For Mish’s prompt for Haibun Monday – morning.Also for Tuesday Platform at Toads.

The morning my mother died was one of the most glorious I had seen in many a year. Birds were singing loudly, dew was sparkling on the grass like diamonds, the temperature was perfect. They called me from the skilled nursing facility that morning. I hung up the phone and walked outside, looking and hearing the beauty around me. I stood in the midst of it, numbed. A small finch lit on the grass a few feet from me and chirped then flew away. I began to weep. My mother was dead.
butter yellow sun
coats the grass – birds are singing
my mother to rest

28 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Frank Hubeny
    Sep 03, 2018 @ 15:42:59

    Sorrow within doesn’t always match the beauty without. Nice haibun. Beautiful memory of your mother.


  2. Björn Rudberg (brudberg)
    Sep 03, 2018 @ 15:52:34

    I wonder how the world can be so beautiful when you are mourning… maybe the nature tried to sooth you… but I would expect it to be a night angry and wild…

    rage, rage against the dying of the light…


    • kanzensakura
      Sep 04, 2018 @ 00:06:52

      The most horrid things have happened on a calm beautiful day: Pearl Harbor, Hiroshima, September 11, the suicides of two friends in different Junes, the sudden death of a dear friend several Aprils ago. The list continues.ordinary beautiful days for extraordinary events. I have found that the dark and stormy nights are for fiction, not for truth.

      Get Outlook for Android



  3. Mish
    Sep 03, 2018 @ 15:57:08

    This made my heart sink. An experience that I will face in the future. How wonderful that the morning blessed you and your mother with sunshine and the beauty of nature. A very moving haibun.


  4. kim881
    Sep 03, 2018 @ 16:14:09

    That’s one thing we can never forget, the time of day when a parent died. I’m so pleased the weather celebrated your mum, Toni.


  5. Grace
    Sep 03, 2018 @ 16:23:31

    Very moving remembrance Toni. I love that the birds are singing your mother to sleep.


  6. Victoria C. Slotto
    Sep 03, 2018 @ 16:24:29

    Wistful, touching memory that most likely has given a whole new meaning to your experience of morning. The haiku adds even more meaning.


  7. sarahsouthwest
    Sep 03, 2018 @ 16:29:23

    What a contrast between the outside world and your emotions. I hope the beauty of the world became a comfort.


  8. V.J. Knutson
    Sep 03, 2018 @ 17:05:13

    What a touching memory – sorrowful and yet, beautiful. To lose a mother is never easy.


  9. Glenn Buttkus
    Sep 03, 2018 @ 17:10:09

    The inside/outside Zen metaphor really kicked off my emotions. Perhaps Nature views death as the natural order of things, worthy of celebration.


  10. Susan St.Pierre
    Sep 03, 2018 @ 17:24:35



  11. Francina
    Sep 03, 2018 @ 17:29:24

    Beautiful and bittersweet


  12. rothpoetry
    Sep 03, 2018 @ 17:37:17

    Beautifully written!


  13. Beverly Crawford
    Sep 03, 2018 @ 17:50:43

    I love the haiku thought of the birds “singing your mother to her rest”. It reminds me of something I read of the Australian aboriginals and their traditions about singing.


  14. Singledust
    Sep 03, 2018 @ 17:54:46

    a day forever etched in your heart, earth she grieved with you but reminded you how beautiful mother is


  15. Jane Dougherty
    Sep 04, 2018 @ 09:18:52

    Life goes on, and in your mother’s case, gloriously. Perhaps it makes the loss easier.


  16. annell4
    Sep 04, 2018 @ 10:57:11

    A sad morning. You have described it perfectly. That was the morning my Son died, but my own Mother preferred the winter of the year, gray skies, the color of her eyes.

    Your words are beautiful and tender.


  17. Vicki
    Sep 04, 2018 @ 13:44:55

    So heart wrenching and beautiful.


  18. Pat: willow88switches
    Sep 04, 2018 @ 14:58:25

    sorrow often arrives in the most unexpected moments, when everything just – is – perfect – and then, it becomes forever framed in this hyper-surrealism … of … how can this be?

    and yet, for the pain, the grief, the shock in the moment, of finally hearing what eventually, inevitably are words we must hear, you have transformed them, now – into a moment, that is perhaps now equally beautiful for its sorrow as for its encompassing love – which is a lovely and precious way to be able to remember, and also heal …

    a very moving, intimate haibun Toni – thank you for sharing.


  19. Sherry Marr
    Sep 04, 2018 @ 17:46:30

    It is always so unreal that the world can be so beautiful, going on as normal, and the loved one is gone. A beautiful poem, Toni.


  20. sanaarizvi
    Sep 05, 2018 @ 06:07:05

    I am so sorry for your loss, Toni 😥 this is a beautiful poem 💕


  21. Frank J. Tassone
    Sep 05, 2018 @ 19:02:53

    as iconic juxtaposition of beauty and sorrow–a genuine kokoro and sabi–as I’ve ever read. Beautiful and heartbreaking, Toni–and your haiku is one of your best!


  22. purplepeninportland
    Sep 05, 2018 @ 20:38:24

    Always odd to think of death on a lovely day. I love your ending on this. I would love to have the birds singing.


  23. Jim
    Sep 05, 2018 @ 23:32:28

    That was nice, Toni, that the mother was welcomed with sunshine and birds singing. My mother may have been welcomed by Angels sitting of puff clouds. We were flying into Omaha, making our approach the exact time she died. A lady across the isle mentioned that she could ‘see’ an angel sitting on every one of the puff clouds. That was in 1999 but I will always remember that instant.


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