‘gut bacteria’ 9/100 #100daysnewthings

‘city of water’ 1/100 #100daysnewthings

watermill,Augsburg,Watermill am Brunnenlech is my 1/100 #100daysnewthings

city of water

floating on your

Roman past

Augsburg is applying to be included in the UNESCO World Heritage list, aiming to secure its unique water management system for the future and make it visible to the whole world.

It says, “Canal landscapes and water towers, waterworks and water power characterize Augsburg. In the interplay of innovative spirit and technical mastery, the city had a system of water management unique in Europe for 500 years. Artistically designed magnificent wells and buildings of world renown to this day of the appreciation of Augsburg water art.”

Best wishes to #Augsburg for their application!

 #the100DayProject #Unesco #water #haiku #haiga

#The100DayProject

Having read Dorothee Lang’s blog post on the #The100DayProject, I am tempted to take part. I will have to choose a theme and create something daily, for 100 days on it, posting the result on Instagram.

#The100DayProject, #100daysnewthingsA  couple of problems: I didn’t want to join yet another social media channel, and have only a few days to find a theme to focus on for the project starting on the 3 of April. And how could I possibly find the time? For these reasons, and many more, I decided to . . . give it a go.

I am settling on 100 days of finding new, to me, things. Of opening up to new ideas, other ways of thinking, other people; expanding my horizons! And I’ve just signed up on #Instagram. I will be using my iPad to post. Daily hashtags: #The100DayProject #100daysnewthings #poetsofinstagram

Each day, I’ll be searching for, finding and posting something new to me. It may not be new to you, but to me, it may be an epiphany. ‘It’ may be an interesting quotation, a piece of information, a discovery or re-discovery, a haiku or other poem or text I discover in me, a photo of something I hadn’t noticed before…you get the gist.

Thank you Dorothee for the inspiration and encouragement!

‘Lullaby’ in Wales Haiku Journal

It’s at its loudest in the early morning hours. Before light dissolves darkness, before the neighbour leaves for work, before the birds start singing, his laboured breathing comes over the baby monitor whispering, gurgling, rattling, spluttering…

I lie awake listening to the crack of thunder, the roaring waterfall, the sounds of the sea emitted from his chest. A car starting, the exhaust backfiring, the train leaving station. The boat reversing in the harbour. Light rain. A soft mieow. His breathing renders a whole world. In this soundscape, I make out the stories he told me when years ago he put me to bed.

Soon, light dispels the apparitions, and his breath comes over the monitor soft, steady, regular, lulling me to sleep.

music of the spheres
how we became
human

*

In the inaugural issue of Wales Haiku Journal, Spring 2018

The British Haiku Society Awards 2017

Congratulations to the winners! The results of the British Haiku Society Awards 2017 are out!

British Haiku Society

I am honoured to have been asked to serve as a judge in the ‘Ken and Noragh Jones Haibun Awards.’ And very much enjoyed reading all the wonderful  entries.

The results and reports by all sections’ judges  can be viewed at the Society’s website (for haibun, please scroll down), and will also be published in Blithe Spirit, the Society’s Journal.

A big thank you to the Society for entrusting me with this task, and to all those who sent in their entries.

In ‘old song’ The Red Moon Anthology of ELH 2017

Honoured to be included in ‘old song,’ The Red Moon Anthology of English-Language Haiku 2017, edited by Jim Kacian and the Red Moon Press Editorial Staff:

old song, red moon anthology,The Red Moon Anthology of English-Language Haiku assembles each year the finest haiku and related forms published around the world in English into a single book. old song, the twenty-second volume in the most honored series in the history of English-Language haiku, includes 151 poems (haiku & senryu), 17 linked forms (haibun, renku, rengay and sequences), and 5 critical pieces on the reading, writing and study of the genre.

refugee child—
folding and unfolding
his paper boat

p.54

(This poem had received First Prize in the Sharpening The Green Pencil Haiku Contest 2017)

International Women’s Haiku Festival 2018

Delighted to have two poems featured on Jennifer Hambrick’s  blog Inner Voices, for a second year hosting the International Women’s Haiku Festival 2018! This is how Jennifer introduces them in her blog:

Two laser-sharp senryu by poet Stella Pierides explore women’s age dynamics and the eternal question of women’s dress and sexuality.

dressed to kill
she asks
if I’m retired

Jennifer says:

Well. Why not just ask about her final wishes? The picture is this senryu is crystal clear: a younger woman, in full heat of professional and/or personal ambition and wearing the clothes to prove it, asks the poetic speaker, whom I read to be an older woman, if she’s retired – read: no longer competition, no longer someone to be concerned with. To be charitable, maybe it’s just an observation: the older woman looks older, looks perhaps comfortable in her own skin, and the younger woman just doesn’t get a) that retired doesn’t equal out to pasture, and b) that remarking, even obliquely, on someone’s age is at best insensitive. And what if the poetic speaker actually is retired? Picasso said it best: “It takes a very long time to become young.”

International Haiku Women's Festivaland:

 

knee-length skirt
the extent
of her rebellion

.

Jennifer writes:

This little senryu is situated perfectly between the rock and the hard place that, eventually, every woman encounters. Look sexy, be sexy, the world instructs. But not too sexy. In this poem, rebellion against the social expectations that a girl or woman be prim and proper results in a shorter skirt. But rebellion against social expectations doesn’t necessarily eliminate the expectations. There is potentially a price to pay – the demise of one’s reputation – for breaking the rules, hence the “extent of her rebellion” is defined by the knees. It could be fear from social pressure that keeps everything north of the knees covered, or it could just be the poem subject’s authentic assessment of her own comfort.

Many thanks to Jennifer Hambrick for including my poems!

I am very much looking forward to reading and enjoying the rest of the month’s contributions with Jennifer’s insightful commentaries.

A Walk Through the Cypress Grove

We die alone. We disembark on the Isle of the Dead with our heads filled with illusions. Vague memories of loves and hurts, envy and resentments. Perhaps holding hands with those who still can bear us, but alone with our regrets. Turning around for a last look, our eyes, swimming with sadness, rest on the ramshackle boats we leave behind.

white light beyond the crucible

*

In Modern Haiku, 49:1, 2018

snow,haibun,

The Surface of Things

haibun On its 50th anniversary, the Museum received a gift towards establishing a Collection of Lost Words. The three curators entrusted with this project, feeling an overwhelming sense of responsibility and apprehension, set about their work immediately. At their first meeting, the youngest of the three suggested they might place an ad in the national press, or even tweet about it asking for submissions. The oldest suggested they go on a retreat together with hand-picked etymologists, philosophers, and linguists, in other words experts, to brain-storm. The woman on the team suggested they search online catalogues for words no longer in use. Words written on tablets and papyri, words from extinct languages. For weeks they discussed the relationship between words and the worlds they described; words and the worlds they gave rise to. Forbidden words, or overused words that lost their meaning. As a result of intense deliberations, a special linguistic search engine was built capable of scouring for lost words. It didn’t take long for results to start coming in. The first word to be returned was ‘love’.

cracked earth
last year’s seedling
yet to sprout

Frogpond 40:3,  p.63, 2017

Greek Dinner Around the World 2018

It was this time of the year again! 15th of January, Greek Dinner Around the World Day! The world’s largest dinner party celebrating Greek people, culture and influences that have shaped our world.

The event involves promising to host a dinner party at home or a local Greek restaurant, inviting others to the celebration of the beauty and wisdom of Greece. Partners to this initiative share experiences and photos of their event, and tweet using the hashtags #GreekDinner, #GreekDinnerAroundTheWorld, and #Jan15.

Athina, YouGoCulture

It was serendipity that on exactly this day I came across the digital platform You Go Culture  by the university of Athens introducing Greek heritage to the world. They say:

“You Go Culture” introduces Greek culture in an extrovert manner on two distinguished levels: to showcase the country’s priceless cultural heritage and to familiarize the international public with aspects of the Greek society of today.

and

Get inspired, encounter past and present, discover world famous destinations around Mediterranean Sea or gain authentic Mediterranean experiences and reward yourself with a virtual or real mosaic of original Greek spirit.

Check it out! Take a virtual tour!

My own celebratory event involved a delicious meal in a Greek restaurant, excellent company (I can reveal that all my guests came with beautiful, newly done hair!), with my 2 most recent books on the table: Ekphrasis: Between Image and Word (Fruit Dove Press, 2017), a collaboration with Maria Pierides and 24 of her paintings with haiku responses by yours truly, and Of This World (Red Moon Press, 2017), my collection of haibun (prose with poetry) with several poems on Greek themes / settings.

Greek Dinner Around the World

A warm, fun, memorable event!

You can obtain a copy of my books by visiting Amazon, Red Moon Press, or by contacting me via the contact form in this website.

And if, having read last year’s blog post, you are wondering whether this year I was a bit wiser, whether this year I followed the Aristotelian

Παν μέτρον άριστον, i.e., Everything in moderation

when it came to consuming the gargantuan amounts of Greek delicacies served at the restaurant,
the answer will disappoint you. No matter, there’s always next year!

Many thanks to Keri Douglas for her tireless efforts in promoting this event, and to all who became part of this global network of celebrating Greece.

Literature, Art, Culture, Society, and lots of Haiku