Tag Archives: waking up with winter

New Junicho: Between Thistles (Links #11 – #12)

With eighteen poems shared, Between Thistles is almost at an end… one selection remains, and again, I have been deliberating between a handful of the poems, reading each as the ageku to see how the image not only breaks new ground but allows us to briefly circle back to Ashley’s hokku, the evocative title poem, ‘between thistles’.

But before I go into detail about the 5 poems that have been sharing the place of the ageku, I want to thank everyone who has read and participated in our New Junicho. It has been one of the most exciting writing projects that I have taken part in. The energy and creativity that you have brought to the composition of this poem has been (in the most positive way) overwhelming. It has been a highlight of my day to check in with your responses and to watch this poem take shape. I will miss it, but there is still room for exploration… To everyone who participated, check your inboxes as I will be emailing you with an invitation to curate your own version of Between Thistles from the links submitted. I think it will be exciting to go back through each of the call outs and see where you may have taken the poem and to consider the many paths a poem like this can take.

Now, to the four poems that I have been considering for the ageku. The poems are, Lee-Anne’s ‘in the fading light’, Trish’s ‘songs-many-tongued’, Chloe’s ‘wind slips a tune’, Chris’s ‘in rifle sight’, and Andy’s ‘beneath bare feet’. Each of these poems leap daringly from John’s ‘Battle of Brighton’ and link us back to”between thistles’ and in doing so shift the feeling of the hokku; allowing us to read the poem with new insight.

Lee-Anne’s ‘in fading light’ gives closure to the battle we have left behind and in reading on, welcomes us to take a deeper look between the thistles where the Egyptian crane steps; the closing line ‘we study all that is’ singing with a deep sense of wabi.

Trish’s ‘songs-many-tongued’ offers such warmth; the idea that a diversity of voices singing in harmony can mend the sun enchanted me on first reading.

Chloe’s ‘wind slips a tune’ has a wonderful sense of lightness; the song beneath her feet adding music to each step of the crane.

Chris’s ‘in rifle sight’ refocuses the menace of the battle and leaves us eye to eye with an enemy. In reading on, the force of the word ‘enemy’ shifts the tone of the hokku, giving the crane a darker edge and bringing into focus another being between the thistles, hunted by the crane.

Andy’s ‘beneath bare feet’ gives the senses a real slap, as it is not only the feel of the mud that hits us here, it is the smell, the sound and the visual of the feet disappearing. This, like Chloe’s poem, connects us to the crane as it steps between thistles.

Each of these poems make a wonderful addition to the Junicho, but it is time to make a choice… to close, I have selected the poem that creates the greatest shift in the tone of the hokku; ‘in rifle sight’ by Chris Lynch.

But as I said before… let’s not view this as an ending. I look forward to posting multiple versions of this New Junicho over the coming days.

I would love for you to share this poem widely, as it is the keeper of many riches.

*****

Between Thistles: A New Junicho
Started: 12 April 2013 – Finished: 30 April 2013
Written between:
Ashley Capes, Simon Kindt, Chloe Callistemon, Chris Lynch, Trish Reid, John Wainwright, Lee-Anne Davie, Andrew Phillips, Cindy Keong, Phillip Ellis,

Link #1 (3 lines) – hokku / shasei

between thistles
the crane’s
Egyptian walk

(Ashley Capes)

Link #2 (2 lines) – waki / cultural (literature)

the noose of a circling skein
called down by Carver’s barreled goose

(Simon Kindt)

Link #3 (3 lines) – daisan / cultural (film)

fan rotors beat
The End
to the smell of napalm

(Chloe Callistemon)

Link #4 (2 lines) – verse / shasei

recycling at 2:30am
moonlight on bitumen

(Chris Lynch)

Link #5 (3 lines) – verse / shasei

moth seeks out
only dark spaces
tired I turn off the light

(Trish Reid)

Link #6 (2 lines) – verse / cultural (art)

Caravaggio fades in from black
is that a pallet knife?

(John Wainwright)

Link #7 (3 lines) – verse / cultural (religion)

he makes the sign
with crossed fingers
crucifix

(Lee-Anne Davie)

Link #8 (2 lines) – verse / gendai

global autumn
H5N1 migrates

(Andrew Phillips)

Link #9 (3 lines) – verse / gendai

waking up
with winter
beside me

(Cindy Keong)

Link #10 (2 lines) – verse / cultural (politics)

a new man rises
such rough beast

(Phillip Ellis)

Link #11 (3 lines) – verse / cultural (music)

the Mods won the
Battle of Brighton Beach
The Who?

(John Wainwright)

Link #12 (2 lines) – ageku / shasei

in rifle sight
my enemy’s eyes

(Chris Lynch)

* shasei – sketched from life – lived experience, observational, uncontrived.
* gendai – modernist – atypical structure, tone or content.

*****

Responses to Link #11:

The call for music went out and four poets came to play! The offerings from Chris, John, Andy and Chloe continue the energy of previous links and approach the concept of music from some wildly different viewpoints.

Chris looks out from the moshpit as the collision of bodies sends sparks flying skyward; John’s three poems move from the apocalyptic movement of ‘valkyrie ride’ (with a surge of Wagner) to the battle of Brighton Beach and the balls-out soundtrack of Daltrey, Townshend, Entwistle and Moon; Andy takes us to the crossroads where the finger-picked blues of Robert Johnson ‘herald the beast’; and Chloe takes us on a discordant musical odyssey where we clap along with Freddie Mercury, break with the beautiful force of Elgar and wake to Beethoven’s cannon.

Such a diverse musical trip! One that has enriched my Sunday afternoon and taken our Junicho on one last turn before we reach our destination. So where did I leap to? I couldn’t resist the Battle of Brighton Beach, as it’s quite possibly the most playful take on a battle I have ever encountered. This selection welcomes John back into the poem and opens the call for the ageku, link #12.

For the ageku, we are looking for 2 lines of natural imagery / lived experience that continues the movement of the poem and in some way connects us back with the opening image. I plan to leave this link open for submission until 6pm Tuesday April 30 to give everyone ample time to pen their final offerings.

This poem has provided such a wonderful sense of community, so I hope that you all come out to play one last time.

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New Junicho: Between Thistles (Links #9 – #10)

Responses to Link #10:

It was a thrill to see the energy of the gendai phase continue; the verse on offer for link #10 vary from the wonderfully  satirical, ‘Mad Katter’s tea party’ (John) and ‘budgie’s snuggle’ (Trish), through the razor sharp political commentary of ‘a new man rises’ (Phillip), the deep resonance of ‘soldier biscuits for sale’ (Chris) and the natural beauty of ‘election promises’ (Vuong).

After reading each poem multiple times, I became overwhelmed at the state of politics in our nation. Such is the power of so many of the links submitted; and in this power lies possibility. The Junicho would be richer for the addition of many of these poems, but there must be one that owns the 10th position and propels us towards an ending…

There are two poems that I have juggled for a number of hours now; placing each one into the Junicho, reading and re-reading the complete poem and then considering where it could lead us… the two poems are Chris’s ‘soldier biscuits for sale’  and Phillip’s ‘a new man rises’. In making my choice, I have decided to go with the directness of Phillip’s link and the energy it generates in leaping forward from Cindy’s ‘waking up’. The use of the word rises is the engine that propels this poem and while I might be showing my political leanings with this selection, this startling image confirmed my fear of the long winter we may wake to post the upcoming federal election…

I will, however, make one edit to the poem, and that is the removal of the brackets around the second line. It is my belief that the poem works more powerfully without them.

So with link #10 decided, link #11 is now open. Link #11 completes the six cultural links by calling for 3 lines with a music reference. After witnessing the uninhibited energy of Black Sabbath last night, I am eager to hear how each of you will make your words sing.

Take the leap and spread the word…

*****

Between Thistles: A New Junicho
Started: 12 April 2013 – Finished:
Written between:
Ashley Capes, Simon Kindt, Chloe Callistemon, Chris Lynch, Trish Reid, John Wainwright, Lee-Anne Davie, Andrew Phillips, Cindy Keong, Phillip Ellis,

Link #1 (3 lines) – hokku / shasei

between thistles
the crane’s
Egyptian walk

(Ashley Capes)

Link #2 (2 lines) – waki / cultural (literature)

the noose of a circling skein
called down by Carver’s barreled goose

(Simon Kindt)

Link #3 (3 lines) – daisan / cultural (film)

fan rotors beat
The End
to the smell of napalm

(Chloe Callistemon)

Link #4 (2 lines) – verse / shasei

recycling at 2:30am
moonlight on bitumen

(Chris Lynch)

Link #5 (3 lines) – verse / shasei

moth seeks out
only dark spaces
tired I turn off the light

(Trish Reid)

Link #6 (2 lines) – verse / cultural (art)

Caravaggio fades in from black
is that a pallet knife?

(John Wainwright)

Link #7 (3 lines) – verse / cultural (religion)

he makes the sign
with crossed fingers
crucifix

(Lee-Anne Davie)

Link #8 (2 lines) – verse / gendai

global autumn
H5N1 migrates

(Andrew Phillips)

Link #9 (3 lines) – verse / gendai

waking up
with winter
beside me

(Cindy Keong)

Link #10 (2 lines) – verse / cultural (politics)

a new man rises
such rough beast

(Phillip Ellis)

Link #11 (3 lines) – verse / cultural (music)
Link #12 (2 lines) – ageku / shasei

* shasei – sketched from life – lived experience, observational, uncontrived.
* gendai – modernist – atypical structure, tone or content.

*****

Response to Link #9:

I am just home after two massive nights of poetry (one launching Brisbane New Voices IV, which I will share details of very soon), and am eager to keep the Junicho moving. That said, my eyes are finding it hard to focus, so tonight, I am going to keep it brief…

Again, I have been swept away by the playful energy of the poems on offer for link #9. I have been checking in regularly and this gendai section has given me a genuine rush.

Many of these poems have seeded themselves in my brain, keeping me company and filling my head with their wildness. Several, will remain there for a long time… such is their resonance.

These poems include, Trish’s ‘she misses his cheek’, Cindy’s ‘waking up’, Chris’s ‘fever sweats’ and John’s uproarious, ‘number nine’.

So which one has made the leap into Between Thistles… for link #9 I have decided to wake up with winter and in doing so, welcome Cindy into the Junicho.

This means, we are now calling for link #10 – 2 lines with a political theme. I’ve got a feeling this one is going to keep the freewheeling energy of the last two links!

Leap boldly,

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