Renga Party!

On Saturday night, myself and 9 others (including a.rawlings via skype… ah, the marvels of the internet) gathered at the home of local poet, Chris Lynch for a good old fashioned renga party… there was wine, there was bottomless tea, there was an array of tastiness, there was conversation and laughter and at the centre of it all two renga – second bottle and autumn moon – were composed. It was all done in the true spirit of this 800 year old form… each poet spontaneously riffing off the verse that came before them while not taking themselves too seriously.

Each of the renga are are 36 links in length, like the favoured kasen form, however, it was decided by Chris and I prior to the party that we would remove all of the imposed themes of a true kasen to allow each poet to leap boldly and freely into the poem. Both of the renga as a result have a really unique energy and are bursting with a freeness I have not encountered often in the form. Chris will be posting both of the renga in full over at his site, The City Hermit, but until that time, here’s a favourite section of mine (and a few others who were there).

from the renga, Second Bottle

Written 6 April 2013 by/between Graham Nunn, Lee-Anne Davie, John Koenig, Fern Thompsett, Rachael Briggs, Chris Lynch, John Wainwright, Cindy Keong, Andrew Phillips, Chloë Callistemon, and a.rawlings.


the captain points
south, pack ice


breath whitens
we enter the shadows
of the gorge


beneath us
the pounding waterfall


a group of ruffian boys
emerge glittering wet
hair parted down the middle


memories are lost here
or only live until the skin dries


spring thaw
we watch our snow angels


waking in white sheets
this beautiful stranger


to look upwards, even
if only for the smell
of cold air


I taste bacon and coffee
from across the room


falling through cream
the dark earth reveals



Filed under poetry

3 responses to “Renga Party!

  1. Now that’s what I call a group project…loved it!

  2. Fantastic, Graham! Jealous in a good way, I’d love to do a live renku!
    Sounds like it was a blast too, will be checking Chris’ blog

  3. Pingback: Renku: The Poem We Build

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s