skip to Main Content

The Renku Sessions: Way of the Wind – Week 14

Wayrenku_300

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

You proved, in the earlier round of love verses, that you were ready for them. Sometimes people are shy about this.

Here are some of the many verses that I enjoyed this week:

 

rolling
in the surf with her
to eternity

                            John Hawkhead

 

whether to accept
his marriage proposal
mid-skydive

                            Chris Patchel

 

fellow feelings
rekindled
with an old flame

                            Carol Jones

 

he sure
looks cool
in shades

                            Kanjini Devi

 

the satin sheets stick
to sweat-slicked
bodies

                            Nancy Brady

 

her open robe
reveals
a 666 tattoo

                            Jonathan Alderfer

 

when I first saw him
it was like
a volcanic eruption

                            Pauline O’Carolan

 

 

As usual, some great offers came from poets who have already been included in the renku. I am so grateful that you continue to play along.

This time, we had quite a few tempting offers from one poet, in particular:

 

Daddy Bear
wants Goldilocks’
phone number

                            Keith Evetts

 

after several doses
still not immune        
to love

                            Keith Evetts

 

how we giggle
at the gurgles
of her waterbed

                            Keith Evetts

 

damned
if she’ll give the boss
a blow job

                            Keith Evetts

 

And Keith was far from alone in being among those “playing along.”

 

afraid at first
to call love
by its name

                            Laurie Greer

 

through the
tunnel of love
down the river Styx

                            Michael Henry Lee

 

risked my life
to paint her name
on a suspension bridge

                            Dan Campbell

 

fanning the fever
after my lover’s
last pfizer shot

                            Wendy C. Bialek

 

that itch
not even marilyn
can scratch

                            princess k

 

true confessions
of a committed serial
monogamist

                            Betty Shropshire

 

shouts
of “get a room”
at the party

                            Carol Judkins

 

 

The final choice comes down to four offers:

 

sometimes the steamiest
sex you’re having
is in your own sconce

                            Kanjini Devi

 

I don’t know if I’ve ever seen a love verse like this. When explaining the intent of love verses to new renku partners, I usually say that it involves love “between adult human beings.” But this does not preclude the possibility that one of them is imaginary or, at least, absent. And “sconce” is such a unique word, coming to English via a French word meaning “to hide” or “obscure.” I am, however, concerned about something that Kanjini could not have known: that two verses from now we will be writing a moon verse and the night illumination of that image would likely be read as back-linking to the sconce in this verse.

 

that delicious fillip
of excitement
from a sidelong glance

                            Marietta McGregor

 

Here is another lovely word – fillip. This verse captures the essence of temptation and sin. All of the “l” sounds giving the tongue something to do. And while the previous verse engages in vigorous hyperbola about the heat of the porridge, this one is exactly focused on a stimulant and one’s reaction to it.

 

his devilish smile
when I suggest
role-play

                            Tracy Davidson

 

It could be fun to link to this verse. The next verse is “autumn love” and it may be that his devilish enthusiasm might turn out to be the high point of the act.

 

I hate this laughter
between you
and her young lips

                            Margherita Petriccione

 

In the same way that I was tempted by the opportunity to have a winter verse containing the phrase “hotter than the fires of hell,” I am tempted to have a love verse that contains “hate.” I like the way that this verse has two readings without a true grammatical break. The speaker hates the imminent contact between “you and her” and also resents her youth. We do have “hips” in verse five, though an interval of seven verses may be enough.

 

Here is what I have selected as our thirteenth verse:

 

that delicious fillip
of excitement
from a sidelong glance

                            Marietta McGregor

 

 

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

 

that delicious fillip
of excitement
from a sidelong glance

                            Marietta McGregor

 

 

We will now conclude our second pair of love verses with an autumn image. Verse fifteen will be an autumn moon verse, so please refrain from any suggestion of the moon in verse fourteen.

 

The requirements for verse fourteen will be as follows:

  • A two-line verse of fourteen syllables or less
  • With an autumn image (kigo) but not the moon or moonlight
  • Without a grammatical break
  • Linking in some way to verse thirteen (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.

 

I will be reviewing your offers until midnight on Monday, August 2 (New York time). On Thursday, August 5 there will be a new post in which I will announce my selection of the fourteenth verse, comment on some of the other offers, and issue instructions for writing verse fifteen.

 

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 95 Comments

  1. he watches my mouth
    opening pumpkin seeds

    8/2/2021 by wendy © bialek

    he watches my mouth
    extracting pepitas

    8/2/2021 by wendy © bialek

  2. that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance
    ——Marietta McGregor

    *

    the dew of our youth
    rises from the scented grass

    *

    head over heels
    in the morning chill

  3. the lovers found
    in the new straw
    .
    the autumn lamplight casts
    shadows on the pair
    .
    the pair discovers
    the scratchiness of new straw
    .
    how scratchy the new straw is
    on bare bottoms

  4. feeding each other
    sardines by the campfire
    *
    square dancing around
    a lantern in the barn loft
    *
    waving farewell to
    salmon in eagle claws
    *
    crickets chirp in cans
    to hear the echo

  5. fall of willow trees
    diluting all your concerns
    ***
    mother’s quick dish
    in mushroom of breakfast
    ****

    all grasses image
    of her poems in sleep
    **
    worms cry
    all through autumnal rhythm
    **
    tattered bashoo easy
    victim of speedy wind
    ***
    counting her days
    in withered tips of leaves

  6. can’t resist
    a haystack kiss

    rolling her net stockings
    downstream of the sweetfish

    inclined to overlook
    her tattered lotus

  7. desolate I can’t marry
    the Google Maps lady

    this long night
    we actually sleep

    her lantern lights
    my better side

    hard to find refreshing rhymes
    for spoon and swoon…

  8. pears ripening
    on the porch rail
    *
    are those mushrooms good
    or poisonous?
    *
    the short-lived sparkle
    of morning dew
    *
    My apologies for jumping in late this session. A work transition and cleaning out two storage units of family belongings has taken up my mental head space. I’ve enjoyed reading the imaginative entries, and John’s informative guidance.

  9. that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance Marietta (congrats!)

    *
    strongly encouraged
    by the double dragonfly

    *
    a goose am I
    for coming back for more?

    *
    soft cheeks against mine
    at the Chrysanthemum Festival

    *
    even in this lamplight
    some before unseen allure

  10. my love juggles peaches
    while I juggle pears
    *
    she still laughs about
    the kilt on my scarecrow
    *

  11. (It has been raining for days here…)(Maybe these will spark better ones)

    that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance

    Marietta McGregor
    —-

    happy ever after
    this windfall peach

    cwtch by cwtch
    under the Milky Way

    on the sixteenth night
    she lets me sleep

    swingtime in the pampas grass
    she plants in the front garden

    refreshing variations
    on tantric poses

    giving her bush clover
    a brazilian

    the zenith of a windstorm
    we can’t stop

  12. that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance
    – Marietta McGregor
    *
    the scarecrow waves
    back to us on windy days
    *
    her talent for catching
    maple leaves blowing in the wind

  13. that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance

    Marietta McGregor
    *
    the crickets singing
    just for you and me

  14. still slow dancing
    when the music stops

    in the bed of red leaves
    lovers rustling

    composing love tanka
    deep into the long night

    a sudden chill
    crosses the lovers’ path

    wind in the reeds
    whispers sweet nothings

  15. Heartfelt thanks John for showing interest in my poem and congratulations on your choice.

  16. in the autumn mist you look
    like a step back in time
    *
    resting on you, my love,
    even the fig leaf blushes
    *
    a pinch of madness
    seeing the new haystacks

  17. that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance

    Marietta McGregor

    the hit in a peach
    of a kiss

    love slippery as sardines
    in the shower

    caught in the lamplight
    courting

    worms cry
    in the fruit of love

    she becomes a scarecrow
    to fit the wedding dress

    1. “love slippery as sardines
      in the shower”

      Ann Smith

      I love all the layered meanings in this one. Bouquet.

  18. Verse 1:

    new coolness
    in her gaze

    Verse 2:

    new coolness
    in the way she looks at me

    Verse 3:

    long night of passion
    out in the garden

    Verse 4:

    when she called me a goose
    I knew it was over

    Verse 5:

    blind to the danger he posed
    when lightning struck

  19. morning fog seeping
    into our leaky tent
    *
    fog horns sound
    like my mating call
    *
    holding hands while
    watching fog land on the riverbank

  20. that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance

    Marietta McGregor
    *
    we awaken to
    one paulownia leaf drop
    .
    finding our place in line
    for the online Obon Parade
    .

  21. that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance

    Marietta McGregor
    *
    together for life at a stroke
    of the lightning
    *

  22. her curiosity of crickets
    delights him
    .
    explain why you have
    a scarecrow in your closet
    .
    utterly tempted
    to a romp in the haystacks
    .
    whispering sweet nothings
    as willow leaves fall
    .

  23. perhaps, better to avoid “chill”… so revising to:

    that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance
    – Marietta McGregor

    comes the dew
    as I weep by your grave
    – Betty Shropshire

  24. that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance
    – Marietta McGregor

    comes the dew chill
    as I weep by your grave
    – Betty Shropshire

  25. that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance

    Marietta McGregor
    *
    renewing their vows
    with a frolic in the knotweed
    *
    no holds barred as they grapple
    in the knotweed
    *

  26. yes to “filip”! a lovely choice .. congrats, Marietta .. ☺
    **
    that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance Marietta McGregor
    **
    the path for the newlyweds
    carpeted with red oak leaves

  27. darn, I forgot about not naming a season directly again. So….

    our ups and downs
    in mackerel clouds

    her place or mine determined
    by migrating birds

    Ivy goes crimson
    up against the wall

    a few old chestnuts roasted
    in the best man’s speech

    for God’s sake Eve
    don’t give Adam the apple

    the pillowed morning glory
    of her wurzle hair

  28. Getting a late start, but hope to catch up–wonderful verse, Marietta! And many thanks, John, as always for the guidance and comments.
    *

    that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance

    Marietta McGregor
    *
    his Tanabata wish
    rising to her occasion
    *

  29. Ah, Marietta, what an interesting word! So it’s something that moves things along—delightful!

    Hopefully your verse will provide me with a much-needed fillip to be more productive in this renku! 😂

    marion

    marion

  30. his linguistic gymnastics
    that soak to the bone
    *
    not all the lightning
    strikes outside of the bedroom
    *
    I come out on top
    while sumo wrestling
    *
    in a hidden corner
    our private game of sardines
    *
    my discarded panties
    hang on his banana plant

  31. Congrats Marietta!

    that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance

    – Marietta McGregor

    Who hasn’t experienced “that delicious fillip”? (Happy to learn the right word to describe it 🙂

    1. in case ‘thermometer’ is too close to michael’s:

      pidge porridge hotter
      than the fires of hell

      then i edit this to:

      he drools as i slash
      the whole sea bass

      7/30/2021 by wendy © bialek

  32. that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance

    Marietta McGregor

    autumn lamplight in her eyes
    draws me down the streets of home

    at our goodbye the autumn rain
    disguises my sad eyes

  33. that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance

    Marietta McGregor
    * *
    [more in the hope that these might spark others:]

    a kiss with raincoats
    glistening in the lantern’s light

    taking a gander
    at a saucy goose

    how delicate and rare
    the maiden flower

    voice of the reeds
    whispering sweet nothings

    mother’s chilly glare
    at her dress askew

    the frisson as we kiss
    a thousandth time this l o n g night

    still looking for my princess
    in the fog

    autumn’s voice whispers
    we’ll always have Paris

  34. John, thank you so much for selecting my love verse from so many worthy offers. I’ve been greatly enjoying ‘Way of the Wind’. I thought the week’s responses were particularly lively and fun, so it was a happy surprise to wake up this morning to find one of mine was chosen!

  35. Thank you Marietta for adding fillip to my vocabulary!
    *
    lone scarecrow with an empty
    nest for his heart
    *
    cross dresser scarecrow
    in my wife’s nightgown
    *
    scarecrows resemble
    prophets in the fog
    *
    building scarecrows together
    beats marriage counseling
    *
    lovebirds kissing
    in front of the scarecrow

    1. correcting
      the wrong date:

      expecting scarecrows
      to see eye to eye

      7/29/2021 by wendy © bialek

      the wrong date
      thinks about eating a peach

      7/30/2021 by wendy © bialek

  36. A sensual and demanding verse, Marietta. Great choice, John.
    Thank you for pausing on one of mine.

  37. that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance

    Marietta McGregor

    **

    she tickles my chin
    whispering tsukutsukubooshi

    in bed a different slant
    on sumo wrestling

  38. that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance
    – Marietta McGregor

    sumo wrestling
    still keeps ’em feisty
    – Betty Shropshire

  39. that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance
    – Marietta McGregor

    squashed that katydid
    before gunning him down
    – Betty Shropshire

  40. Just to say how much I am enjoying this, my first proper renku, and learning a lot. I love the richness of everyone’s ideas. Grateful to be noted for contributions. Endearingly, there seems to be something about love (in all its forms…) that sparks the group. I relished Dan Campbell’s zestful ways of showing his love, and Kanjini Devi’s two were instantly my own favourites:

    sometimes the steamiest
    sex you’re having
    is in your own sconce

    and the brilliant:

    he sure
    looks cool
    in shades

    Wish I’d written that. And the selected verse is another cracker – congratulations, Marietta.

    1. Thanks so much for your appreciation, Keith_()_
      You are inspiring, with your many wonderfully creative verses!

  41. marietta….a sensuous, tongue-twister of a verse! congrats!

    john, great comments!!!

    that delicious fillip
    of excitement
    from a sidelong glance

    Marietta McGregor

    grape leaves
    gave me privacy

    7/25/2021 by wendy © bialek

    1. oops! i forgot…..it’s a love verse!

      grape leaves
      gave us privacy

      7/25/2021 by wendy © bialek

    2. Thank you Wendy! It was fun to write as well as say out loud. I’m enjoying your verses each week, too!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back To Top