Chasing Fireflies is an interactive collection of haiku by the great Japanese masters . . . reimagined for the iPad.

Each poem lives within a beautifully evolving background, moving through the cycles of the seasons in perfect harmony.

Haikus written by the Japanese poets, Basho, Buson, Kikaku and Issa are presented and told in an interactive environment. Here’s a video:

“Our job here was to enhance some of the best poetry ever written,” said Ryan Modjeski, CEO of Honeybee Labs to Publishers Weekly.

“I remembered learning about the concept that haiku had embedded keywords, called ‘kigo’,  in each poem that inform the time of year the poem is meant to evoke. We took that idea and ran with it. I tracked down some phenomenal public domain haiku translations, and went about selecting the poems that really resonated with me, had a universal appeal, and covered a full range of emotions. We then matched the poems and their ‘kigo’ to the appropriate seasonal landscape.”

Chasing Fireflies has a minimalist design and soundtrack, meant to enhance rather than compete with the poetry, which is the app’s center. Leaves can be shaken out of trees, lights can be turned on in houses; the app’s table of contents is a wheel, “signaling a book that has no beginning or end, no better place to start or finish, but instead it loops around itself as it passes from spring to summer to fall to winter and back again.” Modjeski continued: “Then to further that cyclical metaphor, the user is able to rotate their tablet to see a new perspective on the landscape and page layout for each of the four orientations of the tablet.”

Chasing Fireflies is available now in the App Store for $3.99.