Wednesday, May 27, 2020

HAIBUN


NOTHING SACRED  

The Poulnabrone Dolmen, the Portal Tomb.  A six-foot high structure of two slender limestone portal stones supporting a 12 foot flat table-like capstone. High on a hill in The Burren in County Clare, Ireland.  The name means “hole of sorrows.”

Dating back from 4200 BC – 2900 BC, it is the sacred burial tomb of Celtic tribes. Silhouetted against the lowering sun, it is impressive, especially from a distance without tourists snapping pictures and where the restraining ropes are not visible.  They were put up to keep visitors from climbing on the top or chipping away at the pillars. 

I hang back from the group and look again.

six- foot cairn
whistling winds keep company
with the dead
LYNX

Monday, May 18, 2020

Haibun



A CALIFORNIA MEMORY

 A drive up Route 99 (now I-5), a portion of which is known as The Grapevine for its twists and curves. It is early morning in late July. Already hot at 8:00 a.m. The Bug’s water-cooled engine keeps chugging by stalled cars, the same cars which passed us earlier.

windows down
the swoosh of warm air 
muffles our laughter


We stop at Castaic Junction for coffee and donuts, then turn westward toward Santa Paula.  Avocado, walnut and citrus trees in neat rows, blossoms on some, fruit on others.



honey bees
working the orange groves
braceros in straw hats

We continue to climb and reach the crest overlooking the Ojai Valley, named by the Chumash Indians, meaning the Valley of the Moon.  Just before descending we find, tucked in between orange groves, a small Italian market and pizzeria.  We sit in the shade of olive trees and order pizza.  The patrone, an old Italian man from Sicily, upon learning that I am part Sicilian, joins us outside, carrying a bottle of home-made wine hidden in a towel because he has no liquor license.



Down below, in Ojai, the temperature is nearing 100 degrees.  We browse the shops, staying in the shade of the arcaded streets.  Continuing onward and upward, out of Ojai on route 378 to the Los Padres National Forest.  The ground parched and cracked.  Sage and manzanita more abundant.  Chaparral and scrub oak.  Posted in a low spot a sign:  SUBJECT TO FLASH FLOODS.

cerulean blue sky
looking up when we cross
a dried-up stream

We reach Lake-of-the-Woods, a developer’s dream in the 1930s which never materialized.  A man-made lake, never filled, and cottages, never built.  Now, just a sunken dust-blown area where the lake was intended. A small settlement with a few houses scattered here and there in the pines and up dirt roads.

Above Lake-of-the-Woods is the pine and oak studded Mt. Pinos, popular for skiing and hiking.  I gather pinecones to save for holiday decorations, needing to venture only a few steps in either direction to have a full bag.

sticky pine sap
suddenly I have
a green thumb

funneling dust
the fragrance of resin
on my clothes

We return down through Lake-of-the-Woods and eastward through Frazier Park back to highway 99, south down the Grapevine and home to Los Angeles.  

a cool shower
washing down the dust
with gin and tonic
Bottle Rockets

Monday, May 11, 2020

Haiga


Black & White Haiga, May 2020

Friday, May 1, 2020

Haibun


THE NEW NORMAL   

The Apocalypse, Armageddon, Dystopia. The stuff of sci-fi and fantasy movies. Drastic scenarios of the imagination. 

Never to happen, never to come even close, never to nip at the fringes. Never say never. Attributed by some to Charles Dickens in Pickwick Papers. 

Never say neverbecause the beast is nibbling now, not the beast of the Black Death that plagued the globe in the mid-1300 hundreds. A smaller beast, not as ravenous, but cunning in its disguise, hiding behind a neighbor, a friend, a loved one. 

During the Black Death those who could left cities. 

social distancing
she and hubby converse
with texting

Streets emptied. Shops closed. Food was in short supply. People prayed for a miracle

for once, quick parking
leaving the market
with an empty cart

 Seven centuries later we wait for our miracle, a vaccine. In the meantime, we use technology and click, click our order; our children continue school; we communicate. All because of technology, a miracle of sorts, considering how people communicated during the Black Death. 

We do have spring slowly making her appearance, although we may not be noticing her. She comes in spurts and sprints, but she comes, stays a while and disappears.  Patience required. Patience in all things.

schedules we keep
each to its own time
emerging plants

morning coffee
fidgeting while waiting
for the pot to fill
Drifting Sands


Saturday, April 25, 2020

Haiga









Black and White Haiga

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Haibun



A DATE

He was tall. Sandy colored hair that had a slight wave and poetically handsome, A Byron, a Shelley, an Ashley Wilkes.

I should have known when he said, “A movie’s too long; I don’t like miniature golf; I’ve had enough coffee today. Let’s just go for a drive.”

I should have known when he left the convenience store with a six-pack of beer. 

I should have known when he parked the car he would want more than a kiss. 

I should have known that after I told him, “No. Take me home,” he would not call again. 

peak autumn– 
the brightest shade of red
on poison ivy 
A Hundred Gourds

Monday, April 13, 2020

Haiku for Spring



fast flowing creek
rushing towards the river—
the stillness in me

woodland phlox
a soft touch
on my thigh

his just shaved face
the fragrant coolness
of early spring

Another Trip Around the Sun
Another Trip Around the Sun
Tiny words