June 16, 2019

Happy Haiga Day!

Yesterday I attended an impeachment rally on the Boston Common. The size of the crowd was only a few hundred, which I found rather disappointing, as did another attendee I overheard saying, "I was hoping there'd be a million people."

The three Women's marches had a festive feel, this march was different. The frustration and the anger were obvious. As was the sheer exhaustion.

Anger was not just directed at the mango menace, but at those in Congress who have yet to make up their minds on the impeachment issue. As if there was any question about high crimes and misdemeanors!


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Text:

June 2019 rally

the crowd is disquieted
and the volume grows with
cries of "lock him up"

existential threat trumps
Bostonian propriety


Here are a few more photos from the rally:









Back in late February, I posted a quote from Elijah Cummings on this blog's left sidebar. It's still there, and it's still relevant, but in case you missed it, here it is once more:

When we’re dancing with the angels, the question we’ll be asked: In 2019, what did we do to make sure we kept our democracy intact? Did we stand on the sidelines and say nothing?


June 11, 2019

Haiku Sticky #502


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Text:

daddy-long-legs
floating in the cat's water
face down

June 9, 2019

Happy Haiga Day!


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Text:

don't forget science

some things you
never think about when
hanging by a thread

tensile strength
and elasticity

June 5, 2019

Haiku Sticky #501

I forgot to post this yesterday--it doesn't bode well for the next 500 haiku stickies!


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Text:

first of June
already the grass
overgrown

June 2, 2019

Happy Haiga Day!


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Text:

spring walk

the little one halts
intensely focused

the enchantment
nearly lost to an adult's
preoccupation

May 28, 2019

Haiku Sticky #500--Yay!

I made it to 500! That's more than 500 Tuesdays since I started (no Haiku Stickies were posted during April in 2018 and 2019). Somehow I doubt if I'll get to 1,000, but I'll begin on the next 500 a week from today!

© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Text:

summer coming...
peppermint patties
stashed in the freezer

May 26, 2019

Happy Haiga Day!

Earlier this week, heading up the NH coast to Maine, I saw a bald eagle. It was quite a surprise, but I was also taken aback by the landscape in which this American symbol appeared. Sadly, it is appropriate to this week.


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved. Photo courtesy Yellowstone NPS; digitally altered by me.

Text:

today I saw a bald eagle
perched on a dead tree
in the midst of a swamp

my high school English
teacher would have loved

this lesson in irony

May 21, 2019

Haiku Sticky #499


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Text:

days of rain
between the showers
a wild rabbit eats

May 19, 2019

Happy Haiga Day!


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Text:

after too many years

she gently closes
the door
behind her

a slam is not needed
when the reverberations
come from her soul

May 14, 2019

Haiku Sticky #498


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Text:

four straight nights
the gentle patter of rain
now grates

May 12, 2019

Happy Haiga Day!

Here are the other two postcards created for the April Spark postcard exchange; both are cherita poems.

Since it's been raining almost nonstop for the past month, I'm hoping we'll miss pine pollen coating everything. It'll be washed away before it can fly around.


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Text:

spring in bloom

you can't blame the pine
for envying the flowers

she does her best to add to
the color medley by spreading
yellow pollen over all


The dandelions won't be in full force for a few weeks, and although they're weeds, they're a bright, cheery yellow.


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Text:

spring dusk

one dandelion flower
remains open

the tickle of a warm
breeze invites self-indulgence
in the both of us

May 7, 2019

Haiku Sticky #497

After taking the month of April off, Haiku Sticky Tuesdays are back. I'm up to 497! I've written nearly 500 haiku and other poems, which fit on a sticky note, since August 2009.


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Text:

who would have thought
so much green is possible
...May rain

May 5, 2019

Happy Haiga Day!

April was a postcard exchange month for the Spark community. I had to create original postcards to send to four individuals using the general topic of spring. The first two are early signs of spring--crocus and forsythia. The second two occur slightly later in the season. Today I'll post the early spring ones, both of which are small poems.


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Text:

New England Gardens in Spring

Her six-month lease is up.
Granite and gneiss is the trash
she leaves behind as Winter
reluctantly vacates the premises.


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Text:

Spring Impossibility

Getting an accurate count
of rabbit kits gamboling...
in
out
under
a forsythia bush.

April 30, 2019

Ekphrastic April, Day 30: "Reverie"

We started the month with dreams and we will end it with dreams. Thanks for stopping by to help celebrate National Poetry Month 2019!


"Reverie" (date unknown) by Évariste Carpentier [1845-1922].

summer day dreams

she needs no guides
to their interpretation

the light of the sun
is her spotlight and she
is the star of the show


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 29, 2019

Ekphrastic April, Day 29: "Tea Time"


"Tea Time" (1920) by Alice Bailly [1872-1938].

they meet for tea

at first the conversation
barely a step above gossip

the pot emptied refilled
emptied again until words
that must be spoken, are


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 28, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 28: "Joan of Arc"


"Joan of Arc" (1879) by Jules Bastien-Lepage [1848-1884].

does a just god pick sides?

visions and voices
should be doubted mightily

if you follow a visionary
you may be a participant
in her delusions


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Thanks to Linda Baie for suggesting this work.


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 27, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 27: "Ogunquit Beach"

Ogunquit, ME is one of my favorite places. The beach is as expansive today as it was a century ago when this was painted. Only the outfits on the beach-goers have changed.


"Ogunquit Beach" (date unknown) by Elizabeth Wentworth Roberts [1871-1927].

Ogunquit Beach

a continuous roar of waves
and the wailing of gulls

the giddiness at having
found the remnants of boats,
bottles, and bivalves


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Here are a few photos I took over the years at Ogunquit:




Photos © Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 26, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 26: "The Manicure"


"The Manicure" (1929) by Christopher Wood [1901-1930].

sacrébleu!

she has a ragged nail
that must be fixed--now

the only good light
is the desk where I read
my paper--just not today


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 25, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 25: "Study of a Cat"


"Study of a Cat" (1918) by Suzanne Valadon [1865-1938].

an artist needs a cat

for its role as painter's
soul mate--a comic, a critic,
a comfort, and a model

--not for the tail dragged
across a wet canvas


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 24, 2019

Elphrastic April, Day 24: "Pouring the Morning Coffee"


"Pouring the Morning Coffee" (1906) by Laurits Tuxen [1853-1927].

April morning

cat fed, children
nearly finished, too

breakfast's last duty
is to pour a cup of coffee
for no one else, but me


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.



April 23, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 23: "Old Grandmother"


"Old Grandmother" (1886) by Eva Fredrika Bonnier [1857-1909].

my granny

as a child I would look
up into her animated face

today, I paint her from
the same angle to make her
appear larger than life


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 22, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 22: "Salem Willows"

This one is for my friend, Andrea, who has a fast and true connection to Salem Willows in Salem, MA.


"Salem Willows" (1904) by Maurice Prendergast [1858-1924].

an hour's long stroll
to catch up with friends

at Salem Willows

the youngsters never able
to get their fill of popcorn
and Brown's Flying Horses


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 21, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 21: "Easter Witch with Cat"

Happy Easter to those who celebrate it.

Jenny Nyström was a prolific illustrator who was active during the golden age of postcards (late 1800s, early 1900s).

A witch seems an odd Easter symbol, yet, it is a common one in Sweden. Ragamuffins dress as witches, and, adults light bonfires in celebration of the Easter witch! (Does anyone use the term "ragamuffin" any more?)


"Easter Witch with Cat" (date unknown) by Jenny Nyström [1854-1946].

children in kerchiefs
cheeks blooming with rouge

Easter witches

knock on doors seeking
treats from neighbors who
welcome a little heathenry


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 20, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 20: "Children Rolling Easter Eggs"


"Children Rolling Easter Eggs" (circa 1855) by Nikolai Koshelev [1840-1918].

as the eldest girl

Mother gave me the task
of coloring Easter eggs

now I see onions, lichen,
beets, elderberries, hyacinth,
and sorrel in a new light


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Happy Easter weekend to those who celebrate!


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 19, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 19: "Girl and Leshy"


"Girl and Leshy" (1899) by Maria Yakunchikova [1870-1902].

sent into the woods to
gather mushrooms and berries

tales of the old folks
race through her head...
wait...was that the wind?

oh, the poor child


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

A leshy is a wood spirit from Russian folklore. This work is a tapestry, approximately 9' X 12'! I imagine the wood spirit is pretty menacing at those dimensions!


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 18, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 18: "Eagle Head, Manchester, Massachusetts"

Linda Baie suggested this painting to me. Manchester, Massachusetts is now officially known as Manchester-by-the-Sea, a rather more lovely name. Eagle Head is near "Singing Beach," see video below.


"Eagle Head, Manchester, Massachusetts (High Tide)" (1870) by Winslow Homer [1836–1910].

Manchester-by-the-Sea

increasingly fanciful theories
in a discussion of musical sands

followed by grins and whoops
from bare-legged friends
dodging waves with abandon


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.




A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 17, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 17: "Woman and Child on a Balcony"


"Woman and Child on a Balcony" (1871-1872) by Berthe Morisot [1841-1895].

the road below

always a surprise what
the child focuses on

today, the gendarme--
her perplexity at how
he got so small


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 16, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 16: "Spring Sale at Bendel's"

Today's work, by Florine Stettheimer, is a riot of color and theatricality, and it comes as no surprise that the artist did design work for the theater.

Stettheimer was fortunate to have come from wealth. She was able to live without having to sell her work, and upon her death, her art was gifted to museums.


"Spring Sale at Bendel's" (1921) by Florine Stettheimer [1871-1944].

it is easy to be a critic
when you have wealth
and fame to back you up

they take you half-seriously

to be taken whole-seriously
you would have to be a man


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

I was surprised to find this in the Wikipedia article on Florine Stettheimer: "By the 1930s, she was second to Georgia O'Keeffe as the best-known woman artist in New York." Who knew? I had never come across her before.

Bendel's, the store in the painting, was a New York City landmark. Henri Bendel was established in 1895, and lasted until its closure in January of 2019--just a few months ago!


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 15, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 15: "The Birthday Party"

Today was supposed to feature a work by a woman artist, however, it is my daughter's birthday and I don't think there's a more joyous birthday painting than this one by William Merritt Chase. The next two days will feature women and then we'll be back on schedule.


"The Birthday Party" (also known as Helen Velasquez Chase) (circa 1902) by William Merritt Chase [1849-1916].

ribbons and wrappings
tossed in the fire, only the
brown paper hat remains

my birthday party

over for this year--never mind--
in 12 months I'll have another


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 14, 2019

Ephrastic April 2019, Day 14: "La Notte"

Augusto Giacometti was a Swiss artist I hadn't come across before. I love what I've seen of his work and will look for more. I think his epitaph says it all: Qui riposa il maestro dei colori--"Here lies the master of color." (To see a vivid example, click here for "Eruption of Aetna.")


"La Notte" (1903) by Augusto Giacometti [1887-1947].

with hopes of seeing
the northern lights

I climbed to the top

and when I saw them, words
wouldn't come--I was left
with only my tears


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

La notte is the night in Italian. The banner on the woman reads ogni vivente loda il signore, which translates as "every living thing praises the lord."


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 13, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 13: "Cat Hiding in a Laundry Pile"

Millions of Cats is one of my all-time-favorite picture books. I remember it from my childhood and these lines will always be accessible to my aging brain: "Hundreds of cats, Thousands of cats, Millions and billions and trillions of cats." Today I have a pen and ink sketch by Millions of Cats author/illustrator, Wanda Gág.


"Cat Hiding in a Laundry Pile" (date unknown) by Wanda Gág [1893-1946].

clean laundry

the smell of wind and
sun in oft-washed fabric

the sharpness of fresh folds
too tempting to a cat who
lives to distract her owner


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

The artist uses an abundance of curves--it provides a comfy feeling in the viewer, don't you think?


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 12, 2019

Ephrastic April 2019, Day 12: "Midnight Mass"

We're a long way from midnight mass on Christmas eve!

Can't you feel the warmth of the light coming from the church? It pulls your attention to the white horse and the red sled in this the otherwise cold, winter night scene from Canadian artist, Clarence Gagnon.


"Midnight Mass" (circa 1929-1933) by Clarence Gagnon [1881-1942].

midnight mass

snuffling horses and
shuffling walkers head to church

all candles lit, every newly
gifted sweater worn on this
coziest of cold nights


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 11, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 11: "Interior"


"Interior" (date unknown) by Georgette Agutte [1867-1922].

opposites attract

maybe not so much attract
as complement

each in our own sphere
our circles intersect--
in that spot we find peace


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


Georgette Agutte, the artist, was married to Marcel Sembat, a journalist and a Socialist politician who served in the National Assembly of France from 1893 until his death. Twelve hours after he died, Agutte took her own life.



A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 10, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 10: "Three Breton Women in the Forest"

Today is National Siblings Day and so I have a poem about three women whom I imagined to be sisters.


"Three Breton Women in the Forest" (1894-1895) by Georges Lacombe [1868-1916].

on a Sunday

for an hour three sisters
meet in the woods

away from husbands,
children, meals, laundry...
serenity trumps even gossip


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Gossip now has negative connotations of cattiness, and is an activity most often attributed to women. Interestingly, the word gossip has the same root as sibling.
In Old English, a sibling was a relative, with sib an adjective and noun for '(one) related by blood or descent'. (That sib also shows up in gossip, from godsibb, 'godparent'; in Middle English this was used for 'a close friend', especially 'a person with whom one gossips', hence its evolution into 'idle talk' centuries later.)

Source: Oxford Dictionaries


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 9, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 9: "A Market Square with Sheep Auction"


"A Market Square with Sheep Auction" (1919) by Winifred Knights [1899–1947].

1919 visionary

the market square
soon to disappear

she paints in sepia
as if to mark the scene
as already vintage


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.



A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 8, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 8: "Anna Pavlova as a Bacchante"


"Anna Pavlova as a Bacchante" (1910) by Sir John Lavery [1856-1941].

music is a spark
muscles are combustibles

talent is the oxygen
that controls the burn
--heat and light result

dancer on fire!


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.

April 7, 2019

Ekphrastic April 2019, Day 7: "Beer Garden"

Did you know that today is National Beer Day? It is!


"Beer Garden" (1907) by Marianne von Werefkin [1860-1938].

at the Biergarten

the sky aglow with
April's setting sun

all and sundry lift a glass
to summer days ahead,
Gemütlichkeit, and beer


© Diane Mayr, all rights reserved.

Head off to your local brew pub and enjoy a beer for me.


A cherita is a haiku-like poem of three stanzas that tells a "story." The first stanza is one line and sets the scene. Stanza two is two lines, stanza three is three lines. A cherita terbalik is a cherita with the order of the stanzas rearranged.