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The Renku Sessions: Way of the Wind – Week 13

Wayrenku_300

I am John Stevenson and I am your guide for a twenty-stanza, nijûin, renku.

As I stated last week, there are often factors that have a bearing on my selection, beyond what I have listed as requirements. This week, that involves my realization that our next two will be a pair of love verses. This does not require anything in particular from our twelfth verse but it does impose some considerations about whether its contents positively provide a setup for a love verse, or negatively foreclose on certain aspects of that theme.

Here, for instance, is an image that links in an interesting and complex way with the pack of wolves in verse eleven:

 

cornered by a married man
at the New Year’s Eve party

                            Keith Evetts

 

But it could also be mistaken for a love verse, bearing in mind that love does not always mean generous and caring consideration in a renku context but can also include lust and domination.

I should also point out that the New Year begins on January 1 for pretty much everyone in the English-speaking world. But that date is early winter in the northern hemisphere and early summer in the southern. It is registered as a winter kigo on our list but that list was not created specifically for a global renku group and some discretion is required in its use for our shared project. The same applies to any kigo that is associated with a specific calendar date.

 

Here are some of the many verses that caught my attention:

 

icicles forming
on the welcome sign

                            Sandra St-Laurent

 

logs heaped on our bonfire
to drive back unseen haunts

                            Marietta McGregor

 

a PETA protest march
shuts down the hunt

                            Marietta McGregor

 

the passing year full
of empty bellies

                            Tracy Davidson

 

unpacking the firearms
from an heirloom quilt

                            Laurie Greer

 

cor! how screeches pierce
the cold, clear night

                            Maxianne Berger

 

ski resorts prefer faux snow
over no snow

                            Chris Patchel

 

lost in a
desert of snow

                            Dan Campbell

 

that pink tongue
waiting for the snowflakes

                            Margherita Petriccione

 

 

And here are a couple that may have been finalists if we didn’t already have a verse from each of the poets:

 

never swallow an oyster
that is having nightmares

                            Dan Campbell

 

In this part of the renku, a verse that stretches imagination, especially if that involves a certain degree of goofiness, would be very welcome.

 

if only this virus
was in winter seclusion

                            Wendy C. Bialek

 

We haven’t yet included a “current events” verse and what could be more effective for this purpose in a “global” renku than a reference to the pandemic.

 

 

The final choice comes down to five offers:

 

fewer places
to host the Winter Games

                            Chris Patchel

 

This gives us the “current events” topic, plus “sports.” It links with the vast tundra of verse eleven by reminding us that human encroachment and climate change endanger such places and the lives that depend upon them. We named the season in verse five, so I will be reluctant to do so again. This will be a factor in several of these finalists.

 

 

pidge porridge hotter
than the fires of hell

                            Michael Henry Lee

 

I must admit that I am very tempted by the thought of a winter verse containing the phrase “hotter than the fires of hell.” And heat may be a useful prelude to the love verses.

 

 

in a snowy landscape
fuel hard to find         

                            Carol Jones

 

I would have to revise this to eliminate the break created by starting with a prepositional phrase. But this could be easily done. The verse is simple but powerful. It invokes, for me, the way in which finding something to burn during winter was a matter of survival for most of humanity’s history but now contributes to a mechanism that produces the threat of global warming. Compare this to the winter quest of wolves, which is completely in balance with a natural world.

 

 

a double=knock hammer sound
on a clear winter day

                            greenrhythm

 

We haven’t had a specific sound image since verse three, although the juxtaposition of this with the wolf pack of verse eleven highlights the fact that their pursuit is likely to be noisy.

 

 

the winter fly
reluctant to leave

                            Kanjini Devi

 

The contrast of the fly’s motion, or lack thereof, with the hot pursuit of wolves over a wide-open landscape… We do, however, have another flying insect, in verse six,

 

 

Here, after a great deal of vacillation, is what I have selected as our twelfth verse:

 

pidge porridge hotter
than the fires of hell

                            Michael Henry Lee

 

 

Here is what we have, so far:

 

Way of the Wind

 

green barley—
we follow the way
of the wind

                        Lorin Ford

 

kids playing pooh sticks
with plum blossoms

                            Linda Weir

 

the long day opens
with a chime of pots
on the kitchen island

                            Laurie Greer

 

a coin in the cap
of a street busker

                            Andrew Shimield

 

summer moon
low on the hips
of the horizon

                            princess k

 

mosquitoes know that my wife
has sweeter blood

                            Dan Campbell

 

still drawn to him
after all the bumps
along the line

                            Wendy C. Bialek

 

queuing up to enter
the Escher exhibit

                            Carol Judkins

 

do you think
they discovered chaos theory
by chance

                            Keith Evetts

 

three-martini lunch
with old pals from sigma nu

                            Betty Shropshire

 

wolves
in relentless pursuit
across the frozen tundra

                            Sally Biggar

 

pidge porridge hotter
than the fires of hell

                            Michael Henry Lee

 

 

We will now be writing a pair of love verses. The first is to be non-seasonal and the second set in autumn.

The requirements for verse thirteen will be as follows:

  • A three-line verse of seventeen syllables or less
  • Without a season image (kigo)
  • Without a grammatical break
  • Linking in some way to verse twelve (and in no obvious way to previous verses)

 

For this renku, we will be using this site (http://www.2hweb.net/haikai/renku/500ESWd.html) as the source for our season words and images. We should also check it when writing non-seasonal verses in order to be sure we have not used a kigo without intending to.

 

I will be reviewing your offers until midnight on Monday, July 26 (New York time). On Thursday, July 29 there will be a new post in which I will announce my selection of the thirteenth verse, comment on some of the other offers, and issue instructions for writing verse fourteen.

 

Thanks, everyone!

John

 

 

 

 

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://www.thehaikufoundation.org/code-of-conduct/ 

 

 

 

 

This Post Has 86 Comments

  1. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell
                                Michael Henry Lee

    their knotted embrace
    against the cool stones
    of the cathedral walls

  2. Verse 1:

    when I first saw him
    it was like
    a volcanic eruption

    Verse 2:

    he came to mend my fence
    but my lust
    made my walls fall down

    Verse3:

    he ignited
    a raging inferno
    of desire

  3. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee

    *

    the dragon tattoo
    beneath her kimono
    awakens

    *

    her open robe
    reveals
    a 666 tattoo

  4. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell
    – Michael Henry Lee

    true confessions
    of a committed serial
    monogamist
    – Betty Shropshire

  5. high fever
    yet throwing away
    his pickle
    **

    height of temper
    his discarding
    birthday gift
    ****
    not having desire
    to wear new dress
    on his birthday
    ***
    first sip of coffee
    for want of sugar
    in sink
    **
    holding mobile
    in hand with running water
    of surf
    ******
    writing haiku
    beyond prescribed seventeen
    syllables

  6. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee

    *

    their embrace moves
    unseen
    into the unknown

    *

    a kiss
    and the taste of apple
    on their lips

  7. Thank you John for your attention to my verses
    *
    My new proposals
    .

    I hate this laughter
    between you
    and her young lips

    *
    stop looking at me
    because the chili
    is enough

    *
    I feel like
    I’m dressing nettles
    just seeing him

    *
    refreshing
    the melancholy
    to think of you

  8. imagine
    the risks
    when dragons mate

    forever
    carrying this torch
    for an old flame

    what a dish
    crossing her legs
    on a barstool

    flamed on reddit
    as a cereal
    sex pest

  9. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell
    – Michael Henry Lee

    that spark
    of recognition
    comes less often now
    – Betty Shropshire

  10. Congrats and a belated happy birthday Michael!
    .
    pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    – Michael Henry Lee
    .
    .
    the monarch’s
    other
    flushed cheek
    .
    ironically
    heart’s desire is a possessive
    singular
    .
    that itch
    not even marilyn
    can scratch
    .
    no that is not
    eye-shadow rather mercury
    in retrograde
    .
    dear
    john
    echoes in empty chambers
    .
    .

  11. congrats on michael and bornday wishes!
    thanks, John for a fine read!

    pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee

    licked-off devil’s
    food cake layered
    in his likeness

    7/24/2021 by wendy © bialek

    fanning the fever
    after my lover’s
    last pfizer shot

    7/24/2021 by wendy © bialek

  12. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee

    under candlelight
    another shipwreck
    between Rose’s thighs

    paying
    for a second go
    on the love boat

    bright lights
    and seed
    make for raw outcomes

  13. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell
    Michael Henry Lee
    .
    the satin sheets stick
    to sweat-slicked
    bodies
    .
    the sheets stick
    to bodies slick
    with sweat
    .
    one by one
    he feeds her
    a few pomegranate seeds
    .
    he feeds her
    pomegranate seeds
    one by one

    Nancy Brady

  14. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell
    *
    a love match
    sealed
    in brimstone
    *
    going ahead since
    we’re damned if we do
    and damned if we don’t
    *

  15. after the pandemic
    all the masks disappear
    not their trakes

    *

    always postponed
    the Tokyo Olympic
    finally started

    *
    Bidding
    at a incendiary price
    ”The Last Judgment”

    *
    Near the Great Lake
    two elephants trump to trump-
    what they will be saying?

  16. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell
    *
    selling our souls
    to save
    our hearts
    *
    Hope the hearts aren’t too close to the blood of the last love verses

  17. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee

    ardent glances
    across a crowded bar
    from The One

  18. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee
    *
    leaping
    before we look
    and the devil may care!
    *
    falling for the pure
    deviltry
    of that smirk
    *

  19. he sure
    looks cool
    in shades

    .

    the piercing stare
    from across a hall
    almost unbearable

    .
    suffering
    the residual
    scorn of his ex

    .

    still reeling
    from the burn
    of her blush

    .

  20. how she makes
    my toes curl inwards
    with a kiss

    **

    hard to resist
    the capo’s daughter
    playing footsie

  21. like Lucifer
    he unmasks
    my deepest desire
    *
    the horns
    of a stag
    in his mirrored ceiling
    *
    his devilish smile
    when I suggest
    role-play
    *
    I cannot bear it
    when he calls me
    Goldilocks

  22. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee

    witch hazel balm
    in a hand-soft poultice
    for testosterone

  23. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee

    she gives me a star
    coiled in a tongue fold
    of aniseed

    1. or, if an extension or current social affairs wanted

      damned
      if she’ll give the boss
      a blow job

  24. how we giggle
    at the gurgles
    of her waterbed

    **

    the tropic scent
    of frangipani
    kissing her ear

  25. after several doses
    still not immune
    to love
    *
    the fever I feel
    as her silk slip slides
    to the floor

  26. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee

    that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance

  27. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee

    waking up
    to champagne
    and chocolates

  28. ‘pidge’ porridge with rice and pigeon meat…hmmmm. ‘Pease’ for me, please! But it makes for a fun verse to play with, Michael!

    pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee

    carpet burns
    only sting
    under the shower

  29. ‘pidge’ porridge with rice and pigeon meat…hmmmm. ‘Pease’ for me, please! But it makes for a fun verse to play with, Michael!

    pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee

    the hurly-burly
    of the chaise-longue
    with her boo

  30. devilish fun verse MHL (and happy birthday); thx john for mentioning my attempt to link Frost’s feather hammer and birders’ relentless pursuits.

    pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell
    *
    afterwards
    we bat around fun ways
    to pay our penance
    ..

  31. devilish fun verse MHL (and happy birthday); both your verse and John’s reasons for selecting it make me smile. thx john for mentioning my attempt to link Frost’s feather hammer and birders’ relentless pursuits.

    pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell
    *
    afterwards
    we bat around fun ways
    to pay our penance
    ..

  32. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell
    *
    no need to explain
    why it’s better
    to marry
    *
    the reasons
    their love rhymes
    work like a charm
    *

  33. congrats to Michael .. thanks, John, for pausing at mine .. and well, here goes, just because . . .
    *
    pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell
    ***
    Michael Henry Lee
    ***
    how tenaciously Dante
    scales his terza-rima way
    to Beatrice

  34. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee
    *
    their pillow talk
    a miscellany
    of half-remembered rhymes
    *

  35. “Pidge porridge” is great, however it came about–nice work, Michael Henry–and happy birthday!
    Inspired selection, John–and thanks for noticing one of my offers!
    *
    pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee
    *
    afraid at first
    to call love
    by its name
    *

  36. his desire
    for a simple wedding
    not what she has in mind

    porridge is a bit close to lunch ; )

  37. Congratulations Michael, another smashing choice, John.

    Thankyou for pausing on one of mine. Enjoyed reading your comments.

  38. wife in Spanish
    is esposas which
    means handcuffs
    *
    love potions
    work better when made
    by a witch

  39. Wow, totally stoked you mentioned my verse. Thank you, John!
    And well done, Michael. I thought it was pease as well, had to look up pidge 😉

  40. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee

    rolling
    in the surf with her
    to eternity

  41. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee

    the hourglass
    spills a dry trickle
    between us

  42. Thanks for a very interesting and instructive commentary and another stimulating selection – congratulations Michael.

    pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee
    **
    on the back page
    my horoscope still says
    I will fall in love

    Daddy Bear
    wants Goldilocks’
    phone number

  43. pidge porridge hotter
    than the fires of hell

    Michael Henry Lee

    this anniversary
    we still want to share
    a spoon

  44. Thanks so much for choosing my verse John. My wife tells me it should be pease porridge, and after closer examination she appears to be correct

    At any rate it’s still a nice early birthday surprise as i am scheduled to turn 70 tomorrow

      1. In London we call it pease pudding, a savoury dish, Served with either saveloys (a boiled sausage) or boiled bacon.

        1. The whole thing is hilarious. And behold, John has the sought-after goofiness. I love it.

          And I’m going with pidge = pigeon. Convincing evidence unearthed by the master of ceremonies….

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