May 31 • 40M

Wayfaring Poet Profile: Kamo no Chōmei

with Reflections on the Distinction Between Hermits and Recluses

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Appears in this episode

Frank Inzan Owen
an exploration of Wayfaring, ancient and modern
Episode details

Recreation of the mountain hut of Kamo no Chōmei

In this episode of The Poet’s Dreamingbody, we explore a Wayfarer from early Japan, Kamo no Chōmei (1155-1216), a townsman-turned-Buddhist hermit-poet, who eventually became a mountain recluse. In addition to his own poetry published as Kamo no Chōmei-shu, and two other texts, the Mumyōshō (a treatise on poetry) and Hosshinshū (a collection of tales about wandering holy people and hermits), Chōmei is the author of the famous Hōjōki: Record of a Ten Foot Square Hut.


Hōjōki: Visions of a Torn World, translated by Yosubiko Moriguchi and David Jenkins

Four Huts: Asian Writings on the Simple Life, translated by Burton Watson

Hōjōki: A Hermit’s Hut As Metaphor, translated and annotated by Matthew Stravos

Kenkō and Chōmei: Essays in Idleness and Hōjōki, translated by Meredith McKinney


Sacred Mountains, Louigi Verona

Shingetsu, Bronwyn Kirkpatrick

Kitsune, Jarguna and Alcvin Ryuzen Ramos


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