NaPoWriMo 2 ~ Shishi ~ The paired lion-dogs that guard the entrances of temples

This haiku is inspired by one of the creatures from from Japanese legend. Shishi is the paired lion-dogs, one male and one female, that guard the entrances to Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples. The Shishi have magical powers to repel evil.
Jp. = Shishi 獅子 or Kara Shishi 唐獅子, Chn. = Shíshī
Also known as Koma-inu 狛犬 (lion dog) in Japan

I chose this topic for two reasons. Firstly I have a cast iron garden chair which is very decorative and it has a lion head at the end of each arm rest. Secondly, one of my daughters used to be a dancer and she worked in Japan for a year when she left LIPA (Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts). She loved Japan and the people she worked for who were so kind to her. One day she went for a trip to see a newly built temple. In order to raise money to complete the temple roof tiles were being sold with a dedication on them. Knowing that my interests are spiritual she Paid for a tile to have my name and a blessing carved on it. I think it is probably one of the most unusual, the most thoughtful, and the most wonderful thing anyone has ever done for me.

Serene and smiling

Weathered guardians of childhood

Casting out evil

Buddhist temple in Willan, UK

Buddhist temple in Willan, UK


3 thoughts on “NaPoWriMo 2 ~ Shishi ~ The paired lion-dogs that guard the entrances of temples

    • Im afraid the haiku was written at midnight as I had my little grandson all day and couldn’t get a minute to myself. However I really want to write more consistently so I would not go to bed til I wrote it!
      Yes Anna, who now lives in Barcelona, danced her way around the world after Uni. Her passion was choreography and contemporary dance but really she was a wonderful dancer herself ~ mind you I am her mum so I think she is great anyway. As you can tell from her gift to me, she is also a wonderful daughter ~ like all my girls. I am truly blessed x


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