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Good afternoon, poets! Frank J. Tassone here, delighted to host another Haibun Monday, where we wax poetic-prose and haiku in one phenomenal form! Today, Let’s address that wonderous cognitive function that helps us define who we are. Let’s talk about memory!

What do we remember? Is it the apple tree in the backyard that we climbed and played in for hours on end with our friend? Is it spinning on the merry-go-round in the park so fast that we felt dizzy for days? Is it the furry face of our best friend on the day we had to give her up?

What do we not remember? Is it explosions of artillery shells on the shores of the Somme? Is it the tantalizing touch of a forbidden lover? Is it the fierce snarls of a father wolf protecting his pack?

Our memory connects us with our past. Our individual memories form the pages of the story we tell ourselves about who we are. As poets—as writers—we memorialize experience, ideas, emotions, and so much more in words. How much more powerfully do we incarnate memory the same way?

Some Haijin have demonstrated the impact of memory:

Here (Hiraizumi) three generations of the Fujiwara clan passed as though in a dream. The great outer gates lay in runis. Where Hidehira’s manor stood, rice fields grew. Only Mount Kinkei remained. I climbed the hill where Yoshitsune died; I saw the Kitakami, a broad stream flowing down through the Nambu plain, the Koromo River circling Isumi Castle below the hill before joining the Kitakami. The ancient ruins of Yasuhira–from the end of the Golden Era–lie out beyond the Koromo Barrier, where they stood guard against the Ainu people. The faithful elite remained bound to the castle–for all their valor, reduced to ordinary grass…

We sat a while, our hats for seat, seeing it all through tears.

summer grasses:

all that remains of great soldiers’

imperial dreams

Basho, “Narrow Road to the Interior” translated by Sam Hamill, The Essential Basho, p. 18-19

black hole
another toy tossed
into the bin

Sherry Grant (NZ), Failed Haiku Issue 68, Aug 2021

childhood soccer
always last
to be picked

Robert Kingston
Chelmsford, United Kingdom

Today, let’s explore memory! Write a haibun that alludes to memory, any way you construe it.

New to haibun? The form consists of one to a few paragraphs of prose—usually written in the present tense—that evoke an experience and are often non-fictional/autobiographical. They may be preceded or followed by one or more haiku—nature-based, using a seasonal image—that complement without directly repeating what the prose stated.

New to dVerse? Here is what you do:

  • Write a haibun that alludes to memory.
  • Post it on your personal site/blog.
  • Include a link back to dVerse in your post.
  • Copy your link onto the Mr. Linky.
  • Remember to click the small checkbox about data protection.
  • Read and comment on some of your fellow poets’ work.
  • Like and leave a comment below if you choose to do so.

Have fun!