The flowers are hardening, tightening up. You look at them expecting to see their familiar open faces, warm-hearted smiles, but they look back at you stiffly, politely; the entire encounter is awkward. You avert your eyes, hurry by. Just last week you had a friendly conversation, they seemed to approve of you. Now you’re their son’s girlfriend from the other side of the tracks, the salesman who’s about to lose the sale, the kid no one wants to choose for their team. Cold. They’re cold. You can see the future, your future, and they’re not in it.
This whole side of the street–rust. That brick wall–crumbled. All the newspapers–faded. (And no one reads them anymore.)
You feel a pain you’ve never felt before and you know it’s just the first of many.
Andante, adagio, largo, decelerando, decelerando.
but the key still fits
in the lock
In this (extremely belated) edition of the Haikuverse:
Everything I see
— Takahama Kyoshi (tr. Geoffrey Bownas)
— Johannes S. H. Bjerg, 3ournals & Frags
for the light to change–
little chestnut moon
— Angie Werren (haiku and image), feathers
You are gathered to go,
Strip-lining phone wires,
Faced to the south,
After all that’s been said,
I wish I was with you.
— Matt Morden, Morden Haiku
the universe still
a thrown stick
–Rick Daddario (haiku and artwork), 19 Planets
in my pocket
a chain for the black dog
–Johannes S. H. Bjerg, Scented Dust
looking for paradise–
— Josh Hockensmith, No More Moon Poems
my friends say leaf-fall
but I say apple-fall
dull-drubbing the grass
— Marie Marshall, Kvenna Rad
(See also: Marie’s “Fragment 200“)
The casualty report,
made into a bag
for ripening an apple.
— Sanki Saito (1939), on R’r Blog
taiheiyô nomikomeba aki futto kuru
when I swallow
the Pacific Ocean… unexpectedly
— Fay Aoyagi, Blue Willow Haiku World
Scent of burning leaves
the four chambers
of my heart
— Patrick Sweeney, on Issa’s Untidy Hut
invited to feel
the stubble on her legs
—Shawn Lindsay, on ant ant ant ant ant’s blog
This new venture looks interesting: Bones: Journal for New Haiku. Editors: Johannes S. H. Bjerg, Alan Summers, Sheila Windsor. They are poets whose work and taste I admire, and they have a manifesto that I like a lot. In part it reads: “Haiku that stands on the firm ground of tradition but has internalized it and is now written for today and the future.”
Fall is always a good time to start things, especially things that require a flow of brisk air to the brain. I hope this venture flourishes. I hope we all do. Have a gentle fall.