Carpe Diem: Death as Peace of Mind – Tanka – February 20, 2016

Eternal Voyage

in a morning
yet unknown and yet unseen
my voyage ends
before me the universe
behind me the world

© G.s.k. ‘16

Carpe Diem Theme Week #1 episode 4: The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying: Insight 3 “thinking about death gives life meaning”

Introduction

finding peace of mind
the soothing sound of rippling water
the rustling of leaves
strengthens my tired mind
that’s fortitude
deep inner peace, the beating of my heart,
the music of life
caught in the rippling stream –
finding peace of mind

© Chèvrefeuille

A Journey to Freedom – Short Story – January 10, 2016

Suddenly an undefined dissatisfaction roiled inside irritating as a dripping faucet.  She roamed around the room absent-mindedly .  Then grabbed her pen and began to write.  After about 15 minutes of intense scribbles, she crumpled up the sheet of paper  towing it and the pen across the room.

She roamed into the kitchen .. looking for something she wouldn’t find.

The phone rang and for twenty minuets she replied with monosyllables and grunts to the long rambling of her friend’s soliloquy.  A blow-by-blow description accompanied his account as he went into the gory details of who said what and when and how bad it made him feel and of course she’d pay and indeed was paying … her own mind was drifting and she thought, will it never end, when suddenly it did  (he was getting no satisfaction at all from this conversation and decided to call his friend Mark instead).

She turned on the computer and chose a YouTube playlist of what was supposed to be “soothing music for relaxation”.  She began to fix dinner, as the food simmered in pots, she set the table.  There it was again …  a random rolling wave that rolled over her head so that  she felt light-headed.  A voice but not exactly a voice,  in her mind,  whispered:  now would it really matter if she just gave in … just once, It’s been five days now because she was strong, so, she could just go for one more, she was strong enough to do that, just one more cigarette, what the hell would happen if she smoked just one more cigarette … and then as it had come on, the moment passed.

She looked at the chart.  That was the third one today, better than yesterday.  Just a few more days now and the attacks would become negligible. Then she’d really have to be careful, those late comers were traitorous when they popped up she knew.  She wouldn’t be going through withdrawal again if she’d resisted a couple of years back. Hell 15 years without smoking just to be back at square one.  She felt sort of mad at herself but she was also pleased that she was back on track.  She anticipated that surge of energy that was soon to be hers, the tastes and smells that would be intensified.  Just a few more days she thought.

 

 

The Party – Short Story – January 2, 2016

ginestra flowers

Walking into the room shaking snow off the cherry red coat she was wearing, she looked around the feeling a little out of place.  At that moment she heard her name being called from across the room and went towards the sound like a lost soul in the desert goes towards water.

“Ah Virginia, how nice to see you, but dear!  Why don’t you take off your coat! Here, let me help you.” a tall pleasant woman said doing just that. “Now, let’s get you a drink!” the woman said as she handed the coat to a nondescript greying gentleman of about seventy.

Virginia took the drink her friend had offered and sipping it let her eyes roam around the room.  The chatter of the people reminded her of the old rusty springs of her Grandmother’s double bed.  Odd she thought, her Grandmother had passed away forty years before.  People came up to her and they greeted and kissed her.  They exchanged what is commonly called small talk and eventually drifted away.

“How have you been doing …”

“Isn’t that just terrible news about Anna and Mario …”

“Seems the government is going to fall again …”

Small talk for a small world she thought. After a few moments she found herself standing alone in the room and somehow felt more comfortable.

Her mind wandered and she imagined herself walking again in the woodlands of Tuscany among the trees of the Maremma. It was 1987 when she’d met Gaitano and they’d gone for the first of their many walks in those woods.  The yellow ginestra flowers were in bloom then, he’d always loved those bright broom flowers. He’d pointed out the different kinds of bird’s nests to her; she’d been impressed by one huge nest that had been made in the bough of a large tree, she couldn’t seem to remember now what bird that had been.

She was pulled out of her thoughts when another guest entered the room.  A buxom woman of around sixty with a carrying voice. They’d once been close friends a few years back, but she’d gone off to America and they’d lost track of each other as sometimes happens.  As soon as she had hung her coat up she made a bee-line for Virginia.

“Ah, Virginia my dear!  What a sight for sore eyes.  I’m just so very  happy to be back home!” she said as she kissed Virginia on both cheeks, “I’ve had a really harrowing time out in the sticks of North America, I can’t wait to tell you all about it.  But first, tell me my dear, where is Gaitano that adorable husband of yours?”

A sudden hush fell on the room and even the usually self-confident woman felt the collective embarrassment and she realized that something was off.

This happened more rarely now that he’d been dead for nearly three months, but still, sometimes it did happen but it no longer bothered Virginia like it had done.

“Oh my dear Carla, you haven’t heard.  He passed away last autumn. We scattered his ashes in the Maremma.” Virginia replied.

Carla with tears in her eyes embraced her friend.

© G.s.k. ‘16

(This is a work of pure fiction based on parties I’ve been to in my youth. Bastet)

hung, cherry, wearing, bloom, snow, springs, bough, trees, again, roam, woodlands, seventy

Golden Willow – Haiku – December 29, 2015

Golden Willow

Golden Willow

December morning
in splendid golden glory
the willow sways

now alone
she lost her companion
to a summer squall*

with each passing day
she loses her golden chiome
the willow ages **

*Fallen Willow Jisei

**Willow Weep

Today is the last episode dedicated to my haiku and waka on Carpe Diem Haiku Kai.  I have just written a brief note to Chèvrefeuille thanking him for this opportunity, but above all, thanking him for showing my poetry to myself.

I rarely re-read my poetry or in fact anything I write.  I always promise myself that I will wade through my archives and perhaps put together a book or two but never quite find the time to do so.  I don’t know what holds me back except perhaps a lack of confidence in my writing.

This special month and my book which Chèvrefeuille published have been such a wonderful experience for me.  I wish to thank him and all of you who have read and enjoyed my work for your constant encouragement.

this hidden path
draped in honeysuckle
I hear nature sing
sweet is the blackbird’s song
as spring begins to bloom

 © G.s.k. ‘15

Carpe Diem Special #189 Georgia’s 5th strolling yesterday (tanka)

strolling yesterday
astonished by the pine trees.
they seemed to copy
the heavy rain laden skies
imitating it’s wet lay.

© Georgia (May 2013)

a new day rises –
the weeping willow on the piazza
a birds’ gathering

weeping willow
in the autumn sunlight
a golden tree

under the willow
on the city’s graveyard
weeping silhouette

© Chèvrefeuille

Shadows on the Wall – Haiku – December 17, 2015

candles

flickering candles
shadows dancing on the wall
winter memories

© G.s.k. ‘15

Carpe Diem Haiku Writing Techniques #23 finding the divine in the common

the one thing
that lights my world
a rice gourd

© Basho (Tr. Jane Reichhold)

smoke
incense unrolls
itself

© Jane Reichhold

the liquid sunset
touches the sea
I touch the sea, too

scent of falling leaves
– sense of fading dreams
suddenly, a ladybug!

© Hamish Gunn (a.k.a. Pirate)

a single tulip
my companion
for one night

© Chèvrefeuille (2005)

Empty Beach – September 1, 2014

empty beach

on the empty beach
wind whipping the angry waves
where lovers once walked
a girl sits on a park bench
her young love has departed

gulls call overhead
with the sea’s invitation
forget departures
her tears fall with the red leaves
looking at the empty beach

Written for Carpe Diem Haiku Family Shadow – Empty Beach

Estrangement – August 28, 2014

 

The Entrance to the Cemetary Awhen did your love become this entanglement?
these barbed wire bails on a battle field
this corpse of beautiful ideal …
impeding me to freely walk …
to talk, to breath, to write …
your litigious tirades of me, me, me …
these endless heartless harassments …

are leading me into isolation …
and a slow arid spiritual death.

(C) G.s.k. ’14

Three Word Wednesday:

Entanglement, noun: The action or fact of entangling or being entangled; a complicated or compromising relationship or situation; an extensive barrier, typically made of interlaced barbed wire and stakes, erected to impede enemy soldiers or vehicles

Death, noun: The action or fact of dying or being killed; the end of the life of a person or organism.

Heartless, adjective: Displaying a complete lack of feeling or consideration.

Haibun – June 6, 2014 – Misciui

Misciui*

In the warm moon-lit African evening people gathered around a large table decked with a large platter of rice.  The misciui would soon begin.  The goats roasting on the fire would soon be ready.

Someone came with a balafon and his friend brought drums.  They began to play as the rest of the guest listened.  The meat was soon ready and placed in the in honor at the center of the table.

Everyone began to eat as the music played on, eventually becoming more obsessive.  A couple finished eating stood up and began to shake with the rhyme of the drums, their dance sensual, a perfect imitation of love-making as he leaned over her and she responded.

Drink flowed liberally and as each person had his fill of meat and rice, they too began to dance obsessed with the music.  Soon under the light of the moon gyrating couples were lost in the magic of the music and the moon.  All but one old man.

A girl tried to pull him into the center of the dance area. He shook her off and refused saying: “My days of dancing are now past me!  I remember when I was young and shouted at my grandfather, either dance well or start drinking.  I’m drinking tonight!”

moon-lit party
under the skies of Africa
an old man drinks


The prompt this week at Ligo Haibun is “Either dance well or start drinking”.

* misciui is a sort of barbecue, I’m not sure how one spells it, I’ve only heard it used.