空蝉 Utsusemi
-Empty Cicada: This Mortal Life-

For August session, the seasonal word for the month is 空蝉 “Utsusemi“. Utsusemi literally means “an empty locust”, and also defined as “this mortal life”. In the hot and humid summer in Japan, you can hear the sound of 蟬 (semi) – cicadas, everywhere, letting us know that it’s the peak of summer season.  Cicadas lie beneath the earth for 3 to 17 years depending on the species, and eventually emerge above ground as nymph, climb up the trees and shed their larvae shells. They live overground for 4 weeks, only for breeding for their next generation, then fall off the tree. Utsusemi have been used in poetry symbolizing of the beauty of the ephemeral nature of our lives in Japanese culture for hundreds of years. During this hands-on workshop, you will write your choice of words from selected Japanese classic haiku poems themed in Utsusemi.