We braved the inclement weather for our spring ginko to meet at the Hobart Royal Botanical Gardens.
Following 30 minutes of solitary walks, soaking up the gardens in all their spring glory and jotting down haiku or haiku ideas, we gathered in Succulent (the garden’s restaurant) for brunch.
It was a full house with Irene McGuire, Ross Coward, Ron Moss, Lyn Reeves, Leanne Jaeger, Lorraine Haig, Terry Whitebeach and Jane Williams. As this was the first time all eight members had managed to meet in quite a while, the atmosphere was buzzing joyfully.
The haiku journal Kokako #33, which included contributions from Watersmeet members Lyn Reeves, Lorraine Haig, Ron Moss and Ross Coward, was circulated around the table generating much interest.
After brunch, we decided that further discussion should happen outside the restaurant as a lunch time crowd was encroaching and the noise was quickly rising beyond the level at which mindful listening was possible. We moved our group to the Fuchsia House gazebo where we arranged the benches into as close a setup as social distancing allows.
Invigorating discussions ensued; from the challenges of creativity during Covid to the therapeutic benefits of writing and reading haiku, of adopting a haiku mind …
Each of us acknowledged some level of gratitude for haiku in our lives at this time.
Terry Whitebeach raised the question of how to honour our human connection and response to the world through haiku while staying true to the haiku nature. This question prompted discussion about signifying emotion through use of language, kigo and juxtaposition.
We talked about enhancing appreciation of haiku through the use of white space on the page and the pause between lines when read out loud.
Ron shared ideas and examples of hearing haiku read twice. The first time in its intended sequence, the second time alternating lines – an intriguing experiment and reminder of the powerful effect of word placement and the deepening delight of rereading/listening and reflection.
As the temperature dropped and rain pelted heavily on the roof of the gazebo it was a testament to the spirit of the group and our commitment to sharing our haiku experiences that we stayed as long as we did.
from the fallen oak leaves
on the pond’s surface
ruffles the bridge
the wet umbrella
Ron C. Moss
report by Jane Williams