Shuson Kato Poems

Shuson Kato (1905-1993) was a prominent Japanese poet celebrated for his profound contributions to modern haiku poetry. As a master of the form, Kato’s poems captivate readers with their exquisite simplicity and deep insight into the human experience.

Influenced by Zen Buddhism and the natural world, his verses often explore themes of transience, mindfulness, and the beauty of everyday moments. Kato’s unique poetic style combines traditional aesthetics with modern sensibilities, producing evocative and thought-provoking works.

I kill an ant

by Shuson Kato

‘I kill an ant’ by Shuson Kato depicts someone killing an ant and realizing that their children were watching them.

Shuson Kato was a Japanese poet who wrote in a variety of styles, including tanka and haiku. His poetry often focused on the natural world and explored the themes of impermanence, spirituality, and the beauty of the everyday. 'I kill an ant' is his best-known poem and a wonderful example of his verse. The poem challenges readers to consider a variety of important themes in only a few lines.

I kill an ant

and realize my three children  

have been watching

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