A day in Ottawa, haiku and baseball

Museum of Civilization, Gatineau, Quebec, October 2011 (Photo: David Elliott)

I love this photo of John, and his haiku response to it below. (Apologies for the spacing between the lines and the missing indentation for lines one and three, but I can’t make this program obey. In fact, I’m writing all of this text before the haiku so that it doesn’t squish together in the thumbnail version of the entry. Okay, I think I’ve filled enough space to make it safe to include the haiku.)

autumn morning

an old man balances

on a railing’s shadow

–John Scarlett

Long-time Rossie resident John Scarlett–who many know as the blacksmith of Little Tree Forge–sent me this picture and the haiku from a recent excursion to Ottawa with the Elliotts. I’ve never met David Elliott, but I know him well–John introduced me to David via an online renga group. Over the last five years or so, we have created a number of these group poems–sometimes taking almost a year to finish one, sometimes just a matter of months. David is a terrific poet who kindly put up with my clumsy contributions, offering gentle suggestions here and there. John, too, is a wonderful poet when he’s not pounding the iron.

Ah, you say, but what about baseball? After all, it’s the end of the post-season, approaching the World Series. Check out this review from the NY Times when Baseball Haiku: The Best Haiku Ever Written About the Game was published in 2007. You’ll find David’s haiku cited in the review (five of them appear in the anthology, edited by Cor van den Heuvel). For more about the book–a highly regarded collection–here’s the link to Amazon’s info on it.

Share your own haiku in the comment section.

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