Sunday, October 23, 2016

Felino A. Soriano writes

Of this Momentum Song (forty-five)

   We harmony

  here and     settle into

     language.  Green is

  landscape is     gone

    by night’s graying



 whole size eclipse

the distance talks

  into us     into

 what covers our




  Harp hangs

 onto the neck

   of what we’re


praised forward

 each song in echoed

vibration    casting


  our listening     our

 language of understanding,

   unused energy.  To listen

 is to speak of origami’s

     whimsy, of the creased

                        air among

  what folds our watching—

 in waiting the body

   begins its peeled


 invention, a what for? in

  emblem-speech     fire off

the tongue, freedom






 Image result for origami painting

 Black & White Origami Crane Painting -- Nanami Cowdroy


  1. Origami (ori = "folding" + kami = "paper") is the art of folding a flat square of aper into a three-dimensional sculpture. Some claim the art originated in China around 2000 years ago, but they assume that the art developed soon after the invention of paper; however, no evidence of this exists. The Chinese word for paper, "zhi," originally meant silk writing material, while "kami" was derived from "kaba" (birch) or "kan" (bamboo) strips used as writing material. Abe no Seimei was a 10th-century astrologer and onmyōji, making calendars and advising the emperor on the spiritually correct way to deal with issues, conducting exorcisms, warding against evil spirits, and performing various rites of geomancy. He was said to be especially skilled in divining the sex of fetuses and finding lost objects. He is credited with writing the "Senji Ryakketsu," an onmyōdo primer, and, due to his influence, the Abe clan came to control the Onmyōryō, the government ministry of onmyōdō. The mystical symbol, the pentagram, is known in Japan as the "Seiman" (the Seal of Abe no Seimei). His mother was reputedly a kitsune (a "fox spirit"). Many tales were told about his rivalry with Ashiya Doman; in one, Doman had 15 oranges put into a box and then "divined" the contents, but Seimei changed the oranges into rats and revealed the true contents. In one legend, he turned a paper bird into a real one, which is sometimes believed to be an early reference to origami, but there is no mention of his folding the paper. Similarly, Fujiwara-no Kiyosuke, a 12th-century poet/scholar, sent his ex-girlfriend a fake frog, but there is no overt connection to origami. The word "origami" originated at that time (the Heian era), but it referred to a form of writing. The art of folding paper developed during the Edo period, when it was referred to at first as "orisue" or "orikata" and later as "orimono." It was part of the stylized manners of the samurai class and was differentiated by various folding patterns depending on the ceremonial purpose.

  2. The oldest unequivocal reference to origami is a short poem composed by Ihara Saikaku in 1680:

    The butterflies
    in Rosei's dream
    would be origami.

    The reference is to the Ocho Mecho (Male and Female Butterflies) model of origami used to wrap sake bottles at Shinto weddings. Ihara was a prolific poet. In 1675, days after the death of his wife, he composed "Haikai Dokugin Ichinich" (Haikai Single Day Thousand Verse) in 12 hours and in 1677 reputedly composed over 16,000 (some say over 23,500) stanzas of haikai no renga (linked verse) stanzas in one all-day sitting; this was part of a popular pastime, "yakazu haikai" (counting arrow poems). On another occasion he perfomed a public haiku marathon at the Sumiyoshi shrine in Osaka at which he produced 10,000 verses in 24 hours, and in 1684, prodded by the younger poet Kikaku, he orally composed 23,500 haiku verses in a similar exhibition; as Kikaku recalled,

    he gallops away
    20,000 stanzas, while this fly
    gasps for air

    Akisato Rito published "Sembazuru Orikata" in 1797. "Sembazuru" now means "one thousand cranes," but in the 18th century it meant dozens of connected "orizuru" folded from one sheet of paper. However, the Japanese did not call paper folding "origami" until the 20th century. Europeans, who had independently developed their own paper folding traditions at about the same time as the Japanese, did not use the word "origami" until the 1950s. In the mid-19th century, Friedrich Fröbel created the concept of kindergarten, based on forms of beauty, knowledge, and life, all of which employed origami methods, particularly the German art of napkin folding. The Japanese imported the Fröbelian kindergarten movement, along with many other German institutions, late in the 19th century, including his paper folding designs, which exluded cutting, gluing, or marking the paper; they also started making kami, a square of Western paper colored on one side, instead of the traditional washi paper made from the bark of gampi trees, mitsumata shrubs, paper mulberry, bamboo, hemp, rice, or wheat, in order to meet the need to teach Fröbelian origami in kindergarden. Western kindergartens adopted classic Japanese origami. So modern origami is a hybrid of the two. After World War II, Uchiyama Kosho began patenting his origami models and developed abstract patterns based on geometric patterns, and he shaped unique art works by folding multi-layered washi dyed by himself. Yoshizawa Akira was responsible for a number of innovations, such as wet-folding and the Yoshizawa–Randlett diagram notation system, and his work inspired a renaissance of the art form. Fujimoto Shuzo was the first to explore twist-fold tessellations in any systematic way, coming up with dozens of patterns and establishing the genre in the origami mainstream. In the 1980s folders started systematically studying the mathematical properties of folded forms, leading to a rapid increase in the complexity of origami models.


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