Friday, September 21, 2012

Welcome to Poetry Friday

A Japanese Pine Grove, Silk Painting by Hiroshige

Art museum visits are gold mines of poem ideas for me. This week I visited the Farnsworth in Rockland, Maine. An Andrew Wyeth painting named “Two Sisters” spoke to me, so I sketched and wrote notes for a future poem.

There’s a wonderful Frank Benson exhibit going on now. I was surprised to learn Benson also made etchings. “Crows in Rain” inspired the beginnings of a haiku. I’ve now learned that haiku evolve, at least for me. They look simple, but I must write many versions before I think I’ve arrived.

The same thing happened with the haibun I share today. Haibun is a Japanese form that combines prose with haiku. My poem began with a walk in the pine grove behind our house. By the time I had finished working with two kind editors, my visit to Japan had crept in. My first published haibun appears in this month’s issue of the online magazine A Hundred Gourds. The issue includes many Japanese forms of poetry. Here’s the link.

Sample the other poems in Renee's Poetry Friday candy dish at No Water River.


  1. Congratulations on your haibun publication, Joyce! I'm not very familiar with the form, but you have piqued my interest.

    I love that you get inspired by paintings and art shows, and that you sketch your impressions in your notebook, along with taking word notes. I have recently made a new start in my notebook-keeping and I'm all ears whenever anyone talks of using theirs effectively.

    1. Joyce - congratulations on the publication! I love the way you have built the images and complimented your story with a sharp, clear haiku. Great job! I am going to have to spend more time reading A Hundred Gourds. It looks wonderful!

    2. Thanks, Violet. In museums be sure to carry a pencil for sketching and notes. Pens are a no-no.

      Andy,thanks for the comment.For me the complementary haiku is the hardest part! I have to remind myself that it need not relate directly to the image that precedes it.

  2. I've never really come across the haibun form before, except in a full-length story like Wabi Sabi that has a sequence of prose and haiku. I love the affinity between the beech tree and "me", "slipped in".

  3. That's beautiful, Joyce. I could imagine someone acting/dancing it out while they read it.

  4. Joyce, I just came across your poem this morning, and love it! I've never been to Japan, but I feel like I have wonderfully descriptive in so few words.

  5. Congratulations, Joyce, on the haibun publication in A Hundred Gourds! "Japan" is beautiful - both the prose and the haiku. I enjoyed the phrase "slipped in," too.

    [I'll have to stretch my wings a bit and tackle haibun after doing haiku by themselves these last couple of years - you've inspired me.] :0)

  6. I love the Farnsworth! Glad to find another fan of museum inspired poetry.

  7. Thanks for the visits and comments, Everyone. It's wonderful to be part of such a supportive community.


Comments welcome.