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f/k/a archives . . . real opinions & real haiku

August 4, 2006

lily days

Filed under: Haiku or Senryu — David Giacalone @ 11:08 pm

Ana and Cynthia, two of my very favorite friends, love to tend, weed and enjoy their summer flowerbeds — especially, when the lilies are blooming.  As we enter August, most lilies seem to be past peak here in Upstate New York, but their essence can often be recalled through the simple magic of haiku.

daylily Fortunately, a number of my favorite haijin have filled their literary gardens with lilies for our pleasure.

unrelenting heat
her fingertips yellowed
with lily pollen

the space
where the lily was

October sun
a white koi surfaces
among the lilies

Pamela Miller Ness
“unrelenting heat” & “ikebana” – from the sequence “where the lily was,” (2003)
“October sun” –  frogpond XXIX: 2 (2006)

distant jazz
a calla lily
catches rain

through a maze of lilies brushstrokes of the trout

Peggy Lyles – from To Hear the Rain (Brooks Books, 2002)

bills paid
the tiger lily
past its prime

hands stained
with tiger lilies
all day this heat

Roberta Beary
“hands stained”- South by Southeast, (vol. 5 no. 1, 1998)
“bills paid” – Penumbra 1999

tiger lilies, princess lilies
being weighed

quietly the lilies
have bloomed…
a skylark sings

touching the princess lily’s
pure water

kobaysihi issa, translated by David G. Lanoue lilyN

marsh tide
turns around
a lily

John StevensonUpstate Dim Sum (2004/II)

just past sunset —
faded daylilies
more orange than before

summer infatuation –
orange daylilies


Want more? In July 2000, lily was the topic-kigo for the Shiki Monthly Kukai. You can see the results, which include poems by Honored Guests Hilary Tann and DeVar Dahl, here.


Finally, here is some fine summer poetry from our Honored Guest haijin Rebecca Lilly:

Mosquito netting
rises and falls —
the clarity of dusk

Sultry dark —
wild honeysuckle scent
from the junkyard of rusted cars

Distant thunder; faint tick
of the clock’s pendulum
. . . the evening heat

Cooling white wine —
the tinkle of windchimes
in the summer twilight

roses still fresh —
the doctor’s vague answers
to my questions

Rebecca Lilly
– from Shadwell Hills (Brook Press, 2002)
– except, “Mosquito netting” – Mainichi News Haiku Page (No. 686, Aug. 2006); “roses still fresh” – frogpond XXIX: 2 (2006)

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