April 26, 2011

Farewell Sakura

Early sunset in Nara Park.

Sakura(cherry blossoms) season  almost comes to an end, leaving me many precious memories.  During the Sakura season, people would  take a journey to visit Sakura viewing spots one by one.  It seemed to me as if they made a Sakura pilgrimage to leave burdens of their mind at Sakura.

This is three hundred years old  weeping cherry tree in Nara, which is named "Matabe"  after a  notable Samurai warrior. This magnificent cherry tree is bending its body and reaching out for the people.  Its branches look like saving hands of one-thousand-handed Kannon Bodhisattva, Buddhist embodiment of mercy and compassion.   

Villagers planted peach trees and rape blossoms around the tree
so that it would not be lonely.

Kiyomizu-dera Temple is one of the  most popular Sakura viewing spots in Kyoto. The main hall of the temple is famous for its platform projecting over the cliff. The hall is dedicated to the eleven-faced Kannon Bodhisattva. As the platform is surrounded by the lit-up Sakura , it seems as if it is floating  in the vast pink clouds.  But personally I prefer viewing Sakura in the natural light to lit-up ones.
 I especially love to view Sakura in early sunset. Against soft sunlight, the  petals of Sakura start to twinkle and show elegant  luster. The sunset at this time of the year is gently graceful.
The deer in Nara Park are waiting for this special time.  Once a year they eat petals of Sakura. Usually the deer eat grass, leaves or acorns which are rather hard. So soft and fragrant petals of Sakura are spring delicacy for them. The whitish pink carpets of the petals cover gently rolling hills where the deer are roaming,
The petals are on the nose. This adorable scenery  pleasures to the eye.
 


Both famous and unknown Sakura are beautiful.  No difference. People  label them. 

Nara-no-Yae-Zakura (eight-petaled Sakua) which are indigenous in Nara will be soon in full bloom. They are the last Sakura flowers to bloom in Nara. They are designated as the symbol flower of Nara city and prefecture.

Emblem of Nara city

The deer are going home and I also feel like going home.

This year for me Sakura trees look like Kannon Bodhisattva, Buddhist deity of compassion and mercy. Kannon transforms himself into 33 manifestations to save people in suffering. Maybe Sakura has been one of 33 manifestations.  Just we didn't know it.

Thank you Sakura and Farewell Sakura.!!

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25 comments:

  1. OMG! And you had a chance to see all this and capture it with your camera! I really don't have enough words to express my feelings about all this beauty. Unbelievable!

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  2. OH, Snow White!!! This is such a beautiful post...every photo is a treasure! I visited Nara in the summer and spring seasons. I SO enjoyed the Sakura when I was there in 2008. The deer are delightful...I LOVE your last photo of the little guy...SO SO adorable! I always look forward to your posts!

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  3. this beauty is astounding - these photos will last a lifetime in their beauty. thanks for the tour of Sakura. a wonderful post Keiko, I'm so happy you've shared this and enabled me to experience Sakura from afar. have a great week.

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  4. Oh These photos are stunningly beautiful, snowwhite! Here cherry blossoms are almost gone except double-flowered cherry trees. They are in full bloom now. The deer in the larger photo looks so lovely. I always want sakura to stay longer and miss somei-yoshino blossoms very much. Thanks for sharing!

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  5. Fantastic shots. The Sakura tree and blossoms are beautiful. I just love the shot of the deer with the blossoms on its face. How cute is that!

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  6. What an awesome post, Snow White! Such incredible beauty and that you were able to capture it with your camera is fantastic. The Sakura tree and all the blossoms are breathtaking! I, too, love the shot of the deer with the blossoms on its face. Thank you so much for sharing the incredible beauty of your world with us! Have a great week!

    Sylvia

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  7. You've really taken some beautiful pictures. I love sakura and I am always sad to see the end of the sakura season. Ah, until next year beautiful sakura. :-)

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  8. You took many beautiful photos of sakura! Seeing many petals fallen on the ground of Nara Park makes me a little bit sad, but the scene always tell me Golden week holidays will come soon, and our sons come back to see us,my husband and me. Thank you for sharing!!

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  9. Wow wow and more wow! You've really outdone yourself with these lovely shots!

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  10. I enjoyed again Sakura in various scenes through your splended photos.
    Deer with petals on its nose is so cute, and I remembered this tanka poem. Maybe you like it.
    かれの手が撫でたる犬がわれに来て鼻濡れているこの世の時間 源 陽子

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  11. i love your photos! I love sakura and I love those cute deers with sakura leaves on their nose. really awesome captures!

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  12. Until next year! At least you have these wonderful photos to remind you of the Sakuras' beauty until next April.

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  13. The cherry blossoms are so beautiful. I especially like the photo with the deer. The water shot reflects the pastels. Just gorgeous!

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  14. So many beautiful images,Nara Park looks like a very special place.I love the deer with the petal on it's nose.Lovely to have this flower as the emblem of your city.
    Thank you Snowwhite!

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  15. Such beautiful photographs, you have a gift for story telling that is so enjoyable. Thank you x

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  16. Beautiful shots. All good things come to end end. But yo will soon find something new good.

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  17. These are beautiful photographs. The blossoms are as lovely off the tree as on them.

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  18. The spring of Nara has a particular lingering sound.
    It is the atmosphere that I can sense bodily only there "Nara".

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  19. those are such beautiful and enchanting images. the deer with petals on the nose are so cute!

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  20. Yes, maybe Sakura IS one of the 33 manifestations. Thank you for sharing this lovely season with us! The Sakura are beautiful, but I especially loved the 3 deer enjoying the bed of petals, and the petals sticking to their noses!

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  21. You took here the spirit of the moment with such an art... Very impressive pictures, indeed !

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  22. The beauty of the place is breathtaking. It must be like entering a fairy tale to see it in person. Thank you so much for showing it to us in your lovely photos.

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  23. what a lovely post, I love the sakura too and am sad when they fade (ours have lost most of their petals now!). The deer seem to really enjoy their petal feast!

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  24. many beautiful shots - here the wind has taken care of most of the cherry blossom now - lovely while it lasted though.

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  25. Thanks for all the great photos and "sakura" stories. I have borrowed from them shamelessly. And here's another sakura story you may be interested in, although it is not about Nara. Perhaps you can even add to the story: "Atomic-blasted cherry trees 被爆桜"

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Thanks a lot for visiting my blog and leaving warm messages. I will visit your site soon. keiko