15 October 2016

tiny haibun 1


Along the shoreline, anglers. Line taut, anchored before the breakers.

Stopping the tide from going out too far. Hauling it back in.

year's end

sun glint in the spin

of the reel


tiny haibun 2


Storms there have been and storms there will be again. But right now?

Nothing to clatter the wind chimes but my own breezy optimism.

dappled light

we can cut out

the bad bits


tiny haibun 3


She is telling me about his funeral; her thumbnail picks flakes of black paint

from the handrail. Cloud shadows are sweeping in across the field.

magnolia petals

our eyes adjusting to

the change in light



Haiku is that moment when, across all that is going on, you

and the universe catch each other's eye.



ah. the elephant

in the room / is wedged

in the doorway



life & loss . . .

the sunflowers

hang their heads



no real reason

for a small sadness

late white roses



autumn sun -

quick, i hear the

scrap man's bell



everything joyful / is haram


she chuckles

she chuckles / and then is awake



stars / when did i last look up at the stars



a cathedral / of absurdities



gloved fingers / pop of snowberries


7 September 2016

Another Place

One of my own photos, from a few years ago, of a couple of the 100 Iron Men dotted about across several kilometers of Crosby Beach, near Liverpool, more properly known as sculptor Anthony Gormley's installation Another Place.

Seeing Double

Seeing Double : Tanka Pairs, by Liam Wilkinson, was the only book I took away with me recently, having saved it specifically for that week at the coast, where I would be able to give it the attention it deserves. And so I read, re-read and browsed through it, in an increasingly relaxed state of mind, by a window that looked out onto the marsh, and with a glass of something within easy reach. And what a wonderful volume it is.

Now, you'll know that I like to maintain a (half-serious) stance of being allergic to poetry - but this applies less to tanka and not at all to Liam's work, which I have followed for a number of years. I was quietly thrilled even by his first poem here, by way of introducing himself, as I too am obsessed both with the sea and with Anthony Gormley's iron men on Crosby beach:

another place
I stare out
to sea
with the eyes
of a hundred men


I knew that I was going to be in great company as I settled down with what proved to be a truly excellent collection of beautifully written and elegantly arranged paired tanka.

Seeing Double includes a substantial foreword by Claire Everett and an afterword by Larry Kimmel. If you have an interest in short-form poetry, this is as fine an example as you could wish for. [Here is a link to it on AmazonUK where you can find out more.] Wholeheartedly recommended.

5 September 2016

4 September 2016


A betting slip in his hand, he tells me he's started chemo

 sept 1