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The Renku Sessions: Tawny Jacket – Week 13

 

renku_300

We have had a fast finish, with two hundred fifty-nine offers from forty poets. With such a short renku, it is not possible to recognize everyone by including a verse from each in the final work. I hope you will not be disappointed if you are among the majority of poets who are not so noted; that you will have enjoyed the game and found it stimulating. Please be assured that, as I have gone through the offers each week, ALL of you have made yourselves vivid and beloved in my imagination.

Here are a few of the ageku (final verse) offers that I especially enjoyed:

 

butterflies bask
on the river stones

Maureen Virchau

 

as each monarch unfolds
from its chrysalis

Betty Shropshire

 

the whispery voices
of the first sparrow nestlings

Laurie Greer

 

spying bright blue
to find the bowerbird’s nest

Fern

 

I see perfection
in a butterfly

Pauline O’Carolan

 

pollen adds its touch
of chartreuse to the sills

Laurie Greer

 

soap bubbles
on the ocean breeze

Maureen Virchau

 

tilling new fields now
blessed by the ancients

Betty Shropshire

 

the sheen of soap bubbles
expanding from a child’s wand

Betty Shropshire

 

children’s laughter
within each soap bubble

Maureen Virchau

 

another spring and here
comes our cheerful robin

Pratima Balabhadrapathruni

 

a monk with a jingling bell
goes into the morning mist

Kanchan Chatterjee

 

green shoots
in the furrow field

Robert Kingston

 

 

 

Our twelfth verse is:

 

a bee in the bonnet
and more in the field

Laurie Greer

 

I want to say that this selection was made as I was typing. So many other offers had a strong claim to this position but this one came through because of its clear expression, forward motion, and its sense of “more,” which is a good way to end a renku. Not “the end” but “as we leave the scene, the play goes on.”

I like the fact that this verse links with verse eleven through what seems at first to be an idiom. A bee in the bonnet means an obsessive idea. As such, it contrasts nicely with the defused thinking of verse eleven. But the second line makes me think of this bee and bonnet as literal entities. Read it that way, we have a thousand thoughts transformed into thousands of bees and we have contemplated blossoms inspiring the instinctive seeking of other blossoms.

One thing that initially held me back a bit from this verse was the possibility that an “Easter bonnet” was implied. Since Easter is calendar anchored, it could be either a spring or autumn event, depending upon our location on the Earth. Also, there is a well-known song celebrating the Easter bonnet and we already have a song reference, in verse five. But, in the end, I feel that the intact idiom as a first line and the way in which it becomes literal in the second line makes a strong enough impression to overcome any qualms I may have had.

 

THIS WEEK: Let’s take one more week to do a couple of things. While the title of a renku often comes from the hokku (first verse) and it is probable that we will keep “Tawny Jacket” as our title, let’s suggest some other title options this week. Also, let’s just take some time to say “so long for now – see you again, soon.” Or whatever it is that we want to say to each other.

 

NEXT WEEK: I will prepare one final posting for this session, which will include some reflections on where we have been and a preview about the next session.

 

Our completed renku, pending title suggestions:

 

Tawny Jacket

 

autumn leaves
she sets out in
her tawny jacket

Andrew Shimield

 

the still-warm hollow
where the deer slept

Kristen Lindquist

 

cigar smoke
lingers
in the empty room

Pauline O’Carolan

 

seraphim song
of a glass armonica

Autumn Noelle Hall

 

ice-skating
with my hunka hunka
burning love

Lorin Ford

 

a kiss for luck
at the STD clinic

Maureen Virchau

 

rediscovery
of the starry night toad
after all this time

Linda Weir

 

summer day moon
almost there

Wendy C. Bialek

 

the horseshoe player
chugs the rest
of his beer

Patrick Sweeney

 

aiming is easier
than pulling the trigger

M. R. Defibaugh

 

under a cherry tree
a thousand things
come to mind

Marion Clarke

 

a bee in the bonnet
and more in the field

Laurie Greer

 

 

Thank you, everyone!

John

 

This Post Has 81 Comments

  1. Congratulations Laurie at al. I left the party early and am sorry I missed so much. I do look forward to these Renku sessions. Being traditional, I would vote to maintain the working title but just wanted to say that “the still- warm hollow” is my takeaway image! Thank you Kristen. And thank you, John.

  2. Hi All! First…well done Laurie!! A highly relatable verse!
    Second…I am more than alright with ‘Tawny Jacket’ as the title. Invariably, I see someone or something as a seeker. Whether it be predator…lithe and on the move or someone on the move towards whatever lies ahead. And, I am reminded as well of a book jacket…something that always drew me in when prowling the bookstores. We all have stories to tell that leave us wanting more.
    Third, thank you, John. Seeing the inviolate rule waved to create a harmonious balance is a lesson I strive to learn everyday. Was great fun and brought me much needed breathing space…
    Fourth, thank you all for the incredible wealth of poetry and life affirming interactions in this ever increasing devisive world….well played! Well played…Betty

  3. Wonderful selections. I enjoyed what little I participated. My suggestion for a title is “Almost There.” I like how it suggests near completion—isn’t that just like a renku, leaving us with the feeling of satisfaction, and yet, there could be more?

  4. Thank you everyone. Especially Wendy for your insightful critiques. I have really enjoyed this and hope to continue. My suggestion for a title would be:

    Whence the Season

  5. Well done, Laurie—your ageku is a fitting conclusion to the junicho.
    .
    Thanks so much to you, John, our sabaki. As always, you have guided us well.
    .
    Regarding the title, I’ve just looked back at the last nine renku completed here on THF and, apart from ’Distant Melody’, led by Sandra Simpson, in which a line from the wakiku was used, all the titles have come from the hokku. So if we are sticking to the latter, I suggest these, in the following order :
    .
    Setting Out — for its sense of excitement and adventure
    Autumn Leaves — for visuals and potential movement (“leaves” could be read as a verb)
    Tawny Jacket — really because we’re used to it (it’s unusual and, I have no idea why, but I wasn’t taken with it at all when I first read it…it’s grown on me now.
    .
    If we can suggest titles from elsewhere, here are my thoughts:
    .
    After all this Time — just for being a beautiful line;
    A Thousand Things — it feels weird suggesting a line from my verse but because there are so many “things” in our renku, it might work;
    In the Field — the echo in the final line with the addition of “more” adds depth;
    Where the Deer Slept — what a beautiful image and I can imagine the deer in that bee-filled field of the ageku.
    .
    A thoroughly enjoyable renku. Great to see newcomers…roll on the next one!
    .
    marion

    1. Okay, so I see the title should come from a significant verse rather than just any old one, so perhaps I was being too much of a maverick in my suggestions, John! 🙂
      .
      marion

        1. Yes, I love coming up with titles, John – it’ll come in handy for that novel that I will write one day – not! 🙂
          .
          Thanks again.
          .
          marion

    2. “I’ve just looked back at the last nine renku completed here on THF and, apart from ’Distant Melody’, led by Sandra Simpson, in which a line from the wakiku was used, all the titles have come from the hokku.”
      *
      Marion’s statistical analysis presents a most excellent argument for why/how this renku might set itself apart from the crowd via creative, non-traditional titling! ; )
      *
      ~Autumn

  6. Congratulations, Laurie. Thanks to John and everyone else.
    .
    I came in late, trying to learn as I went by reading the renku and comments from the beginning. Very puzzling. It was a mystery. Unknown rules, connections I couldn’t see and seasonal words that I couldn’t find (link broken). By the time I found them, I had learnt from the comments there were more rules as to when, where and if they could be used at all! I was a bit miffed, because I have been quite happy in my short Haiku-And-Things-Related journey to escape the 20,000? or so seasonal words used in Japan! I was going to give up, but it looked such fun. I didn’t know then it WAS a party. Deciding I could always slink away from any embarrassing creations I spawned, I jumped in. Eventually, I found a podcast about a renku party and seeing the process here while listening was a rewarding learning experience. It was fun…. in the end.
    .
    Opening my bag in the
    .
    ‘Art for All’ Class to find
    .
    old school crayons

    1. Hi Fern
      Do you have the link for the podcast you discovered please..
      Many of us are novices here, to listen in on a group in action would be useful for all I suggest.
      Kind regards
      Rob

        1. Hi Carol
          Thank you. I get a prompt come up that says this may be a phishing site.
          Do you know it’s source?

          Kind regards
          Rob

          1. I’ve been into the site, Robert and all seemed well.
            Search for -renku party- then scroll for the haiku chronicles -renku party, I’ve just did a search, it took me to
            where I wanted to go.
            There are some very established poets in there.
            Better luck this one, hopefully
            .
            https://haikuchronicles.com

          2. No same thing,, just do a search, Robert, I think this will be your best bet, my links never work, for some reason, sorry.

          1. Yes, that is the podcast. Thank you, Carol.
            .
            >>An invaluable guide to renku composition with renku master, Kris Moon Kondo. Al and Donna join guest poets Henry Brann, Robin Palley, Penny Harter to write the collaborative poetic form Renku.

            Read the final Kasen Renku (36 stanzas) by the poets, “THUNDER MOON”…… <

            I'll try to post the link again, but Carol's directions will get you there.

            An invaluable guide to renku composition with renku master, Kris Moon Kondo. Al and Donna join guest poets Henry Brann, Robin Palley, Penny Harter to write the collaborative poetic form Renku.

            https://www.haikuchronicles.com/podcasts/2010/e15-thundermoon?rq=renku

            Fern

          2. Thankyou Fern for this link to the chronicles it has so much to offer regarding the haiku related genre, a must go to for a huge learning curve.
            .
            carol x

          3. Thank you Fern.
            I have enjoyed listening to Thunder moon, time to find a few more. Btw, your link goes straight to the page.
            .
            We got there in the end Carol, thank you for your early guidance.

            Rob

  7. congrats to all poets who were chosen – none of mine but i enjoyed very much the weekly challenge and the overall journey. re titles i like “tawny jacket” because i get a pic of an owl in my mind each time.
    *
    fielding a thousand things
    *
    looking forward to another weekly gathering
    nancy liddle

  8. nicely done, Laurie, i loved this verse when i first saw it, and i’m glad, John, that you took it.
    .
    this was a fun session, and a great opportunity to learn something new about renku for most participants. the sheer number of comments speaks volumes.
    thank you, John, for making it possible once more.
    .
    as renku titles are traditionally taken from the hokku, and only occasionally from other significant verses like the wakiku or the ageku but almost never from the internal verses or just out of the blue, our working title does the job perfectly well.
    “Autumn Leaves”, as suggested elsewhere, would work, too, but for my taste it sounds, i don’t know, somewhat ordinary.
    in spite of what i just said, i rather fancy “Bee in the Bonnet” , or even “More in the Field”

  9. At the risk of repeating another’s suggestion, Laurie’s last words might make a nice title, for many of the reasons I was getting at earlier:
    *
    More in the Field
    *
    Plus, it would bracket the renku beautifully–[title and end line]; and it is WIDE open, as the word “field” has so many different meanings and implications. Again, taken with each verse individually, it would open up the meanings/interpretations (for example, the deer has left the hollow, but there are more in the field; the person at the STD clinic might conclude there are more in the field in a different way; there is the field of competitors at the skating rink and the horseshoe pit and the target practice, a field of stars on the backs of rediscovered toads, a field where the cherry tree is standing; even the sound of the glass armonica has a sense of vibrational fields of resonance .
    *
    This is a far less limiting possibility than say, tawny jacket or autumn leaves or summer moon, each of which only really applies directly to one (or maybe two) verses. I would like to see a title that is more all-encompassing/all-illuminating in its possibilities. If movement/momentum is important in a renku, than wouldn’t a title that allows for a sense of motion (rather than a static image) be equally appropriate?
    *
    Just one more of the thousand things coming to mind…
    *
    ~Autumn

      1. 😀
        *
        Thanks for speaking to your fancy as well as tradition! While I respect and honor the importance of learning and understanding the traditions that have lead us to where we are writing today, I strongly believe that part of our being-here-now responsibility as short form poets is to write to and about the times we are actually in and to introduce ideas that may become part of the future canon of these forms. After all, when future readers and scholars look back, they will not be seeking the ways that we reiterated the past so much as the way we spoke authentically to our lived present. It is important to remember that things we now view as “traditions” were also laid down fresh at one point–someone somewhere penned the first-ever cherry blossom verse o.O; it is only repetition as time passes that makes anything a tradition.
        *
        I think John has done a remarkable job of finding a balance between honoring tradition and risking new ideas and expression. It’s one of the things that makes this renku interesting, as well as relevant. I would like to up-vote that winning approach to the title as well!
        *
        One more question I meant to pose earlier: While I am tickled that a few poets have kindly suggested drawing from my “glass armonica” verse for our title–many thanks!!, wouldn’t it become less “unique” if it were to be repeated in that way…?
        *
        Yes, I AM that student that asked all those annoying questions in class and made us late for recess… ; )
        *
        ~Autumn

        1. Re: tradition/innovation–a fascinating discussion, and it also sounds like another iteration of our guiding principle: the old link-and-shift. So we follow the path, and we make it new.

          Autumn, I’m honored by your argument for More in the Field–or for any part of my contribution–as the title.

  10. .
    Congratulations to /all/ poets on the completion of this renku. I have enjoyed reading all the verses every week and enjoyed composing my own responses.
    .
    Thank you, John, for your leadership – I know it must have taken a tremendous amount of time to sort through all the responses.
    .
    As for the title – I would like to suggest the word um, which is a fragment of the word autumn from the first line of the hokku. Here is the definition:
    .
    from The Century Dictionary
    .
    • A prefix of Anglo-Saxon and Scandinavian origin, meaning ‘around, about,’ cognate with ambi- and amphi-. It was formerly common, but is now wholly obsolete, except in a few Scotch words.
    • Same as om.
    .
    The obsolete definition of the prefix um meaning ‘around, about’ makes me think of a walkabout, which is basically a walking trip or a public stroll. This seems to be (mostly) what is depicted in the renku verses, strolling from one scene/event to the next.
    .
    The second part of the definition: Same as om – the sacred, mystical syllable used in prayer and meditation. This part of the definition takes me back to the 11th verse by Marion Clarke:
    .
    under a cherry tree
    a thousand things
    come to mind
    .
    Marion Clarke
    .
    .
    Until next time….

  11. A blanket “thank you” to everyone for the congratulations!

    For the title, I also like A Thousand Things as well as Glass Armonica–both are beautiful, resonate, and embrace much. I’ve grown fond of Tawny Jacket, too, especially for the relative rarity of the “tawny.”

    I also keep going back to verse #7, and the “all this time”; could some form of that phrase work? All This, maybe, or This Time…haiku is made of moments, after all. As with the many wonderful offerings throughout, we have a wealth of wonderful choices in the final dozen verses–I don’t think we can go wrong, whatever we choose.

  12. @Everyone here ,

    It has been such fun playing, and now it is time for me to go do something else before the new session begins.

    Going off the boards for some time. The canvas calls. Many of the writings will resonate in my mind as I paint.

    Bye all and let us play again, thank you for the warmth and laughter

  13. It has been a lovely beginning to 2020 to share in this virtual renku party with all of you. Haiku really does make a global community and I’ve really enjoyed seeing everyone’s suggested verses, seeing which become runner ups to the final selection. And having a verse selected was a huge thrill. I’m looking forward to the next one and seeing our community continue.

  14. Congratulations, Laurie! An excellent ending verse.

    *

    I vote for A Thousand Things for the title. That might have been my favorite verse, and I like the resonance of that line throughout the rest of the poem.

    Thank you all for participating so thoughtfully and enthusiastically. For my first renku, this has been a fun adventure!

  15. Congratulations to Laurie; you have created some fabulous and clever verses. This one is perfect!

    Thank you, John, for including me as Verse 3, and for liking some of my other verses. That certainly makes Friday mornings (Australia) a highlight of the week. I have enjoyed your leadership as sabaki too.

    On a personal note, the renku has been something that has kept me sane since the bushfire ripped through my tiny town of Cobargo on New Year’s Eve. The trauma of that and of living in a community which is grief-stricken from lives lost and property destruction has profoundly affected me. I have gone from a carefree woman living alone with a cat to a saddened woman living with a man and three dogs who lost their 150 year old home in the inferno (mind you, he’s a gorgeous man so no hardship on that score!!).

    Writing the verses, receiving lovely supportive messages from fellow poets, watching the unfolding of the renku and the companionship that’s evolved over the 12 weeks has been a great comfort. I’m looking forward to the next journey together. Thank you all!

    Pauline

    1. Pauline–
      I’m glad to hear you made it through the fires–and that this renku could help. It was not easy to watch the destruction from a distance, so I can only imagine what it was like. I hope things will get easier for you and all there Down Under. Glad you have good company, both virtual and real–canine/feline/ and human.
      all the best
      Laurie

  16. a bee in the bonnet
    and more in the field
    *
    Laurie Greer
    *
    Congratulations, Laurie on a most excellent among excellent verses! I think (just by rough approximation) that you’ve probably submitted more verse possibilities than anyone throughout this renku, so may of which were intriguing, as well as beautifully conceived and written; I was definitely rooting for you to have one chosen!! So, well done and well earned, you!!
    *
    I use the phrase “bee in the bonnet” often and to describe any number of obsessions. I personally have a been in my bonnet about the bees themselves! Last year, our local beekeepers lost the majority of their hives due to a late, cold spring compounding issues like neonicotinoid poisoning (from Monsanto’s Round-up). We were unable to grow vegetables, due to a lack of pollinators. So we are crossing fingers and toes here for a recovery, aka “more in the field,” as well as doubling down on our pollinator-friendly planting. This is such an apt image to end upon–thank you for leaving us a-buzz with the thought of our fuzzy pollinators.
    *
    I appreciate the nods to my verse offered by those who’ve suggested using portions of it as a title. Thank you for honoring my words with your kind thoughts!
    *
    I am incredibly grateful to John for including and encouraging me. To have even one of the gifts of patience, poetry or passion is a rare thing–it has been a privilege and an honor to be mentored by someone who possesses all three in equal measure.
    *
    As I read and re-read the completed renku, I kept feeling that sense of being pulled along on a quest of sorts. My experience with title (which I feel are and integral part of the poem, and therefore as crucial and significant as the verses themselves) comes from tanka prose. IN that form, it is possible to employ the title as a “third” entity, complimentary to the poem and prose, while also allowing meaning to be extended beyond the two.
    *
    My thought for a title may not be in keeping with renku tradition (of which I know little or nothing). But it does potentially pair in an interesting way with each of the verses to expand their meaning. If nothing else, it provides food for thought:
    *
    Searching for Umami
    *
    Many thanks to all for your generosity in sharing your creative efforts here. IN a time when the world is divided into warring factions of one sort or another, it is no small thing to have poets from around the world working cooperatively together on a single effort for an entire quarter! Raising a glass to each and every one of you–kanbei! 干杯
    *
    ~Autumn

    1. Autumn–
      Thank you for your kind words, and for your encouragement all along the way! You were no slouch in the submission category, yourself!
      *
      Very sorry to hear of the bees’ travails where you are. I was definitely thinking about the challenges to pollinators when I worked on these spring verses. Our building is a blithe user of herbicides and it’s been a (so far losing) battle to get them to stop–we should be so lucky as to have a yard where weeds want to grow!
      So the struggle continues. Glad to have given the bees a friendly spot on the renku.
      All the best–

  17. Congratulations, Laurie, and to all who make up this intriguing renku. And well done to all poets with noted verses. Because of our dire summer, I’ve hovered at the edges rather than being a full participant. Canberra’s fire to our south is slowly becoming less threatening, as is the huge fire which devastated our south-east regions. So much has been lost.
    .
    May I suggest ‘Glass Armonica’ for our renku? To me it reflects the tones and nuances everyone has captured in their verses a little more broadly than ‘Tawny Jacket’, which is a friendly and approachable name we’ve all got used to, but may not be indicative of the renku’s range. And ‘Glass Armonica’ is poetic, singing and soaring as well as being unusual.
    .
    — thank you, John and cheers to all,
    Marietta

  18. Congratulations Laurie! Ending with a bee seems fitting for some reason. There is an interesting tie to the rediscovery of the starry night toad that isn’t an actual link, but the discovery of a bee in the bonnet. Both bring us back to nature and remind us of the frailty of life as many bee species are also being threatened. There is also the intentional link to the cherry tree’s pollinators that only reinforces that notion and their importance. Of the thousand things that came to mind, preserving our planet must be one.
    ***
    Another favorite verse of mine (a thousand bubbles perhaps):
    ***
    soap bubbles
    on the ocean breeze

    -Maureen Virchau
    ***
    Here are some titles I like, maybe in this order: Tawny Jacket, Starry Night Toad, Rediscovery,
    Summer Day Moon. It seems fitting to have the title in the hokku, but it also nice to have to read some to discover the title.
    ***
    Thank you, John, for hosting such a fantastic session and for including me among your 12 selections. You are a modern master of haiku, so it is an honor to work with you in any capacity. I missed the first four weeks or so, but the last eight have been excellent. I’ve enjoyed reading all the submissions and appreciate all the inspiration we have shared. Our collaborative success has been remarkable, and I look forward to creating verses with you all again soon!

    1. Thanks for your most thoughtful comments; I heartily concur with everything, especially:
      “Of the thousand things that came to mind, preserving our planet must be one.”
      The climate crisis is on my mind constantly. I’m grateful to haiku for being a perfect vehicle for the feelings and images that would be overwhelming otherwise.
      It’s been a pleasure getting to know you and everyone else here during these past weeks!

  19. I also thought these two lines would make interesting titles that apply to the work as a whole:
    Seraphim Song
    A Thousand Things
    They seem broader than just repeating a line from the very first verse. I’ve enjoyed participating, even when I couldn’t squeeze out any verse offerings despite looking at it daily. My favorite verse in the whole thing is the cherry blossom verse – what a perfect juxtaposition.
    Looking forward to the next one!

  20. What a sweet ending. Congrats to Laurie and thank you to John for guiding us through this, my first renku. I will have more appreciation and understanding now when I read them. I didn’t quite get the flow of them before this. So many rules, but with a creative twist, which makes it challenging and satisfying both.
    *
    I’m for keeping the title. It has grown on me, and the word “tawny” is seldom seen.
    *
    Also, I enjoyed reading the encouraging banter although I didn’t join in often. My two part time jobs sap my energy some days. Looking forward to the next session!

  21. Congratulations, Laurie! Your verse is very clever. It made me smile when I first read it. The subject of bees is definitely a great link to the ‘thousand things’ here. I also love the idiom & I haven’t heard it in a very long time. And there are definitely always more bees in the field. And more renku!
    .
    Thank you to all the members of the renku party. It’s been another wonderful experience. Your enthusiasm & creativity is contagious. It’s been soooo much fun.
    .
    Thank you, John, for leading this renku. Your time and consideration is greatly appreciated. I always looked forward to your insightful commentary. Thank you, thank you.
    .
    I’m quite fond of the current title. It suggests the beginning of an adventurous journey. I also really enjoy the fact that it doesn’t state if the wearer of this jacket is human. I actually imagine her to be a deer or a bird or another wildlife form sporting such a color. I love the ambiguity.
    .
    Other possible titles- Her Tawny Jacket & Under a Cherry Tree. I’ll post again if I think of anything else.

  22. Congratulation, and well done, Laurie, a fitting end to a wonderful and exciting journey.
    .
    Thanks, John for the opportunity of tagging on along the way.
    .
    Tawney jacket is a really nice title, Autumn is loved by so many, as a season, a fitting title.

  23. this was one of my best experiences in writing/education/and inspiration since i started reading/ and writing haiku. reading….60 years ago…..writing…55 years ago.

    thank you john for holding my hand through this first completed renku. having had this wonderful taste of it….i will search every nook and cranny that serves renku….i want to learn, learn and grow up more with this fascinating literary art form.

    thank you so much to all the members of this group for the fun and educationally, stimulating offerings and links and supportive interaction. such a life-changing experience i will never forget!!!!

    1. Professor Fukuda would be happy to hear this from you, Wendy. He said, “First is has to be fun.” And he went on to explain that, if it is fun, people will want to do it again and, if they do it again, they will likely also want to learn more about it. To attempt to give one a thorough education in renku upon the first encounter is the most likely way to discourage newcomers. But the fun of it can lead to learning. I hope it will always be fun and also an opportunity for learning, for you and for me!

      1. the responsibility of the sabaki….is all encompassing.
        i have great respect for, and i applaud you, john, for carrying
        out this role…with such an open and brilliant mind. from the selections you made….you have sculpted/carved out a masterpiece section of time/portion of a journey/that touches upon so many cultural experiences/”parts of the elephant”/reflecting all the seasons/and samplings of human experiences that bond us together. Though, as you have said…many times….that this would not pass the scrutiny of rules which renku publication and competition reqiure….it is a wonderful literary art piece that you have created…from the many puzzle pieces thrown from our posts.


        bravo to john!!!!!
        .
        since it was your idea…to look into a possible change of title…i am curious
        what title do you want for your “sculpture”????? and why?????

    2. Glad you enjoyed this experience, Wendy. My first steps in this form were also here on the Foundation and I’ve participated in every one since…a case of ‘hooked on renku!’ 🙂 There is always a slight sense of sadness at the end of each, because we have spent time online in discussion with each other (albeit a brief moment each week) I’m looking forward to the next one immensely.

      1. me twooooooo! Marion.
        i had a taste of it in the eighties….but i had no idea of the need to shift…..all i was doing was linking….and i didn’t follow the rules and got kicked out of the group…..i was so sad….i didn’t understand why that happened. now i know why…a bit better.
        i also submitted in 2019 to…and have a moon verse included in poetrypea’s renku two…but it’s not like this….there is no group communication other than the verse being displayed….no real teaching structure. yes, i am hooked!
        I understand and feel the sadness….like finishing a good book. and having to say goodbye for now, to a friend leaving for camp.
        for my recent birthday, my husband ordered a bunch of renku books….that will keep me busy ’til we meet again. and i will be finishing a book i am editing and illustrating, too!
        And you have your painting, yes? we will cope…..yes?

  24. Congratulations, Laurie, and a perfect selection to end the renku, John!
    .
    Thank you to John and everyone who participated. It was super-fun!
    .
    I love “Tawny Jacket” for the title, but “A Thousand Things” could be good too.

  25. well done to Laurie
    and many thanks to John for his time and expertise in guiding us along.
    several lines suggest themselves to me as possible titles:
    a bee in the bonnet
    almost there
    a kiss for luck
    seraphim song
    though I don’t mind if we keep our tawny jacket on

    1. thank you andrew for creating our beginning journey, with your awesome hokku.
      .
      and thank you for including my line3 for an alternative title.
      .
      i agree….”almost there”….could work!
      .
      because each verse is part of a continuation of the journey….which never really ends……so i can see how you thought to include this as a possibility.
      …very brilliant observation, andrew!

  26. butterflies bask
    on the river stones
    .
    Maureen Virchau

    *

    as each monarch unfolds
    from its chrysalis
    .
    Betty Shropshire

    *

    the whispery voices
    of the first sparrow nestlings
    .
    Laurie Greer

    *

    spying bright blue
    to find the bowerbird’s nest
    .
    Fern

    *

    I see perfection
    in a butterfly
    .
    Pauline O’Carolan

    *

    pollen adds its touch
    of chartreuse to the sills
    .
    Laurie Greer

    *

    soap bubbles
    on the ocean breeze
    .
    Maureen Virchau

    *

    tilling new fields now
    blessed by the ancients
    .
    Betty Shropshire

    *

    the sheen of soap bubbles
    expanding from a child’s wand
    .
    Betty Shropshire

    *

    children’s laughter
    within each soap bubble
    .

    Maureen Virchau

    *

    another spring and here
    comes our cheerful robin
    .
    Pratima Balabhadrapathruni

    *

    a monk with a jingling bell
    goes into the morning mist
    .
    Kanchan Chatterjee

    *
    green shoots
    in the furrow field

    Robert Kingston

    *
    Wonderful offerings….congrats to all above as well!
    and to the poets who weren’t included in renku….your day will will come soon.
    @@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@
    although i love “tawny jacket”….if we are going to rename this renku then my offering for a title is:

    *
    taste of journey

  27. a bee in the bonnet
    and more in the field
    .
    Laurie Greer

    @@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@

    a terriffic ageku, laurie…..so glad you made it in to the renku….my fingers were crossed for you…..you worked to hard, your enthusiasm so great and your offerings so good…..this is a perfect cap!

    another excellent choice by john! a great commentary, and educational understanding that highlighted laurie’s verse.
    .
    i learned so much here just in the last ageku….i did not know the other meaning of “bee in the bonnet”….thank you john! this makes laurie’s verse more profound, and most fitting.
    .
    i also did not know that easter was celebrated in different season’s throughout the world….my bad! thank you john….for pointing this out to me,

    1. Thank you, Wendy! You were a real force through this whole thing–I can’t begin to count how many of my offerings were inspired by things you did, in both your verses and comments. Learned a lot! And it was fun!

      1. wow…..my heart is so filled by your sharing these events. thank you sooooo much laurie. i was hoping to inspire….since mine was chosen so early in the ‘game’.

  28. Wow! I’m speechless! Humbled and honored; there were SO MANY wonderful offerings, as has been true with every verse. Thank you, John, and everyone who has been part of this. I had a fantastic time, reading, writing, and learning ( I already miss it–I’m primed to be working on the next verse right now!).

    John, it’s so instructive to hear your thought process on the selections. I thought this one would be disqualified because it echoed the jacket of the opening–another item of clothing! But maybe it completes the outfit and so is ok. (Maybe we could call this The Outfit?) I’m truly overjoyed to have been able to contribute to this renku–my very first one! You are an excellent teacher. Well, so was everyone who took part. Truly a great group effort.

    1. Congratulations, Laurie! I too, found your verse a standout one for the spot. 🙂 Lovely link to Marion’s verse and that sense of opening out to many possibilities and ideas is brilliant.
      .
      re your
      .
      “I thought this one would be disqualified because it echoed the jacket of the opening–another item of clothing!” – Laurie Greer
      .
      It might,/i> be frowned upon for that reason in any of the “internal verses” (all verses between the hokku (1st verse) and the ageku (last verse) but to my knowledge,the last verse/ ageku is free of many of those restrictions. Therefore “bonnet”, even if it were in the literal sense (which it is not, in your verse) would be open to the sabaki’s discretion.
      .
      (Unlike John & due to different nationality, I imagine 🙂 the literal ‘bonnet ‘ (as headwear) does
      not immediately take me to a woman’s ‘Easter Bonnet’ as in the popular American song known mostly in the Bing Crosby version, nor to ‘5th Avenue, New York, but back to the Scottish bonnet (from the French ‘bonet’ ) which is a version of the beret. )
      .

      .
      John, Thank you for your outstanding guidance and your encouragement of a sense of camaraderie throughout.
      .
      As for title, my preference is for ‘Autumn Leaves’. Though it served well enough for a name tag while the poem was being created, I’m not keen on ‘Tawney Jacket’ as a real title. Also, the plurals ‘autumn leaves’ (hokku) and ‘more bees’ (ageku) , taken together, suggest the ‘many things’ that come to mind.
      .

      .
      .

      1. Thank you, Lorin, for your kind comments and for the details about the ageku–did not know any of this! You have been an unfailing source of information, wit, and mastery throughout this renku; I count it a privilege to have shared these 12 weeks of intensive versifying with you.

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