autumn winds

Inspired by Frank’s 50th Haikai Challenge, I explore some of my recent encounters with autumn winds. They herald the gradual shift from summer to fall:


a subtle coolness

whiffs of air through the window

autumn is moving in


the green tarp is gone

did a thief pass by today?

gusts of autumn wind


close to heatstroke

cleaning the shed at summer end

I catch a breeze


new winds are blowing

autumn into everything

porch chimes singing


©️2018 Ontheland

Renga with Basho #7

It’s time for another Renga with Basho. For this challenge the haiku offered by Chevrefeuille, our Carpe Diem host, are translations by Robert Hass. The bold three-line stanzas are by Basho, renowned  Japanese poet (1644-1694), and the italicized two-line stanzas are mine.


by the old temple

peach blossoms;

a man treading rice


golden manna from the storehouse

each grain a nourishing pearl


all the day long

yet not long enough for the skylark

singing, singing


old farmers toil and hum

whispering paddies rustle


the shallows

a crane’s thighs splashed

in cool waves


an evening in the rice fields

quiet moments bathed in peace


the dragonfly

can’t quite land

on that blade of grass


we shall spread a blanket

under the shady willow 


I’m a wanderer

so let that be my name

the first winter rain


when peach leaves are falling

my staff will be by my side


Thank you to Carpe Diem Haiku Kai for this challenge.  As mentioned above, the bolded stanzas are by Matsuo Basho, as translated by Robert Hass, and the two-line italicized stanzas were written by me.

‘..and the way of it is long’


What is this life I am spinning?

I emerge from meditations on what I thought I wanted..ambitions, thwarted passions, wrung-out dreams.

My eyes slowly open…

maze of confusions—

a circuitous journey

leading home


©️2018 Ontheland

Carpe Diem’s Weekend Meditation #48 features the following poem written and translated into English by Rabindranath Tagore, Bengali poet (1861-1941). This English version of the poem was first published in 1912 as part of his collection ‘Gitanjali: Song Offerings’.

‘Earth is short’

I reason, Earth is short…’

~ Emily Dickinson


Life feels long but is quite short

We are of air,

of water, molecules,

eternity fore and aft,

knowing little

like butterflies morphed from tiny eggs

into a biosphere we call ‘Earth’

If only it were enough

to sip nectars,

to love

to fly


A quadrille for dVerse Poets Pub Quadrille #63

©️2018 Ontheland

Renga with Basho

In this special edition of Carpe Diem’s Renga with Basho series Chèvrefeuille asks us to commence with a greeting verse (‘hokku’) actually used by Basho to commence a Renga Party. The other verses by Basho were written as stand alone haiku. As usual I have bolded Basho’s haiku (translated by Jane Reichhold) and italicized my two-line responses.


autumn coolness

each peeling with our hands

melons and eggplant


last embers of summer

lodge under our fingernails


swinging bridge

lives are intertwined

in ivy vines


the trellis has been transformed

brimming with succulent fruits


with young leaves

I would like to wipe away

the tears in your eyes


a blur of joy and sadness

ushers in each season


blossoms at their peak

the mountain the same as always

at day break


a mist of whitening dew

blades of grass sparkle at sunrise


a clear night

cooling myself under cherry trees

waves of flowers


I peel my eyes to glimpse

a shooting star flash the night sea


©️2018 Ontheland (bolded haiku are authored by Basho as translated by Jane Reichhold).

Reflections on the August long weekend (Ontario)

The long weekend, a time to get away, to wait for hours in lines of traffic from Friday afternoon to Saturday morning and again from Monday afternoon until late evening, bumper to bumper in August heat.  Campgrounds are filled to capacity with people and noise all day and much of the night.  I concluded years ago that long weekends are for local events and family visits avoiding the stresses of highway congestion. The inner city, so quiet and peaceful after the big exit.

vacate or stay?

twenty-eighteen (2018) choice for some

while millions wander

fleeing fire, drought and war

homes and habitats destroyed


©2018 Ontheland

Haikai Challenge #45 Vacation