Hope feels like a small thing at the moment – the hard green apples waiting to ripen, the half-filled pea-pods. A domestic thing. I am narrowing my gaze, because the world feels too big, too precarious, and I feel helpless.
But perhaps that’s how hope always starts – as a green shoot coming up through the burnt earth, as a child folding a paper crane.
peace comes at twilight green things growing silently sun rising with hope
This is a haibun for dVerse. Frank is hosting tonight. He reminds us that last year we wrote about the anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing. This year, he wants us to commemorate that bombing, but to write about the hope that can emerge from tragedy.
I’ve just read “A Tale for the Time Being” by Ruth Ozeki. She mentions the fact that Japanese schoolchildren folded 1,000 origami cranes for peace after 9/11. I was moved at how this connected back to the story of Sadako, who developed leukaemia after being exposed to radiation at Hiroshima. If there is hope, it is in the hands of children.
Oh, all the lovely freckled things the speckled things, the thrush’s breast and the trout’s belly and the blue egg nestled in mud and feathers and your sweet face and the sunlight on the water and the dancing shadows of the leaves.
This is a call for poems by women for a celebration of International Women’s Day 2020.We are seeking poetry from international poets as part of the first Festival of Women’s Voices to be held in Great Torrington, Devon, UK. There will be a range of workshops and performances during the festival, including poetry, movement, and listening, along with talks from inspirational women who have overcome adversity to find their own voices.
As part of the festival, we want to showcase women’s voices round the world. We are seeking poems on the theme of “Finding a voice”. Poems should be under 30 lines. All poems will be displayed in the venue – our beautifully restored Town and Community Hall, which dates back to 1861 -the photograph above is taken from the North Devon Gazette. We will also be putting together an anthology from poems received from around the world, and poems produced in the festival workshops.
I hope you feel inspired to contribute to this amazing event!
Please send your poems as a Word attachment to firstname.lastname@example.org, along with a brief biography. You are welcome to send a poem that has been published on line before, but if you want to be part of the anthology, please make sure we have the right to publish it. All rights will remain with you.
The closing date for submissions is 31 December 2019.
I’m really looking forward to hearing from you. Please feel free to share this post.
The first night in orbit, I dreamt I was the moon. I dreamt that the beings down there – and what would they be? Would they be recognisable as life? – gazed up and saw my face, cold and white and beautiful, and worshipped me.
I didn’t tell the rest of the crew about my dream, but I carried it with me through the days that followed, as we scanned the landscape below us, looking for variations in temperature, in colour; mapping oceans and continents. I carried it with me as I put on my spacesuit and strapped myself into the pod that would take us down there, to see it all for ourselves.
As I stepped from the pod, I looked up. The ship was there, reassuring, glowing. Not a moon, but a new star in an alien sky. Who else had seen it?
My offering for the Prosery prompt at dVerse. I’m hosting there tonight. Our prompt phrase is “I dreamt I was the moon”, from Full Moon by Alice Oswald.
That morning we dressed in our finest clothes to say goodbye. Four children – our brightest, bravest, strongest – were leaving us.
My daughter hugged me tightly before she went. I held back my tears. How could I cry when her face was so full of hope? She was going to the City.
Nobody knows what happens there. There are stories – strange, or brilliant, or terrible – but no-one ever leaves, only the blank faced soldiers who come for our children. All we see are the lights in the distance.
That night, I dreamt I was the moon, watching them make their way down stony paths, a trickle of people, joining other, until they made a torrent heading towards the great gates of the city. Like the moon, I could watch them, but I couldn’t call to them. I was trapped in my own silence.
My second piece for the dVerse Prosery prompt. I’m hosting, so I did have advance warning!