Everything is in free fall. There you are — standing on the bridge between life and death, between being something and becoming something else, between anticipation and foreboding, between then and thereafter, between what you were meant to be and what you will be when it is over.
And every word, every breath, every thought, leaves you to flutter downwards into the snaking continuum, not belonging to you before it was yours, not yours after it has belonged to you for that one moment — passing through your presence, changing you, changing itself, drifting rushing, reaching into the ever-moving. Still you wait with hopes and dreams in your sad eyes as if the tumult of the shuddering universe has taught you nothing.
sky or sea or wind –
this first monsoon cloud?
Water to Water, my first poetry collection, is now available on Amazon – US, UK and India
Yesterday’s experiment with tanka impels me to take it further with ‘Tanka Prose’. Like a haibun but with a signature tanka instead of a haiku, this is an excellent form to stretch one’s imagination and word crafting skills even further.
Try this or any other form of micropoetry and share using comments or Mister Linky.
For days we climbed together. Sometimes they disappeared into the mist ahead, sometimes they lingered on the edges. I could always hear their whispered voices, even as the sky slipped closer. But now the words are gone and I have been orphaned by the need to speak. In their soundless absence, the river is just one ceaseless motion, the moon in it is just a point of reflection and this moment is both big enough to fill the universe and small enough to tremble as the cold wind rushes by. What will the birds call me if I do not have a name?
on the other side
of the horizon-
the eagle’s wing
the silent dark
Haibun is a wonderful style because lets you combine prose and poetry in a beautifully fluid way. Basho, the master, wrote it in such a simple, effortless style making his work timeless.
I have two rules for myself. 1. Keep the prose short. 2. The haiku should derive from the prose without being repetitive in word or content.
Write your own haibun or any other form of micropoetry and share using comments or good old Mister Linky!
It was the kind of morning that had all the answers – the square of anticipation, the differential of despondency, the coefficient of human failure. Hanging from the sky like a picture frame behind which we had once hidden the dark, its colours dissolving into sunshine streams, its birds flying in formation beyond its corners. It was the kind of morning that should dawn after a night like that. After you left, after I stayed, after I gathered the pieces, not knowing if they could ever be put back together again. The improbability of hope.
the lone raven steals
the last of the light
It was so deep inside the dark that light, wading through the charcoal sea, arrived breathless at its door, too hungry and weak to knock, disintegrating rapidly, fading into the ripple-less night. Every night. And so it stayed buried, feeding on the solitude, on the molten ebony quiet, on its own mind, till it no longer remembered why it had come to be there, why it had come to be.
Again, the light burrowed further into the murk, a shadow of itself. How could it stop when it knew there was still something there, unseen, unrevealed? What if it had life, what if it was life? The universe furrowed its brow, the stars went into a huddle. Hadn’t it been said, that some things, some questions, even some answers were best left alone, to die?
from behind a cloud
the evening sun tries to catch
the rainbow painter
The yellow dahlias were startled at first, then they shook their pretty heads in unison and laughed into the sudden sunshower. Behind me, the rhythm of her brass mortar and pestle unchanging as she hammered betel nut and lime into submission, the old woman cackled. I turned to see her toothless smile radiant across her cloudy face. “The raven and the fox are getting married,” she said as I strained to catch the slurred words, red juice pooling at the edge of her mouth. I nodded slowly at the old tale as she laughed again, her eyes filling. “So should you.”
I watched her. Half old crow and half cunning fox. Everything I knew, she had taught me since I was a little girl. I raised my face to the scent of the soft drizzle and imagined satin black wings that would let me fly into the freshly arched rainbows.
painted in liquid light
this grey gold sky
drips into my empty teacup
For Dverse Poets where the Haibun prompt is “Rain”. Tenki Ame is Japanese for sunshower.
Every morning, before the tentative warmth of dawn melts the waxy sleep in my eyes, before reality sails in on the contrails of a fuming orb, I grab the last dark fibres of the shredded night and fashion them into brushes. Sometimes a soft rounded brush to sweep across time’s waking face, sculpting its cheek bones, filling its dimples with a rose tinted blush, colouring its ghostly pallor with the red hue of life, drawing its cold, snake skinned lips into a welcoming smile; or hard bristles to briskly sweep away fragments of a stubborn dream that dares in vain to breach the final wall of night, or maybe the sable haired brush from my mother’s table to paint over the wrinkles, the spots, the gashes, the tears, the blood as they step one by one into the watery light.
Every morning I carry a masterpiece, restored and refined, a perfect copy of the one from yesterday, and place it carefully into the mirror of the waiting day.
kohl smudged sky
a frayed blanket still drawn over
the slumbering sun
For the haibun prompt at Dverse Poets – “Quotidian”
Where action inclines sharply towards consequence, where cause metamorphoses gently into effect, where the past plunges headlong into an everlasting present, where destiny stands with one leg digging into the unmoving earth, the other dipping into an effervescent champagne cloud, where for an instant we stop each time, eyes searching the old forked road before your feet no longer hear the sound of mine…
How often have we passed through time’s revolving door, how often have those roads led back to this endless moment, this boundless place, this unsaid word, this unpromised feeling, how often does it seem that everything has happened and will just happen again, how often do we have to leave before we learn to say goodbye?
And yet, today, my steps falter, my eyes fade, my shadow turns repeatedly to check if you are following.
who is counting
between horizon and shore
the waves that came and left
For Dverse Poets where the prompt is “farewell”