Beneath dull skies, scraps of cloud glide, silenced by the falling rain. Gulls, grey as daylight, swing low and skim brown waves. Drizzle spits and blows, and even cherry blossom fades into the monochrome. Where did it go the hope in the spring, the surge, hot and green from every new shoot? Already the wind tears the blossom and drops it in the mud of the last rain.

The same gestures repeated over and over, blossoming, dying, waiting for the winter, the same dread of the envelope on the mat, the monotony of not having. The only change is age. Each day adds a few more grams of weight; sky, clouds hang lower, feet drag. I can make silence in my head and let it crowd with memories, but no dreams flow into tomorrow, leaving bright streamers in their wake for me to follow, and memories fade, their time done.

The salt smell of iodine fills the air, heavy and rich and I can feel the ocean rolling beyond the riverโ€™s curve. Clouds break, little by little. Perhaps we will see the sun.


Wind in cold branches,

ephemeral blossom falls,

sky full of fragments.


Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

12 thoughts on “Iode”

  1. The rhythm to this one is especially gorgeous, Jane. It complements the evocative images and bittersweet emotions so well. The haiku is a lovely ending to it, too. Beautiful!

      1. As I said, today is warm, 23ยฐc and the garden is bursting with life, but we’ve spent all afternoon dealing with a washing machine emergency! At least the place should dry out quickly today ๐Ÿ™‚

      2. Oh no! But yes, could be worse, could be raining – then it would never dry out. It’s sunny and warm here too, after some “cold” days. I have to put cold in quotes because that means something entirely different in southern California than it does anywhere else I’ve lived. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      3. Not really. In what they laughingly call “winter” here, I actually appreciate the chance to wear my favorite boots and sweaters for a change. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      4. Oh we definitely complain all the time anyway — you quickly get accustomed to a very narrow range of perfect weather, and anything else is just *ghastly*. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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