Hello again. This is John Stevenson and I am facilitating a twelve verse renku, in the Jûnichô style. Over the course of this session, we will add one new verse each week, selected from your offers.
Thirty-three poets offered a total of 175 verse eleven candidates this time.
I must admit that I have been more than usually distracted by other matters while this session has been in progress and have missed a number of things that I probably wouldn’t have, otherwise. The latest example is that I have suggested that this might be a cherry blossom verse, as is often the case when we get to the spring blossom. But I had not considered that we had already included references to pine and apple (verses five and six), which would tend to forestall any further tree references in so short a renku. So, no cherry, plum, pear nor, of course, apple blossoms. This leaves other kinds of spring flowers but I do regret not sending you in that direction in last week’s instructions.
Here are just some of the verses that caught my eye this time, including some that I will pass over because of my poor instructions and through no fault of the various poets:
something within me
with the plum blossoms
in the darkening day
glow in the shadows
This is unusual because the kigo is not the blossom; it’s “pilgrimage” (all spring).
swoops down past the pink
an early photo
in black and white
Of course, verse nine invokes a children’s game, as does “ready or not.”
“Blossoms” are generally presumed to be cherry blossoms in renku unless otherwise specified, just as “moon” is presumed to be an autumn moon unless otherwise specified.
chasing a petal
We have a horse and the Spanish name for turtle in verse four. Another animal seems like a lot for such a short renku.
the ivory petals
out of reach
of her hands now
This is very tempting. But verse number nine involves a game played with hand gestures (which is also a presumptive link to the piano in verse ten).
a violet blossom
perfuming the tress
in her locket
A borrowed scent in verse five?
look, the hedge is
a minor detour
to pick a posy
of vivid violets
OUR ELEVENTH VERSE
Our Renku, So Far
to count the stars
9/11 still fresh
in our memories
in the back seat
has borrowed its scent
from the pines
he licks the apple juice
on her chin
we take each other
rests on granite
of the piano
Please offer candidates for our twelfth, and final, verse, using these guidelines:
- Two lines
- A spring verse with a non-vegetation kigo from our list: http://www.2hweb.net/haikai/renku/500ESWd.html
- Linking with the eleventh verse only (no obvious linking to any of the first ten verses)
- Without an internal grammatical break or pause
Please enter your offers in the comments section, below. Offers should be made by midnight, eastern US time, on Monday, September 5th. On Thursday, September 8th, I will post a selection of the offers, with my comments, and select the final verse for “Barely Time.”
Looking forward to your offers,
The Haiku Foundation reminds you that participation in our offerings assumes respectful and appropriate behavior from all parties. Please see our Code of Conduct policy: https://thehaikufoundation.org/about-thf/policies/#code-of-conduct