Tanka: Memories

close up portrait of black whippet looking straight at the camera

the flow
of rock and turquoise waves
ocean’s beauty
between us on the shore
the memories keep growing

© Xenia Tran

rocks and outcrops flowing out into the bay with white sand in the foreground

With love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Camera: Panasonic Lumix FZ200, Settings: f/2.8 – 1/1000 s – ISO 100 and f/6.3 – 1/1600 s – ISO 100.

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Haibun: Song of Sika

Raven’s Rock Gorge

close up shot of a black whippet in a black harness on a forest trail

The clear waters of Alt Mor tumble over the stones. The rains have been welcome after wildfires swept across our moors. I love the smells of earth and water, the young green leaves. It feels as if the forest can breathe again.

in the air
the soft whistle of sika deer
calling their young

© Xenia Tran

water flowing through Raven's Rock Gorge, lush and green with spring leaves

We wish you all a very happy Monday and a sumptuous new week!

With love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Camera: Panasonic Lumix FZ200, Settings: f/2.8 – 1/250 s – ISO 100 and f/3.5 – 1/125 s – ISO 100.

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Haibun: This World We Sail In

Glen Affric

a blue and white whippet in a black jacket climbing a hill on a forest trail

There are so many ways to climb the hill. Stone steps are here for those who stride big, who like something solid underfoot. I prefer to take smaller steps, feel the soil between my toes, the earth’s heartbeat.

may flowers
this forest speaks of growing
your own star

© Xenia Tran

two whippets in black jackets on a forest trail with stone steps and exposed tree roots

We pause to read messages left here by the deer, hear the swish of dippers’ wings above the flowing waters. It’s in the silence, where we hear our guidance speak.

this world we sail in
the water on the outside
spurs the dream

© Xenia Tran

the water flowing down Plodda Falls in Glen Affric in spring

This is our final post in the current Glen Affric series, a beautiful nature reserve in the Scottish Highlands.

With love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Camera: Panasonic Lumix FZ200, Settings: f/3.2 – 1/60 s – ISO 200, f/2.8 – 1/160 s – ISO 100 and f/8 – 1/25 s – ISO 100.

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Haibun: Parallels

Glen Affric

upturned tree roots in forest look like a figure in brown velvet walking, trompe l'oeil

The upturned roots look like a figure walking, cloaked in brown velvet from another time. A snail’s slick silver lines awaken our curiosity. We follow a ribbon of moonlight between lichen and moss.

an eagle calls
whose star greets the sky
in these moments

© Xenia Tran

two whippets in black winter jackets sniffing the moss underneath a Douglas fir tree on a forest trail

With love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Camera: Panasonic Lumix FZ200, Settings: f/2.8 – 1/125 s – ISO 250 and f/3.2 – 1/60 s – ISO 160.

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Lai Nouveau: Seashore Anew

a black whippet sniffing a seaweed covered breakwater on tidal sands

soothing rise and fall
the sea helps us all
relax
wolfhound’s ancient call
mountains rising tall
perhaps
scale the old sea wall
throw me a new ball

letting us grow tall
helping us seal all
the cracks
blue sky’s magical
readiness enthrals
our tracks
the sea helps us all
soothing rise and fall

© Xenia Tran

close up of a black whippet looking over his shoulder beside a breakwater at low tide
a blue and white whippet chasing a pink ball on the beach

This is our second contribution to dVerse Poets’ Lai and Lai Nouveau Challenge.

A Lai is a French poetry form consisting of a five-syllable couplet followed by a two-syllable line. The number of lines in each stanza is fixed at nine and the couplets must rhyme with each other, as must the two-syllable lines. The number of stanzas is not fixed and each stanza has its own rhyme pattern. The stanza’s rhyme pattern is: a a b a a b a a b.

A Lai Nouveau is considered to be slightly more challenging than the Lai. It has an eight-line stanza and is similar in idea to the Villanelle. In the Lai Nouveau the first two lines are the refrain and are used as the last lines of the subsequent verses with the last verse including the refrain lines in reverse order. The stanza rhyme patterns are: A1 A2 b a a b a a and a a b a a b A2 A1.

You can read our first contribution, River Affric, on our sister blog Tranature.

With love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Camera: Panasonic Lumix FZ200, Settings: f/2.8 – 1/1600 s – ISO 160, f/2.8 – 1/500 s – ISO 100 and f/3.2 – 1/2000 s – ISO 100.

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Haibun: Nature’s Spirit

Cairngorms National Park

a blue and white whippet in a purple harness sniffing the bark of a pine tree on a forest trail

We’re walking through the forest at Easter, the sun is bright and warm. It’s the warmest Easter we’ve known since moving to the Highlands. Eivor walks beside us, touching my hand with his nose to let us know. To let us know, how good it feels to be here.

Pearl walks slightly ahead of us, sniffing the bark of a pine, touching a twig or leaf. Prints from paw and foot weave on behind us. Our eyes follow the movements between the trees across the water, where pairs of geese go quietly.

nature’s spirit
stars flicker through the temple
of this world

© Xenia Tran

a blue and white whippet in a purple harness beside a pine tree on a forest trail
two pairs of geese swimming across a lochan surrounded by trees and reeds

Wishing you all a beautiful Tuesday and a wonderful week,

with love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Settings: f/3.2 – 1/400 s – ISO 100 and f/5 – 1/160 s – ISO 160.

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Villanelle: Where Seasons Meet

Cairngorms National Park

a black whippet in a black jacket sniffing snow along a forest trail

it’s good to breathe the scent of pine
the freshness of our lingering snow
brings winter romance to our time

a blue whippet in a black jacket turning back along a forest trail beside the pine trees and heather

the snow-capped mountain turns to shrine
for seeking peace, a letting go
it’s good to breathe the scent of pine

a river flowing beside a forest trail with overhanging pine trees

our spring begins to bloom and shine
while snow-melt and the river’s flow
bring winter romance to our time

a blue whippet in a black jacket walking through a puddle of melted snow on a forest trail

the forest trail begins to climb
we pause to watch the mountain grow
it’s good to breathe the scent of pine

a blue whippet in a black jacket on her hind legs between the heather, watched by a black whippet in a black jacket from the forest trail

the air tastes pure, so sweet and fine
our woolly hats and ruddy glow
bring winter romance to our time

a black whippet in a black jacket walking towards a blue and white whippet in a black jacket on a forest trail

two seasons meet along fine lines
we cherish both and deeply know
it’s good to breathe the scent of pine
bring winter romance to our time

view across the heather and pine-clad hills towards the snow-capped mountains

This is our second contribution to this month’s Villanelle challenge at dVerse Poets. You can read our first contribution at A Voice that Knows and our third contribution Worth Waiting For has now been published on our sister blog Tranature.

A Villanelle is a French verse form consisting of five three-line stanzas and a final quatrain, with the first and third lines of the first stanza repeating alternately in the following stanzas. These two refrain lines form the final couplet in the quatrain (the Poetry Foundation)

Below is the complete version of the Villanelle:

it’s good to breathe the scent of pine
the freshness of our lingering snow
brings winter romance to our time

the snow-capped mountain turns to shrine
for seeking peace, a letting go
it’s good to breathe the scent of pine

our spring begins to bloom and shine
while snow-melt and the river’s flow
bring winter romance to our time

the forest trail begins to climb
we pause to watch the mountain grow
it’s good to breathe the scent of pine

the air tastes pure, so sweet and fine
our woolly hats and ruddy glow
bring winter romance to our time

two seasons meet along fine lines
we cherish both and deeply know
it’s good to breathe the scent of pine
bring winter romance to our time

© Xenia Tran

The prompt at dVerse remains open if you want to participate and there are now more than seventy contributions for you to enjoy.

With love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Settings: f/2.8 – 1/320 s – ISO 100, f/2.8 – 1/1250 s – ISO 160, f/4.5 – 1/250 s – ISO 200, f/2.8 – 1/250 s – ISO 100, f/2.8 – 1/160 s – ISO 100, f/2.8 – 1/800 s – ISO 100 and f/4 – 1/800 s – ISO 160.

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