Afriku – July 2, 2015

along the Logone
when Lai was just a village
moon light lit the night

Way back in the 70s I lived in a small village in the Tandjilé region of Southern Chad.  We were there as part of a project to create canals for rice paddies.  The village, for it was really just around a 100 huts, two Christian missions (one Catholic and one Evangelical), a Soviet Health Care Centre run by a Russian couple and a small bazar owned by a Nigerian, seems to have grown around the rice project.

Looking up Lai today, because I’d forgotten the name of the river that flows past the town, I discovered that it’s now the capital of Tandjilé and has an airport and a population as of 2008 of 20,428!

When I think of Lai, I always remember the ferry service, which connected Lai to Mondou (the largest city nearest Lai at the time) and was it ever a precarious thing – little more than a robust raft with heavy ropes holding it between the two banks of the river. Now I wonder if it too has also evolved .. at the time at least three vehicles a day passed over the Logone on that ferry. Or perhaps they’ve since built a bridge.

passing time
a ferry-boat to the future
Lai on the Logone

© G.s.k. ‘15

The desert is constantly growing in Northern Africa eating up land and evaporating the water resources … what was once one of the largest lakes not only in Africa but in the world has been slowly drying up – the encroachment of the desert has many reasons behind it and it’s a very complex problem to face and solve …


Carpe Diem Special #154 Afriku, haiku from Africa, an idea of Adjei Agyei Baah. “Stones”

shoreline pebbles…
a reminder of how far
we have come

daddy’s delicacy
taking stones out of gizzard

stone temple
leftover boulders
add to reverence

© Adjei Agyei-Baah, Kumasi, Ghana
Poetry Foundation Ghana

Full Moon – July 2, 2015

playing with the moon_1

smiling on the mountain
her peach blushed face radiant
July full moon

© G.s.k. ‘15

My son visited the yesterday and we walked down to Arco to have a pizza for dinner.  The moon came out from behind the clouds at about 10:00 as we were walking back home through the fields.  Her beautiful blushing round face illuminated the white stones of the path until, once again, the clouds returned covering her face.

timid lady hides
behind a screen this evening
flushing full moon

© G.s.k. ‘15


Carpe Diem Extra #21 July-2015

and here is our host’s contribution inspired by Hawaiian mythology:

dripping wet moon
the Water Bearer spills
water from the bowl

© Chèvrefeuille

One-Bun – Travelling by train – July 1, 2015


Travelling by train

I discover that each station has its own special quality and personality – but people’s faces seem all the same …

[concentrated] anxiously awaiting mulling voyagers

© G.s.k. ‘15


Tokubetsudesu #50 one-bun

The one-bun is an ultra-short haibun which has just one line of prose (including the title) and a (one-line) haiku invented by Jim Kacian. I will give examples of this one-bun written by Jim Kacian.

The light

of the most distant stars, which describes for us the size and age of the universe, won’t reach us for aeons, leaving us to imagine …

dark space the red shift of my mind

© Jim Kacian

The second week

traveling by myself I cross the continental divide, and everything that once ran in one way now runs in another, down and down

on the surface of dark water my face

© Jim Kacian

And our host has written a one-bun also:


shares its sweet perfume as this summer day runs to an end, while I enjoy the coolness and the warmth of her naked body next to mine …

hot summer day the sweet scent of Honeysuckle and the one I love

© Chèvrefeuille

American 767 – July 1, 2015

never alone when she walks
searching the road and fields
the tiny ant leaves her trail

seeds, crumbs – a rich summer feast
she dances joyously
the tiny ant leaves her trail

© G.s.k. ‘15

The American 767 and it was created by Dennis L. Dean.

Here it is for you:

The American 767 is:

  • a tristich, a poem in 3 lines. (Cool thing to know!)
  • syllabic, 7-6-7 syllables per line.
  • unrhymed.
  • written with the name of a “bug” in it.

Written for:

Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie – B&P’s Shadorma and Beyond

Utabukuro – how it all started – June 29, 2015

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAUtabuku:  Use a favorite haiku or tanka and explain why it’s so special for you and to write an all new haiku (or tanka) inspired on your favorite. No prompt or something, but this time a theme “how it all started”.

In my youth I discovered impressionism and fell in love with it, as I grew up I discovered Zen and fell in love with it … now in my autumn the two have come together in the form of Japanese poetry.  I love the essential quality of haiku and tanka – the brief outlines that create images and sensations in the reader (and indeed in the writer as well).  It’s hard to choose one haiku and describe to you why it’s particularly special for me, basically because each haiku takes on a different meaning each time I read them.  Among my first haiku then, you’ll find many about birds.  I also love to write about the rain, the lake, sunsets and of course dawn.

The haiku I’ve written that I enjoy the most are usually those about birds …

in a laurel tree
noisy chittering sparrows
awaken me

G.s.k. ’15

fancy head-dress
the fashion king shows off
before heading north

© G.s.k. ‘15

morning concert
bright finch and blackbird duet
sparrows in counterpoint
then in the distance ravens
caw syncopated laments

first gift of spring
beauty wrapped in a sunrise
morning birdsong fest

spring morning sunrise
fills the world with gifts of light
gone empty darkness
sad thoughts of impermanence
melt with the warmth of birdsong

© G.s.k. ‘15

I’m fascinated by the birds … I hear them each morning before the sun is fully up, they chatter and sing – taking the place of the cars and other human sounds that usually fill a day.  I like to observe them as I walk in the woods or near the lake.  They’re love games in spring outside my window fill each morning with wonder.  The second haiku was about a grebe I observed on Lake Garda last spring.  I’d never seen one on our lake before and his presence and that of members of his group was fascinating .. I loved watching he bobbed and dived into the water fishing.

This morning the sound that greeted me was that of a tiny sparrow like bird (here they call them robins, but I’m sure they’re not what we’d call robins) making a desperate peeping call followed by chattering and then he’d peep again.  I say he, because he’d fly out of the trees in the courtyard in front of my house and sit for a second on the roof then fly back into the trees and I recognized his distinctive white cap on his red head.  Close by I heard the peeping of another of the same species.  It seemed almost consolatory.  After a while he seemed to calm down.  I couldn’t help but wonder what was going on …  had a cat attacked their nest – later I discovered that like with the swallows, here two the babies were taking their first flight out into the world.  This haiku comes to mind:

early dawn
the robin peeps and chatters
from roof to trees

frantic calls at dawn
a lone robin

baby robin
with brown ruffled feathers
trapped in the loggia

© G.s.k. ‘15


Carpe Diem Utabukuro #3 how it all started

Departing Summer – Youth – choka – June 30, 2015

train station

riding in the train
visions pass by the windows
trees turning to gold
fields lying fallow – hay stacked
her thoughts for him
hands upon her breasts and back
languid kisses
moonlight walks upon the beach
departing summer
leaves memories and hope
upon a distant shore-line.

© G.s.k. ‘15


Carpe Diem #766 departing summer

Departing Summer – Old Age – choka – June 30, 2015

persimmonthe old woman sits
upon a park bench smiling
brown and red leaves fall
swallows departed
ducks fly south overhead
departing summer
she wonders if this will be
the last time she’ll feel its warmth

© G.s.k. ‘15


a shriveled leaf
still hanging on
to summer’s end

end of summer
beyond the garden gate
mist turning to rain

end of summer
in the cool morning air
at the open door

end of summer
tall and bright in the fields
of thistle

summer passing
the path to the beach
where no one goes

(C) Jane Reichhold

abandoned beach
finally I can find peace
summer has gone

(C) Chèvrefeuille


Carpe Diem #766 departing summer

Leaves – June 29, 2015



laying in the grass
light show colours the leaves
evening concert


green hands search
seek out sunshine and rain
flutter in the wind
the miracle of trees
and each tiny leaf of grass

© G.s.k. ‘15



Carpe Diem #765 leaves

The video is by Neil Bromhall