Green Jays Stage ~ Steps-and-Pauses

I’m pleased that my first attempt at a puente acted as an introduction to the form for one of my favorite poets. Stop by to see how effectively Jazz uses the form to offer two perspectives of the same scene.

stepsandpauses

December 6, 2019.  We returned to our haunts near Rio Grande City the week of Thanksgiving.  One very good birding location is Salineno World Birding Center located on the Rio Grande River and thus in danger.  The current expectation is a wide caliche roadway between river and birding, nothing to spoil the birding center so long as the birds aren’t repulsed by construction.  (But there are those insisting we need a continuous WALL …)  If anywhere near Salineno in the November-March months, this place is worth the search.  (The birds go elsewhere to breed summer/fall.)

I’ve been thinning and tweaking photos since we got back, looking for a green jay image that captures their playful energy.  Today, I encountered a poetry form that so fits the experience of watching green jays – birds flapping around noisily, people holding still quietly.  I don’t think I’ve seen a puente poem before, and…

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Finding Direction ~ puente

Finding Direction

How I held your counsel dear,
missed now in your absence –
the talks we shared,
the lessons learned.
Long years have passed
since we last spoke,
each trial faced reminding me
of the advice you gave,
each time leading to
that never ending question.

~ Which is the right course to take? ~

No words I might provide
would hold the answer you seek.
It is not mine to give,
but yours to divine.
Look not to my past,
but to your present.
There is hope and despair
in all that you face.
Know the difference,
and all will be revealed.

The prompt for MTB: O Apostrophe! from Amaya at dVerse ~ Poets Pub is to use the poetic apostrophe – not as in possession, but in reference to something absent. When poets direct speech to an abstract concept or a person who is not physically present, they’re writing apostrophe poetry. Historically, poets often began their address to the absent party with the interjection “O.”

The is my first attempt at writing a puente. Its form seems perfect for my purposes, as this poem contains a response to the opening stanza.

The puente has three stanzas with the first and third having an equal number of lines and the middle stanza having only one line which acts as a bridge (puente) between the first and third stanza. The first and third stanzas convey a related but different element or feeling, as though they were two adjacent territories. The number of lines in the first and third stanza is the writer’s choice as is the choice of whether to write it in free verse or rhyme.

The center line is delineated by a tilde (~) and has ‘double duty’. It functions as the ending for the last line of the first stanza AND as the beginning for the first line of the third stanza. It shares ownership with these two lines and consequently bridges the first and third stanzas, essentially resulting in two that overlap.

rudderless

rudderless

far from flawless,
my memories, homeless
in their wanderings

searching for details
in times no longer ageless,
leaving me helpless

formless, these thoughts
passing through my mind,
almost wordless

Choosing words from the supplied list (below), this series of senryū is my response to
Tuesday Poetics: Less is More, more or less, from Laura at dVerse ~ Poets Pub.

ageless ~ boundless ~ breathless ~ careless ~ cloudless ~ colourless ~ faceless ~ fearless ~ feckless ~ flawless ~ formless ~ harmless ~ heedless ~ helpless ~ homeless ~ listless ~ needless ~ restless ~ rootless ~ senseless ~ tasteless ~ weightless ~ windowless ~ wordless ~

I’m also linking this to Colleen’s 2019 Weekly #Tanka Tuesday
#Poetry Challenge No. 156, #Poet’sChoice.

Despair ~ quadrille ~ prose poem

Despair

This spirit that holds me, this answer to my trials, answers to no one, its unremitting darkness consuming all desire to seek a way out of its depths, no light strong enough to wrest me from a grip that drags me ever further down.

This prose poem is my response to Quadrille #93: Spirited Poems
— the prompt from Kim at dVerse, which is to use the word spirit
in a 44-word poem that does not require meter or rhyme.

 

polishing cedar ~ fusion troiku

The prompt for Carpe Diem #1789 The Winter Trees (Crossroads)
starts with two haiku by Yosa Buson (
in blue) to be used
to create a “fusion” haiku which is then to be the base for a troiku.

cutting into with the ax,
I was surprised at the scent.
the winter trees.

unfolding at the
hand of the glass polisher:
a camellia!

               Yosa Buson

polishing cedar
beauty of the grain unfolds
stimulating scents

polishing cedar
respecting treasured heirloom
held in loving hands

beauty of the grain unfolds
revealing further treasures
beloved keepsakes

stimulating scents
reminders of days long gone
held close to the heart

A troiku is three haiku, with each of the three lines from a suggested haiku as the first line of each haiku in the troiku. It’s not always possible to have a 5-7-5 format in the second haiku, due to the limitations of the suggested haiku. The name of the form is derived from “troika,” a sled or carriage drawn by three horses harnessed side-by-side, an iconic symbol of Imperial Russia.

Troika

Image source: wikimedia.org (troika)