Greetings 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 for a 36-link kasen renku. I’ve led over 40 of these linked-poem gatherings over the past 20 years and my latest book, out from catkin press of Carleton Place, Canada is a selection of 15 of them, called petals in the dark.
Now, though you can get your saijikis out and use them for inspiration or reference, they probably won’t help you have a link included since i don’t consult any. When i specify a season, what i’m looking for is seasonality, not any particular word; and just as i believe that poetry is what happens between words, i believe seasonality, like sexuality compared to ‘sex’, is a matter of process in context rather than a specific attribute. And the seasonality here will always be one adherent to the northern hemisphere, temperate portion, with the four cardinal seasons and a fifth, New Year’s, added for spice.
Ideally, a link should both link and shift. I like to think of each new verse as a magic lamp that casts a light back on the previous step and gives it a different angle or slant of meaning while also foreshadowing by maintaining an openness to the next step and thereby allowing the shift to happen, somewhat like an undulating coil. I also feel the whole renku as a roundabout; 18 links out, 18 back in and an attempt at a mandala, a microcosm of the universe. Grand aims i know, and probably grandiose enough a statement of them for now. Meanwhile, can’t wait to see what you’ll contribute to link with this hokku of mine:
Here is the verse you must link to:
a day of snow
no one else
has come to the door
So what we need now is two lines, in winter, preferably outdoors. You have until Midnight (Toronto Time) next Tuesday, March 22 to submit your offers. Please enter them in the comment section, below. Happy linking!