Bridge of sorrows

Open link night at dverse. A trio of tanka.




over the stream

a bridge—beneath water runs

a stream bright

with spangled hopes and fish leaps

a bridge across sorrows


sorrows bridge night

and day you and me the past

and what is to come

streams of forgotten future

unknown past—bright water flows


beneath the bridge

a stream kingfisher darting

hopes leap silver fish

where sorrows flow wingless

yet we are all kingfishers


Water beneath the bridge

A quadrille for the Secret Keeper’s challenge. It sounds to me like something the oracle might have whispered.

This week’s words:



Water beneath the bridge, you say, carries worries away.

But on what shore does the tide abandon them,

To sink roots, nurture young shoots?

Enter here, roars the river, leave hope for the foolish.

Nothing fades but it leaves a ring of grime behind.

Microfiction: Bridge

Getting my Friday Fictioneers piece in while I feel in tune with the gloomy picture.

Photo © C.E. Ayr


“That’s it,” he said. “The way out.”

If we could climb up to the old footbridge, we could get out beyond the marshalling yards, he’d said. It had never been repaired after the bombing.

“Okay,” I said, willing to follow any plan, clutch at any straw however fragile. “Let’s go. Just tell me, when we get to the end of the bridge, we’ll be safe, won’t we?”

“It’s the edge of the city. No man’s land,” he said.

“But beyond, there’s green stuff and no soldiers, no looters, gangs, no guns?”

He stared down at his hands. “I don’t know.”

Time out of mind

For the Secret Keeper’s weekly writing challenge

This week’s words are



Time out of mind the river’s flowed

Beneath the bridge, where we would stand,

Watching the boats sail to the sea.


Lovers ’fore us had promised here,

To be as constant as the flood,

Time out of mind the river’s flowed.


Box sprigs tied with ribbon bright,

Dropped in the current danced and sped

Beneath the bridge where we would stand.


A strange far land is where you went,

Your secret you did guard it well,

Watching the boats sail to the sea.

Sunrise with bridge

This one is for Ali Isaac who was asking for purple prose

The photo is by Nell. The bridge is by some engineer or other.


Dawn breaks with vibrating motors,
Shattering the smooth, dark softness
Where the moon and fading night stars lie,
Pouring pink paint across the canvas of the sky.
Bridge straddles, unsupple,
Bare concrete, po-faced piers
Smudged by the kindly half-light.
Beneath, water laps,
Rodents stir,
Crows flap, waddle, ungainly and bleak,
Paddling in the tide-washed mud,
And somewhere among the rustling shadows of the bank,
Soar the first bold notes of the robin’s song,
Making half-formed apprentice-work,
Of all the worthy bridges of the world.

Haiku challenge: Bridge & Move

A late entry to Ronovan’s haiku challenge, but I finally did it. What looked like an easy prompt turned out to be quite difficult—for me anyway. Thanks, Ronovan for making my brain work so hard!

Gouache by Franz Niklaus König


The day the bridge fell
river ran free unfettered
eternal motion.

Bridge spans the gulf
stars wheel in endless movement
bringing dreams to birth.

On the bridge light moves
across the rushing river
morning star fading.


And since it’s National Poetry Day, here’s another poem. It’s my blog and I’ll post what I like.


We lean on the rail you and I

Our elbows almost touching but not quite.

Below, the water flows

Tumbling in chaotic cataracts of muddy brown.

Beyond, water blue glitters with captured sun

And clouds trace their snowy course across the icy sky.

Pigeons pass in silent flocks,

Their wings twist and bend like silver foil.

The world is in movement but I would have it still.

I would have it place a finger to your lips and seal them shut.

I would stop time, stop the rush of life and light

To keep this moment in suspense for eternity.

As if this quiet before the truth shatters the surface is life.

You drop a pebble watch it fall.

It leaves no trace, no hole in the river’s eternal flux.

The pebble drops, you speak, and your words fall like pebbles

Into the indifferent brown movement,

Swallowed in the mud brown water.

But deeper than pebbles they fall and fall

Into the brown stillness that was once my heart

And there they settle

And there they will lie forever.

Painting (untitled) by Amadeo de Souza Cardoso