Sunday, December 14, 2014

Carpe Diem #627, Fog/Ripe

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Time flies when you have fun and fun it is to make another episode of Carpe Diem, our daily haiku meme. We are busy with exploring modern kigo (seasonwords) compiled by Jane Reichhold in "A Dictionary of Haiku". Today I love to share another nice modern kigo, fog/ripe. Both are the foundation of the magical early winter morning after a good night with frost. They are together the sculpture of those wonderful ripe, that fragile substance with covers the world after the night's frost.
As I walk outside on such an early morning, the sun starts to climb, than the world looks so fairy tale like, so fragile, mysterious and magical ... awesome. I am overwhelmed by that beauty and than I realize why I am here on this world, writing haiku and share them. To catch the beauty of Mother Nature.

Let us look at the haiku by Jane Reichhold which she uses for example of this kigo:

lace edges
the fallen leaf
white with frost

the winter moon leaves
a frosted path

Credits: Ripe on bare branches

Really the world looks so fragile after a night with fog and frost ... gorgeous .... how to catch this in a haiku? I have to try it ...

life passes -
in the early sunlight
the ripe melts

frost on the branches
melts in the early sunlight
life passes

© Chèvrefeuille

And another one inspired on a haiku written by Matsuo Basho, my master.The haiku which inspired me was the following:

if taken into my hand
melting in the heat of tears
autumn frost

© Matsuo Basho (1644-1694)

Matsuo Basho, my master

This verse by Basho touches me deep. It's about his mother who died when he was a young boy. In the preface of this haiku he is saying the following:

"At the beginning of September I came back home. It was already long since my mother had died. The grass in front of mother's room had withered in the frost. Everything had changed. The hair of my brother and sisters was white and they had wrinkles between their eyebrows. We could only say: 'We are fortunate to be still alive'. My elder brother openend an amulet case and said reverently to me. 'Look, at mother's white hair. You have come back after such a long time. So this is like the Tamate box of Urashim Taro (an old legend in japan). Your eyebrows have become white'. We wept for a while and then I composed this verse."

This verse of Basho is not a well known one, but it touches me so deep, because it brings painful memories. My Grandparents are all gone and also my elder brother died. As I look into the mirror my hair is starting to become grey. When my brother was still alive he surely would be grey because he was several years older.

my hair turned grey
as if it was the frost
on bare branches

© Chèvrefeuille

Again I feel that emotion as I had when I wrote this haiku several years ago and published it on my "own" personal haiku-blog which you can find at: Chèvrefeuille's haiku blog ... feel free to visit.

This episode is open for your submissions tonight at 7.00 PM (CET) and will remain open until December 17th at noon (CET). I will (try to) publish our next episode, the third haiku by Richard Wright, our featured haiku poet, later on. For now ... have fun!


  1. fabulous post.Great haiku and I include yours.

  2. Your haiku about your hair turning grey touches me deeply...

  3. I think it should be rime.. not ripe..

    1. I have searched for the right word, but this came up as i brought the dutch word 'rijp' as we call that fragile frost here ...

    2. I was so confused -- "ripe"? -- but it really is supposed to be "rime".

      But -- it would be a really neat metaphor to think of frost-covered trees as being ripe. Would make for some really awesome wordplay.

      Was moved by your frosted hair haiku also. Time can be less than kind.

  4. I am out of kilter weather wise with the rest of you, so I will write about fog and grey on Sydney harbour. Christmas is an emotional time for many. Also a time of sadness for missing absent friends and loved ones.Lovely haiku KP

  5. Ah... I was confused too since ripe didn't have the right definition, but 'rime' does...
    Noun: rime: Also called rime ice. an opaque coating of tiny, white, granular ice particles, caused by the rapid freezing of super cooled water droplets on impact with an object.

    All is good. We learn new things everyday...if we are lucky two new things :)

  6. Great post and great choice of haiku for inspiration!