October Square challenge – Monday Past: a time in space (two haiku)

20160122 taken in a mining museum

He: with time passing dear

neither here or there I fear

dare beyond this sphere

She: do I ever dread

time and sphere not me my dear

firmly we shall bare

2021-10-11 PraiseWord

Monday Past -the Life of B
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the hermit poet lauds “cheers” to himself

taken 2019-10-07

《a poem inviting an old friend to come over for a drink, written while climbing the Orchid Mountain in autumn》

Amidst white clouds of the Northern Mountain, the hermit lauds “cheers” to himself,

Gazing afar, overtures a higher climb, his heart yearns with the parting geese.

Enfolding dusk arouses a faint sorrow, yet the crystal clear autumn mount stirs up high spirit. 

Buoyed up by returning villagers in twos or three, strolling at the beach, some resting at the ferry,

Painted on a clear horizon backdrop of trees as intricate as shepherd’s purse,  gleaming sandbar laced with celestial white moonlight, 

(the hermit asks,) 

When will you, (my friend), bring over your wine and get drunk together on this Double Ninth* festive mountain?

Poem by Tang Poet Meng Hao Ran 《a poem for ZhangWu, written while climbing the Orchid Mountain in autumn》

The above English version is my attempt to “translate” (not entirely) a Tang Dynasty poem from a poet to his old friend, inviting him to come over for a drink up the autumn mountain. I have tried to capture the spirit of what he had intended and it is not a literal translation.

*the festival falls on 2021-10-14 this year.

北山白云里,隐者自怡悦 ~唐朝诗人孟浩然《秋登兰山寄张五》

北山白云里,隐者自怡悦。

相望试登高,心随雁飞灭。

愁因薄暮起,兴是清秋发。

时见归村人,沙行渡头歇。

天边树若荠,江畔洲如月。

何当载酒来,共醉重阳节。

2021-10-10

Remembering October

Remembering October snow

I still recall the shock. Sunshine and clear blue sky in the morning when I went out. Snow and blurry car windows when I returned at noon. October. October snow. I noted in the weather forecast but I just did not believe it could happen. It had been decades since I went to live in a snowland. I was warned about the sudden changes in weather and I did prepare though feeling skeptical.

But the first snow came on that fine morning, saying hello, my acquaintances said, and that’s the way the weather up that 8000 feet altitude worked. To the locals, it was business as usual, nothing out of the blue.

After the initial shock I took some nice pictures. My first snow in October for decades. Lovely moment.

2021-10-10

a memory of a lost year with hope

“That is the land of lost content, I see it shining plain, the happy highways where I went and cannot come again.”*

We have not met for quite a long time and then we get together again from time to time. At time like this, for a year plus now, each gathering of friends in person is rare and precious. We can no longer gather a big group like we used to do, but the few who manage to do so take the bother to come and bring their personal warmth and care to the rest. It is really a time to ponder and consider.

Why did we not value our previous freedom when we were so free to walk about, to drop in as and when the wind brings us and the smell of Spring time stirs us? Last year was a harsh Spring for us all as we were all caught unprepared by the news. We found that we have made promises that we could no longer keep. We thought it would be over soon and some of us had postponed our reunion to Summer, then Fall, and then were crushed by the harsh Winter.

For 365 days, daily I stand at the window for a while, and scan the sky, why? I listen to the whispering silence out there, and ask in quiet response, is this new dawn bringing me a time of joyous connection with a long lost one today? Each dusk I sit quietly giving a passing glance at the world outside the glass panel, undeterred by the futility and weariness of waiting. We are separated by an ocean or two. The ocean is too vast to cross. Yet we do not lose hope.

Not all of us are without bags of ages laden on our feet. Yes, the weariness of time. A year had left us, taking some friends with it. We still call those who remain, in a renewed hope with Spring around the corner of our garden, taking virtual coffee and cookies, a glass of wine or two, singing half-forgotten lyrics with whatever words and phrases we recall from old. Yes, we shall not give up. We are thankful we are still around and available for our old friends. Let us press on to be a season of hope makers for each other, my dear friends. Cheers!

Star and coronal and bell
April underfoot renews,
And the hope of man as well
Flowers among the morning dews. (A. E. Housman, ‘Spring Morning’)

*a quote of A. E. Housman

Weekend Sky #1 -with an October Sky poem

October, Woodland Park, Co

I decided to start with my own photograph, “partnered” with a stranger’s poem I found at random in the WordPress blogs. Here is the first poem that aptly titled October Sky (Poem). By clicking on the quote below, you will find a poem that speaks from the soul of a poet. What can be more heart-felt than photographs and poetry after all?

Quote: “After that there is nothing but
the poet’s sadness and a subject for a poem
” (October Sky -poem)

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Weekend Sky #03 -Oct 24th