Written for:  Carpe Diem #1159 Matto, birthplace of Chiyo-Ni

Today we are visiting the birthplace of the most famous female haiku poet ever, Chiyo-Ni (1703-1775).


Hakusan, Ishikawa Prefecture’s natural beauty (autumn)

‘Chiyo-Ni is most known for her haiku about Morning Glory for example this one, her most famous haiku I think:’

morning glory!
the well bucket-entangled,
I ask for water

(c) Chiyo-Ni

lies within the listener –
a cuckoo’s call

on moor and mountain
nothing stirs
this morn of snow

(c) Chiyo-Ni

Here is my attempt:

russet richness
autumn raises its head
birds hide in leaves


Posted in Purple's Home | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

It’s Your Choice

Written for:  Imaginary Gardens With Real Toads  (Imagined by Isadora Gruye)
Out of Standard:  Multiple Choice

In the current political climate of my America shaped box, leaders are lifting lines directly from one of my favorite authors – a man whose books are read in every high school in America – George Orwell. Hearing all the Orwellian chatter brought me right back to the classroom. And so it is in that spirit which I present to you today’s challenge.

The Multiple Choice poem
The challenge is simple. Write a poem in the form of a multiple choice test. The whole poem could be a test, or you could insert a multiple choice some where into the normal structure of a poem.

When asked,
what is your favorite
film, you pause;
you want to fit in.
These are intellectuals,
so scratch Fantasia. Mumble
something about documentaries,
then walk off, deeply in thought.

You love Casablanca, because

a.  it unfolds in an exotic place
b.  you are in love with the French National Anthem
c.  you dream of being Bogart/Bergman

You could not get into Moby Dick, because

a.  you get seasick
b.  you detest fish
c.  it is endless
d.  it sucks

Your poetry springs from:

a.  deepest places in your heart
b.  a need of purging pain
c.  you think everything should rhyme
d.  you know big bucks are ahead

Posted in Purple's Home | Tagged , , , | 9 Comments

This Pad is Reserved

Written for:  Imaginary Gardens With Real Toads – The Tuesday Platform
C’mon in, the Platform is yours today! Please share a poem with us. Long or short, old or new, it’s up to you.

Toads gather on lily pads
to share some poetry.
Croaking and hopping–happy or sad,
they love the camaraderie.

Posted in Purple's Home | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments

Uncomplicated Years

Written for:  Poets United Midweek Motif~Nostalgia
The word “nostalgia” comes from two Greek roots, nostos meaning ‘return home’ and algia ‘longing’. However neither poetry nor politics birthed the term, rather it came from ‘medicine’. In the seventeenth century nostalgia was considered as a curable disease, like a common cold.
Nostalgia is a longing for a Place as well as for a Time.
Whether good or bad, we are dealing today with long past. Let’s weave our words with the thread of deep yearning for the bygone days of our experiences.

“I was right when I said I’d never look back. It hurts too much, it drags at your heart till you can’t ever do anything else except look back.”
     — Margaret Mitchell, Gone With The Wind

Click on pictures
in my head, full scenes
fill the screen. Green summer
dress dotted with slices
of watermelon. Hair in a “bowl”
cut–birthday party.

Riding subway with friends
to shop in downtown Brooklyn,
all of us in our pre-teen years
with no fears. We thought we were
so grown up, not knowing life
could be sewn up while we waited
for our futures.

We tend to colorize happy
moments, relegating sad times
to negatives. We draw boundless
possibilities. Aging shrinks
adventure to daily living,
and surviving.

Posted in Purple's Home | Tagged , , , , | 14 Comments

Poker At The Longhorn

Written for:  Poetics Aside #385 – Write an Ekphrastic poem


All patrons are facing table,
wondering if Handsome Jim will be able
to keep his winning streak.
Other players’ faces are bleak.
Blonde Betty is betting on Jim,
Juan peers out from under brim
of his sombrero. Coonskin Bob,
rifle in hand, hopes his job
will not be breaking up liquor-soaked men.
Could be a shootout, thinks barkeep, Ben.
All blonde Betty wants is time to sup
with Handsome Jim, so ante up!

Posted in Purple's Home | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Suburban Seasons

Written for:  dVerse Poets – Poetics, Suburb Poetry   (guest host:  Oloriel)
“What makes a poem into a suburban poem? I would not want to go on a limb and define it myself, nor use some strict formula or definition. I would say it is the feel that the poem leaves, the difference in scenery, the constant physical and metaphysical presence of animals, wilderness, gardens, curtains. Combinations that seem esoteric, worded that way, whilst in a modern poem they would be a normal thing.”

“How does one go about writing a suburban poem?
I would say, keep yourself emotionally in the suburbs, shed the characteristics of a modern environment. Be free, be strange.
I suggest including flora and fauna in your poem.
Rhyming and repetition do a great job at depicting the haziness of the suburbs
Think of motives of longing, melancholy and repeated cycles”

Leaves have been raked,
they wait in special bags
for garbage day.

You can smell Spring in the air,
all grills are fired up
in each backyard.

Thump, thump, thump,
high jumping basketball players
are at hoops.

Children in shorts rubberneck,
try to catch first glimmer
of the ice cream truck.

Scent of grass percolates up and down
neighborhood blocks.  Lawnmowers whine
on Saturdays.

Grass is cut, gathered and placed
in special colored containers,
waiting for garbage day.

Posted in Purple's Home | Tagged , , , , | 17 Comments


Written for:  The Twiglets – “even the ducks”

Record breaking rain
dogs reluctant to go out
even ducks are fed up

Posted in Purple's Home | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

Sakura (Cherry Tree)

Written for:  Carpe Diem #1157, Sakura, the National Pride of Japan

“Today, as spring approaches, the entire nation turns a shade of pink. Months before they arrive, retailers switch into sakura mode – cue supermarkets filled with plastic cherry blossom flowers and cherry blossom-flavored innovations in convenience stores. The countdown excitement is heightened further by the televised Cherry Blossom Forecast which offers a petal-by-petal analysis of the advance of the blooms – known as the cherry blossom front – as they sweep from the south to the north of the archipelago.
When the blooms actually arrive (as confirmed by teams of meticulous cherry blossom officials), it is time to indulge in one of the nation’s all-time favorite pastimes – hanami, which literally translates as “looking as flowers” and refers to flower appreciation picnics under the blooms.”

CWF3YA Cherry trees in bloom over canal and path with bridge

Cherry Blossom Kyoto

cherry blossoms
looking so fragile in the moonlight –
ah! the spring breeze

such sadness
the spring wind has molested
cherry blossoms

fading moonlight
caresses the fragile blossoms
finally spring

© Chèvrefeuille (our host)

Shinano’s deep wooded mountains
even in Fifth Month…
cherry blossoms

© Issa

how many, many things
they bring to mind —
cherry blossoms!

© Basho (Tr. Robert Aitken)

double cherry blossoms
flutter in the wind
one petal after another

© Shiki

the wild cherry:
stones also are singing their songs
in the valley stream

© Onitsura

Here is my attempt:

Carrying basket
looking for picnic spot
under sakura’s blanket

Posted in Purple's Home | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment


Written for:  Carpe Diem #1158, Kashiwabara – birthplace of Kobayashi Issa
Kobayashi Issa (1763 – 1828) was a Japanese poet and lay Buddhist priest of the Jōdo Shinshū sect known for his haiku poems and journals. He is better known as simply Issa, a pen name meaning Cup-of-tea. He is regarded as one of the five haiku masters in Japan, along with Bashō, Buson, Chiyo-Ni and Shiki — “the Big Five.”


Kashiwabara, birth-place of Issa, is a wonderful place to be.

Shinano’s deep wooded mountains
even in Fifth Month…
cherry blossoms

sleeping side by side
Shinano’s mountains too…
evening snow

deep wooded mountains–
home-grown in Shinano
glorious blossoms

Eighth Month–
a rainy night, pre-harvest moon
in the mountains of Shinano

(c) Kobayashi Issa (Tr. David G. Lanoue)

Here is my attempt:

stands with skis on mountain
thrilled at beauty below
thinks of a haiku

Posted in Purple's Home | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

What Helps You Survive?

Written for:  dVerse Poets, Haibun Monday:  “The Best Things In Life Are Free”
(posted by HayesSpencer)

“I keep singing this song lately, The Best Things in Life are Free. And to be truthful, they are. They are also priceless as well.  I am not talking about free and freedom but free, as in no cost – priceless as well.”

My poetry group meets once a month at a local library.
I had not been able to attend for several months,
and missed the camaraderie.

This month, I walked into a small group.   Number of people
are different each time.  Everyone was happy to see each other,
and share some poems. This congenial,  warm place lifted my day.

mother penguin waits
chicks need food now, to survive
father finds his brood

Posted in Purple's Home | Tagged , , , , | 12 Comments