Hawk in the air

This one, on Frank Tassone’s ‘hawk’ theme is for the great lady of letters who has just left us, flown to a better world than this. Bonne route, Ursula.


I would be

a hawk in the air and spit

in winter’s eye.



For the dverse prompt, a poisonous plant haibun. Linguists might be interested in the wikipedia entry for Throstle.


He dipped the point in mistletoe and pressed blind Hodr to join the sport. A brutish game it seems to us, to beat and pound and stab and spear, but times were different then and life was harsh. So Baldr died, and all of Asgard wept and swept the world to find the fiend. (Did Loki ever do a bit of good?) Odin caught him in the end, devised a suitable unsubtle ending, long, drawn out and with plenty of collateral damage.

Times were different then. They didn’t know that one mistletoe berry never killed anybody.

Sticky moon berries,

winter harvest for throstles—

ancient rituals.

Twittering Tales: Fire

This little tale of 205 characters is for Kat Myrman’s Twittering Tuesday.

Photo by hschmider at


They thought they were safe from the world’s problems in their luxury chalets. The expensive boutiques, restaurants and security of the mountain resort kept out the riff-raff. But not determined arsonists.


This haibun is for the dverse prompt about handwriting. As a lefty, I had a hard time mastering the knack of writing. What motivated me to overcome the difficulties was a childhood obsession with the shape of letters and the pictures they make.


From left-handed struggling to make the shape of the words as beautiful as the sound, with the examples of uncial script and italic, from the Book of Kells and the Lindisfarne Gospels, I shaped the loops and strokes into a form of art. In my eyes, words have always formed a frieze as weighty as the Bayeux Tapestry, the souls of their writers singing out in their graceful script. The child, inspired by the pictures and the colours in the capitals, the gold leaf and the vivid tints, formed by chilblained fingers in some long dead chapter house, writes still, guided by the hands of all those dead artists.

A leaf falls slowly,

parabola, wind-lifted,

telling autumn’s tale.