Tag Archives: moon

New Moon Renga

IMG_0233Today, as part of the Northern Poetry Library Project, a small group of us gathered in Hexham Library to make a 12-verse renga sparked by our ‘food’ theme – which even after six months seems inexhaustible.

The first verse, or ‘hokku’, is a version of one by the Japanese master, Basho.  It seemed like a good place to start – him knocking back the saké on the day of the new moon (and an auspicious Spring eclipse).

Fennel, Saffron, Silver

 

No blossoms, no moon,

the Master’s drinking saké,

see, all on his own

 

dried fruit sweetens the mouth

picked on a sunlit day from the slopes

 

autumn unfolding

chewing the passing year

bitterness of loss

 

ginger wine, ginger biscuits

home-made, Gran’s spice against cold

 

quickly the mushroom

strives for light under the door

a hint of decay

 

looking down on Crag Lough

we stop to munch dark chocolate

 

who knew such longing

could be poured into a bowl

of apple crumble?

 

my love and [garlic]

a conflict of interest

 

red seeds on your tongue

fennel, saffron, silver

perfumed breath – mukhwas

 

leek, onion, potato, simmered

into soup that opens each cell

 

Café de l’Opéra

coffee and croissant

splash of traffic

 

table, the first noun learnt

in a new language – we eat around it.

 

 

 

A junicho renga

at lunch time

in Hexham Library

on 9th March 2016.

 

Participants:

Birtley Aris

Jo Aris

Matilda Bevan

Linda France

Patricia Gillespie

Simone Silver Path

Margot Waters

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Tune In

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A couple of sound pieces are now available online…

Just back from the lovely Ledbury Poetry Festival, where, as well as hearing some fantastic readings (Sharon Olds, Sujata Bhatt, Anne Micheals, Brenda Hillman, Ali Cobby Eckermann, Maggie Sawkins, Glyn Maxwell and Robert Hass), I took part in two events. One for the Poetry Society was a showcase of this year’s National Poetry Competition winners and I read alongside Josephine Abbott and Elaine Gaston. Ed Doegar asked us about writing ‘winning poems’ and there were questions from the floor.

You can hear a podcast I recorded with Mike Sims last month at the Poetry Society here.

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The other event at Ledbury was called Moon & Meadow – with sound recordist Chris Watson. We revisited our 2008 collaboration The Moon & Flowers, as well as creating a new piece from a recent sequence, set closer to home but also charting the cycle of the seasons, called Stone Meadow. The mono recording is rather plain compared with Chris’s audio wizardry where the songs of birds and gentle sounds of weather rippled through the packed Baptist Church on a balmy summer evening. Later we watched a plump pale orange moon rise in the sky above the town.

You can listen to Moon & Meadow here.

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Renga at the End of the Year

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The Gate of the Moon

Nowhere left

for the rain

to run to

*

solar panels capture

a dull grey sky

*

this hill

rising above

winter earth

*

three hundred thousand miles

reflected in a puddle

*

a quick burst

glimpses of red

waxwings scatter

*

assorted woollen socks

circle the rug

*

in awe of grammar

we follow the rules

we have never heard of

*

the white Buddha

mossy round his knees

*

the poetry master said

if you don’t understand anything

it’s all right

*

how convert digital

love to analogue?

*

while the clock ticks

memories chime

to a different rhythm

*

a year’s worth of tears

spilled before breakfast

*

she draws

small villages

when she’s lost

*

the language of light

tells the garden its season

*

how to be an artist?

invite someone dangerous

for tea

*

the fox in Brian’s garden

weighing his options

*

what we’ll see

when it’s all over

the gate of the moon

*

seedheads of honesty

waxy, translucent

*

the mouse carefully sniffs

the air outside

the opened trap

*

budding black already

ash branches, tips uplifting.

A Renga in Winter

at Harnham Buddhist Monastery

on 27th December 2012.

 

 

Participants:

Ajahn Abhinando

John Bower

Chandra Candiani

Linda France

Geoff Jackson

Martha Jackson

Neda Popovic Bras

Christine Taylor

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