Tag Archives: Issa

Three shorts – poems

Credit: Mammiya via PIxabay


1
I discovered Pome only a couple of months ago and am enjoying the poems very much: an interesting range and they are short, even very short. As I understand it, Matthew (Matt) Ogle originally posted the poems some years ago and the project has restarted via Tiny Letter.


Here is an Issa haiku, translated by Robert Hass. Since I am a paid-up member of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to House Dust, it speaks to me …


Don’t worry, spiders,
I keep house
casually

2
Monostich – a poem or epigram of one single line. The title is important and may be long, longer even than the poem. My recent example from a course I’m doing:


While it rained, we went out and put the poster on trees and lamp posts in the neighbourhood


It needs heart and courage (lebh in Hebrew) to wear a pochet with conviction.

3
Here is a short poem by Carl Tomlinson from his Changing Places. It has a haiku-like quality. Carl is the May guest poet. I look forward to sharing more of his poems with you then.

August


All along the bridleway
some kind of rain
is trying to shake off the wind.
The land feels thinned.

Synchronicity

Cover Narrow Road

I am listening to the BBC Radio 3 programme Private Passions: today’s guest is the novelist Richard Flanagan. Only two nights ago, I started reading his novel The Narrow Road to the Deep North. The book was the winner of the 2014 Man Booker Prize. The title is borrowed from Basho and haiku by Basho and Issa start the different sections of the book. It is based on his father’s experience in a Japanese Prisoner of War camp. His father was a survivor of the Burma Death Railway.

Only two days ago I collected my first set of hearing aids and as I am typing this, Flanagan describes how he lost his hearing at the age of three and how he was thought to be “simple”. My hearing aids are brilliant: I feel more alert and it’s already helped me feeling more confident in social situations and meetings.

Richard Flanagan didn’t want to write The Narrow Road to the Deep North. He says It was a burden, a stone. A stone that grew. He also knew that, if he didn’t write the book, he would not be able to write another. He finished the book and emailed the manuscript to his publisher. Then he went to see his father who was 98 and ailing. That afternoon his father died.