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The Kokinshu, compiled around 905 C.E. in 20 thematic books, was the first imperial anthology of Japanese poetry. It was an enormous success, becoming a cultural touchstone that defined the acceptable topics, diction, imagery, and style of court poetry for the next thousand years. Haiku poets took many cues from this tradition, including giving primacy to seasonal imagery.Ice Melts in the Wind is an exciting new translation of the six books of seasonal poems, depicting the progression from New Year's Day through spring cherry blossoms and summer cuckoo songs to autumn's colorful leaves and winter's snow, ending again with the New Year. Japanese text and commentary is included for every poem, along with brief biographies of all named poets.