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The Renku Sessions: Junicho verse #9

renku_300

I’m Sandra Simpson, and I will serve as your guide as we compose a 12-verse junicho (june-ee-cho, as in choke).

Happy Easter to all as I post this on Good Friday, having spent the day in the garden in what feels more like late summer than autumn – if you’re in the northern hemisphere I hope your spring is springing!

The second of our love verses is necessarily set in winter and there have been some strong candidates – and some unusual positions! – submitted. We’ve had a prostitute, an old maid, a robot, a shepherd (though I wondered if that was a dog), a patchworker, a figure skater (and her coach), ski parties, a snowman … full marks for inventiveness and not being afraid to try.

Please do keep an eye on what has gone before though, as a couple of strong contenders repeated nouns – and please do keep at your elbow what is required for the next verse, it’s a big help to me if we’re all aiming within the same framework.

Among the verses I liked for this position were:

gently he kindles
the fire and me

– Jayashree Maniyil

cold handshakes
with each speed dater

– Christopher Patchel

your après-ski photo
with someone i don’t know

– Polona Oblak

the arc of her breast
as I raise the covers

– Paul MacNeil

sipping vodka between his kisses
she warms up faster

– Marilyn Potter

Chosen for verse #8 is:

his pride tied to the bedpost
with her thermal undies

– Karen Cesar

Larks and lawks! Sounds like a right, old to-do … a night to remember. I’m sure you don’t need me to explain that the link is “sexual love”.

The ribald sense of fun in this verse is the perfect note for the penultimate verse in our ha section. I have edited the verse slightly to make it a singular bedpost. Having his pride tied to more than one bedpost sounded painful, if not a little messy!

Karen has also subtly swapped the power in the two love verses from the male cosmonaut in the first to the female in the second. Nicely done.

What comes next – verse #9 is:

  • A 3-line verse that is not cut.
  • A no-season verse that is not a love verse. We have completed our pair of love verses and are now moving on.
  • A verse that links to verse 8 but shifts away from verse 7 – in tone, setting, construction, etc. This verse might be inside or outside, there is a case to be made for both so I hope that frees things up for you.
  • This is our last verse of the ha or “party” phase of jo-ha-kyu so let’s go out with a bang! (Oh, no wait, we just did that! :).

How we play:

Please enter your candidate verses in the Comments section below. All verse positions in this junicho will be degachi, that is competitive, and the final poem will comprise stanzas written by 12 different poets.

Please submit only 3 candidate verses for each position. I will allow a week between each verse selection so you have plenty of time to consider your submissions before making them.

For information about junicho and renku, please refer to the Introduction post. And, remember, have fun with your writing.

An inspiring quote:

The game for the writer [in a renku] is to get as much diversity as possible into the verses while maintaining a poetic flow.

The game for the reader is to enter into the renku in a more proactive way than the Western reader is used to. Renku is more empathetic than sympathetic. It is poetry more of the imagination than of the analytical mind.   – Karen Cesar

Our poem so far:

cooling off –
our feet in the river
with the ducks

– Lorin Ford

the distant melody
of an ice-cream truck

– Maria Tomczak

paper planes
by the window
ready for his bag

– Sanjuktaa Asopa

welcome to Gaza
from Banksy and friends

– Betty Shropshire

somewhere a missing key
among sprouts
of green grass

– Maureen Virchau

and a pot of daffodils
at the end of the rainbow

– Marion Clarke

on re-entry
the cosmonaut inhales
the scent of her body

– Patrick Sweeney

his pride tied to the bedpost
with her thermal undies

– Karen Cesar

This Post Has 60 Comments

      1. Sorry, the above misreads as a cut.

        ferris wheel only
        now that I’m prone to
        motion sickness

    1. Hi Gabriel,
      **
      I’m afraid that you’ve used not one, but two seasonal kigo in this verse – and this is a *no-season* position.
      **
      “seeds” and “breeze” are definite spring *and* autumn kigo.

      **

      I look forward to seeing your next try,
      Sandra

      1. Hi Sandra,

        Sorry, I didn’t read the guidelines for this verse too carefully.

        My next try:
        ***
        on the cafe wall
        wind blowing up
        Marilyn’s dress

  1. I walk away accepting my
    hidden embarrassment as a sign
    that I have grown old too quickly


    home alone the child hides
    in the closet behind the
    the boxes of money


    As I fall down the stairs
    I sadly realize I left my
    cell phone under the pillow

    1. Hi Liz Ann,

      **

      “slow dancing” is, I’m afraid in the “love” category” so making this verse ineligible in this spot. Please do try again.
      **

      I realise people may not be reading through the comments section so a few days ago I amended the “instructions” area for this verse position to point out that we have only one pair of love verses in a junicho – this is the *only* place love may be addressed; anywhere else is simply wrong.

      **
      Thanks,
      Sandra

      Thanks,
      Sandra

      1. Thanks Sandra – I knew this as your instructions are clear – just spaced it out! Will try again!

    1. Just keep an eye on the “what comes next” section each week Pat. I try and make that as clear as possible about what the requirements are for the new verse position.

      **

      Thanks for submitting some more.

  2. on re-entry
    the cosmonaut inhales
    the scent of her body

    – Patrick Sweeney
    .
    his pride tied to the bedpost
    with her thermal undies

    – Karen Cesar
    .
    ***
    between swigs of cheap booze
    a wino recites poems
    to the crowd
    .
    the guide’s umbrella
    points towards
    Ponte dei Sospiri
    .
    the culture growing
    in a petri dish
    yet to be determined

  3. .
    .
    on re-entry
    
the cosmonaut inhales
    the scent of her body
    .
    – Patrick Sweeney
    .
    .
    his pride tied to the bedpost
    with her thermal undies
    .
    – Karen Cesar
    .
    .
    filling the pot
    before a mouse stirs
    singing Dolcelatte
    .
    .
    Niagara Falls
    are the whispers
    between rain
    .
    .
    Marliyn Monroe’s
    revenge for not finishing
    the last film
    .
    .

  4. First offer for verse 9:

    the whoosh
    of the axe
    as he chops the wood
    *********************
    Second offer for verse 9:

    a cat toys
    with the milk sachet
    outside the door
    ************************
    Third offer for verse 9:

    outside the door
    the steady gaze
    of a gargoyle
    **********************

    1. Hi Pravat,

      Welcome to the junicho. Unfortunately, we can’t have a link back to verse 8, which is what you have done by using “shuttle” – we are *shifting* from v8 and *linking* to v9.
      **
      I would also advise against repeating words and ideas, such as “thermal” insulation/underwear. Linking is more subtle than that. The idea is that the link is unspoken (unwritten) but there for the reader to discover.
      **
      Please read the Introduction post and feel free to come back with any questions – and I do hope that you’ll try posting another couple of verses.
      **
      Good luck!,
      Sandra

  5. well maybe this one, too…

    ***

    so little missed
    by the chief inspector
    known as Sherlock Holmes

    1. Hi Judt,
      *

      I’m afraid “bride” put us into love verse territory, and we have now left that. I’m sorry if my outline for this verse wasn’t clear – I’m afraid it can’t have been as you’re the third submitter to do this. I will adjust the text to make it clear.
      *
      Regards,
      Sandra

      1. Sorry, Sandra, you did make it clear. But the “bride” thing went right by me, I guess because it wasn’t directly about the couple. These blind spots are amazing, because I checked out several aspects of the poem. :-/ I’ll try again.

        Thanks for letting me know.
        Judt

    1. Hi Pat,

      We have left our love verses behind – only 2 in a junicho – so “between the sheets” is ineligible, I’m afraid. Please do submit some more. After each set of paired verses – love, spring – we have a pair of no-season verses, have you noticed? The idea is to keep the freshness of the poem alive.

      Best wishes,
      Sandra

  6. Sorry Sandra,
    The quote is from the article I wrote published in Simply Haiku. I’d forgotten it.
    .
    Blushingly Yours,
    Karen

    1. Hi Peg,

      This is too much like a love verse, I’m afraid, territory that we have left behind. Please do try again.
      *
      Best wishes,
      Sandra

  7. .
    .
    on re-entry
    
the cosmonaut inhales
    the scent of her body
    .
    – Patrick Sweeney
    .
    .
    his pride tied to the bedpost
    with her thermal undies
    .
    – Karen Cesar
    .
    .
    there’s filling the pot
    before a mouse stirs
    singing Dolcelatte
    .
    .
    n.b.
    Dolcelatte literally translated name means “sweet milk”
    .
    .

  8. I should have said sooner that *all* poets are welcome to contribute verses at any time – exercising the writing muscle is A Good Thing – but I will consider only those verses from poets not yet included for the next position. Have fun!

  9. his pride tied to the bedpost
    with her thermal undies
    – Karen Cesar

    * * *

    scratch scratch scratch
    then the sound of water
    from the cat tray

    * * *

    😛 … never thought that my ex-feral Mr. Stripey would provide inspiration.

    – Lorin

  10. his pride tied to the bedpost
    with her thermal undies
    – Karen Cesar

    * * *
    so industrious,
    the sound of loud scratching
    from the cat tray

    😛

    (not eligible, of course … like Betty, I couldn’t resist adding a verse)

    re Karen’s verse: terrifying . . . I just hope that it wasn’t his Gay Pride !!!

    – Lorin

  11. Sandra,

    The “inspiring quote” above is attributed to me. You might want to change that as it is not my quote. Thx, Karen

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