Weather Doesn’t Wait ~ haibun

Weather Doesn’t Wait

Thirteen times since early May, our weather has flirted with – no, made out with – temperatures of 90ºF or higher here in mid-Missouri. Since the beginning of the year, 83 days have had daily high temperatures that exceeded the normal range, with 4 record high temperatures set. All of this, while waiting for tomorrow’s start of summer.

weather doesn’t wait
for notes on a calendar
waiting for solstice

This is my response to Haibun Monday 6-20-22: Solstice,
the prompt from Frank Tassone at dVerse ~ Poets Pub.

Image: Black Shire Distillery, Hermann, Missouri 19 June 2022

Hibernal Lament

Hibernal Lament

I wait, but days do not
grow longer, nights shorter.
This will pass. Daylight will reign again.
But darkness never reduces to nothing.
Why am I reminded of what is lost
when what I seek is light?
I stand perfectly still,
yet my shadow still follows me.

This table shows the length of daylight during this week
surrounding the winter solstice in my part of the world.
Source: Sunrise Sunset

Solar Separation ~ haibun

Solar Separation

The sun rises and I embrace the warmth. I tan evenly over the course of the summer, but mindful of the power of those rays on my fair skin I limit my exposure and use sunscreen. Meanwhile, I spend my days making pickups and deliveries for a trucking company. Half of those hours are spent behind the wheel, often with the sun shining into my cab. I give little thought to that sun exposure. After all, there’s no sunburn. In fact, there’s no irritation, at all.

In my fifties, I learn the error in that assumption. I have some precancerous cells on the left side of my face frozen for removal. Two separate times, I have cancerous growths removed from my upper chest and shoulder. They can appear anywhere, even areas that get less exposure. The left side of my body seems to be the most affected, that which would have received the most sun exposure through the driver’s side window.

Dry patches on my face, primarily on the left side, are misdiagnosed by a dermatologist as a form of psoriasis, but they are correctly diagnosed as precancerous when I visit a cancer center for skin screening after moving to Missouri. Daily application of Efudex cream over several weeks gives me a face fit for a Star Trek alien when all of the precancerous areas are exposed, until the dead skin sloughs off and my face returns to normal.

That was six years ago, and there has been no recurrence. Summer has arrived, but my days in the sun are a thing of the past.

sun high overhead
shortest shadows of the year
days now grow shorter

This haibun is my response to Haibun Monday 6-21-21: Solstice I,
the prompt from Frank Tassone at dVerse ~ Poets Pub.

Solar Separation

mid-treatment for precancerous skin damage

Sol’s Assurance

Sol’s Assurance

For the briefest moment in this shortest span
of daylight, the clouds part to reveal the sun,
as if to say, “Fear not. I am still here,
my light growing, the darkness receding
with each new day, each glance I pass your way.”


Image: Missouri, 3:19pm CST  21 December 2019 (7 hours short of Winter Solstice)

hours before sunrise ~ fusion troiku ~ hineri

The prompt for Carpe Diem Weekend Meditation #90 Crossroads
Summer Solstice (Troiku Hineri)

starts with two haiku by Jane Reichhold and Yosa Buson (
in blue) to be used
to create a “fusion” haiku which is then to be the base for a troiku.
The hineri (or twist) is to use each of those haiku to create three new troiku.

this short night –
from a shallow well I scoop
a persimmon flower
                      Yosa Buson

solstice splits
between the peach halves
a red stone sun
                      © Jane Reichhold


hours before sunrise
a shallow well of darkness
summer solstice night

hours before sunrise
early morning dew on grass
field mouse in hiding

a shallow well of darkness
offers little time to hunt
owl returns to nest

summer solstice night
shadows fading into light
eyes closing at dawn

The three additional troiku follow, below.

hours before sunrise
tiny feet finding way home
safety of darkness

early morning dew on grass
faint signs of activity
traveler’s footprints

field mouse in hiding
snugly secure in its nest
before coming light

a shallow well of darkness
holding opportunity
for keen eyed hunter

offers little time to hunt
darkness giving way to light
before finding prey

owl returns to nest
spending the day in silence
patiently waiting

summer solstice night
approaches with setting sun
wings spread in darkness

shadows fading into light
successful night of hunting
hunger satisfied

eyes closing at dawn
owl hidden within shadows
waiting for nightfall

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.


Image sources:
Library of Congress
Bullfinch and Horned Owl, by Kitagawa Utamoro (cropped here) (troika)

full moon approaching ~ haiku

full moon approaching
visible on longest night
day of transition

This haiku is in response to
Frank Tassone’s #Haikai Challenge #65: Solstice II.

Image: the moon at 4:34pm CST 21 December 2018
~ sunset was at 4:50pm ~
(The Missouri State Capitol is under wraps for a $50M renovation)


The moon at 6:29pm and 6:37pm CST 21 December 2018
~ full moon is at 11:48am 22 Dec 2018 ~
(click each image for larger view in new tab)