Tanka: Quantum Leap

a smiling black whippet leaping across the beach

quantum leap
nature has her way
of painting
small delights into
the day’s air

© Xenia Tran

a smiling black whippet striding out across tidal sands

Wishing you all a happy Thursday and a peaceful rest of the week,

with love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Camera: Panasonic Lumix FZ200, Settings: f/2.8 – 1/2.8 – 1/640 s – ISO 100.

Tanka Thursday: Air

Your Daily Word Prompt: Genial

Tanka: Where Peace can Grow

two whippets in winter jackets sniffing the frozen ground near wetlands

parallel lines
nature paints choices
between water and ice
reeds shuffle and wonder
how peace on earth can grow

© Xenia Tran

part frozen wetlands in Winter under a clear blue sky

We are deeply honoured and delighted that Frameless Sky Issue 13 on the theme of Our Connection with Nature is now available on DVD and YouTube link. The video features forty nature photographs by yours truly, poems by seventy-six poets from eighteen different countries, a special reading by Hemapriya Chellappan and music by Sascha Ende. A very big thank you to Chrissi Villa and Shloka Shankar for featuring my work and putting this beautiful edition together!

Frameless Sky Issue 13 Contributor Portraits

Wishing you all a very happy Monday and a happy Burns Night to our friends in Scotland,

with love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Camera: Canon Powershot SX60 HS, Settings: f/4 – 1/800 s – ISO 100, f/4.5 – 1/1000 s – ISO 100 and f/4 – 1/640 s – ISO 100.

PI Prompt: Parallel

Your Daily Word Prompt: Irenic

Looking Back at 2020 with Love and Gratitude

The mild Winter that began in 2019 continues into 2020 and we go hiking in other parts of the Highlands and Perthshire to make the most of the ice-free roads. Waves of Gratitude, Love at First Sight and Windows of the Soul become the most popular posts in this period and reflect some of these unexpected journeys.

News of the pandemic begins to filter through and on 23 March the country goes into lockdown. We can only go out once a day for exercise, all non-essential shops and services are closed. Many people begin to hoard and panic-buy, leaving the rest of us without essentials.

village store
the parrot tells us
there’s no bread

© Xenia Tran

(Bundled Wildflowers, Haiku Society of America 2020 Anthology)

Spring still has a few cold days before the temperatures rise. Our most popular posts of the season are Spirit Mountain, Pink Moon Rising and Circles and Spirals.

Without traffic and tourists, our air, our beaches, river and sea become cleaner than we’ve ever seen them before. The birds and wildlife are rejoicing. It is truly amazing to see nature bounce back as soon as humans retreat.

shaded meadow
a range of flowers
surrounds our nest
the lockdown gives us time
to see each other clearly

© Xenia Tran

(Ribbons, Spring/Summer , Volume 16 Number 2)

At the beginning of July our travel restrictions are lifted and we venture out for the first time in four months, avoiding all the tourist hot spots. Because it is crowded in the places we would love to visit we continue to spend most of our time close to home.

I learn how to make videos and include these with our new Look Inside and Shopping features for Sharing Our Horizon and Between Heather and Grass.

Trust, Buck Moon and Memories in Motion are the most popular posts in Summer.

We donated dog food, dog bowls and other items on the Wish-List to DOTS (Dogs on the Streets) with the proceeds from Sharing Our Horizon and made donations to Dogs Trust and Children with Cancer UK with proceeds from Between Heather and Grass. A huge thank you to all of you who buy and read our books!

Autumn begins with sunny, mild weather and glorious trails for walking. Aureate becomes our most popular Autumn post and the most popular post of the year, closely followed by Chosen Route and Daydream.

Through an unusual sequence of online encounters I meet someone who turns out to be a distant relative. He is able to fill me in about part of my ancestral history. Another contact provides me with old film footage that features them and the village they grew up in.

all souls’ night
my great-grandparents
play in the snow

© Xenia Tran

(Autumn-Moon Haiku Journal, Volume 4:1, Autumn-Winter 2020-2021)

two whippets in jackets looking at the beach and sea from the dunes

As Winter arrives we look back at an unusual year. We lost people from our haiku community and our local community, many local businesses struggled to survive. At the same time nature and wildlife were thriving.

the air so clean
in our lockdown days
a healing
pulsing through the stars at night
where earthlight weeps and breaks

© Xenia Tran

(Ribbons, Spring/Summer 2020, Volume 16, Number 2)

tidal outcrops in the firth with a cormorant drying its wings

We got used to new ways of working, walking, shopping and interacting with each other. We wear our masks and keep our distance.

two metres apart
no one walks between our words
on the pavement

© Xenia Tran

(Haiku Dialogue: Connection with Others, Troutswirl, 25 November 2020)

close up of two whippets on a sofa

With so many people now working from home, adoptions from animal shelters increased. It was lovely to see so many dogs and cats from shelters we support find their loving forever homes and we hope this is a trend that will continue.

If you are thinking about getting a dog or a cat, please consider adoption as your first option. Please consider adopting an older pet too if you can. We have done this several times and it is very rewarding.

his grey hair
full of sunlight
the sea retreats

© Xenia Tran

(The Bamboo Hut, Number 4, 2020)

two smiling whippets walking side by side on wet tidal sands

We want to thank all our readers and followers for your support and inspiration this year. We had more time to write and there was a lot to write about.

Feel free to browse the monthly archives for posts about the support within our community, a tribute to a poet lost early in the pandemic, the Hope project and many more moments that made this year so special.

Thank you to all the editors and publishers who featured my work in journals, anthologies and special features.

Huge thanks to Eve, Frank, Kristjaan, Misky, Ronovan and the team at dVerse Poets for a great variety of poetry prompts, to Becca, Sheryl, Kristian, Brian, Christine, Emily, Heather, Katherine, Ping, Punam and Tracy for your wonderful writing prompts and to Cee, Jez, Paula, Sue & Gerry, Cathy, Terri, Amy, Ann-Christine, Patti & Tina for your fabulous photographic prompts throughout the year.

A big thank you to all the healthcare workers and people who kept us fed and cared for during the pandemic.

We wish you all a blessed, happy, healthy and creative New Year!

with love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia.

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Your Daily Word Prompt: Tidings

Word of the Day Challenge: Wishes

Lens-Artists Weekly Photo Challenge #129: Favorite Images of 2020

Haibun: Precious Moments

two whippets in maroon jackets on the beach with driftwood

The sun is slow to rise above the trees, brightening a small strip of sand near the shoreline. The surf sings her song, a large piece of driftwood listens and greets the day with wing-like branches.

morning frost
a seagull tip-toes over
the pure notes

© Xenia Tran

a frosty beach with driftwood and shadows of people and dogs

Wishing you all a happy Monday and a blessed new week,

with love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Camera: Panasonic Lumix FZ200, Settings: f/4 – 1/500 s – ISO 100 and f/3.2 – 1/1250 s – ISO 100.

Lens-Artists Weekly Photo Challenge #127: Precious Moments

Your Daily Word Prompt: Faithful

Tanka: Magic Mountain

two whippets in jackets at a fork on the mountain trail

steep trails
my right shoe leans
against the left
there is another world
behind the smiling fairy

© Xenia Tran

a smiling fairy stone resting on lichen and moss

Wishing you all a blessed Thursday and a wonderful rest of the week,

with love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Camera: Panasonic Lumix FZ200, Settings: f/2.8 – 1/200 s – ISO 100, f/2.8 – 1/160 s – ISO 100 and f/3.2 – 1/125 s – ISO 100.

Thursday’s Special: Pick a Word 2020-4 (Accessible, Craggy & Hallucinogenic)

Tanka Thursday: Lean

Twiglet #205: My Right Shoe

Your Daily Word Prompt: Ally

Wordless Wednesday: Peaceful Puddles

two whippets in jackets on an autumnal forest trail
a whippet in a jacket bending down to drink from a large puddle

Wishing you all a wonderful Wednesday,

with love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Camera: Panasonic Lumix FZ200, Settings: f/2.8 – 1/80 s – ISO 100, f/2.8 – 1/125 s – ISO 100 and f/2.8 – 1/60 s – ISO 200.

Wordless Wednesday

Jez Braithwaite’s Water Water Everywhere #53

Your Daily Word Prompt: Peace

Wordless Wednesday: The Only Sound is Nature

a blue and white whippet in a black jacket looking up between the pine trees
a blue and white whippet in a jacket looking ahead between the pine trees

Wishing you all a wonderful Wednesday,

with love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Settings: f/4 – 1/80 s – ISO 125, f/4.5 – 1/500 s – ISO 100 and f/4 – 1/80 s – ISO 100.

Wordless Wednesday

Your Daily Word Prompt: Tranquil

Haiku: Chosen Route

profile of a black whippet in a winter jacket on a forest trail

clockwise circle
the trail is covered
in dazzling gold

© Xenia Tran

view between autumnal trees towards Loch an Eilein

Wishing you all a happy Monday and a wonderful 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 – 1/100 s – ISO 100, f/2.8 – 1/400 s – ISO 640 and f/4 – 1/200 s – ISO 160.

Lens-Artists Weekly Photo Challenge #121: Focus

Rag Tag Daily Prompt: Lucid

Your Daily Word Prompt: Choice

Tanka: Wilderness Calling

close up of two whippets on a sofa

cosy in the warmth
of candles and cuddles
we accept
how wet these days can be
the promises to ponder

© Xenia Tran

two whippets snuggled up on the sofa

Wishing you all a wonderful Thursday and a peaceful rest of the week,

with love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Camera: Panasonic Lumix FZ200, Settings: f/2.8 – 1/100 s – ISO 320, f/2.8 – 1/30 s – ISO 400 and f/2.8 – 1/8 s – ISO 400.

Nurturing Thursday: Inside Job

Tanka Thursday: Promise

Carpe Diem #1835: Caught by the Call

Your Daily Word Prompt: Discern

Tan Renga: Such a Hot Day

a blue and white whippet running down a hill

such a hot day
my shadow needs to cool down
under the willow

© Kyoshi Takahama

the leaves create music
where grasshoppers sing

© Xenia Tran

two whippets on a hilly forest trail


Kristjaan at Carpe Diem has invited us to create a Tan Renga with the given haiku by Kyoshi Takahama (1874-1958). A Tan Renga is a short, chained poem written by two poets. It looks very similar to a Tanka, but a Tanka is written by one poet.

We wish you all a happy Monday and a blessed week ahead,

with love from Eivor, Pearl and Xenia xxx

Photographs by Xenia Tran, edited in lr.

Camera: Panasonic Lumix FZ200, Settings: f/2.8 – 1/160 s – ISO 100, f/2.8 – 1/250 s – ISO 160 and f/2.8 – 1/200 s – ISO 100.

Carpe Diem: Tan Renga Wednesday #17

Frank J Tassone’s Weekly Haikai Challenge #152: Katydid (Kirigirisu)

Your Daily Word Prompt: Ameliorate