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Rise, Ye Sea Slugs! Paperback – 31 Oct 2003

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Product details

  • Paperback: 484 pages
  • Publisher: Paraverse Press (31 Oct. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0974261807
  • ISBN-13: 978-0974261805
  • Product Dimensions: 18.9 x 2.5 x 24.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,820,527 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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First Sentence
The sea slug is not so catholic a winter phenomenon as coldness, snow, dead trees or iced-over lakes. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mr. P. G. Smith on 22 Mar. 2010
Format: Paperback
This beautifully written, somewhat schizophrenic book, now has permanent place on my coffee table. Look at the dimensions carefully before buying, it's quite large!
I find this book a joy, as it can be used in so many ways: To sit down and lose oneself in for a while; to pick up in passing and consume a morsel of erudition; and (my favourite) to watch the look on my guests faces as they are inexorably drawn to it by title and design, open it at random, and try to work out what it is / is for / is about! Do not try and read it all at once - your head is likely to explode ;-)
Professor Gill's writing is delightful, clearly demonstrating his fascination with, and enjoyment of, so many different strands of life and art. This book will make you want to source all his other books, and all the references he quotes in the huge bibliography. Whether you are interested in reading haiku for your own pleasure, studying haiku academically as art or as history, studying Japanese culture and food (yes, they eat these icky things!), or having an interest in the natural world and the life under the seas, this book will enthrall, divert and delight.
The title is somewhat confusing, as the haiku and natural history in the book are about sea cucumbers (Holothurians, a subgroup of Echinoderms) and not sea slugs (Nudibranchs, gastropod molluscs) but Prof. Gill explains very neatly in the foreword that 'slug' is much more likely to fit into a short-meter poem than 'cucumber', and they are both, after all, fairly small slimy soft-bodied sea-floor-dwellers. Such flexibility, as well as Prof. Gill's clear sense of humour, mark this book out as a labour of love, and much more than an academic text in any subject area.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book as soon as it came out. It's simply awesome. If you want to know the potential of haiku, buy this.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4 reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Delectable! 29 Nov. 2003
By Nancy Flaherty - Published on
Format: Paperback
Sea slugs (in this case "sea cucumbers") may not be everyone's cup of tea, but this collection warrants a good read by anyone interested in pure fun, not to mention haiku and senryu, marine biology, the hair-raising problems of translation and cross-cultural communications, and, more fundamentally, what the heck a seasonal reference in a haiku might mean.
For those already familiar with R. H. Blyth's 4-volume <em>Haiku</em> or my own <em>Haiku World</em>, <em>Rise, Ye Sea Slugs!</em> offers a deep view of the place of seasonal phenomena in Japanese haiku and senryu. Robin Gill brings some 1,000 poems to demonstrate the tremendous range and depth inherent in one modest Japanese seasonal topic, <em>namako</em>, and in so doing shows us how incredibly rich the inclusion of a season word can make one of these short poems. Also, his method of multiple, pungent translations of many of the poems gives a more rounded view of each than that achieved by most translators in the field. (Perhaps only 10-20 of these poems have been previously translated into English. Gill includes original Japanese and romanized texts, as well as word-for-word trots of each poem, along with his witty and usually dead-on translations.)
The ultimate worth of this book will be the striking questions it raises about the (im)possibility of bridging cultural and linguistic gaps, and the wonderful fun to be had along the way. It also forms a tutorial on the packed meanings of well-written poems in the tradition, and challenges those of us who think we write "haiku" in other languages to revise our views of that enterprise.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Sea Slug-Fest 16 May 2006
By chibi - Published on
Format: Paperback
Mr. Gill has a knack with translating haiku. His technical prowess is top-drawer! It is a brilliant slant on sea slugs, a foil, to explore the layered depth and soft heart of haiku.

Rise Ye Sea Slugs is a thick and rich treatment that will take time (and you should take time) to enjoy.

As a student of haiku, I find his treatment of the Japanese language invaluable in giving context to its use in poetry. I will continue to use his work(s) as helpful and joyful references.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
A Feast of Gargantuan Proportions for the Lover of Haiku 8 April 2008
By Poetcomic1 - Published on
Format: Paperback
Gill's books on Sea Slugs (as well as his equally fine Cherry Blossoms book) are a rousing death blow to the Western image of 'haiku' and the 'haiku' sensibility as something 'precious' and affected. . Goodbye to the tasteful 'one or two to a page' presentation of haiku as little 'jewels' of enlightenment. These crowded sprawling pages are full of humor, good cheer, wonder and segue effortlessly from lowest burlesque to the sublime. As a long-time writer of haiku I thank Mr. Gill for liberating me from the unseen shackles Western haiku has worn for a half a century and more.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
What you expect, and more 8 April 2013
By fisqa - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I expected this book to only display lots of haiku translation, it turn out to be more. Not only it provides explanation about the haiku, but also anything I want to know about Sea Slug. It's a literary product and encyclopedia, all in 1 complete package. Do I get my money worth? MORE!
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