Winter Words

Last year (I mean 2019), (when we could actually meet up with people) I made Christmas crackers for my family, and made little tree ornaments to go in them. This Christmas, I wanted to do something similar, and I thought that instead of (or as well as) jokes, I could include some haiku poems, as they are short and usually very beautiful little treasures – and I figured I could have a go at writing some myself. The main problem I found was writing ones that might be suitable for Christmas, so I abandoned the idea of the crackers (largely because I couldn’t really give them to anybody), but I had fun writing some poems anyway.

There are certain ‘rules’ for writing haiku but the more I looked the more I found that nobody agrees on the rules, and you constantly find examples of haiku that break these rules. But I wanted some kind of boundaries, so I suppose that these are the constraints that I have gone with for these particular poems –

  1. They are minimal poems, all of three lines, and mainly trying to stick to the 7-5-7 syllable structure, although I occasionally dont stick to this.
  2. They are usually about nature (and mostly inspired by my commute to work in the winter through Bournemouth’s gardens and briefly past the sea)
  3. They try to contain some moment of illumination in the final line, but again not consistently

Here we go

Crow poised on dead tree
Frost on the ferns is glowing
Full of the new dawn

Lonely silver birch
Reveals her silver body
To moon between clouds

Earth-torn, tooth-sawn stump
Root-wrenched, dead, by riverside
Cradles tiny shoots

Wave-crowned mist-drowned sea
And up from the wild waters
Thrusts a black oil rig

Dragonfly alights
In dawn sun, on woodland fern
Curls at its touch

There was no wind there,
That rippled on the river
Or scattered the leaves

An old photograph
Nobody remembers her
But she’s still smiling

Scent on winter breeze
For the smallest of moments
Promises the spring

Between the buildings
Between beats of a sad heart
A glimpse of the sea

Storm tears world apart
But we are snuggled beneath
My big umbrella

I open the door
And I breathe in the moment
The rain stops falling

Birch, bush and briar
Encroach upon pylons with
Incessant buzzing

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