jornales

for a moment of joy or moments no one pays for, i give myself a ‘jornal’. this makes me rich. try it.

unfinished tales (for One Shoot Sunday)

photo prompt by Neil Alexander

at nightfall
a herded flock of sheep bearing
flasks of prayers
bleat on their steps
toward the temple

in the distance
crows scream for mercy
the broken tower
unleashes bats sniggering
at the sheep

in the darkness
the owl hoots at a pregnant moon
who smiles at shrinking Mars
the stars in his court simpering
conspire with the moon

in the thorny bushes
men braid their way into the night
on their heads their gifts
wobble like heads of wearied gods
once revered

seething fireflies their pin eyes
darting among snoring bees
beguile the men
who mesmerized by the light
melt on their knees

spirits splatter
on yesterday’s thorns turned
night embers burning the temple
far off where prayers thicken
barnacled walls

Dawn fans the dying
souls of the moaning sheep
and the whimpering men
the bats coat the temple tower
with their leavings

on the altar awaiting gifts
the gods disentangle
their limbs but leave their hearts
to morning worshippers
hankering for unfinished tales

Posted for One Shoot Sunday at One Stop Poetry, the gathering place that has been the most fertile ground for my poetry where among the most talented poets and artists whose invaluable nurturing caused me to wildly bloom. I thank Adam, Chris G, Claudia, Pete and Brian’s endless unfailing smiles who are leaving OSP and especially Joy and Jenne, goddesses of the lyrical realm for me, for my growth. Thanks especially for the Sunday page, Chris and Adam, these have driven me to work on original pieces I could never have written. It has been for me a blast of 28 weeks and as you had promised Adam, Chris, Claudia and Brian, I hope to meet you again or please seek me out when you are orbiting in the spheres again! I really can’t thank your enough for your support and uplifting words about each poem I’ve written for OSP.

July 10, 2011 Posted by | free verse, poetry | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

spring breeze/haze/blind alley (random haiku for the day)

spring breeze–
nothing but a touch
from a wisteria tip

haze–
when out of the bushes
a squirrel leaps

blind alley–
between your word and mine
a wrong turn

April 28, 2011 Posted by | haiku, poetry | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

rose hips

rose hips–
my laughter among the bushes
once

There’s that “ache”, again!

“Yes, it seems to be a constant in my lines. I think in my poetry as in my being–because it’s from where our thoughts rise–pain, real or imagined, balances my leaps of joy. It keeps me aware of how flitting life is, beauty is, how un-changeless yet at the same time how much in constant flux this universe is; hence, how treasured each moment must be.”

That and what follows are from comments I’ve pulled out from my posts regarding the “sadness” and the “ache” in my haiku and other poems.

From Jenne Andrews at http://jenneandrews.wordpress.com re my lyric poem, The Birthing, “there is an ache here and in your other poems i’ve seen that is so potent…”

From Patrick Gillespie at http://poemshape.wordpress.com on my haiku winter beach, “One feels that there’s some sorrow in the relationship. One also wonders why, on a cold winter’s day, they are walking so close to the waves…”

From my reply to Patrick on winter beach, “Yes, Patrick (and Jenne), this sad feeling persists in my poetry. The Japanese aesthetics you couldn’t quite recall, when you wrote your comment on my ‘three tanka’ (qarrtsiluni), is not only “wabi”, as I replied but, “wabi-sabi”. I think it is its metaphysical sense that flows into my poems.

As described by Leonard Koren in his book, “Wabi-Sabi for Artists, Designers, Poets & Philosophers” (Stone Bridge Press, Berkeley, California, 1994 that I recently found in a used bookstore, McLeod’s on Dunsmuir St here in Vancouver, a space so tight one could get caught in an avalanche of books, all gems, much like Strands in New York), the metaphysical basis, which he begins with the question, “what is the universe like?” is “Things are either devolving toward, or evolving from, nothingness…While the universe destructs it also constructs. New things emerge out of nothingness…In metaphysical terms wabi-sabi suggests that the universe is in constant motion toward or away from potential.”

It’s a state of mind I seem to have been aware of as long as I can recall. I have always felt rueful about beauty, and always cried, when absolutely uplifted by works of art especially music; I still do both. I have characters in my short stories and my novella, who sense that at the height of happiness there awaits an equal in the depth of sorrow: my female protagonist in my novella-in-progress (editing and rewriting), “Lovers of the Interior“, exemplifies this thought. But that’s another story–a swing away from haiku!”

I do wish that I could veer away from it more often and walk close to Basho who said that haiku should be light as in shallow water (do I recall this right?) Even Shiki who was writing close to his death could still write with a sense of humor as in this haiku (1901 from Kimiyo Tanaka, Shiki team at haikuworld)

full of spring
rotten oranges
how sweet!

Perhaps I should meet up with Mutusumi often, the Japanese friend who pushed away my “dark” haiku and helped me search for “the wing in my heart”, an experience I hope to post soon!

January 18, 2011 Posted by | haiku, poetry, reflection | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments