Carpe Diem Haiku

Carpe Diem Haiku, Greed (Mongolian Mythology)

mp-mongolian-script

The grasslands lose their magic when the wolves are hunted in view of reducing their numbers or even removing them. Without wolves the marmots, rabbits and other small animals create burrows which weaken the natural firm surface, and create situations where horses can easily break their legs.

The wolf is a formidable opponent, and a hunter, but no animal is more caring of its babies than the female wolf. The bite of a wolf is much more powerful than that of a dog though, and the wolf knows where to bite. Still, man must learn to live in the grasslands and not be greedy, wanting it for himself. He must remember what his father and grandfather told him about the years when nearly all the wolves were killed, and how the grasslands suffered. The wolves keep the grasslands clean.

if the wolf is gone
from the grasslands
the moon cannot rise

 

 

 

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Carpe Diem Haiku

Carpe Diem Haiku, Photographing

Ye gods, what a difficult prompt, that others will as usual take in their stride! I saw some beautiful haiku in yesterday’s prompt, here (Maniparna), here (Gillena) and here (Celestine). But also here (Ese) and many more…

‘Photographing’ seems tough. What clever imagery could we evoke? Striking the right balance in a haiku is difficult, and I think I’m going to find a vintage Japanese photograph to sprinkle with words.

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photographing
a dream makes me
dream

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Carpe Diem Haiku

Carpe Diem Haiku Special, Soen Nakagawa’s “boundless autumn”

All the haiku by Soen Nakagawa have a strong, deeper, Zen layer and in this one Zen is also clearly in there. The goal of this CD Special is to write a haiku in the same sense, tone and spirit as the one by the featured haiku-poet, seen just below.


endless is my vow
under the azure sky
boundless autumn

Here is my effort.

under a great blue sky
Mongolian grasslands promise freedom
the wolf howls

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Verse

Magpie Tales: Graduation Day

Finland, 1968, photo by George F. Mobley

Finland, 1968, photo by George F. Mobley

before
they let the balloons go
colourful stories
filled
to flow
float
fly
almost endlessly
rip
on jagged branches
lie defeated
in the tumbling snow
blown
torn
on the jagged edges
of jagged stone

before
the balloons
were let loose
from the palms of our hands
from the psalms
of our defunct books
so much was left unsaid
on lips
already poisoned
by too much innocence
too numbed by cold

and anyway
with nothing
nothing to say
before we passed
the real tests
and regressed
moved to our caves
let our balloons take our stories
far from us
in sunset skies
and jagged branches
where even the snow had dried
and we wonder
if we ever really tried?

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Carpe Diem Haiku

Carpe Diem Haibun – Beach

Beaches don’t come much colder than Aberdeen beach, in the northwest of Scotland. But before people bustled onto planes to get drunk abroad, Aberdeen beach was a popular holiday destinations for hardy Aberdonians. They don’t make folk like that anymore. Nowadays, of course, none venture in such cold waters when their are holidays further south to be had.

Advances in technology have brought a fair amount of improvements to our lives, but for every action there is a reaction. Isn’t that the first law of Physics?

Our food is worse now, not better. Our health and fitness worse. The food is less nutritious, and there is much less variety of it, a little known fact. There are many less varieties of apples around than there used to be 50, or a 100 years ago, for example, as industrial production seeks the cheapest to produce, the farthest away. One day we will learn more by looking back, except that many of these varieties have disappeared, forever. In fact there are storage centres desperately being arranged and built in an effort to preserve seeds of disappearing varieties of foodstock. It is that bad.

Our ancestors never got to see and experience what we do, but not everything they believed and lived by was wrong. Our social fabric is torn. Today we have what has become the propagandist aggressive negativity of Feminism, for example, while before we had gentlemen, and decency towards women. Even, maybe, in Aberdeen!

Scottish Comedian Billy Connolly gives an account of Aberdeen beach in his particular style which gives a fair idea of Aberdeen beach – start at 4.40 mins for his account of swimming in Aberdeen.

And the emptiness of Aberdeen beach today…

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loneliness by the sea
what is found over horizons
is found here too

each step in sand
as if never there
but a continent conquered

desert oasis
aroma of water
but only sand

her hands tell a story
we travelled miles to see
while her belly shimmers

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Carpe Diem Haiku

Carpe Diem Haibun – Bjorn’s Lingering Cold

Sometimes it feels like that’s all there is left. Two old warrior’s we felt ourselves to be, at the kitchen table this morning, my painter and I. Both about the same age. In his youth he’d been a UN blue beret – attached to the UN through the Finnish army. In my youth, with my beret green, I’d been in exactly the same area, with the French military, Lebanon, Syria, Israel. We’d perhaps even been only yards apart at times.

And both of us knew that rare thing. We both knew and felt the lies so often told about the Middle East by our western governments and press, this ex-UN soldier, attached with his Finnish regiment, and I. He’d witnessed a Norwegian UN soldier, a woman, beaten up by Israelis when she had a flat tyre and was trying to flag a car down for help, though it was true she was in uniform and Israelis revile the UN – but her thumb up gesture was also a dire insult in Israel. I’d heard about it. We both saw or heard about many incidents.

We drunk our coffee, and we knew the lies.

“But still the dates grew in the trees, all year round,” he said, “and the olives too, until those crazy extremist  Jewish  settlers burnt all the olive groves.”

“That was, and still is terrible,” I said, “and never talked about.”

The cold crept in trough the open kitchen window. I shivered.

“When I was a child, all our winters were cold, full of snow,” he said, looking out the window with me, at the trees just starting to bud. “This year winter did not come properly but still the cold lingers.”

“Yeah,” I said.

“Maybe that is how it is now,” he said, “never really starting, or ever finished.”

lingering cold
flowering spring won’t be today
I miss absent palm trees

 

 

 

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Carpe Diem Haiku

Carpe Diem Haiku – Gypsies

Before I post my haiku, or you read it, I’d be honoured if you just took a few minutes to watch this video of the guys – gypsy dancers I know from far back. If anyone thinks this is easy stuff, well, I think you might want to try it.  know exactly how hard it is, and remember one night with guitars, milk jugs, my bongo drum and an Australian with didgeridoo. A beautiful night but some of the toughest dancing ever to learn. But its the synchronicity also – just watch how it builds up, and you’ll go some way to understanding my love for the roma people, the gypsies. Worth every minute, this short video.

barefoot gypsy
dances her path before me
-a romany blessing

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To finish off see how the music reaches deep in this gypsy home. These roma are quite light-skinned, and in my experience more so than the lovely bronze tone some friends had. Makes no difference of course, once a gypsy always a gypsy for many of the European population, who discriminate against roma people, the largest minority in Europe, in the crudest of ways.

 

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Haibun

Ligo Haibun Challenge – Image Week

Thanks to everyone participating in the Ligo Haibun Challenge – if you would like you can post your haibun at Medium here, and label it under the “Beautiful Haibun” collection. This gives you further readership and gives you a step out of the ‘WordPress world.’

My apologies for the lateness of the post this week. I was a bit exhausted after travel and duties, and have a lot of catching up to do. There are a lot of fine people out there and I don’t want to lose them…so I will be catchng up, especially as I want the Ligo anthology out soon – so send your haibun!

I will be contacting folks very shortly about their haibun – that probably means you reading this!

This week is picture week. As usual choose one to write your Beautiful Haibun. I certainly encourage all glancing here to have a read of the haibun, which are of very high quality in an art form that in itself encourages beautiful writing.

If you are new to the form ask here for details..

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Please give us some beautiful haibun! Link up with the blue critter below..

http://goo.gl/KAbZf4

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Haibun

Ligo Haibun Challenge – Word Prompt

…Here’s 3 haibun we particularly liked from last week  and are mentioning here:

After two hours yesterday and nearly an hour today, I still cannot and will not nominate one over the other. The haibun are all so good for both very similar and different reasons.

See what I mean….

The prompts for this week are continued

 

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Writing

A Writer’s Lair: Africa!

Nowhere better actually. Just nowhere. The people are wonderful in every country, the tragedy is galling, but the smiles are pure music. The headscarves, wraps, dresses are all magical, and my two favourite ‘perfumes’, the diesel and the dust, are everywhere. There is nothing not to love about the continent: they must make it, just must.

I cannot pin point the best country or town and seat in Africa to sit and write your novel, but where ever it is, the novel will swirl around you, day and night. The difficulty is squeezing it into your pages quick enough. 

Once an ex-US Marine
gave me a job in Sierre Leone
my job was not too complicated
he said
wake up in the morning
sit on the front of a truck
with a shotgun
during the diamond run
and also bring back the pay
the very same day.

As a writer I could not refuse
and I knew
nothing is more similar to the holder of a pen
than the trigger of a gun.

 

nationsonline.org
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Carpe Diem Haiku

Carpe Diem Haiku Kai – Pilgrim

I wonder what the difference is between pilgrim and refugee. Both seek shelter from the world. It is true that they both might pass each other on the road, dressed in similar clothes, with the similar, hunted look in the eyes, or upon the face. Of course, the pilgrim wants to come back, and the refugee does not. And the pilgrim is rushing to his god, while the refugee is running away from someone else’s god. But aside from these differences, they are both somewhat similar in nature, more or less.

shooting star at night
or floating ember from fire
grasshopper guesses wrong

 

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