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The Renku Sessions: Way of the Wind – Week 5

Wayrenku_300

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

 

I’ve been a bit distracted during the past week. As administrator for the Peggy Willis Lyles Haiku Awards, I’ve been busy keeping up with entries as the June 1 submission deadline approaches. Over 400 poets have entered, so far, and additional entries are still coming in fast. As a result, I haven’t previously commented here upon some things that, in my mind, eliminated some of this week’s verse offers.

Many verses, for instance, named a color. Since the hokku names a color (green), we won’t want to name another for some time, if at all, in the remaining renku verses. This does not prelude the use of words that present a strong image of something colorful. But we will want to name the thing and not the color of the thing.

And, while I did say in the instructions that, “the tone should remain sedate and somewhat formal,” I should probably have expanded upon this. In Introduction to World-linking Renku Shinku Fukuda writes, “Pleasant or peaceful themes should be used in this part…too strong impressions or controversial themes such as God, Buddhism, love, uncertainty, recollection, poor health, a place name and people’s names are not included.” The good news is that we will be able to write much more freely, starting with the very next verse.

In the meantime, here are some verse four offers that I enjoyed:

 

setting her ringtone
to a temple bell

                        John Hawkhead

 

Many of you opted to link to the “chime” of verse three with another sound. Here is a pleasant example. While we will want to save religion for later in the renku, the balance between temple and technology might be considered to create an equilibrium between the topics. Unfortunately, we probably also want to save technology for later verses.

 

practicing for the dance
with spoons for castanets

                        Keith Evetts

 

Another approach that some of you took was to link through other kitchen items. Keith Evetts offers us spoons and projects them into the future, in a different room and making a sound that strongly contrasts to “chimes.” The gentle humor of this image presses but, for me, does not quite transgress the tonal quality required in the jo.

 

waving at the neighbors
with a fresh cup in hand

                        Clysta Seney

 

Here’s a verse that takes something from the kitchen to a new location. The tone is right, and one can take something different from the verse, depending upon whether we imagine the cup in the gesturing hand or in the other. In the former picture, the message might be something like, “The coffee’s ready. Come and join me.” And in the latter, it might just be a friendly, “Good morning.”

 

an anniversary gift
of a completely cleaned car

                        Debbie Feller

 

I like verses that link through a somewhat broader gap. Instead of sound to sound, or kitchen item to kitchen item, this verse asks us to consider something less direct. For me, I pictured the chiming pots of the previous verse as hung in a spotless display of gleaming copper, perhaps only touched by a breeze as the cook enters the kitchen in the morning. This domestic image might link to other gestures of taking our shared things back to a state of “newness.” We will want to save the idea of an anniversary in case someone wants to use it when we get to the love verses. But I did enjoy it here.

 

mesmerized by
the ASL interpreter

                        Chris Patchel

 

And then, there is the sound of silence.

 

My final choice comes down to two candidates. And a hard choice it is.

 

she presses her design
into the bowl’s soft clay

                        Ellen Compton

 

The link is “pots” but this one is quite different, being in the process of creation and still soft and malleable. In that sense, it matches our current place in the renku. We’ve already got some elements that may prove to have shaped the completed work to come, but that remains to be seen. If we used this verse, we would be starting with air (wind), water and earth (clay). And perhaps it would not be too much of a stretch to think of fire as a kitchen necessity. My only reservation relates to the pronouns (she, her). We have a pronoun in the hokku. And we may want to hold off on pronouns because they occur so naturally in the love verses.

 

a coin in the cap
of a street busker

                        Andrew Shimield

 

There are at least a couple of ways of imagining this. Perhaps it links through sound – “chime” to whatever sort of music we imagine this busker making. And perhaps there is another sound as a coin is tossed into the cap and strikes other coins. Alternatively, we can imagine that the busker is just setting up and has “seeded” his hat with a few bills and a coin to hold them down. That is a pleasant mirroring of where we are, having taken the necessary steps to complete the introductory section of our renku.

 

It’s almost a coin toss. Here is what I have selected as our fourth verse:

 

a coin in the cap
of a street busker

                        Andrew Shimield

 

 

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

 

 

We are now moving from the “jo” to the “ha” and we need a strong change in tone and content. You are now invited to submit up to five verse five offers.

The requirements for verse five will be as follows:

  • A three-line verse of seventeen syllables or less
  • With either a winter or summer moon image (the literal moon or moonlight)
  • Without a grammatical break
  • Linking in some way to verse four (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, May 31 (New York time). On Thursday, June 3 there will be a new post in which I will announce my selection of the fifth verse, comment on some of the other offers, and issue instructions for writing verse six offers.

 

Thank you, 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 99 Comments

  1. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield

    moon
    in the shadows
    of the crow’s caw

    fire cracker
    filling the night sky
    starlight moon

    cloak moon
    at the drop
    of the flintlock hammer

  2. slow moon
    the firefly
    dies first
    * * * * * *
    full moon
    sails
    half past the river
    * * * * * *
    partial eclipse
    the moon wanes
    behind the dangling leaf

    Priscilla Arthur, Accra, Ghana.

  3. slow moon
    the firefly
    dies first

    full moon
    sailing
    half past the river

    partial eclipse
    the moon wanes
    behind the dangling leaf

  4. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker
    .
    Andrew Shimield
    .
    ten bucks buys
    a raffle chit for a moonlit
    oyster feast

  5. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker
                            Andrew Shimield

    the cat’s eyes
    fixed on moths
    dancing in moonlight

  6. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker
                            Andrew Shimield

    trailing a dewy path
    of popcorn
    lit by the summer moon

  7. rays through gaps
    of thatched moon
    from child’s catch and play
    ********

    me getting ready
    for title of my novel
    ‘moon in your forehead ‘
    ***********

    spreading a full
    spree of dinner time
    in the summer moon
    *********

    living through
    only light of summer moon
    in farmer’s smile
    ***

    moonlight tilts
    in the gurgling waters
    of her pot

  8. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield
    ****
    on a white expanse
    under the summer moon
    our love will be …

    Nani Mariani

    Nani Mariani

  9. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield
    ****
    moonlight on your face
    also the scent of roses
    i always miss mom

    Nani Mariani

  10. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield

    hands in pockets
    a small crowd stamps
    in the winter moonlight

    bumping the glass
    under the summer moon
    a maybug hums

  11. love this verse, andrew, congrats on its inclusion in our great way of the wind renku!
    thanks john for your continued guidance.

    a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield

    the moon’s
    magic caught
    in a weir

    5/30/2021 by wendy © bialek

  12. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield
    *
    first bonito
    in the moon’s glitter path
    eludes our grasp
    *

  13. This one is a fun challenge. Here are my contributions:

    a coin in the cap
    of a street busker
    Andrew Shimield

    moonrise
    over San Juan bonfires
    double the magic
    .
    just enough light
    by the strawberry moon
    to count the take
    .
    at the summer fair
    star and moon tattoos on the hands
    of the palm reader

  14. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield
    *
    night too short
    to tarry
    with the moon

  15. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield
    *
    warming up
    for the super moon
    with fireworks
    *

  16. desert’s first snow
    shape-shifting shadows
    under the moonlit sky
    – Betty Shropshire

  17. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield

    this winter moon
    from its pockmarks
    is only an avatar

    the neighbours’ sitz bath
    on their garden deck
    basks in moonlight

  18. hopping
    to better frame
    the winter moon
    ***
    the teeth chatter
    with the frost but …
    the moon
    ***
    crystal goblets
    to celebrate
    the great winter moon
    ***
    drops leaping
    from the icicles
    in the moonlight
    ***
    footprints
    of a run in the snow
    under the moon

  19. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker
    Andrew Shimield
    ***
    from behind the window
    the frog sang melodiously
    I’m insomnia …

    Nani Mariani

  20. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield
    ***
    backpacker
    is chasing memories
    accompanied by the moon

    Nani Mariani

  21. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield

    flamenco festival
    in city hall
    the night of a super moon

  22. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield
    a violinist plays
    a nocturne
    in the moonlight
    .
    an old warbler joins
    him in a duet
    under the summer moon
    .
    the winter moon shines
    on the guitarist composing
    a new song
    .
    a guitarist strums
    a folk song
    on the moonlit street corner
    .
    Nancy Brady

  23. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker
    — Andrew Shimield
    *
    on the patio
    neglected jasmines
    gasping for moonlight

  24. congrats to Andrew … and now for a moon .. hmmmmm …
    **
    a coin in the cap
    of a street busker
    —Andrew Shimield
    **
    at the snow festival
    the zipline whizzes past
    the very moon

  25. #3
    tree branches
    trimmed for safety
    now the moon peeps in

    #4
    colorful laundry
    on the pulley clothesline
    drying by moonlight

  26. Congrats Andrew!
    .
    .
    summer moon
    low on the hips
    of the horizon
    .
    summer moon
    currently identifying as
    a dangling participle
    .
    all crack
    the thunder moon
    smokes the rent money
    .
    ever faint
    the day moon
    airing
    .
    careful
    what you wish for
    hunger moon
    .
    .

  27. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield

    after the concert
    the moon and the park
    in dawn twilight

  28. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    after the concert
    the moon and the park
    in dawn twilight

    Meera Rehm
    Uk

  29. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield

    mother always says
    an upended moon
    brings winter showers

    windows wide open
    to cooling moonlight
    this summer night

  30. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker
    … Andrew Shimield
    .
    rugging up
    for our neighbourhood’s
    blood moon eclipse party
    .
    clear and cold
    for our neighbourhood
    blood moon eclipse
    .

  31. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield
    ****
    sound from
    melodious guitar
    full moon

    Nani Mariani

  32. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker
    .
    Andrew Shimield
    .
    the festival in the park
    with flamenco
    and a super moon

  33. Congratulations Andrew! And thank you, John, for enjoying the cleaned car verse.

    with the trees branches
    now trimmed for safety
    the moon peeps in

  34. Am slightly confused (it doesn’t take much to be honest!). I don’t know if I’m missing something, but if we’re only supposed to use moon images from that one site, the only ones it mentions are “summer moon” and “winter moon”. Seems a little restrictive. Anyhow, those are the ones I’ve gone with.
    *
    under a winter moon
    the tuneless howl
    of a would-be wolf
    *
    beneath the summer moon
    a song stilled
    on dead lips
    *
    on a freezing night
    his bare head
    brings two winter moons
    *
    beneath the summer moon
    she pays
    for her sacrifice
    *
    the change
    she sweats through
    under a summer moon

    1. The moon, by itself, is considered an autumn kigo. To write a winter or summer (or spring) moon verse, you need to add a winter or summer (or spring) kigo. For example “firefly.”
      .
      fireflies
      in a moonlit
      arbor
      .
      In this example, “fireflies” makes it summer and “moonlit” makes it a moon verse.

      1. Oh. Don’t see buck or “Buck Moon” on the list so maybe that’s not enough here, so maybe this version will fit:

        a coin in the cap
        of a street busker

        Andrew Shimield
        *
        the buck moon
        cools
        a lost lottery ticket
        *

  35. Sorry, my second offering should be edited thus:

    on the summer pond
    a loon’s calls
    shiver the moon

  36. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    —Andrew Shimield

    the rising moon
    lays a straight path
    to the beach

    *
    on the summer pond
    a loon’s calls
    shivers the moon

    *
    shining on snow
    the moon creates
    an aha moment

    *
    from the hot spring
    a clear view
    of the solstice moon

    *
    the moon and fireflies
    arrive in time
    for the bonfire party

    1. Kristen,
      .
      Our list of season words lists bonfire as a winter kigo and fireflies as summer. This verse has to be a summer OR winter moon verse. It can’t be both at once. As I have mentioned in the past, kigo are not always intuitive. While I have enjoyed summer bonfires, we have to work with the specified list of kigo.

  37. Congratulations Andrew!

    a coin in the cap
    of a street busker
    ————Andrew Shimield

    waning quarter moon
    gives what it can
    to the winter city

  38. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield
    *
    the buck moon
    pieces together
    a lost lottery ticket
    *
    a frozen receipt
    glares back
    at the moon
    *

    1. revising to:
      the frozen receipt
      glares back
      at the moon

      too jarring following Andrew’s “a” with another “a” verse

  39. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker
    – Andrew Shimield

    cities blanketed
    by the first snow
    under a full moon
    – Betty Shropshire

  40. well done Andrew
    ********************************
    just a drop
    in the bucket from
    this winter’s moon
    *********************
    summer concerts
    on the pier by
    the light of the moon
    ****************************
    at a loss for words
    neath the sultry
    summer moon
    *********************
    Blue Bayou in
    low A under a sultry
    summer moon

  41. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker
    Andrew Shimiel

    #3
    watching
    tonsured cloud surround
    the strawberry moon

    #4
    in winter moonlight
    a bittersweet song
    to empty streets

    #5
    a silver quarter
    enough for a moonful
    of summer song

    1. Afterthought: my #5 is intended to be read/spoken without a grammatical break, but if you feel the flow would be better, it can be amended by adding ” ‘s ” to read:

      a silver quarter’s
      enough for a moonful
      of summer song

      1. Ah, John, I see from your other somments that ‘silver’ will rule this one out. And so, I’ll amend #5 simply to:
        a quarter’s
        enough for a moonful
        of summer song

  42. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield
    .
    this winter moon
    as pale as the moons
    of winters past
    .

  43. Congratulations, Andrew, well done indeed and what a clever selection, John! 🙂

    Without any further ado, “a coin” opens a link to the moon because of the shape and, in the case of the recent moon, the colour of a newly minted, rose copper coin as well.

    I watched the moon go through the eclipse the night before last. (That is, I saw the moon rise and after that checked outside my back door every 10 minutes or so. ) Before the eclipse began, the moon was big and full and looked like a shining, brand new, rose copper penny. The eclipse shadow moved like a big dark thumb pushing slowly across the shining moon’s surface, from my left to my right, until even the last bright sliver was darkened. Then it reversed. Luckily the sky was clear for the duration, and the two pointers and the Southern Cross were clear and bright to my right, too.

    They called it a “super blood moon” but from my vantage point it wasn’t a red moon at all. (The only red moons I’ve ever seen have been in the wake of bushfires… caused by all the ash particles in the air)

    1. um … correction “. . .from my right to my left. . . “and the Cross & its pointers were to my right, above, as well.

  44. Congratulations, Andrew! Glad you chimed in with such an outstanding verse. And thanks, John, once again, for helpful comments
    this is just for fun!
    *
    a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield
    *
    the new moon
    worth its weight
    in grime-laden snow

  45. a coin in the cap
    of a street busker
    Andrew Shimield
    — #2
    cool evening moonlight
    dances on a slice of lemon
    in my gin fizz

  46. Loving it so far! Well done all.

    a coin in the cap
    of a street busker

    Andrew Shimield
    — #1
    her silver hair
    and everywhere
    winter moonlight

    1. As I said in my commentary, we won’t want to name a color soon, if at all. So, no “silver.”

      1. Thanks, John. I’ll scratch that then, and substitute for #1:

        a moth
        caught between the streetlamps
        and the moon

  47. Well done Andrew, you’ve taken us to the streets. And, thank you John for your commentary weaving how renku works with why you choose the verses. And, for mentioning my neighborly verse.

  48. Thanks for choosing this, John.
    I did put up another post saying that I thought this verse was too close to dropping blossoms into the water for pooh sticks (verse 2). But if you are happy with it – so am I.

    1. a coin in the cap
      of a street busker

      Andrew Shimield

      *
      four chopsticks
      paint the outline
      of the hot moon
      *

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