Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Update: Dad's Health

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Lately I told you all that my dad was in hospital. It's with pain and sadness that I have to tell you that my dad has passed away. Yesterday 12.35 hour my dad has died. As you all will understand this brings a lot of sadness and my mom and I are very busy with organizing and arranging my dad's funeral. So I will not post at CDHK for a while. It's with pain in my heart that I cannot publish here, but I think you all will understand that.

from a treetop
emptiness dropped down
in a cicada shell
the soothing sound of spring rain
makes the silence stronger  

© Chèvrefeuille, your host

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Update: my dad's health

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

I love to update you. My dad is still on the ICU, next to a severe pneumonia he has a major heart attack. He is on the respirator and they keep him in an artificial coma. Last evening we had a talk with the doctor and he has told us that my dad has a very low chance to recover from this pneumonia and heart attack. He told us to prepare for dad's death.
This night is critical. As my dad this night survives maybe he will recover, but the doctor was very clear about his chances ... so my family and I are preparing on the worst scenario.

Thank you all for your love, thoughts and prayers.

Chèvrefeuille, your host

PS. I think you all will understand that during these circumstances I don't have time to publish our posts. My apologies ...

so fragile
the strong old oak
hears the sound of the ax

© Chèvrefeuille

Monday, March 28, 2016

Carpe Diem Special #204 Shida Yaba's "morning frost"

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

First this: Last night my dad became very ill and became hospitalized. He is on the ICU set on the respirator. He has a severe pneumonia. The next 48 hours are very critical and we hope that he will survive this.

This CD-Special is a little later than planned, but as you know I am in the nightshift and hadn't time to create this episode on time.
This month all our CD-Specials are about Basho's ten most close disciples, also know as the Shoomon Basho. In this episode I love to introduce to you Shida Yaba (1662-1740).

Shida Yaba (1662 - 1740)

Yaba was 79 when he died. He was born in Echizen, Fukui. His name was Shida Yaba and his nickname Yasuke or Hanjiro. At a young age he left for Edo to work with the money changer Mitsui EchigoYa. He climbed to success as their head clark.
His name in the haiku world, Yaba was first mentioned in 1687.His style was that of karumi (lightness.) He also used the name of Chobokusha or Choshi. He studied haiku first with Kikaku, later with Basho himself.
Later in his life after the death of Basho, Yaba settled in Osaka since 1704. During a great fire in 1724 he lost all his possessions and moved to a hermitage in Takatsu. It is said he had more than 1000 students, from Western Japan, Central Japan and Shikoku.
His most important disciple is: Tagaan Fuuritsu (1698 - 1781), a salt merchant from Hiroshima. 
Shida Yaba (1662 - 1740)
Remembering Basho
asajimo ya shi no sune omou yuki no kure
morning frost -
I think of the shins of my master
on a night with snow

© Yaba

Yaba wrote the following haiku when he heard the news of Basho’s death
chikara na ya hiza o kakaete fuyugomori
no strenght left -
I wrap my arms around my knees
in winter solitude

© Yaba
It’s known that Yaba and Basho had a very warm and close contact.  There is a letter from Basho to Yaba, written during his trip "Oku no Hosomichi", which was found in 1997.
Uguisu (Japanese Nightingale of Bush Warbler)

Basho wrote :

. uguisu ya mochi ni fun suru en no saki . 
Ah! the uguisu
Pooped on the rice-cakes
On the verandah.

© Basho (Tr. Peipei-Qiu)
Bashô’s verse breaks drastically with the convention and discovers poetry in the natural and the low. The master’s new poetic ideal in this poem had a deep impact on his disciples, as Yaba wrote:
"I am utterly impressed by the exceptionally wonderful combination of the warbler and the rice cake. I don’t think one can find any other verse like this. The effect cannot be achieved without the words “excreting on a rice cake.” The juxtaposition is so magically marvelous that it can only be compared to the masterpiece of the Natural. There may be more combinations like the warbler and rice cake later, but we will never see a line like “excreting on a rice cake.” In these words lies the soul of the poem." (source : Basho-and-the-Dao - Peipei-Qiu )
Ï have to admit that I had never heard about Yaba until I did my research for this CD-Special. It's really awesome to read an actual response of one of Basho's disciples on a haiku written by the master himself. I was excited as I read this at the website of Gabi Greve.

Especially the idea that Yaba's haiku writing style is mentioned as "karumi" (lightness) and that's one of the haiku writing techniques which Basho used also and which we will see in the last regular episode of this month.

I found a nice haiku composed by Yozakura, also a disciple of Basho, in which I read the same intensity as in the haiku by Yaba.

feeling alone
lost in the woods around Edo –
just the autumn wind
© Yozakura
It's even possible that Yozakura this one wrote when he heard of Basho's death, there is however no "evidence" for that idea.
pink camellia
a gust of wind
a hat tolls around and around -
camellia flower
© Chèvrefeuille
I am looking forward to your responses on this episode in which I introduced you to Shida Yaba, one of Basho's Shoomon disciples.

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until April 1st at noon (CET). I will try to publish our new episode, rice gourd, later on. For now ... have fun, be inspired and share.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Carpe Diem #948 brush

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

First of all ... Happy Easter, have a great Sunday.
Second ... I am in the nightshift so that's the reason why I post this episode later than planned, my apologies for that.

In this episode it's about a haiku writing technique which we have seen also in our last series of Carpe Diem Haiku Writing Techniques. Today it's about "yugen".

Yugen is usually defined as "mystery" and "unknowable depth". Somehow Yugen has avoided the controversy of Wabi and Sabi. But since deciding which haiku exemplifies this quality is a judgmental decision, there is rarely consent over which verse has it and which does not. One could say a woman's face half-hidden behind a fan has Yugen. The same face half-covered with pink goo while getting a facial, however, does not. But still, haiku poets do use the atmosphere as defined by Yugen to make their words be a good haiku by forcing their readers to think and to delve into the everyday sacredness of common things.
Here is an example of a "yugen-haiku" by Basho:
Souvenir paintings
what kind of brush first drew
the image of Buddha
© Basho (Tr. Jane Reichhold)
And … sorry I have made it myself a little bit easy, I have a small part of our CD-HWT series re-produced here. Starting with this haiku by Jane Reichhold:

a swinging gate
on both sides flowers
open - close
© Jane Reichhold

Yūgen may be, among generally recondite Japanese aesthetic ideas, the most ineffable. The term is first found in Chinese philosophical texts, where it has the meaning of “dark,” or “mysterious.”
Kamo no Chōmei, the author of the well-known Hōjōki (An Account of my Hut, 1212), also wrote about poetry and considered yūgen to be a primary concern of the poetry of his time. He offers the following as a characterization of yūgen: “It is like an autumn evening under a colorless expanse of silent sky. Somehow, as if for some reason that we should be able to recall, tears well uncontrollably.” Another characterization helpfully mentions the importance of the imagination: “When looking at autumn mountains through mist, the view may be indistinct yet have great depth. Although few autumn leaves may be visible through the mist, the view is alluring. The limitless vista created in imagination far surpasses anything one can see more clearly”.
Yūgen does not, as has sometimes been supposed, have to do with some other world beyond this one, but rather with the depth of the world we live in, as experienced through cultivated imagination.
Noh Theater

The art in which the notion of yūgen has played the most important role is the Nō (or Noh) drama, one of the world's great theater traditions, which attained its highest flourishing through the artistry of Zeami Motokiyo (1363–1443).
So ... yugen as defined "mystery" and "unknowable depth" is not a well-known (or often used) haiku writing techniques, but in a way I am attracted to this technique. In a way I feel yugen in our November prompts about the Altai Mountains and our search for what Hamish Managua Gunn (Pirate) calls "shaman-haiku". I even think that in the most haiku shared here at Carpe Diem Haiku Kai we can find yugen, but that's just my humble opinion.
What to do with this haiku writing technique? I think we have to explore this, because I belief that haiku needs yugen, needs "mystery" and "unknowable depth". So let us focus on that in our responses, our inspired haiku, for this episode of “In The Way Of Basho”.
I will give it a try ... I just have to, because how can I expect it from you, as I don't even have tried it myself to catch "mystery" ... yugen ... "unknowable depth" in a haiku? So here is my attempt to write a "yugen-haiku" and a few examples from my archives:
translucent tea cup
hides a deep secret
ghost of tea
© Chèvrefeuille
Or what do you think of this one from one of the former posts here at CDHK:
one empty bowl
thrown away in the sink
the faint scent of tea
as I empty the kettle -
time for coffee
© Chèvrefeuille
Cicada Shell
And to conclude this episode about yugen I have a tanka for you in which I think we can find yugen too:

from a treetop
emptiness dropped down
in a cicada shell
the soothing sound of spring rain
makes the silence stronger
© Chèvrefeuille

And as I ran through my archives I found another nice "yugen"-haiku I think. This one I wrote somewhere in 2012 as a second full moon occurred:

it's a mystery
a second full moon
Blue Moon

© Chèvrefeuille

Well ... it has become a (maybe to long) nice episode and I hope it will inspire you to create a "yugen"-haiku or "yugen"-tanka. Have fun!

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until March 30th at  noon (CET). I will try to publish our new episode, our last CD-Special of this month, later on.

PS.: I am busy with creating our new prompt-list for April. In April I love to bring your attention to haiga based on modern kigo for spring as gathered by Jane Reichhold in her "A Dictionary of Haiku".

Friday, March 25, 2016

Carpe Diem Theme Week #2 Color Your Life: violet

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

This is our last episode of the second Theme Week of Carpe Diem. This week we discovered the deeper meaning of the colors of the rainbow and it was a joy to create this Theme Week for you all. As you all know after the Theme Week I create an exclusive CDHK e-book in which I gather all the posts and your responses on it. If you don't want your haiku (or other shared poem) published in this Theme Week e-book please let me know by sending me an email to

Today we end our journey along the colors of the rainbow. Our last color is violet. This is the color of the seventh chakra, the crown-chakra.

Violet is the color of good judgment. It is the color of people seeking spiritual fulfillment. It is said if you surround yourself with violet you will have peace of mind. Violet is a good color to use in meditation.

Violet has been used to symbolize magic and mystery, as well as royalty. Being the combination of red and blue, the warmest and coolest colors, violet is believed to be the ideal color. Most children love the color violet. Violet is the color most favored by artists.

Violet is a combination of blue and red. Red is a focusing, dynamic and active energy while blue is cooling, calming and expansive. Violet brings a new dynamic to the expansion of blue and the activity of red. Red brings practicality to the undirected expansiveness of the blue, and allows more creative energy to emerge. For this reason, violet is associated with imagination and inspiration.

Violet is an important energy for those who use blue and indigo skills in the psychic field. The red in violet offers a grounding effect.

a violet mask
hides her red eyed face
lost spirituality

© Chèvrefeuille

in deep silence
I see the violet color
of spirituality

cold and warm colors
fused to deep violet
balanced again

© Chèvrefeuille

A last one on rainbow again, for closure so to say of this wonderful Theme Week about `Color Your Life` at Carpe Diem. Not one by myself but one of Kobayashi Issa (1763-1827).

yûmomiji tani zankô no kie kakaru

evening's fall colors -
the rainbow in the valley
fades away

© Issa

Thank you all so much for participating in this Carpe Diem Theme Week "Color Your Life", I have read wonderful haiku, all very wonderfully composed and colorful. It has been a pleasure to host this Theme Week.

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions
and will remain open until March 27th 7.00 PM (CET).

Carpe Diem #947 grass pillow

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

March is running towards its end and we have just a few days to go. This month we are exploring the haiku writing techniques which are used by one of the greatest haiku poets ever, Matsuo Basho (1644-1694). In a way I see him as my sensei, because through his haiku I fell in love with this beautiful tiny poetry form from the far east. Let's go and explorer another haiku writing technique used by Basho.

The haiku writing technique we have today isn't an easy one to understand. Maybe you can remember our first series of CD-HWT at the beginning of last year. One of the haiku writing techniques I tried to explain was "sabi" ... and that's the haiku writing technique which we are going to explore here (again.). This is the haiku by Basho (in a beautiful translation by Jane Reichhold) which will be used to explain this "sabi".

dreaming rice cakes
fastened to folded ferns
a grass pillow

© Basho (Tr. Jane Reichhold)

As Jane says about this haiku writing technique: "It is questionable whether this is actually a writing technique, but the concept is so vital to Asian poetry that it needs to be included".

Sabi refers to the passing of time, which creates a feeling of sadness, longing and melancholy. It's about transient imagery, how things convey how they've lived - their age, their knowledge. Sabi by itself refers to the natural progression of time, and carries with it an understanding that all things will grow old and become less conventionally beautiful. However, things described as "sabi" carry their age with dignity and grace. At the heart of being "sabi" is the idea of authenticity.


An example of a haiku in which "sabi" is used:

rocky spring
lips taking a sip
from a stone mouth

© Jane Reichhold

I almost hesitate to bring up this idea as a technique because the word sabi has gotten so many meanings over the innumerable years it has been in Japan, and now that it comes to the English language it is undergoing even new mutations.

As fascinated as Westerners have become with the word, the Japanese have maintained for centuries that no one can really, truly comprehend what sabi really is and thus, they change its definition according to their moods. Bill Higginson, in The Haiku Handbook, calls sabi – "(patina/loneliness) Beauty with a sense of loneliness in time, akin to, but deeper than, nostalgia." Suzuki maintains that sabi is "loneliness" or "solitude" but that it can also be "miserable", "insignificant", and "pitiable", "asymmetry" and "poverty". Donald Keene sees sabi as "an understatement hinting at great depths".

So you see, we are rather on our own with this! I have translated this as: sabi (SAH-BEE)- aged/loneliness - A quality of images used in poetry that expresses something aged or weathered with a hint of sadness because of being abandoned. A split-rail fence sagging with overgrown vines has sabi; a freshly painted picket fence does not." As a technique, one puts together images and verbs which create this desired atmosphere. Often in English this hallowed state is sought by using the word "old" and by writing of cemeteries and grandmas.


I recall that I wrote a haiku in which I used "sabi" (and its "twin" "wabi"). I have "re-done" this haiku to which I am referring here to a tanka, which I love to share here:

wearing blue jeans
sign of happiness and freedom -
bleached with stones
jeans almost falling apart
can't throw them away

© Chèvrefeuille

Using this technique, the writer puts together images and verbs that create the desired atmosphere.

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until March 28th at noon (CET). I will (try to) publish our new episode, brush, later on. Have fun!

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Carpe Diem Theme Week #2 Color Your Life: Indigo

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Our second Carpe Diem Theme Week “Color Your Life” is almost over. We have just two days ahead of us. Today our rainbow color is indigo. What can I tell about Indigo? Let's look at the spiritual meaning of Indigo.
Indigo is the color of the Third Eye Chakra

Indigo is the color of the deep midnight sky. It can have a negative effect when used during a depressed state, because it will deepen the mood. Indigo symbolizes a mystical borderland of wisdom, self-mastery and spiritual realization. While blue is the color of communication with others, indigo turns the blue inward, to increase personal thought, profound insights, and instant understandings. While blue can be fast, Indigo is almost instantaneous. Inventors use indigo skills for inspirations that seem to 'come out of the blue'.

Cosmic Rainbow
spiritual future
called Indigo child
third eye fully open
travel into oblivion
visiting ancestors

© Chèvrefeuille

Indigo ... a wonderful blue color ... strong rooted in spirituality. It's the color of the Third Eye, in the middle of our forehead.

Tomorrow we have our last rainbow color violet and that will close this second Carpe Diem Theme Week “Color Your Life”. It was really a joy to read all your posts on all those wonderful rainbow colors. Thank you all for participating in Carpe Diem.

As you all (maybe) know it’s my intention to create an e-book about this second Theme Week of Carpe Diem Haiku Kai. In that e-book I not only wish to re-produce the posts, but also your submitted haiku. Just to give you a present to read again.

If you don’t want to be published in this e-book “Color Your Life”, than please let me know through sending an email to our CDHK email-address:

This episode of our second CD-Theme Week is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until March 26th at 7.00 PM (CET). Have fun!

Carpe Diem #946 spring evening

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Poets often used ambiguity to hide the fact that they were writing, about themselves. They would refer to "an old man" or "the traveler", when in fact it was the author having the experience. By doing this, the technique moved the poem from the individual into the universal. This technique was known as "hiding the author". That, however. is not our haiku writing technique for today.

I love to say first something about the technique mentioned above "hiding the author". I think that's one of the stronger rules of haiku. In your haiku there is no need to show yourself, but I also think that it isn't a sin if you mention yourself in your haiku. You are the poet and therefore I think you can and may be part of your haiku, but ... don't overdo that.

Today it's all about a variation on the above "hiding the author" technique. Here is the haiku to which the title of this post refers:

a bell at sunset
also was not heard
a spring evening

© Basho (Tr. Jane Reichhold)

The variation on "hiding the author" as shown in the haiku by Basho is known as "hidden subject". By using this technique the poet wrote about a subject that could not be sensed but only imagined. Asian poets, like Basho and other classical haiku poets, often praised a missing thing. Frequently this was done as a lament for a deceased person, but it was also a way of forcing the reader to think beyond the poem to imagine something that was not expressed in the words.

Basho experimented with this technique and Jane Reichhold ( to whom I am very grateful that she gave permission to use all of her work) mentions, next to the earlier haiku by the master, another one in which he used this technique.

no bell ringing
what does the village do
on a spring evening

© Basho (Tr. Jane Reichhold)

This technique "hidden object" is a nice way to use in your haiku and that's your challenge for today.

Here is my attempt:

mist covers the heath
slowly, slowly the sun rises -
a skylark's song

© Chèvrefeuille

Not as strong as I had hoped, but I think it fits the haiku writing technique for today.

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until March 27th at noon (CET). I will try to publish our new episode, grass pillow, later on. For now .... have fun, be inspired and share your inspired poem(s) with us all here at our Haiku Kai.

Carpe Diem Theme Week #2 Color Your Life: blue

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

In case of you have missed the latest CD-Extra "for closure", you can find that post HERE.

Welcome at this belated Theme Week episode "blue". In our 2nd CD Theme Week we are exploring the deeper meaning of the colors of the rainbow and today that's "blue". Blue is one of my favorite colors, because it fits my idea of freedom. Blue in my opinion stands for freedom, because of the color of water and the sky. To be free like a fish in the ocean or a bird in the sky that's what blue means to me.

At the start of CDHK I have done a "rainbow"-week and to make it myself a little bit easy I have chosen (again) to use that former post on "blue".


Today it's all blue what we will write for Carpe Diem. Blue is my favorite color. I love blue clothes and therefore I wear mostly jeans. Jeans giving me a good feeling, a feeling of joy and freedom ... and they are almost commonly blue. So this prompt must be an easy one to write haiku about.

wearing blue jeans
sign of happiness and freedom -
bleached with stones
jeans almost falling apart
can't throw them away

Blue ... the color of the sky, the color of the sea, blues the music I love.

Awesome! Blues ... my kind of music ... giving me joy and the feeling of freedom.

blues night
at the pub around the corner
drinking Guinness

patches of clouds
torn apart and drifting away
ah! that blue sky

My brother was a big fan of the Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) and they had a song which I listen often. It was called 'Mr. Blue Sky'. It gives me that great feeling that my brother is in heaven. He passed away several years ago died of lung cancer. I miss him every day. So I love to share that song by ELO here:

in memoriam
mister blue sky high in heaven
still missing him

I hope you enjoyed this episode on Blue and I hope that it inspired you all to write wonderful haiku. Please leave a comment after linking.

This episode of our 2nd Theme Week is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until march 26th at 7.00 PM (CET).

Carpe Diem Extra March 24th 2016 For Closure


Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

It is time for closure and I think the "new" logo above shows you why. The used image is titled "Sitting In Silence" and that's what I have done yesterday and today. I gave my thoughts room to flow and I even considered to close Carpe Diem Haiku Kai. Why? I still am very sad about the whole discussion about "publishing and copyright". I am glad that I opened up this discussion, but I didn't expect that few of our haiku family members would withdraw from this loving community of haiku poets.

As I started Carpe Diem Haiku Kai my only intention was to promote our beloved haiku and try to bring that love to the world wide web. Not only that was the purpose, but it was also the purpose to give haiku poets a stage to share and show their haiku (and other Japanese poetry forms). As I learned, from my parents and my grandparents and from my own soul that I have to respect every thing and every one on our beautiful planet that became my goal of life. Through haiku I learned to appreciate the beauty of our planet and I learned to choose the right words to speak out my deeper spiritual feelings. Through haiku I truly believe that I have become a better person, of course not perfect, but better.
Haiku became not only my kind of art, but it became a kind of life. In everything I have done, do and will do in the future haiku is the leading thread. Not only in my private life, but also in my professional life as an oncology nurse and publisher of e-books and being your host at Carpe Diem, haiku is always my leading thread. I even can say (maybe this will sound immodest) that I am haiku.

This whole week was tough and really there were several moments that I considered to stop with Carpe Diem Haiku Kai. This community is my life and I really see you all as family, a family of haiku poets.
In the above mentioned part "I gave my thoughts room to flow and I even considered to close CDHK" you all can read (and feel) what this whole situation has done to me. That feeling I don't want to have anymore, because I am addicted to haiku and to Carpe Diem Haiku Kai. And it really hurts that I had to choose to create a "publishing policy", because I am still believing that I have always given credit to all of you as I used your haiku in posts or in the exclusive series of CDHK e-books. I always gave credit and in every e-book I have made recently I have mentioned that "all works are copyrighted and that the rights belong to the authors", in my opinion I have guaranteed everyone that his / her work is copyrighted and that the rights belong to you, my dear Haijin, visitors and travelers.

With this I will close the discussion about "publishing permission". It has been enough I think. It always had killed this haiku loving community of haiku poets from all over the globe.

Carpe Diem Haiku Kai will not be removed, or stopped. This whole discussion gives me even more energy to make CDHK a greater success as it already is. I foresee a bright future for Carpe Diem Haiku Kai and I hope you all will be part of that bright future.

unconditional love
shared with the world
green hearts beat

© Chèvrefeuille, your host

PS. I will "remove" the post about "publishing permission" after the weekend.

Chèvrefeuille, your host

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Carpe Diem #945 pine needles

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

First I have to apologize for being late with publishing our regular and ThemeWeek posts. I will publish today our regular post only and the Theme Week episode "blue" tomorrow.

Today I love to share a very old method of choosing subject material for a poem. This haiku writing technique is known as "Narrating an Admirable Act". The old Chinese poets were the first experts, but the Japanese ran a close second. In the Imperial collections of waka, some of these poems with this attribute were categorized as "laments". Usually the poem is polite bragging of one's goodness or elevating one's poverty to an achievement.

Jane Reichhold shares the following haiku in "Basho, The Complete Haiku" as an example of this haiku writing technique:

burning dried pine needles
to dry my hand towel
such coldness

© Basho (Tr. Jane Reichhold)


I don't understand this haiku writing technique really well, but I have given it a try:

weeping willow
in front of the poorhouse
children's laughter

© Chèvrefeuille

Not a strong one I think and I don't know if this one is correct in the use of this haiku writing technique.

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until March 27th at noon (CET). I will try to publish our new episode, spring evening, later on.

Carpe Diem Extra March 23rd 2016 the results of the Time kukai

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

After a little CDHK storm I have finally found the time to share the results of the Time kukai. In this edition of the CDHK kukai we had 10 poets who shared 26 haiku together. It was really a joy to be the host of this kukai. And as you all (maybe) know I will create an anthology hereafter with the submissions for the "Winter"- and "Time"- kukai. During the last circumstances according to publishing I would like to ask you to email to our cdhk email-address if you don't want your haiku published in this "kukai" anthology.
Our email-address is:

Okay ... back to the results of the "Time"-kukai:

The winning haiku is the following:

morning becomes night
how much time has passed by
without a clock

This haiku got 10 points and the poetess who wrote this haiku is Sara McNulty. Congratulations Sara. As you will know, dear Sara, you have won the creation of a CDHK-E-book with a maximum of say 50 to 60 pages (or 30 haiku). The pages can of course deviate, there is not a very strict rule to that. And you will be our featured haiku poetess next month April 2016.

Than there were two runners-up Celestine with the following haiku:

midair waltz
first snowflakes and the leaves
frozen in time

And your host with his haiku:

I missed my train
snow falls softly ... tucking in the world -
she ... dressed in blue

Of course I congratulate Celestine with being runner-up. Celestine you have earned the possibility to create a CDHK Tokubetsudesu episode or I can create one about you to honor you being the runner-up.

10 points: haiku 1
9 points: haiku 5 & 26
7 points: haiku 10 & 17
5 points: haiku 4 & 11
4 points: haiku 18
3 points: haiku 24
2 points: haiku 6, 15 & 25
1 point: haiku 9, 12 & 22
the other haiku not mentioned here didn't get points.


Chèvrefeuille, your host

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Carpe Diem Theme Week #2 Color Your Life: Green

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Welcome at a new episode in our fantastic CDHK Theme Week about the colors of the rainbow. I have another nice episode for you all, but I have taken the easy way this time. At the start of CDHK I have done a week about the colors of the rainbow and because of the events here at CDHK and in the world (Belgium) I decided to re-produce the "old" episode on "green" here again with you.

Isn't it a great rainbow-week? I love to write all those colorful posts and I shall try to do that today again with green the fourth color of that graceful colored bow ... set as a gift to us by God. It's His promise to the world that He will never leave us alone ... it's a token of His Love.

Green is the color that belongs to the 4th chakra Anahata (at the center of the chest also called Heart Chakra). It's stimulating healing and makes self-love stronger and with that the love for others. As I already mentioned in my 'Red'-post Green is the spiritual color for love. Green is aligned with Venus and the Moon and has effect on our ability to share unconditional love and compassion. Wow! What a strong color!

unconditional love
shared with the world
green heart beats

© Chèvrefeuille

Did you know that there are green flowers? I only know one kind of succulent with green flowers. I don't know the name, but I have it in my garden at the front of my house.

almost invisible
between colored leaves
succulent's flowers

the color of the heart
green and not red as ever
ah! what a shock

© Chèvrefeuille

Green the color of love, the color of the heart. Let the green color sent you unconditional love her strong energy.

Here are a few other haiku inspired on the color green which I extracted from my archives:

touching the spikes
of green barley covered with raindrops -
refreshing tears

on the green paddy
no more rice planting songs -
just rustling of rice

late at night
picking young greens in the kitchen garden -
the almost full moon

© Chèvrefeuille

And to conclude this episode of our 2nd Theme Week I love to share a so called “rengay” (invented by Garry Gay) which I wrote together with my sensei Basho inspired on a beautiful “hokku” by him. (The hokku used is translated by myself)

sprouting green leaves
in the sunlight

sunbeams in the mirror
her smile even brighter

in the mirror
a man in the autumn of his life
his hair turned gray

gray misty morning
cows legs in the meadow
crowing of a cock

colorful field of flowers
finally exposed to the sun

colors sparkling in dewdrops
just one heartbeat

© Chèvrefeuille

It has become a nice episode for our Theme Week I would say and I hope it will inspire you to write haiku, tanka or another Japanese poetry form. Have fun!

This Theme Week episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until March 24th 7.00 PM (CET). I am looking forward to your responses.

Carpe Diem Tokubetsudesu #74 music to inspire you

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

It's time for a new episode of our special (Wednesday) feature Tokubetsudesu. This month I bring different "old" CD features and we have had a lot of them. We even had months in which we had e.g. only Tan Renga Challenges or Haiga challenges, but we have had also months in which I tried to inspire you through the wonderful art of music.

I have searched through You Tube ®  and found a wonderful piece of music in which spring is celebrated and the love for nature, as is our deeper goal I think for our haiku.

This music-video is created by Mystical Valley. Enjoy the music and let it inspire you to write haiku, tanka or another Japanese poetry form.

celebrating the sun
with narcissus flowers in my hair -
Spring Equinox
day and night the same length
departing Winter

departing Winter
visiting my ancestors graves
paying my respects
to Mother Nature ... flowers in my hair
Vernal Equinox

© Chèvrefeuille

The above set of tanka I re-created from a cascading haiku which I once shared here at CDHK and I love to share a haibun in which I try to give words to the joy of spring starting ...

New Life

It's early in the morning of March 20, the start of Spring. I love this morning. Its every year a great day to me. Celebrating Spring ... the young green leaves start to bloom and all those blossoming trees. Birds chanting and lambs in the field. Spring ... the beginning of the light part of the year.

After the dark time of autumn and winter finally the light has come back. Today the sun is shining bright when I come out of my bed. "Yes", I think ... finally I can go out sitting in the sun. I have a nice garden with lovely trees and bushes and when it's a sunny day I go out. Love to feel the sun on my skin. "At last. Spring is there. I go out with the kids playing in the park and do some fishing in the pond. I smell the blooming flowers, narcissus, crocus, clover, the cherry and plum blossoms. Awesome! This is my time of the year.

Spring ... the season of new life, new beginnings and young animals and birds. It's also my season to write haiku. I have written a lot of Spring haiku mostly about the blossoming trees of Cherry and Plum. Today it's the first day of Spring a light breeze caresses my hair and my body. Mm ... feels great ... love that feeling.

young cherry trees -
the spring breeze caresses
the fragile blossoms

At night I see the hazy moon. Mysterious hidden behind the clouds. She, the moon, is still a bit shy on this first night of Spring, but then ... she is no longer hiding ... the clouds fall apart and then ... her lovely face ... the full moon of March. What a sight! Neo Pagans calling her "death moon", Chinese calling her "Sleepy moon" and the ancient Celtic name of her is "Moon of Winds". Isn't it great all those names for her ... the moon ... our natural satellite?

moon of winds
showing her face through the clouds
what a mysterious sight

finally Spring
green leaves open carefully -
the Death Moon

"Death Moon" strange name for the moon of March. March the month of Spring, new life sprouting, cherry blossoms bloom and then she, our lovely moon, called "Death Moon". It's for sure a strange name and I am not sure what it means, but it makes some contrast with the new life, the new beginning, the starting of the light part of year. Maybe "Death" stands for ending the dark part of the year or ... I don't really know. Spring brings joy and happiness. Spring ... that's my season.

cherry blossoms bloom
such a fragile beauty -
the Spring breeze

© Chèvrefeuille

Spring ... my season ...

This Tokubetsudesu episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until March 25th at noon (CET). I will try to publish our new episode, pine needles, later on. Have fun!