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The Renku Sessions: Triparshva—Call for verse 16


Welcome to the third Renku Session. I’m Linda Papanicolaou, and I’ll be leading this journey in collaborative poetry. Triparshva is a 22-verse form developed by Norman Darlington in 2005. It’s a good form for composing online because it moves more quickly than the 36-verse kasen, while also following the jo-ha-kyu (beginning-development-rapid closure) pattern of traditional renku. So whether you’re new to renku, or simply want to keep your skills honed, you’re especially encouraged to join us.

Selection of Verse 15:

Back when we began this renku, I did not count ahead and had no idea that we would wind up writing our major moon verse on Supermoon Viewing night, and with an eclipse to boot!  I did enjoy the “no moon” submissions. One thing I have learned in this renku is to listen to you when there are a number of great minds running in the same channel. Although once again there were several verses that would have been fine additions to the renku, the verse to which I kept coming back was Gabriel’s setting moon, and this is the one I would like to place.  Here it is, with maeku and uchikoshi:

after a while
the life boat for refugees
floating hardly
~Vasile Moldovan

the first paulownia leaf
to touch the soil
~Maureen Virchau

setting moon
fills the garden
with the darkness
~Gabriel Sawicki

I’m fascinated with how it links to the maeku. From a close-up of the paulownia —remember, this kigo centers on the sound of a falling leaf—our view zooms out to the darkness of a garden at moonset.

My sense is that at this point we probably need some variation such as an exclamation, but that doesn’t overly concern me because this verse could easily be tweaked with a construction like Beth’s “scents” offer, something like “how the setting moon / fills the garden / with darkness!”  But we can think about that later when we can consider the whole renku. . I’ve left time for fine-tuning at the end.

So thank you very much for this beautiful verse, Gabriel. The image I have in my head is my own garden, plunged into shadow as the moon sinks behind the trees, and in the darkness a thunk! as a large leaf hits the ground.  Nice linking.

Specifications for verse 16:

With this verse we will complete our ha!  Here are its maeku and uchikoshi:

the first paulownia leaf
to touch the soil

setting moon
fills the garden
with the darkness

Please write this verse with the following:

  • two lines
  • autumn
  • your choice, person or non-person
  • link to the maeku, shift from the uchikoshi
  • avoid leaves, flowers or indeed anything to do with plants; falling things, boats, travel, water
  • nota bene: topics we don’t have yet include mammals, fish, clothing, beverage, alcoholic beverage, study and learning, compass direction, work, dreams, sickness, accident, birth, death, natural disaster. . .

How to Submit:

All verse positions in this renku will be degachi. Please post your offers in the Comments section below. Let’s have an upper limit of 3 per participant.

The call for this verse will remain open until Monday, October  5, 2015 at midnight (EDT).  At that time I’ll collect everyone’s ideas, consider each, choose the one that best serves the renku, and post a call for the next verse on Thursday.

Useful links and resources:  

  • If you’re just joining us, please take a moment to review my Introduction to Triparshva post.
  • NEW:  A full copy of the schema for the renku may be found at the bottom of the introductory page. I am filling in the verses as they are placed.
  • For the archive of previous calls and submissions, click here.

The Renku so far:

Side 1: jo

a bowl of cherries
sitting on each white plate
someone’s name
~Lynne Rees /su

under a canvas tent
the snap of a breeze
~Barbara Kaufmann /su

passersby stop
to applaud a subway
saxophone player
~Karen Cesar / ns

sweet reminiscences
of our bygone days
~Barbara A. Taylor / ns

yet again
the moon lights the loggerhead
as she digs
~Paul MacNeil / sp mn

with the twittering
morning mist clears away
~Maria Tomczak

Side 2: Ha

from the mountain top
Puyallup natives trace
their lands below
~Carmen Sterba / ns

who left the doors open
to Valhalla?
~Polona Oblak/ ns

rusty roofing iron
as a letterbox
~Sandra Simpson / ns

#smitten #diamond #yes
~Christopher Patchel / wi lv

at the Marquise
a clandestine romp
in neon flicker
~Judt Shrode / ns lv

his better half chambers
another round just because
~Betty Shropshire / ns lv

after a while
the life boat for refugees
floating hardly
~Vasile Moldovan / ns

the first pawlonia leaf
to touch the soil
~Maureen Virchau / au

setting moon
fills the garden
with the darkness
~Gabriel Sawicki

This Post Has 39 Comments

  1. Oops–I just realized I forgot to include the “How to Submit” section in the post. I’ve just edited it in.
    As usual, the call for verse 16 will remain open until Monday, October 5, 2015 at midnight (EDT).

  2. as a mole approaches
    the worms cry out
    through bare branches
    I count and recount the nests
    halfway through the midnight shift
    a nurse rubs her back

  3. I expect I am not eligible, but couldn’t resist chiming in. We do not have a first person singular, or much to make one smile? And, Sabaki Linda asked for an exclamation! So, for fun:

    out of practice
    I forgot the chimney damper!

    1. Also nice, but with that internal cut it’s more haiku than renku verse. Would you like to continue to work it?

    1. Not to be a bean-counter, Todd–it’s an excellent verse and links nicely, but we have a reptile in the loggerhead turtle so it’s best to think of animals we don’t yet have–mammals, insects, fish.

      1. You’re right, Linda! Even an iron skillet needs to be “seasoned” before use.

  4. but yet the wounded roe deer
    is feeding the new-born calves


    angling autumn hestill hopes
    to catch the gold fish at last


    up at the old wine cellar
    the must yet began to boil

      1. Sorry I was using a Chinese book of words and it says “melancholy, that bittersweet feeling which comes in the fall, and has been celebrated over the ages in Chinese painting, poetry, and song” so I went with it as only a autumn word.

        “long night” is on the “THE FIVE HUNDRED ESSENTIAL JAPANESE SEASON WORDS” so maybe this is a little closer…thanks.

        long melancholy night
        as the heart ponders…


        melancholy the long night
        as the heart ponders…

        1. That would do it. And good for you for finding another way to indicate season other than naming “autumn”.

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