White Pebbles Haiku Group

White Pebbles

 

Convenor: Beverley George

In the winter poem many of us are familiar with, Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening , the poet stops on the darkest evening of the year, ‘to watch his woods fill up with snow’.  Like the poet, Robert Front, the White Pebbles Haiku Group stopped to watch the winter scene unfolding at  the Gosford /Edogawa Japanese Gardens on the Central Coast this past Saturday 15th June just a week out from the dark and shortest day of the year (Winter Solticies this year June 20/21st )

We all look forward  to our meetings and our winter ‘stopping’ was no exception.

This is our second winter walk together. ; with Beverley George our leader, present were Verna Rieschild, Marilyn Humbert, Maire Glacken. Samantha Hyde, Colleen Keating with a heart-felt apologies from Gail Hennessy and Kent Robinson.  

We began our morning with a welcome coffee and catch-up in the cafe sharing  some newly published work and thoughts from  our ‘homework,’  – a handout that Beverley emailed earlier to help us prepare.

 

 

We spent about forty minutes contemplatively moving around the garden, walking, sitting, pondering, jotting down thoughts and ideas for haiku writing;  Today the cheeky plowers were busy, their call ringing out continuously. Lingering leaves from the maple trees were  drifting down  many children were feeding the the koi , ducks were active catching most of the food and the light playful nature of the children reminded us winter is only a season not an age. 

Some of the group sat in the open tea room overlooking the white pebble beach, Some took advantage of sitting in the winter sun under the climbing wisteria. 

After our ginko  (season walk) we  are privileged,  each visit to enjoy a quiet working space in the Art Gallery and we gathered at the round table to share our writing and work sheets. 

 

 

Beverley  introduced the group to Haiga  inspiring us with her beautiful  greeting cards. We had all done our homework which was to bring a winter scene and our haiku to go with it  and at our sharing time it was enlightening to discuss our work . Next meeting we will continue to work with more haiga.

We marvelled at the rich and varied takings from our winter observations.  We are encouraged and affirmed by our sharing.   We left inspired in our haiku writing and look forward to our spring meeting Saturday 14th September 2019.

Just one final observation since our Autumn meeting  a new gengo (era) has been declared with the new reigning Emperor.  Reiwa was announced and  is based on the Manyo-shin – Japan’s oldest Anthology of Poems. It means that culture can grow when people sincerely care about each other. What beautiful sentiment  and hope for our world. 

Some stayed to enjoy the choices from the delicious lunch menu in the cafe.  

Colleen Keating  ( White Pebbles Haiku Group)

 

SHARED FOOTPRINTS GINKO WALK: WINTER

TWO SETS OF FOOTPRINTS

by Michael and Colleen  on beach walk winter

 

 

footsteps-in-the-sand-peter-mooyman

 

CK  beanies coats and gloves –

our shadows long

on washed sand    

 

MK at the edge –            

foam trimmed

fingers of ocean               IMG_2336

 

CK  surprise

orange sand crabs 

bask in winter dawn

 

MK  slant of sunrise

yin-yang shadow

stone and shell

 

CK  spaciousness

on a winter beach

solitary seagull

 

MK    low low tide

untouched canvas

be awake                                                        IMG_2326

 

CK   over seaweed 

flirt of swallows

warms us

 

MK  fisherman and heron 

wade knee deep –

winter warriors

 

CK   rock pools mirror

clouds

our lives stilled                                  IMG_8152

 

MK  dawn

cuts sea and sky 

pelicans wait

 

CK burdens fall away

in morning light

willy wag tails

 

MK winter sun

softens our world

two sets of footprints  


IMG_2315

 

 

 

   

soul’s winter

 

Another poem in the section called The Smell of Parsley .  You will see why after you read it a few times.

It amazes me how close is death to the birth of new life. ‘ We are reminded of this by nature over and over, how the sun bursts through after the darkest storm, how the new buds appear miraculously on the branch of a tree that some could think lifeless, and how the light overcomth the darkest of night each dawn. Nature shows us and we are reminded not to  loose hope in the dark, yet how often are we  ‘stunned in the impasse of unknowing.’ 

This poem tells of an incident of waiting    ‘stunned in the impasse of unknowing‘.  The waiting in the dark and cold  of nights.  Maybe it could be said the last line was not needed but I added it anyway.

winter tree

 

 

soul’s winter

waiting in winter
on the cusp of spring
for a baby to be born
feels as if the world
has taken a vow of silence
and time is paralysed

it amazes me how close is death
to the birth of new life

outside a straggly wet mop of a day
droops in
skeletal limbs of trees x-rayed against sky
shudder like brittle bones
breathing just a little
tremulously

their cold black presence
chills my blood
stirs thoughts of death
i sense its shadow
shiver in its grip

my heart fumbles
like one lost in a dark night
stunned in the impasse of unknowing

i want to believe that this will change
and that I will soon
be dazzled

and i am

 

winter morning walk

 

The winter walk was sensually intense, the colours and sounds, and the potential of birthing buds ready to burst out in all glory.  Below the brambley Wisteria I did find myself on my knees and smiled to myself. It was early morning and I like to think the walk sounds as if it was in some very important place. You have to read to the end of the poem to find out where this special experience unfolded.

winter walk

 

winter morning walk

come with me
feel the shrill bell-tingle
of the morning on your face
leave your ears bare to listen

unfurl yourself
like the pocket magnolia bud
peeping from its birthing cocoon
its curiosity insatiable
knowing it is glorious

distinguish whips and chortle and chirps
notice the screech of the yellow crested cockatoo
high above in the blue gums

smile at the showy red camellia
its carpet of colour reflecting its flamboyance
take in that orange blossom scent

kneel before the snow bells
profuse like lilies of the field
below the wisteria’s bare brambles

rub hands
with the pepper tree foliage
let its aroma play in your mind

ah what joy
is this winter morning walk
around the block

winter walk 2