At the February 2013 residency, Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg and Karen Campbell led a renga party, a chance to come together, experience Japanese treats and traditions, particularly the tradition of the renga. This ancient Japanese poetic form brings people together to write communal poems, each person adding more lines. Here is our renga on the theme of place, culture, home and beginnings:
We enter, shake the winter
from our feet, the warmth
of the fire melts
There are chocolate puddles in the
scraped wooden slats dirt snow warmth winter
Early morning, pink sky, cold, very cold
Warmth fills the house as the wood burns
branches, a criss-crossed world
lit from the sky, the land.
The chickadees forge within the white
surviving, thriving in the thrill of the fight.
It brings them closer, and together, we watch.
Our breath on the window blurring the lines
of frost-work on the panes, blending
our musings with morning’s clarity.
Steam rising, tangled spirals aloft,
hands cupped tight, ceramic vessel, sweet warmth.
This is where it all started
brilliantly simple in its beauty and truth.
Icicles perfect, forms crack
upon the warming earth
where a bud sprouts.