Renga – Swan Dive (qbit/sarasouthwest)

Our swan meets Nikki Papandreou,
The Greek Olympic diver

Eye to eye and nose to beak
They keep their poise and watch each other

She waddles to the edge of grace
Submerged, he breasts for air

Wings cut through air,
Arms slice through water

How fierce the thrill
That twists as one?

How strong the force
That separates them?

Jackknifed time entangles
Their fall as flight through space

Becomes reunion of bone and skin and
Hand and feather, a merging and emerging

Yet such ecstasy, transgression,
Cannot queen the body long

This body’s reaching out for that
Still point, where rise turns into fall

The ancient moment, amphibian mind –
Zeno’s paradox suspended

A moment free of up, of down, all
Movement frozen in a blue eternity



Conspirators: qbit, sarasouthwest
qbit’s Renga Challenge – Swan Dive
For Jilly’s October Casting Bricks

Renga – Swan Dive (qbit/Jilly)

Our swan meets Nikki Papandreou,
The Greek Olympic diver

Brandishing a cygnet ring
Bargaining with Poseidon’s wave

“Nikki” she laughed, “suburban demi-god.”
“Prove your flipcraft of the Argonauts.”

Oh, Siren, thought he, in the face of her derision
Fifty heroes shall stand and see

A white Medusa, her neck a downy serpent –
“For Lysistrata and the Amazons!”

“Apply the wrench, my lovely wench”
The Golden Fleece denied

Head over heels, they mirror the gods
Unbounded by the sea or heaven

A Promethean dive from dizzying heights
a mythological echo and splash

Their wild swan chase to raise Atlantis,
Oysters, smoked in their beds

Ocean crossroads deal carved in stone
Volcano ash scatters the sweetest atone

Conspirators: qbit, Jilly
qbit’s Renga Challenge – Swan Dive
For Jilly’s October Casting Bricks

Renga Challenge – Swan Dive

Our swan meets Nikki Papandreou,
The Greek Olympic diver

[Your couplet…]

[Repeat 5x]


Administration, Thoughts, Plots, Plans &tc:

Proposed as a Renga of unstructured couplets for two people, but certainly fun if folks want to do one with more people, although then we’d probably want 20 couplets instead of 10.

I’m hoping that by keeping each writer to two lines, our push/pull on each other stays strong, but leaves enough room to develop a new idea, pivot, etc.

PLEASE SIGN UP IN THE COMMENTS BELOW, and we will work out logistics and kick off the working versions in another post.

Group Renga for Jilly’s October Casting Bricks Challenge

More background and thoughts on Regna: here.

Life Craft

The list of things you can’t know
Includes songs of the New Hebrides –

How to whistle south of the Solomons,
And arias of who died in the Coconut War.

You laugh, but it is not your sons
Who are fallen.

I insist on archipelagos,
Obscure republics and music of the spheres;

You teach me to recognize my mother,
Distant in the constellation of Virgo.

Chiaroscuro that passes the time,
Our hopeless conjuring as we drift.



For Wednesday Poetry Prompts: 413

Haibun – “Shimo no koe ~ First Frost”

Well, I’m not so sure that frosting the cake or anything else before you bake it is a good idea. Leave it to the Japanese: ‘Shimo no koe – First Frost!”, probably some kind of trick they know how to do – a Samurai baking thing. What if it is a Zen Koan: “What was your cake before it was baked?” asks the Zen Master. “First Frost!” replies the student. I don’t know, it is beyond my limited mind/body duality Western brain. If I tried to frost something first there would be nothing but goo.

Maple sugar drips
Baked long in Summer’s oven –
Cool Autumn Frosting



For dVerse Haibun Monday