Haiku: Stone Cold Heart

haiku, Carpe Diem Haiku, poetry

in the game of love
she fails at deciphering
ancient pick-up lines


Inspired by CARPE DIEM HAIKU KAI: #788 Rosetta’s Stone.

Carpe Diem Haiku Pilgrimage: Winter Emptiness

icy beads pelt down
as slippery paths glisten
…winter emptiness

winter banquet, haiku, writing challenge, carpe diem haiku, japanese poetry, winter

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 Inspiration: Chevrefeuille’s Carpe Diem Haiku Kai – Meiseki-ji (temple 43) and here, in my hometown, another healthy winter mix of sleet and snow for the next couple of days.



Ligo Haibun, haiku, writing,

Behind the Screen

“Music in the soul can be heard by the universe.” Lao Tzu

Before sunrise, the early bell rings. Their bare feet swing down from the straw mattress bed to the clean polished wooden floor. To save on utility bills, the heating thermostat hovers at sixty-five degrees. The closet size rooms mimic the lingering winter frost. The only other room furniture includes a plain writing desk and chair.

icy coldness
jolts morning routine forward
– hopping like small birds

Smoothing out every wrinkle and tucking the back-end of the white cotton bed sheets neat and snug, each sister then pulls the plain brown coverlet across their own bed. A second bell rings. The teakettle whistles and interrupts a thought on sacrifice:

To live a cloistered monastery life may seem to some, abnormal…I wonder, does it seem like an excuse to escape from life or can it be something of real value? What price can be tagged on kindred souls sharing tea time and daily chores with little friendly bells to dance through their prayerful day?

Breaking up the cloudy thought, a luminous red and orange morning sky appears and opens in harmony with the third bell.

hidden from the world
nuns chant melodic prayers…
life-giving heartbeats

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Inspiration: Quotation prompt from Ligo Haibun and some wonderful behind the scene prayer communities like:

February Pilgrimage: Horinji Temple, 9

Somehow, I missed temple 8 – goofing off on a pilgrimage – not a good idea, but here we are at Horin-ji Temple in Awa City, Japan.

In English, one would call this temple, the Dharma Wheel Temple. The name reminds me of a television series I occasionally watched called Lost. Bunch of people on an island…they were lost. Creative title. (Laughing) The word Dharma, as in Dharma Initiative, appeared in the show but had nothing to do with the Dharma Wheel Temple. I thought it was a good television series but please, excuse my digression.

What is important about Dharma Wheel Temple is Shaka Nyorai, the Buddha honored, and appears as a statue in repose position – quite uncommon in Japan. Also, a local belief is one may find healing for any feet or waist afflictions. Perfect spot for pilgrims with blisters, yes?

Today’s haiku comes as a hope that one day world peace would reign as supreme power…

crowd of carved figures,
share mystical divine gifts
– one world family

haiku, carpe diem, writing challenge,

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Inspiration: Carpe Diem #394 Horinji temple 9

*I’m running behind on everything from visiting and commenting but please know I will be catching up with you readers. My apologies. 😦

Photo source: Wikimedia.org | Atsumi-spa-nehanzo

February Pilgrimage: Konsenji Temple on Day 3

Day three and we visit the Konsenji, or third temple, in the Ohenro 88 temple pilgrimage. According to legend, Kobo Daishi, a Japanese monk and founder of Shingon Buddhism, visited Konsenji and found sacred healing water when his staff struck the ground.

Supposedly, today, there is a well next to the Daishi Hall, and if you see your reflection in the water, you will live until 92 years old. (hmm, do we want to live that long??) But, not seeing your reflection only means, eek!, you will die within the next three years.

It is only a legend. You can breathe easy now. [laughing]

As I walk the pilgrimage path up to the temple entrance, the haiku guide, in a soft voice says:

follow ritual
clean hands and mouth with water
then bow down to pray

haiku, pilgrimage, Carpe Diem haiku kai, healing water, prayer

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Inspiration:  Carpe Diem #390, Konsenji (Temple 3)

Photo credit: Wikimedia.org


The Way of St. James

Opening the old latch on the rusty metal Spanish Gate, the pilgrim steps meditatively forward. His own heartbeat thumps in exciting rhythms. So many years in prayer hoping to walk The Way of St. James pilgrimage. Finally, the answered prayer. He imagines the historical footsteps marching along the path. First, the Roman invaders knee-deep in snow, trudge along as commanding leaders, Charlemagne and Napoleon, follow; bringing up their stomping armies from the rear. The bright orange-yellow sunlight obscures the horizon and then, a real voice echoes with surprise into his ears.

HELLO! a guide shouts
in the early morning fog –
thirty holy days

Monte do Viso, Santiago de Compostela, haiku, writing challenge, haibun, pilgrimage

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Inspiration: Carpe Diem Haiku Kai Special – Pilgrimage to Santiago De Compostela or The Way of St. James.

Photo source: Wikimedia.org