White Pebbles Winter Meeting

June 2022

On June 11th, seven White Pebbles members met at Gosford/Edogawa Commemorative Gardens for our winter meeting. As always, we caught up for a brief chat over coffee or tea before heading out into the garden at precisely 10:30 to walk in silence and jot what we observed.

We all appreciate that this Japanese-style garden adjacent to the Gosford Regional Gallery and Arts Centre provides an ideal venue to celebrate the changing seasons.

Ginko over, the time came to gather in our workshopping room, seated at the round table; the right space in which to read a few of our own haiku, brought with us or jotted today, and benefit from our fellow members’ thoughtful appreciation and helpful responses.

Group photo of White Pebbles
From left: standing:  Gwen Bitti, Verna Rieschild, Kent Robinson  
seated:  Michael Thorley, Beverley George, Colleen Keating, Maire Glacken

Twists and Turns

Michael Thorley took the group through a variety of re-writings of Basho’s famous haiku on the frog leaping into the pond. This haiku has been re-expressed by many poets over the years, including Shiki, Australia’s Harold Stewart, Lucien Stryk, Allen Ginsberg and James Kirkup (who rewrote it in a simple three-word effort).

The group looked with interest at the success, or otherwise, of these rewritings.

Thank you, Michael.

John Bird

In sad response to his parting from this earth but with spirited acknowledgement of his major contribution to haiku in Australia, we stood around the table and in turn read, one by one, ten of John Bird’s haiku. We feel sure that readers of this post will want to revisit them too and think of many other personal favourite examples of his work.

Beverley George
Convenor
White Pebbles Haiku Group

Haiku written by John Bird shared in respect at White Pebbles Haiku Winter Meeting
barking dogs –
the swaggie’s slow progress
through town
                        		                              Yellow Moon 2004


cloudless sky
the village church
holds up a cross
                               				      Windfall: Australian Haiku issue 1 2013


world stirring
water in the poacher
starts to simmer
                         				              Windfall: Australian Haiku issue 2 2014


fly tent –
looking at the emu
looking in
                        					      Windfall: Australian Haiku issue 2 2014


winter beach
the old timer hitches up
his swimmers
                        					      Windfall: Australian Haiku issue 3 2015


burbling stream
the stone in my hand
dries silently
                        					      Windfall: Australian Haiku issue 8 2020


spring morning
dog and I exchange
silly grins
                						     Haiku Dreaming website


anzac eve
a crow watches old men
clean the cenotaph
                                        			    Haiku Dreaming website
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