Snowflakes Wander

A shisan renku consisting of twelve verses that follow the progress of the seasons: -冬-春-夏-秋. P1190042a-The linked verse was composed on 24.2.13 in an 8-mat room upstairs at Murin-an 無鄰菴, Okazaki, Kyoto on a bitterly cold late winter day of sun and passing snow flurries. Some enjoyed a stroll around the watery, Meiji-period landscape garden we could see from the window. Twelve poets took part and most had at least one of their offered verses chosen.

Snowflakes wander …
grey down snagged on juniper
from the goshawk’s kill

With one brush stroke
the frozen river

Wide-eyed
the boatman’s monkey
chattering

Irritable lady
explains over and over again

Pink plum blossoms
bursting on the bough;
the skirt tighter this year

Rainbow-patterned curves
of painted Easter eggs

My wish to be in Hawaii
attending a wedding –
dreams come true

Sudden showers
lovers run for cover

Since the nuclear meltdown
no more swimming
in the turquoise sea

A candle burns on
changing shadows of itself

Foxes approach:
the harvest moon keeps her eyes
on the rice-cake offering

Ripened fields stretch
to the world’s end.

participants (in random order): Tito (sabaki and host), Jiko (shuhitsu), Mari Kawaguchi, David McCullough, Hitomi Suzuki, Ursula Maierl, Keiko Kurumizawa, Kyoko Nozaki, Michael Lambe, Kazuko Miyazawa, Masako Fujie and Peter MacIntosh

3 Responses to “Snowflakes Wander”

  1. Dear Tito and all the renju,
    I enjoyed reading this shisan very much. I think it is well composed and many individual verses are beautiful. Seasons work out very well. The only thing I yearn for is more variety. You have enough of natural description, and some interesting phases of human affairs, but there is no verse on topical issues. Your shisan gives us a quiet sense of relief but does not excite my imagination so much. However, this is probably rather wishful thinking on my part, and you might say shisan is too short to include everything.

  2. Thank you for this largely favourable comment. Hailstone as a circle of poets still struggles with the execution of renku, however short or long, but this past year we have certainly been trying. We are still happier, as you know, doing ginko-no-renga. As sabaki this time, I asked for ‘topical or social comment’ stanzas around the verse 8 mark on the day and did choose the no swimming nuclear meltdown verse as a consequence. Perhaps this was not topical enough? Or too abstract?

  3. Dear Rengaistas
    I thoroughly enjoyed reading your renga on this miraculously warm day in England. Some exquisite link&shift and lovely individual images. I enjoyed the variety of archetypal and contemporary imagery, and found it rich and varied, both in terms of imagery and mood/tone.

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