Thursday, November 19, 2015

Mr. Toad

We are writing these today over at

The Florette consists of two or more 4-line stanzas. 
Rhyme scheme: a,a,b,a 
Meter: 8,8,8,12 
Fourth line requirement of internal (b) rhyme scheme, on syllable 8. Like the outgrowing of a small flower, the forth line of each stanza is longer, and enwraps the previous lines. Line #4 requires an internal rhyme scheme that rhymes the eighth syllable with the end of line #3, and continues to add on four more syllables than the other lines so that the fourth line ends rhyming with lines #1 and #2.

Mr. Toad

I did not see you there at first
In your language, I'm not well-versed
You blended in with the wood chips
so uncannily, my parched lips cried out in thirst

We stared each other down awhile;
In shadows, I'm quite sure you smiled
Fell away pieces of my heart
I then began to fall apart, in the erstwhile

Fear evaporated like rain
You listened closely to my pain
as I wept, needing to confide,
and lay in my bed on my side to hide in vain

Moonshine fell on the ebbing tide
You led me in hope to abide
small waves pulled away at the neap
You said the time to leap is when dissatisfied,

Who knows from where some ropes are thrown;
you helped me see beyond the stone
wall where I was squarely grannied, 
stripped of all camouflage, harried and quite alone 

Courage now springs from fertile soil
where strange mushrooms grew through turmoil
You took me from the moat beneath,
my soul to a safe castle keep, my friend loyal

Monday, November 2, 2015

His Homeland..


Today's Monday haibun is about reflecting on Vincent Van Gogh's painting, "View of the Church of de Mausole". I found this a delightful exercise.

If I were to choose a calendar month for this painting, it would most likely be autumn. But because of the way light from the sun falls on the fields and spreads like butter throughout the sky, it could be Van Gogh's depiction of a spring or summer day..or even a colder, winter scene.

Autumn leaves streak across the sky, or could those be morning cirrus clouds sprayed gold by the rising sun? Perhaps it is a hot afternoon or almost twilight when the sunset melds everything into long shadows and afterglows of the day's mirages.  Would shadows be as prevalent or stretched long if it were painted during the earlier part of the day?  Van Gogh's blues and golds, heavily splashed on canvas, flow like a river, suggest evening-time. But, they seem to reflect the sky in the terrain below. There is no obvious snow and the trees have most of their leaves, so I am leaning toward a late September day.

I am struck by Van Gogh's ability to express such passion so boldly. I am impressed he doesn't appear to hide secrets or hold back his fears, joys and sorrows. I imagine him sitting on a stool not far away, wildly wielding his brushes up and down and across, driven, his clothes splattered in colors of paint and his face awash with red in the heat of his work.

Buoyant solace, mirth
Vincent's French countryside church
overlooking all

Feline love

It's time for the Monday Haibun -                                       


Your image emerges from tufted white clouds as I paint the surrounding sky. Your portrait, within a rainbow's full arc, today I paint through teary eyes. I had not yet planned to make that particular small journey yesterday, but I'm glad I took the turn that led me north instead of south after I left you. Otherwise, I would not have seen what I saw before me: the sky parted and a rainbow appeared.

I watched as you sank to a lying position and folded your paws into my hand. Your eyes were open while I sang our favorite song to you; you purred just like you always do. I petted your pretty head and rubbed your ears between my fingers with my other hand. I told you we would be going home soon and pick up where we left off, watching the birds and other small animals. Because I knew you were tired and weary, I said things I knew you loved to hear. 




You are permanently etched into my heart, with me wherever I go. I know you understood how much I loved you, how much you meant to me. But it stuns me to realize how true was your love and all that I meant to you. I did not deserve the altruistic devotion you showed me, living only to please me, and it has been my unraveling. As you closed your eyes, I remembered the day I found you, decided to adopt and care for you. Through everything, you were by my side or on my lap, comforting me. 

 Loyal companion,
gift to my wandering soul -                                                                      
rest in peace, my friend