Sunday, July 1, 2007

Ingenium loci

The latest edition of Modern Haiku has arrived, and with it, a flood of inspiration. In addition to this, the summer day camp I'm currently in has bounced me all around the region where I live, and I've been gathering impressions from all the places we've visited to work into a haibun later on. Isn't summer wonderful?
making cairns.
the stream bubbles
after the fact,
my words
after many beautiful days,
there is no river
the car passes.
its dust
once the fireworks start,
no one
hears the band
they sing
the music,
the dove of peace
a funeral
lets off fireworks

Ingenium Loci
(The spirit of Place)

Coming up the valley, a stone wall looms. Something out of a distant time, covered in moss and ferns, a testament to some forgotten might. Rubble around it fills the gorge, boulders strewn in a frozen flood. Only mosquitoes disturb the lichen's slow growth, competing with moss for dominance of the rock. To disturb this peace is sacrilege.

a butterfly
on the old grave

Trees arch their bows over this still scene. Not pale imitations, but mighty and massive, carrying the memory of the world forest down to today. This place is theirs. People may come and go, but they are eternal.

It is not a nice peace. We are invaders. There is power beneath the trees, but it is not ours for the taking. Their majesty is best observed briefly, and from a distance. It is dangerous beneath their branches. Not a danger to one's body, but the danger of being changed, of losing something not worth the immaterial gain. To lose oneself in the endless mossy passageways between their trunks; to disappear forever from the hearts and minds of friends. To fade with the forest when the unstoppable wave of humanity bears down with saw and torch to take the land that was never theirs.

a flake of ash:

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