Hope in question

Posting this one to earthweal.


Cold comes in the answer
and snow in the wind,
furrows fill with white, while
growling incandescence consumes
branch and twig
in our invocation of the sun we have lost
in the dark night of winter.

In the morning,
the embers cold and pitted with deer tracks,
ash streams, the wind still bitter.

Ice cracks in the north
with a dark voice full of teeth,
and in the wood
a thrush is singing.

The breaking of the day

This morning, for once I was wide awake at the magical moment when the night silence was broken by the first bird.



I lay awake after the storm


to the silence flow back

the cats settle

the air stir again night cool

just before dawn cool


to the sigh of the oaks

water laden weary


to tiny insect sounds



through the shutters

light soft as pigeons

sky grey as mist grow


the glorious burst,

two, three notes rapid

repeated, then a tumble of song

thrush the first bird

filling with utter loveliness

the breaking of day.

A thrush, the first bird


The restless, storm-tossed night was long,

dark filled with wave-hiss, snapping boughs,

a ship moored in a sea-rocked berth.


No stars, a heavy quilt of cloud

pressed down, oppressed the swaying trees,

the restless storm-tossed night was long.


When rage along the river swept,

storm carried north across the hills,

dark filled with wave-hiss, snapping boughs,


a thrush, the first bird, broke the calm,

a rush of song sailed through the dawn,

a ship rocked in a sheltered berth.


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.

In the forest

In the forest a leaf falls

And feeds the snail

That feeds the thrush

That the fox takes to feed her cubs.


In the forest a tree falls

And the fox wakes

To catch a rabbit sniffing green shoots

So the shoots grow.


The rain from the ocean pours

And the earth drinks

Feeding the shoot

That grows to a tree.


In the shade of the tree

Fox lies where snails glide

Watching the rabbits

While the thrush sings.


The sun shines

The rain falls

And the ocean rolls

While in the shade of a tree

Young foxes tumble

Among the first falling leaves.