I love you as the dry earth loves the rain
and your voice is as sweet as the sound of the rain
you have walked through the desert with me
your footsteps as soft as the gentle rain
you have nurtured me like a young tree
that turns its leaves to the touch of the rain
you have come to me through the darkness
the sound of thunder, the driving rain
you have filled the fruit on my boughs
with sweet juices for those who thirst for rain
you have softened the glare of the sun for me
gentled the heat like cooling rain
you have swept me down to the wide ocean
a river filled with the bounteous rain
you have washed the veil from this princess and left her naked in the summer rain
So, I have given in to the ghazal and gone for the lushly romantic. Each stanza stands alone, I think, and together they create a flower with many petals. Or something like that. This is for the dVerse Form for All project for June, hosted by Gay. I’m linking up to the dVerse Open Link night, too.
I think I’m looking for something – something to stitch me to the world, the way the birds stitch the hedge to the sky
I will drink the wingbeat of the swallow
or I’m looking for something
to carry with me
through the day
even today, the sky grubby
trapping the sounds
who would have thought there’d be so many wrens?
suck it down, the warning call,
the zip trill song
and the sudden shock
of crows thudding
from the last ash
wood-pigeon fires bullets with its wings
sweep and glide
across the ploughed field
sharp spikes of life
in rows and squares and lines
on the round roll of the land
scent of violet
and the first dog-rose
I’m stitched in place
warning thud thud thud rabbit sentinel guarding the warren home
We took the quieter path through the trees. It runs alongside an old canal, a memorial in itself to local people who carved it out of the steep hillside. We walked the old towpath – single person narrow – above the river and beside the canal itself, empty of water, but full of nettles, red campion, dog’s mercury. We stopped to read the names carved into the bark of a beech tree – Layla 7 years old Jack 4 years old. We wondered who they were; worked out they might be in their thirties now, with children of their own. We wondered who had carved this green memorial, and why. The beech tree kept its secret, even though the leaves were whispering all around us.
trees are green guardsmen
river water slow and silent
time blurs all our names.
I went on a poetry walking workshop on Sunday, with Chris from Poetry Pin. We walked, wrote poems, and pinned them to a virtual map, so that future poetry lovers can read them in the place they were written. Along the way we found a beech tree with these names carved into the bark. We wrote a poem there, so if you’re ever on the Tarka Trail, you can read it and connect with us on a wet Sunday in May.
This haibun commemorates that walk. It’s a memorial of a memorial, maybe. It’s written for Frank, who is hosting haibun night at dVerse tonight. It’s Veterans’ Day in the States, and we are asked to write about memorials.
So, lately I’ve been thinking about wood, the way it ages. The way the beauty of it is in the stubborness, the drive to growth, the knottiness. I’ve been thinking about how a tree holds its memories on the inside, grows out and up, reaching for the sky. I’ve been thinking about beeswax: feeding the table, attending to the scratched surface, the scars we’ve made through living, the stains that have gone deep, deep into the wood, sunk under the surface. I’ve been thinking about driftwood, shaped by the sea, but keeping its own essential twists and turns, the smoothness of wood, the splinters. I’ve been thinking about the willow slips that sprout, put out roots and leaves, so determined to grow, to green.
Amaya is hosting at dVerse tonight, and we are thinking about traditional views of the elements that make us up as people – and the world, too, I guess. I don’t believe in astrology, doesn’t make sense to me, but I know a lot of people do. If you are interested, my zodiac sign is earth, my Chinese sign is fire -but my Chinese year is wood. I’ve also worked on the principle that everything you write is about yourself at some level. This is my meditation on wood.
We go to the sea, find a place to breathe and sigh; somehow we believe each wave sets us free – we fly – everything we see adds strength to this creed.
From the world we flee, you are next to me, you’re my love, my apple tree, oh, you nourish me, and I find a place to breathe: we go to the sea.
This is a Lai Nouveau, for this month’s Form for All prompt for dVerse. I have to say, I’m finding this the hardest form so far. It’s so small, so structured, so rhyme-y. It’s hard to say anything that isn’t a cliche. Apparently the English language has a shortage of rhymes – Italian is much easier to rhyme in. That’s my excuse, anyway.