Haibun for stargazing

For the dverse prompt.

The most crowded place in the Milky Way

The night sky is always there though often veiled with cloud or rain, sometimes oranged with glare, sometimes floodlit by full-sailed moon, but the nights of no cloud, no rain, no moon, away from the orange stain that seeps skyward from the unsleeping town, are the nights to be swept into the net of the universe.

Soaring, we reach out to the million million blinking lights of the starcrusted sky, Milky Way spilt and pale, and the great fiery beacons that hold our spellbound gaze, until we see nothing but layers of light, hear nothing but leaves falling.

sky so high
and hung with lights and the dark
with fox-bark

Haibun for small mercies

For the dverse prompt, a local snippet.
Not much happens in our town. Looking back through the regional paper for the last week or so, it looks as if nothing happened at all. I do get FB notifications though from the wild life refuge just outside the town, in a nature reserve, out of bounds to the general public unless on an errand of mercy. Lots of good things happen there. Centre-de-soins-de-la-faune-sauvage-de-Tonneins-

P.S. If you look at the site, the most recent post is about the release of a buse variable, a common buzzard. The FB translation has chosen the other meaning of buse — a nozzle. You have to laugh.

Quiet and slow flows the world these days, but the men with guns still stalk the lazy fields, the wooded pools of the flood plain and its blue sky-gazing ponds, keeping the countryside safe from deer and pigeons. Quiet and slow, and in the river bend where no one walks, not even armed, is where the healing works. Here in the quiet, we take our foundlings, babies bereft, broken or off course, weak, wounded or too weary to care, and in the quiet on the river bend, on this domain, out of bounds of gun and dogs, pieces of life are patched up, wild lives reclaimed. So many small victories beneath the hail.
after the floods
and winter frosts the daffodils
always shine

Haibun for the next quarter of the year

For the dverse prompt.

The darker half of the year begins with fire. What more magnificent tribute to the dying of the old, the going out in brilliance, new growth cradled beneath the ash? We tell the dead we remember them and call them home to warm themselves and take their place at table. And so they won’t miss the path, we place a lighted candle in the window. Fire driving back the darkness, symbol of enlightenment, the sign that the world might be dark, but we have no fear.
tonight the cranes
flying south call to the light
of the stars

Haibun for return of the sun

For the dverse prompt.

Rain cloud hung heavy. Days were cold and wet and nights were dark, but today the sun came back, the wind turned and brought the warm breath of the west. Butterflies, orange ochre and blue, danced, lizards skittered over the walls, and the new fresh green was like a premature spring.
I should have written the moon, but the sun is still in my eyes. It brought a flock of egrets, moonwhite, and herons, flying so low one grazed the windscreen of the car with trailing legs. Breathtaking.
whatever the night
there is always a moon

Haibun for the last day of summer

This haibun is for the dverse prompt.

Last day of summer and we walk a path never taken before that dips and rises between small fields, a vineyard and valleys full of trees. We walk in cart ruts perhaps centuries old, and fat glossy hens stride through the hedgerows. A ratter trots ahead companionably from the farm where a mother holds a baby up to watch. This world is a place of quiet beneath sky billowed with great cloud galleons and the only sound the dry rustling of wind in the papery corn leaves.
summer fades
old gold in a velvet case

Haibun: balance

There is always a list to be made of positives and negatives. On one side: the fine day, the peace and quiet, the bills all paid and the roof mended; all I love have their heads above water

time suspended

the beat of a blackbird’s song

nothing falls but peace

on the other: time passing, life’s tide ebbing, weariness in the bones and of ever seeing change in the world, horror piling on horror and time passing. Some days the balance tips to the darkness, and even the calm bright meadow is a minefield

bird sings

the stone in my heart

is cold

Haibun for night beauty


after the heat and the thickening cloud the night rain pounded dry earth’s skin taut as a drum and we closed the shutters to keep it out. Later when silence returned and the heat, I got out of bed to open the shutters, let in the cool air, and gasped at the unexpected sight of such a crowd of stars

behind grey billows

flimsy intangible screen

stretches space the stars

Haibun for a good question—why?


I sat down at my desk this morning, opened my computer, went to the file of my WIP and opened that. I wrote a single phrase and stopped. It gets harder to justify the time and emotional energy. Poetry at least is part of the heart. No expectations. It just is.

cool breeze damp grass

white flowers soft clouds a world

where things live and die

Haibun for heavy heart


The suffocating heat has gone on too long. The trees are suffering, leaves dropping and the barrage on the stream has reduced it to a trickle. I put out water for birds and animals, and biscuits for the old abandoned dog that was wandering the lane yesterday, too scared to be cajoled. The sun is merciless, but in a few days we will have rain. In a few days, will we be any kinder?

sky pulses

cockcrow the only bird voice

insects engine-throb