At our winter meeting the seven members who attended were joined by two welcome guests, Carol Reynolds and Margaret Mahony. Another member, Samantha Hyde, although unable to be present, sent a completed worksheet well ahead of time and we were glad to include her valued poetry in our workshopping session.
As always we met at 10 a.m. for coffee and informal chat before heading off at precisely 10:30 on our ginko. The weather was cold but fine and the garden so delightful to view from the many aspects its winding pathway affords. A large Japanese maple stirring in the breeze drew the attention of every poet.
On our arrival for catch-up and coffee we were slightly daunted by a brief downpour. This obligingly ceased precisely at our regular ginko set-off time of 10:30. The glossy leaves of cloud-shaped bushes, neatly trimmed, glistened with small raindrops; and white crocuses lined one edge of the pathway. Jotting and silence prevailed, apart from waterfall tumble and the voice of a very young child telling her mother how much she loved the word ‘igneous’, her favourite type of rock.
Four members of the group were able to meet up at Gosford/ Edogawa Gardens on December 12th: Maire Glacken, Verna Rieschild, Colleen Keating and Beverley George. Armed with excellent completed work sheets sent ahead to us by Marilyn Humbert and Kent Robinson, we settled on the paved deck outside the café for a preliminary coffee, and passed these two sheets around reading the responses to the prompts aloud. We were inspired by them – a valuable and enjoyable start to our meeting.
The spring meeting for the White Pebbles Haiku Group extended a little longer than is usual. The 12th of September flowed on to embrace the 12th – 21st of September, and that is so far!
All nine members commented on how much they enjoyed reading each others’ work.
Seven optional prompts were circulated to members well in advance of the scheduled email meeting date with the only firm request being that the seventh of these involving a painting, sketch or photograph were included. One of our members, who was travelling, wrote all of her verses in real time as she moved through diverse countryside locations — a haiku journey we all greatly enjoyed learning about. Carefully considered comments on all the submitted haiku were shared over the following days.
Positive and mutually supportive, as always, our members made sure our spring meeting was satisfying and very worthwhile.
And who knows? Perhaps our December meeting will again be held in the Gosford/Edogawa Gardens.
On the second Saturday of June (our scheduled meeting date) we caught up by email for the third time since Lockdown. Computerised catch-ups in April and May had worked well for us; kept us in touch and writing. Our regular Winter Meeting began with eight of our members writing to 6 prompts.
camellias or another flower species out now that takes your fancy
the sound of water — stream/ocean/rain any one of these
Although we usually meet only quarterly, current circumstances encouraged us to also have a brief email catch-up in April, sharing current news and at least one haiku each. Members were very responsive and we all enjoyed it so much we have a similar email meeting planned for May. We are looking forward to resuming our ginko and workshop meeting at Gosford/Edogawa Garden when that again becomes possible but meantime we all value being in touch.
Far fewer of us than usual were able to attend this autumn meeting but those present understood the wise and valid reasons of our absentees and wished them well.
After our catch-up coffee, we set off, walking in light rain. As always special sights delighted us: fragments of tiny blossoms scattered through white pebbles; dense foliage across the wisteria archway; the rattle of wind in the bamboo patch.
We retired to the meeting room and our round table to workshop poems written in response to the previously circulated worksheet or newly written on our ginko.