My husband and I were at infant and junior school together. We have a photograph of us when we were in Miss Sanderson’s class, and we not only recognise our younger selves but we can also remember the names of all the children in the photograph. We were both energetic youngsters; David was mad about football and I loved running and long jump. We ran, cycled, scooted or skated everywhere, chasing around the playground or the block of council maisonettes where we both grew up. Every autumn we picked blackberries from the bushes by the railway line, kicked fallen leaves and collected glossy horse chestnuts from the trees at the front of our block, some to play conkers and some for the class nature table. Every September we put on our newer, bigger school uniforms and went back to school a year older. That was a lifetime ago and a lot has happened. For one thing, I can’t run like I used to; I get breathless after walking even a short distance. I’ve lived in a number of different countries and studied at several universities. I’ve had a range of jobs. I’ve given birth to and brought up a beautiful daughter, who is married now. I have lost family and friends to illness and accidents. Two things haven’t changed throughout my life: my love of poetry and the unwavering love of my soul mate, my best and oldest friend.
as the seasons change
leaves, conkers and blackberries
fill up our table
© Kim M. Russell, 2016
My response to dVerse Poets Pub Haibun Monday: Winds of Change
Toni has been discussing “changes in seasons” – fall to winter, winter to spring, spring to summer, summer to fall or, seasons in our lives – youth to young adult, young adult to adult, adult to middle aged, middle aged to older aged. She has explained that Japanese aesthetic is all about change – impermanence – and that Japanese has several words associated with change: mujo, mono no aware (pathos of things), wabi (subdued, austere beauty), sabi (rustic patina), yugen (mysterious profundity), iki (refined style), and kire (cutting).
She has asked us to write about change: how we have noticed the coming of fall or another season; changes in our bodies as we grow older; our melancholy (or joy) at the passing of things; how our lives have changed since falling in love, getting divorced, and so on, in a one paragraph haibun, ending with a nature-based haiku.