Sky haibun for D’verse

West Cork sunsets 2015 001All day, we’ve watched the sky, as if it were some ancient god, powerful and unpredictable. At lunch time great purple storm clouds boiled up from the west, but by mid afternoon the sky was clear, bright blue – like a gannet’s mad eye – scattered with wisps of white gauze. Right now, there are deep grey clouds rolling down almost to the horizon, opaque and ominous, but below them there’s a band of duck egg blue, like an angel’s robe. Swallows are flying high, a hopeful sign, weaving a complex sigil – warp and weft – across the darkening evening sky.

Dart and dance, swallow,
Call up a shimmering sky,
Weave a blue morning.

A haibun for Kanzensakura, over at D’verse
. She’s keeping bar there, and she’ll explain exactly how to write a haibun – not something you get from most bar tenders around here!

Tanka romantica!

The moonlight touches

Your hair and moves on – seeking –

But not finding such

Softness – such fragrance – in all

The twilight scented garden.


This is a tanka, a very ancient Japanese form, written for Kanzensakura over at dverse.  It’s a short, romantic form, with a syllable pattern 5-7-5-7-7

Far far away – microfiction#10 for Jane Dougherty.

In the city there is a fountain. Under the fountain there is a serpent.

If you can tell a good enough story the serpent will grant you a wish.

To reach the city you must walk over seven hills, ford seven rivers, and battle through seven forests. Don’t speak to anyone – not the beautiful girl who offers apples, or the old woman who asks for bread. Don’t turn aside to pick the roses that grow beside the path, or to warm yourself at the fires the woodmen make at night.

When you reach the city, the gate will be locked. Prick your finger 5 times and write your name on the gate in red blood. The gate will open for you.

You must enter the city barefoot, at dawn.

The city is made of glass, and shines in the sun as if it is made of fire. Buildings will shatter around you at times, cutting you. You must stay silent. As the sun strengthens, the glass will burn your feet.

When you reach the fountain, you must wash yourself and then tell your story. If the serpent offers you a wish, you must first refuse politely.

Then wish yourself home.

This is for Jane Dougherty’s Microfiction challenge. The image is by Theodore Kittelson, and Jane has asked us for a fairy tale. I don’t know if this is quite a fairy tale, but I started writing something else, and 200 words is JUST NOT ENOUGH. So this strange little thing emerged.

For anyone who’s interested, Stella is fine, but having a bit of a rest at the moment. I  have worked out a couple more episodes, and may well post them, but I think we all need a bit of a rest from her…

Dawn Ghazal – for Jane Dougherty

Love should not hide itself in darkest night,
Wait here with me for morning’s pearly light.

Last night you feasted on me with your lips,
Now see me here, adorned in pearly light.

We planted secrets in our bed of clouds,
Now let them bloom in warming, pearly light.

We merged ourselves, joined skin to skin to skin,

So stay, heed not the warning, pearly light.

None of us knows what each new day will bring,
Stay close, bathe in the dawning pearly light.

The very wonderful Jane Dougherty has taken time out from promoting her NEW BOOK!!! and very kindly set us the challenge of writing a ghazal. It’s another formal form, and it’s a bit tricky getting it to flow naturally, but I’ve given it a go!



The woman who preserves – a jar quadrille for D’verse

She has weighed
And stirred,
And strained –
And now the summer
Stands preserved
In neatly labelled
Jars, placed
In orderly lines
To gather dust
And fade, discretely.

But I wish,
Just once,
She would gorge
Herself, and turn
With juice stained


Bjorn is tending bar at D’verse, and has asked us to write a quadrille containing the word “jar”. So I have. And you can, too. 

Three moons – a trilune for Jane Dougherty

Three coins lay in the palm of my hand.

What to spend them on? First, on your thoughts,

Your hopes, your dreams. It seemed a fair price.

Second, on a great white horse, still running,

The night clouds parting before its hooves,

As it makes its own path through the skies.

Third, on the gleaming ghost of a kiss,

Fragile, hung on a fine silver chain,

What’s left in the grate, when the fire dies.