Haibun: Bees

Haibun: Bees
“To make a prairie it takes a clover and one bee, One clover, and a bee, And revery. The revery alone will do, If bees are few.” Emily Dickinson

I began keeping bees last year. I wanted to be sure because it is quite a commitment. I have one hive but it is a busy one! A typical hive takes visiting about two million flowers a season to produce one pound of honey. I often sit on my back steps watching them going back and forth, in and out of flowers. I keep clover blooming from late winter to late autumn. It is a labor of love with me. Listening to their somnolent hum, their burying themselves in flowers and coming out covered with pollen. Interestingly, they do not destroy their source of pollen as humans destroy their source of anything in the natural world. And I must confess, I am allergic to bee stings!
bee staggers drunk –
sipped sweetness day long
and slept well all night

The Dark Place

Day 23 of NAPOWRIMO. Sanaa’s prompt is to write a ghost story or a story that calls to darkness.  It is open link day at Toads but I am following the prompts for the 30 in 30.

The Dark Place

…”when the sun hides its face for years at a time, and little children
are born and live and die all in darkness while the direwolves grow gaunt and
hungry, and the white walkers move through the woods” George R.R. Martin, A Game of Thrones

in the woods across the road there is a corner –
dark amidst the brightness of green
and tree filtered light.
the corner is in the northwest quadrant
and in that space is a small stone, old
and covered with moss beginning to crumble.
on the stone is Rest in Peace and it points
to the west – not the east.
the people who buried this person
hoped he would not rise again.
the corner is dark, even at high noon –
heavy dead vines, like calcified snakes
strangle the life out of the two trees
in that corner, no green growth,
no animal life, even the fallen leaves
blow away in the wind leaving the hard earth
bare. I don’t know who is buried there.
I just know I walk past
the place quickly, with my fingers crossed,
and my head down.
The darkness calls out to me
but I dare not heed.
I dare not heed.

Haibun: The Balloon

For Merrill’s prompt at dVerse – a quadrille.  A quadrille is a poem in any form with exactly 44 words using the prompted word, sans title.  The word today is “rise”.  A haibun in the manner of Basho.


Haibun: The Balloon
“Perhaps wisdom… is realizing how small I am, and unwise, and how far I have yet to go.” Anthony Bourdain

The day I buried my mother’s ashes was a hot summer day. I untied the balloon from my wrist and let it go. I watched it rise quickly to the sky.
balloon rises to heaven
and clears the trees –
my heart goes with it


It is the 22nd Day of NAPOWRIMO. For Fireblossom’s last prompt at Real Toads. she is asking us to pick a pic and write about it. The pics are based upon her posts throughout the years. The title of the prompt is Beware of Poor Substitutions! Shay, thanks for being a friend and a poetic mentor.

“I know it’s not butter.” Anthony Bourdain

instant coffee – Postum no less.
Ersatz powdered crèamer.
Powdered artificial sweetener.
No wonder I can’t get going in the morning.
Or rather,
the false dawn in which my digital alarm goes off.
tokens in the fare slot on the bus,
a Danish with artificial jam.
No wonder I crash and burn before 9:00 a.m.
my plane crashes on the runway –
I don’t stand a chance.


The Notes: Postum is a powdered roasted-grain beverage popular as a coffee substitute. The caffeine-free beverage was created by Post Cereal Company founder C. W. Post in 1895 and marketed as a healthful alternative to coffee.

No Substitutions Allowed

For Fireblossom’s prompt over at toads for Day 22 of NAPOWRIMO:  Beware of Poor Substitutions


No Substitutions Allowed
“I can believe it’s not butter.” Anthony Bourdain

Years ago I went to a sleepover at a school friend’s
and three of us spent the night and stayed for breakfast.
I was 12 at the time and come to think of it,
that was the first and last time I went to a girl’s sleepover.
Giggling about boys, fixing up each other’s hair,
doing makeup, reading teen mags and swooning over
the lackluster stars contained therein.
for lunch we had bacon lettuce and tomato sandwiches and
tuna salad sandwiches and I presumed, coca cola.
My first bite into the BLT caused me to choke.
horror of horrors they had used generic mayonnaise!
Not Hellman’s mind you but…no name brand!
I held the bite in my mouth and went to the bathroom
and there I spat it out.
Not only that but the tomato was a flavorless
mushy tomato from somewhere,
not a good summer tomato.
I returned to drink my glass of cola
and discovered…
you guessed it,
it was Generic Cola,
not coke.
I went home and stormed to my parents –
As god is my witness I’ll never eat
generic mayo and winter tomatoes again
and drink no name cola again!.
People with no taste buds should never ever
invite people to eat a meal with them.
That’s all I have to say.
and margarine instead of butter?
hell no

Flower poems

For Magaly’s prompt at Real Toads: three line poems about flowers!  I am a day behind on posting this for NAPOWRIMO

white wisteria –
ghosts in the trees weeping in
the misty spring rain


sign of spring
blooming in spite of snow
flowering quince


zinnias – fireworks
explode in green sky dimming
the bright summer sun

The Takasago Pines

For Kim’s prompt on Day 21 of NAPOWRIMO, tree mythology.  She asks us to write a poem based on the mythology of trees. Based on a tale of pines from Japan. The Japanese revere pines and consider them a symbol of long life and fidelity as pine seeds often sprout two trees – “wedded” trees.  Pines are often planted outside of Shinto temples.  The backs of Noh theaters ae often decorated with pictures of pine trees. Gokinboshu (sacred pines) are decorated with ropes, tassels and paper lightning at Shinto temples.

at Kifune shrine

The Takasago Pines

“the pine tree of Shiogoshi
trickles all night long
shiny drops of moonlight” Matsuo Basho

the tide goes out taking the moon
with it – the tide comes in
bringing the sun with it.
winds softly blow through the branches
of the twin pines –
soft words drawing lovers to the trees.
a temple bell sounds.
two old people come to sweep the ground
beneath the sacred pines.
an old man and an old woman –
they are the spirits of the pines
visiting the trees that guard the temple.
jo and uba – old man old woman.
grow old together until they fell asleep.
together they grew into pines.
together always.
decorated with fresh ropes and tassels,
lightning bolts –
tied together by wind and sun,
rain and snow.
everlasting love.


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