26. Two Haiku Lines of Benibana (紅花二句)
These two haiku lines are said to be created by Basho Matsuo (松尾芭蕉) three hundreds years ago, in 1689 on the way of the tour around the Tohoku districts. It was on May 17 when he arrived at Obanazawa (尾花沢) and left for Oishida (大石田) on June 1. At this season, benibana seemed to be in full bloom, he visited Yamadera on May 27 and 28, in the solar calendar on July 13 and 14. He had been advised to visit there. The full bloom along the road seemed to charm him deeply. Mr. Shinichi Konta (今田信一氏), who is a researcher of benibana says that if we appreciate these two lines, "Mayuhaki" (眉掃) line comes from his impression of a pretty flower and "Yukusue" (行末) line is produced a gorgeous bloom of the flower".
Benibana's northern growing limit is Higashine, but, there, they laid the seeds at the beginning of April and then a flower usually comes at the middle of July. On the other hand, they laid the seeds on April 4 or 5, then a flower usually comes on July 2 or 3. To think of the appreciation of two lines above, the first line expresses Higashine blooming and the second one expresses the prosperous blooming along Yamadera area.
Basho created these two lines via visiting Risshakuji Temple(立石寺) of Yamadera, where he went down from Obanazawa and also created one of the most famous haiku line "Cicada" ("静けさや岩にしみいる蝉の声").