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The Renku Sessions: A Day of Snow 30

renkuchainGreetings and welcome to The Haiku Foundation’s Fourth Renku Session: A Day of Snow. I am Marshall Hryciuk of Toronto Canada and i will be the leader of a 36-link Kasen renku. I’ve led over 40 of these linked-poem gatherings and my latest book, from Carleton Place, Canada is a selection of 15 of them, called petals in the dark.

Hello there, renku travelers! We’re about to make the turn for home. Our 30th verse is:

along the Sheboygan
salmon anglers drift fishing

                  Betty Shropshire

“Drift” is the keyword in the linking here. I thought ‘dance’ was too close to the graceful but deeply anchored movements of tai chi practice in unison but that “drift” connoted a kind of oneness with the river’s flow that would be neither willful nor against the anglers’ wills either.

“Drift” also works here both as a noun; ‘drift fishing’ being a technique of landing the game and as a verb where it would be the anglers who are drifting. “Sheboygan” was just the most resounding Place Name for a river suggested and “along” in its ‘n’ and ‘g’ sounds deepened its resonance.

We’ve had mammals, a sea-monster and a bird, so with “salmon” we have now included an animal from the fish phylum. These are non-native, “inland salmon” who in fact don’t die after spawning in the shallower, pebble-strewn waters of  North America’s ‘Great Lakes’. But they are salmon nonetheless and are fished in the autumn, both for the sport they offer and their taste.

Thanks to Patrick Sweeney and Betty for their input here. This is a lovely transfer of energy from a non-seasonal verse to a setting for our fall seasonality. Thank you very much for this verse, Betty.

What’s up now is our final ‘moon verse’ -3 lines, with a further indication that it’s in the autumn. We’ve had moonlight and a new moon (crescent) so there’s no need to be bashful about offering a full moon, a round simulacrum or a day moon for this link. Just please steer clear of animal repetitions, colours or reflections on windows or waters.

Happy linking,
Marshall

 

A Day of Snow to Date

a day of snow
no one else
has come to the door

    –Marshall Hrycuik

coyote song closer
this longest night

    –Judt Shrode

incense lit
the scent of sage
lingers in a crowd

      –Maureen Virchau

bales of the second haying
stacked to the rafters

    –Paul MacNeil

dust from travelers
makes its slow descent
in the moonlight

    –steve smolak

faded jeans, school colors
and granny’s specs to match

    –Betty Shropshire

facing me
a hairy bunyip points
the bones

      –Barbara A. Taylor

balls of moss
exit the quaking forest

      –Carmen Sterba

in the garden shop
seed packets
arrayed alphabetically

      –Marilyn Potter

glasswing on the handle
of my butterfly net

      –Karen Cesar

a gypsy’s forecast
uttered to the sound
of rolling dice

    –Lorin Ford

trick-or-treaters skip
under a new moon

      –Maureen Virchau

horses’ foggy snorts
lead our morning jaunt
along the track

      –Marietta McGregor

scanning an empty platform
as the train chugs off

      –Shrikaanth Krishnamurthy

I sit in silence
behind the steering wheel
awhile

    –Paul Geiger

the ewe gently nudges
her lambs to move on

      –Mary Kendall

one white tulip
in a sunlit border
glows against the green

      –Marietta McGregor

another soul in the limelight
of #blacklivesmatter

      –Agnes Eva Savich

Bastille Day
fireworks
extinguished

      –Marion Clarke

recruitment of volunteers
for the hospice New Year’s Eve

    –Gabriel Sawicki

beaming with joy
the first visitor presents
a tray of passionfruit

    –Barbara A. Taylor

the commuter car full
of personal devices

    –Michael Henry Lee

with a touch of her finger
the goddess of wind
marcels the tall grasses

    –Patrick Sweeney

a gull’s wings barely moving
in the midday heat

    –Polona Oblak

if only I could fit
an arm chair
into my wine cellar

    –Liz Ann Winkler

a dust caked child
turning a dry spigot

    –Judt Shrode

week after week
the geyser spout remains
frozen solid

    Barbara A. Taylor

skiers debate
violet wax or blue special

    –kj munro

twelve breaths
moving as one
hour of tai chi

    –Michael Henry Lee

along the Sheboygan
salmon anglers drift fishing

    –Betty Shropshire

This Post Has 205 Comments

  1. or all who are dying to know we survived Mathew but not without financial loss
    **********
    after the storm
    a flock of wood storks
    under a day moon

      1. certainly glad to hear from you, Michael -that you got through this last weekend -seen pictures of wood storks in people’s bathrooms in North Carolina -is that where you are?

  2. . . . & another last go


    along the Sheboygan
    salmon anglers drift fishing

    –Betty Shropshire


    caught
    among blackberry briars
    the rising moon

    – Lorin

    1. ironic, Lorin, that the reason i didn’t want food or cooking in this link was that it would seem like the ‘catch of the day’ from fishing -and you have a “blackberry briar” as well, making the netting explicit -i’ve been trying to avoid such direct links throughout, but i certainly appreciate your efforts and commitment to making this an intelligent as well as an elegant renku

      1. o, duh! And I thought it was so apt & realistic a link. Put it down to relative inexperience. This was a flashback to my youth in the backwoods of East Gippland. Blackberries grow as high as the first storey of a house along the river there.

        – Lorin

    1. a little bit of phantasy never hurt, eh, Marion? -it’s only that “a plastic bag” just feels like a ‘bad’ linking to the nets of “drift fishing”

    1. well, that’s original, Paul -don’t really want ‘the ultimate driving machine’ linked in here, but thanks

    1. what, Vasile, is being warmed? -you don’t mean to say that the moonlight is making the wooden pail’s water boil, are you?

    1. it’s awkward, joel, having one line begin with “under” and a subsequent one end with “over” -stating “orange”isn’t really needed either

    1. this one does involve autumn, Vasile, but has no sensual appeal to the reader, except maybe to the kinaesthetic sense of speed

    1. thanks for clarifying -guess i was still indulging my ‘notherner’ bias to think that when the moon was closest in November it wouldn’t be for the southern autumn (February) as well -but as for the kigo of cicada -you know i said right from the beginning that i believe kigo only apply in Japan and would be a waste of time to use in offering to this renku -all i can draw upon is my own experience -and if i want to know of the cicada, i listen to the cicada and to me they mean summer

  3. one last go:

    along the Sheboygan
    salmon anglers drift fishing

    Betty Shropshire


    2 versions:

    elder’s pipes
    smoke by the pampas grass
    until moonset

    white beards
    of elder’s by the pampas grass
    until moonset

    – Lorin

      1. glad to see you eliminated “smoke”, Lorin, which was too close to “breaths” -but even as it is it’s too soon after “twelve breaths/ moving as one”

        1. Was trying to use and play off obtuse as in complementary angles…epic fail but I only minored in math, Marshall

          1. “The complementary angle of a compliment, Betty? What a difference an ‘i’ makes. ?
            – Lorin”


            LOL…I was a little too obtuse!
            Cheers!
            Betty

      1. this is a mental extrapolation, Betty, based on ’cause-and-effect’ results -not a sensory experience

    1. fair enough, Mary but this could happen any night of the year -we’re specifically looking for a moon verse that’s autumnal even without the moon

    1. like how the “leaf bed” would signify autumn, here, Marion -not so sure about “bids” beginning one line and “bed” ending the next -and i have to consider whether we need “beofre” next time i read this, thanks

    1. okay, Lorin, so the moon is closest in its orbit of earth in November -so that’s when it has the largest in appearance to us when full: “huge” -so that’s fall here, but spring in the southern hemisphere -so are there really cicadas in November in Australia, Lorin? -anyway, “the cries of cicadas” would mean primarily summer to any poetry reader

      1. “are there really cicadas in November in Australia, Lorin?” – M

        Probably up North, but not where I am, in the South. You seem to be going by calendar months, Marshall. Hey, it’s spring here now, 2nd month of spring: October. They begin to emerge in Summer (in Victoria) . . . late January, February (think of your August) But they’re still around and more vocal in Autumn, then there’s the pathos of fewer and fewer who haven’t yet mated, (so, my ‘fading’ … March into April) Deafening when there’s a lot of them, but when you get the fading sounds there are fewer & fewer. You notice it. It must be that Japan’s main island climate is close to mine (certainly closer than Canada’s!) because the sound of cicadas is a traditional autumn kigo for the Japanese.

        kigo for all autumn

        cicada in autumn, aki no semi 秋の蝉 (あきのせみ)
        ….. autumn cicadas, shuusen 秋蝉 (しゅうせん)
        This kigo brings out the sadness and appreciation of the near death of this animal.

        remaining cicadas, nokoru semi 残る蝉 (のこるせみ)

        http://worldkigo2005.blogspot.com.au/2005/03/cicada-semi-05.html

        – Lorin

        1. To clarify:

          “so the moon is closest in its orbit of earth in November” – M

          In the Northern Hemisphere, yes. But in the Southern Hemisphere, November is late spring and the moon is closest in it’s orbit in autumn, the opposite season to spring, just as it is in the Northern Hemisphere. It’s the Earth’s elliptical orbit around the sun that makes your longest day my shortest and vice versa. The moon is constant in its orbit of Earth.

          – Lorin

          1. whoops, no, that’s not it! The moon’s orbit is elliptical too. So this might be better:


            “During the year, the sun is furthest north of the equator on the first day of northern summer and its furthest south of the equator on the first day of northern winter. Right now we’re in the beginning of fall in the northern hemisphere. The moon, opposite the sun, is moving northward as the sun is moving southward. The season of fall is somewhat of a midway point for the sun and the moon. Because the moon is moving northward, it is rising about 25 minutes earlier than it normally would, or only about 25 minutes later each night. Therefore, for about a week, it’s rising at about the same time that the sun is setting.”
            http://phys.org/news/2010-10-harvest-moon-big-orange.html

            … and there’s more about why it looks biggest in autumn, in both hemispheres. your autumn, my autumn…at opposite times of the calendar year.

            – Lorin

          2. thanks for clarifying -guess i was still indulging my ‘notherner’ bias to think that when the moon was closest in November it wouldn’t be for the southern autumn (February) as well -but as for the kigo of cicada -you know i said right from the beginning that i believe kigo only apply in Japan and would be a waste of time to use in offering to this renku -all i can draw upon is my own experience -and if i want to know of the cicada, i listen to the cicada and to me they mean summer

    1. “storm of leaves” a metaphor, Lorin -which isn’t necessarily a death-knell for it -but then when add that clouds, “race the moon” this whole verse leaves the realm of haiku or ‘haiku-related’

      1. Well, ‘a storm of leaves’ may strictly be metaphorical but it’s shorter than ‘leaves being blown around by a storm wind’ , which is what I’d hope most readers would see as an image. There’s nothing ‘very metaphorical ‘ about it, as there would be if it was, eg. ‘a storm of words’.:-) Our whole language is metaphor based!

        As for ‘clouds race the moon’, haven’t you seen that? Haiku is not and never has been a scientific ‘nature report’. Check out ‘clouds race the moon’ on the Presence website (I’ve read your haiku in Presence ):

        the Cup favourite
        restless in his stable …
        white clouds race the moon

        Lorin Ford, Presence 51 (2014)

        (That ku, of course, is set in spring, not too long before the first Tuesday in November, the day the nation stops for a horse race. 🙂 )

        Just sayin’ 🙂 (as the Americans say) … not everyone would consider the “storm of leaves” ku I offered above as a verse that “leaves the realm of haiku or ‘haiku-related’ “.

        – Lorin

        http://haikupresence.org/tagged/Lorin%20Ford

          1. You hadn’t noticed that it had become a competition for some, Marshall? I did, and so I decided this time around I’d attempt to compete, too. Silly of me, though, I admit. 🙂

            cheers,

            Lorin

      1. Yes, Betty 🙂 you’re right, I admit it was me getting vexed with the moon (verse). 🙂 I wish I was over there fishing in your river instead of being hooked & struggling with this #!#! renku!

        – Lorin

    1. still have trouble, Lorin, with “street sleeper” -and with the possible exception of winter, this could be any season

      1. True, Marshall. Any time the moon was bright & glaring enough to annoy. 🙂 Mind you, a lunar eclipse doesn’t happen in a particular season either, though it only happens with a full moon.
        If I say I saw a sunset the colour of peaches, would that mean I saw it in the season of ripe peaches?

        – Lorin

        1. No, Lorin, you’re right -but if you used the word “peaches” it would probably consolidate a summery feeling -be odd to accept it say, for a winter verse, wouldn’t it?

      1. sounds a bit like the Olson, Lorin -and “spotlight moon” i just can’t abide since it makes the moon into a useful human tool as in a stage theatre

  4. along the Sheboygan
    salmon anglers drift fishing
    .
    .
    Audrey singing
    Moon River
    in a wistful voice
    .
    as Audrey sings
    Moon River
    in such a wistful way
    .
    .
    MH, not sure of the rule about linking two verses by beginning with a conjunction in the second one.
    .
    if this isn’t acceptable, then:
    .
    Audrey singing
    Moon River
    in such a wistful way

    1. seems to me, Lorin, that this occurence would be both awe-inspiring and dazzling -“fields of dew” i have reservations about -but it does have a magic to it -but “repeated repeated” just doesn’t -and then there’s my bias against reflections . . . -will reread later, thanks

        1. Whew! What a snarl! Back to the top, I’d like to take out “full.”
          .
          spiral of an orb weaver
          shimmering with frost
          under the moon

          1. Help!! I’m ensnared by the orb weaver! Can’t seem to stop; I apologize. Try as I might, the dang verses transmogrify as soon as I post! And I now realize that spider webs alone suggest autumn. So…
            .
            spiral of an orb weaver
            shimmering
            under the full moon
            .
            Please disregard everything else that I have posted…thanks.
            .
            Judt

          2. no problem, Judt -“orb weaver” actually has happy associations for me of Ariadne and Penelope in Greek mythology -so don’t be kicking yourself

      1. “flowing” we probably want to avoid writing explicitly, Mary, due to the river in the previous line -but also, “Selene” without any context that it’s denoting a human is in fact a goddess -so the last line is a throwaway

        1. Darn. My link attempt was the word ‘flowing’ to connect with ‘drifting.’ Isn’t that a legitimate way of linking???

          Selene is the Moon Godess (one of her names) so automatically a moonstone for her is appropriate, no?

          Thinking perhaps renku just isn’t for me. 🙁

          1. many of your offerings might work in a ‘live renku’ where i choose to include the first one i can work with, Mary -and you certainly ‘get loose’ quickly (as a musician would say -and you’d be a fine asset in doing that and loosening everybody else up -so don’t discount your renku chops just yet

          2. Mary . . . different sabaki, different approaches to renku, different verse choices, different results. Yet why would you want to give up? I’ve noticed that Marshall has been particularly encouraging to you in his comments throughout.

            But with this ‘Selene’ verse, the obvious reason it wouldn’t be selected by any sabaki worth his/her salt at this stage of this renku is that ‘goddess’ has been done. After Patrick’s verse:

            with a touch of her finger
            the goddess of wind
            marcels the tall grasses
            –Patrick Sweeney

            it would be a glaring mistake to include a subsequent ‘goddess’ verse.

            – Lorin

          3. Ah, I get it. Silly me–I overlooked the first goddess. Lorin, Marshall has been encouraging–I’ve commented on his patience a few times. As a renku beginner among so many skilled poets, I get annoyed with myself for not grasping how to link. I’m learning a lot and will quit complaining. Apologies.

  5. Marshall, you have mentioned that you didn’t want food in this verse. I have an offering that refers to a wonderful Mexican folktale for children called, “Borreguita and the Coyote,” in which the greedy (and tricked) coyote goes after the moon’s reflection in the pond thinking it is a big cheese he can eat. I’ve done two versions here with one mentioning a cheese and the other alluding to it as a disk. Not sure if this still is a no go zone when it’s only a illusion.
    .
    .
    greedy coyote
    dives into the pond
    after the golden cheese
    .
    .
    coyote splashes
    the golden disk
    watching it disappear

    1. yeah, Marietta, i was worried how easily ‘Moon River’ and ‘Blue Moon’ would come to mind here -want some thing more ‘angular’

    1. this is nice too, Marietta -but i prefer your “eclipse” one -and “along” repeats the “along the Sheboygan” just four lines before

    1. to go from “drfit fishing” to lighthearted phantasy such as this is too much of a shift, Marion, even for me

    1. Do we specifically need to mention the moon, Marshall or is it clear enough that mushrooms suddenly appearing at midnight have been lit up by the moon?
      .
      .
      as if by magic
      mushrooms follow a path
      to the moon

      1. each case is different, Marion -a ‘face’ or ‘orb’ by itself in the right setting would suggest the moon -“mushrooms” don’t connote the moon to me, so iwould probably discard this one, even if i were taking ‘food oriented’ offerings

    1. “overflows” carries the water over from the “drift fishing” of the previous verse -acceptable in some renku but not to ours

    1. two food groups, Marion -but you must know i also detest lines ending in an English- language article, such as “a”

    1. “sanguine” puts too much human emotion into the still moon, Marilyn -and i’m thinking if “the displaced march” they would probably be more likely prisoners, (not going to freedom) and if they’re refugees, they’d be straggling and unorderly

    1. “days” is a rather loaded word in this renku, Paul and the game of “bridge” as a link with the “anglers” in a river is offputting to me

    1. no, Barbara, decided to do without food or cooking for this link (i know i didn’t state this at the beginning of the ‘offer period’ but i realized the first day that i in fact wanted something else for this link

    1. this one has possibilities, Marion -don’t know if i want to change “follow” to ‘trace’ or ‘track’ or just leave it -obviously, have to look at this one again, thanks

      1. decided, Marion, that “skein of mist” is too soon after the breaths of the debating skiers made explicit the next verse of the tai chi participants

  6. Betty, I neglected to congratulate you on your excellent verse:
    .
    along the Sheboygan
    salmon anglers drift fishing
    .
    the word play and imagery in this verse is particularly appealing…I had never heard of drift fishing, but you linked so well to the previous verse…Congratulations!

    1. okay, Marietta -but if you didn’t know the moon signalled ‘autumn’ how would you know it was autumn from this verse unless it’s an astrological reference that i would rather not have here

  7. g’day Marshall,

    In my garden I do have wonderful fungi that are luminous.

    I seem to have forgotten the moon in my last offer:

    intense moonshine
    on a scarecrow’s crook
    declares “No Trump Here”

    1. but with this version, Barbara, the magnificent mushrooms are gone and we’re left with a political comment

  8. along the Sheboygan
    salmon anglers drift fishing

    –Betty Shropshire

    gleaming
    with plates in the dish rack
    a bone china moon

    gleaming
    with plates in the dish rack
    harvest moon

    lorin
    – Lorin

    1. hi Debbie -lovely image of the rolling field under moonlight -last line, though accurate to the perception is a bit coarse for what i’m looking for however

      1. Thanks Marshall! I thought about that! This is such a fun challenge and I so enjoy when someone comes up with just the right fit!

    1. yeah, the reddish-orange i saw once around midnight in Ottawa was truly amazing, Marietta -you actually see the orb as if a coloured shadow -thanks, now you’ve given me 3 to consider

    1. i’m more of a slow gin than a brandy apple, myself, Marietta -sounds like fun, but i’m off of food and drink for this one

  9. Congratulations, Betty.

    .

    along the Sheboygan
    salmon anglers drift fishing

    –Betty Shropshire

    .

    fastening
    her moonstone pin
    his fingers tremble

    1. nice ‘zoom in’ from anglers fishing to “fastening” a pin, Marietta -unsure about whether i want the focus to be on the human fingers and a human product rather than the moon though -but thanks, i’ll have to think on this one

  10. Congratulations , Betty!
    ————
    along the Sheboygan
    salmon anglers drift fishing
    -Betty Shropshire
    ————–
    flanneled photographer
    caught in headlights
    the moon framed

    1. nice twist, Debbie, the gauche paparazzi caught like a deer in the headlights -but too heavily augmented for our renku

    1. more cerebral than perceptual, Judt -not completely against ‘the rules’, but not what i’m looking for here

    1. hope it was one composed by Brahms with Pablo Cassals playing, Judt – but “Frosty …” unfortunately for me brings to mind the children’s Santa song, “FRosty the Snowman” – don’t kow how you could know that -but it does

    1. now i think , Lorin, the barbie dolls must be hiding -don’t even wants prawns right here (after the salmon)

  11. along the Sheboygan
    salmon anglers drift fishing

    –Betty Shropshire

    presenting mooncakes
    as the moon rises gift-wrapped
    in shining clouds

    – Lorin

    1. decided i want to leave out food for this link, Lorin -but “gift-wrapped” is too baroque for here in any case

        1. yes, you’re right, Mary -it does indicate autumn, as this verse needs -guess i just think it’s too ‘tight’ a word for a field ready for harvest

      1. i would write, ‘day moon/ serendipitous/ over a pumpkin patch’ -but i think it would be more of a surprise if “day moon” were not stated as such and were left to the last line

        1. I think you are exactly right, Marshall. In a haiku I would do just that…I have trouble figuring out what to leave in or out in a renku, but I am starting to learn.
          .
          serendipitous
          over a pumpkin patch
          daymoon
          .
          or
          .
          over a pumpkin patch
          serendipitous
          daymoon
          .
          I prefer the second version. I will be careful about paring down more in the future.

          1. keep writing, Mary -to mix metaphors with baseball -‘you can’t hit nothin’ if you don’t make that swing’

    1. okay, so i know what a Cassia tree is -but what, Mary, specifically are “mooncakes”? -eating as a link after fishing is interesting

    2. The mid-autumn festival in China is often called the Moon Festival. Part of the celebration involves lanterns floating into the night sky, and it is customary to give (and receive) moon cakes which are round and stamped with moon-related designs. They are made of preserved lotus beans and are given out as a wish for good fortune. Much of this links back to the moon myth of the Moon Godess named Chang’e…a lovely story there. This link to a wikipedia article tells all about the various customs, but eating mooncakes and drinking cassia wine are two of the most common.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mid-Autumn_Festival

      1. thanks alot, Mary -i don’t really know what my preferences are for a link until i receive a few and just feel my intuition respond -so i wouldn’t have said beforehand i don’t want a food link here -but i realize now that i don’t -but thanks for the info and keep writing

    1. a lot here, Mary -a bone-carver phantasizing a full-scale painting -just not sure we need “ripening” -but thanks, i appreciate the complexity

        1. yes, you’re right, Mary -it does indicate autumn, as this verse needs -guess i just think it’s too ‘tight’ a word for a field ready for harvest

    1. has a mysterious ring to it, Maria -but in some ways it’s too close to the drifting anglers and from another view, it doesn’t link at all
      -and, “stopped among” while it adds resonance is an activity we don’t want here -looking to ‘pick up’

    1. reinvigorates the meaning of “Hunter’s Moon” well, Maria, but i feel a need for a second element here

    1. like the first one better, Barbara -and would prefer, ‘luminous’ or ‘surreal’ “mushrooms” to the “phos . . .” which sounds too much like a lightbulb -also “tonight’s” seems out of place here beside the “full moon” -don’t have a suggestion for how to rectify that -but thanks -saw some orange mushrooms myself just yesterday -very autumnal

  12. .
    twelve breaths
    moving as one
    hour of tai chi

    –Michael Henry Lee
    .
    along the Sheboygan
    salmon anglers drift fishing
    .
    –Betty Shropshire

    .
    .

    quietly humming
    across a hunter’s moon
    the hum of a drone
    .
    .

    the kanji for ‘cloud’
    across a hunter’s moon
    quietly humming

    .
    .
    the kanji for ‘cloud’
    quietly humming like a drone
    across a hunter’s moon
    .
    .

    the kanji for cloud
    across a hunter’s moon
    quietly humming
    .
    .
    the kanji for cloud
    quietly humming like a drone
    across a hunter’s moon
    .
    .
    the kanji for cloud
    crossing a hunter’s moon
    quietly humming
    .
    .
    the kanji for cloud
    crossing a hunter’s moon
    the hum of a drone
    .
    .
    Alan Summers

    1. hi Alan -don’t like how “the kanji” are being used here -i’m thinking along the lines of ‘moving across the Hunter’s Moon/ while i hum/ the kanji for cloud’ -but i think this is too close to tai chi and ‘drifting’ -want to avoid a kireji break here as we’re bearing for ‘home’ and want to speed up slightly -not even sure i want to use ‘Hunter’s Moon’ even, since hal the renku i’ve read have one in them -but thanks for your efforts

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