Aug 30, 2012
On a quiet autumn evening more than 200 years ago, a retired imperial prince sat patiently on the polished bamboo floor of the veranda waiting for the moon’s reflection to shimmer across the pond of one of the world’s most exquisite gardens at Katsura Imperial Villa in western Kyoto. As it rose in the sky, he lifted his sake cup to catch its reflection and bring him good luck in love—something even emperors need.
Here in Portland, we have a place patterned after just such a garden, where people gather to sit and wait for that very same moon to raise high in the evening sky in autumn.
There is no better place in Portland to share the romance and mystery of the full moon in autumn than from the eastern courtyard of the Portland Japanese Garden Pavilion, with cup of sake in hand, gazing at the harvest moon as it rises above the city.
Moonviewing, or O-Tsukimi, is a traditional Japanese festival which honors the full moon in autumn. On the evenings of September 28, 29, and 30, guests enjoy a quiet evening in the Garden, observe a candle-lit tea ceremony in the Kashintei Tea House and listen to the elegant live music.
Poetry reading and writing have been part of traditional moonviewing events in Japan for centuries. Guests are invited to write their own poetry in honor of the autumn moon and listen to poetry readings in the Garden Pavilion. Sip sake or tea, enjoy a light sampling of seasonal Japanese foods, and experience a rare walk through the lantern-lit Garden during moonlit hours.
Issoan Tea will be presenting Tea Ceremony at Kashintei Tea House on Saturday, September 29.