Thursday, May 13, 2010
Kakitsubata (Rabbit-Ear Iris)
Kakitsubata(燕子花、杜若:Iris laevigata or Rabbit-Ear Iris):
It grows in shallow waters or marshy places and blooms in mid-to-late May. Its petals are partly white. Kakitsubata, ayame and hanasyoubu are confusingly similar in appearance.
Ayame(菖蒲、文目、綾目:Siberian iris or Iris sanguinea) blooms from Early May to Mid-June, prefers dry land and has partly-netted petals.
Hanasyoubu(花菖蒲:Iris ensata var. ensata) blooms from early June to late June, prefers wet land and its petals are partly yellow.
http://dougafreesozai.com/index.html (Japanese version only)
The exhibition "The National Treasure Irises Screens and Rimpa Paintings" is being held at the Nezu Museum(根津美術館) in Minami-Aoyama, Tokyo from April 24th to May 23rd. The highlight is the national treasure "Kakitsubata-zu-Byoubu(燕子花図屏風), which is a pair of gold-ground six-panel screens by Ogata Kourin(尾形 光琳,1658-1716).
The screens depict the scene of the 9th chapter of "The Tales of Ise".
The hero, Ariwara no Narihira(在原業平) made the following poem about kakitsubata in the tales.
"I left behind my wife in the city of Kyoto, and now have come a long way.
Like comfortable clothes, we have come to be comfortable with one another.
The feeling of loneliness come home to me."
This poem includes "KA-KI-TSU-HA(BA)-TA" that is a word of five syllables.
The rabbit-ear irises in the museum's garden are being out of season.
"drawstring pouch in the shape of rabbit-ear iris" designed by Masako Fujimoto
Shigeyoshi Inoue(ed.),Shiki-wo-Irodoru-chirimenzaiku(Tokyo:ONdori Sha,2000),P.13