Tuesday, 23 November 2021

Forest Haiku


Two of my haiku were published in a fine line Spring 2021, the magazine of the New Zealand Poetry Society. 

About haiku 
Maybe you learned to write haiku at school and were told haiku were poems of three lines with 5 -7 -5 syllables. Today haiku can be 2 or 3 lines and are almost always less than 17 syllables. Haiku use strong images to convey the essence of a moment in nature.

Notes: Krummholz is a word that English language has borrowed from German to mean a tree that is stunted, bent or twisted. It wasn't that easy finding photos that were an exact match, as these haiku were written about moments of seeing that weren't necessarily captured by a camera.

Find out more about writing haiku

This is written as a guide for teachers, but is useful for anyone considering writing haiku, especially the definition and explanation of haiku on page 3:


Friday, 9 July 2021

Bringing Back the Ocean-going Birds

Mention ocean-going birds and the mighty long-winged albatross comes to mind. But the ball of fluff I hold in my hands is no heavier than a pompom and not much larger. 

White-faced storm petrel chick

Weighing in at just 40-50 grams, white-faced storm petrels are a small miracle. The chick is so tiny, so delicate. But when I loosen my hold, the Jesus Christ bird rockets out, its long legs springing it off into the bushes. Once fledged this bird will be walking on water, its long legs and webbed feet bounding across the waves. For now though, I must wrangle it safely back into its burrow.

Monday, 3 May 2021

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Reef heron from 2019

Reef Heron

The smooth grey rock

on the jagged shore

lifts up

separates from the shadows

two legs stalk

head darts

beak breaks the mirror

surface of the pool 

reef heron snaps and swallows

becomes rock again.

Yesterday I was down at Pukerua Bay beach, the water was glassy blue and the rocks dark shadows. I watched as a rock changed shape, became a reef heron, snapped some food and settled back again into it's rock-like posture. I'm having fun writing nature poetry!