April 28 is my mom’s birthday. Today, she would have been 81 years old. It’s only the second birthday she hasn’t been with us, and still, I feel that split second urge to call her to say “Happy birthday.”
I try to cherish that split second, for it’s in that tiny moment that I feel she’s still with us.
I wrote a tanka for my mom’s birthday today. Since I still feel her with me, I hope she likes it.
Happy birthday, Mom.
I miss you every day.
But you’re still with me.
For in my reflection I
See you smiling back at me.
Posted in Life, Love
Tagged birthday, loss, mom
In the last thirteen months, I’ve lost my mother and two uncles. Yesterday, I learned from my cousin that my Uncle Cold Outside (here’s how he got that name) passed away, the last member of the Sasaki Nisei generation.
May they all rest in peace, and may the Sasaki Sansei generation keep them alive in our stories and traditions.
the last Sasaki
proud Nisei generation
lives on in Sansei
I’ve been looking forward to giving a workshop at Ozarks Writers League on February 21, and have become even more excited as I prepare the PowerPoint presentation. Is it possible for us to inspire ourselves?🙂
The workshop is titled “The Perfect Haiku,” and I must admit, initially I shuddered at the title. I’ll explain why in my workshop.
With the start of a full time job, I haven’t spent much time writing haiku, (or writing much of anything else for that matter!) in the six months since I began working. But this morning, as I perused this blog for examples of haiku to use in my presentation, I felt as though I’d visited an old friend.
So many memories captured in these haiku, and the seventeen syllables of each takes me back to what I experienced as I wrote them.
This morning, I wrote a new haiku to describe the feeling:
I open the door
to a room full of memories
good morning, old friend
If you’re in the Branson area on Saturday, February 21, I’d love for you to join me. We’ll learn about some of the haiku masters, and I’ve got lots of writing prompts to inspire you to write and share the power of your seventeen syllables.
Click HERE for more information.
My brother lost his best friend a few days ago, a friend who was by his side every moment for fifteen years–when he walked to the mailbox, cooked dinner, tinkered with his car, swam in the pool, slept at night.
And so, when he texted me that Chance was gone, I cried with him. Not only for his loss, but for the memory of losing my two best friends, Jubie and Bear–not to death, but to divorce.
So I wrote this haiku, for sweet Chance, and all the dogs we’ve loved and lost.
Rest well, dear friend
By my side so many years
My heart lost its wag
I once loved an alcoholic. In our relationship, I thought of alcoholism as an 800 lb gorilla in the room–rarely acknowledged, but always, always lurking. In the end, when alcoholism took his life, I called it a vampire.
More than a decade ago, when the vampire sucked the life from our relationship, I wrote this haiku:
he chose instead of my heart
love’s glass is empty
This morning, months after his death, this haiku came to my mind:
became a raging river
that drowned him
Steve has had a lot of experience with alcoholics, both professionally and personally. He wrote a couple of haiku after reading this post:
back to the garden
that sweet intoxication
ended with a shot
just one more
never enough, death by
One of my favorite things about autumn is watching leaves dance in the wind, swirling, spinning, drifting, until they gently touch their final resting place.
Posted in Nature
Tagged Autumn, haiku
Today I’ll be continuing to move “stuff” from the townhouse I’ve been renting for the last year, into a real-life HOUSE. I always knew the last year was transitory, so I never became attached to this place.
Still, moving reminds me of one of the haiku I wrote for The Red Kimono. This haiku encapsulates Sachi’s feelings as she leaves her home for the last time before being relocated to an internment camp during World War II:
My house is empty
But memories will remain
Echoes in my heart.
I wrote this haiku based on my own memories of leaving my house in Tulsa when I moved to Fayetteville in 2003.
I lived in this house for twenty years. It was the house where I raised my children. It was a part of me. I remember packing to move and finding an infant diaper tucked deep inside my linen closet. I remember feeling like my heart was breaking as I walked through the echoing rooms for the last time.
Then, I lived at the farm for ten years. It, too, was filled with lots of memories, both happy and sad. When I packed my belongings after the divorce, I tried to focus on the future and not the past. But the memories had a hold of me, stubborn to let go. When I turned to say goodbye to Jubie and Bear in the backyard, again, I thought my heart would break.
So, as I prepare for what may likely be my last move, I am thrilled to get the move over with and begin to make new memories–to make this house a home.
What are your memories of “home?” Can you describe it in a haiku? Please share it with us!
I’m not sure who likes our walks more–Tommy or me. Especially now that Fall is here.🙂
leaves rain down on me
acorns crunch beneath my feet
an October walk