natural shelter (kikôbun)

Early in the morning, raindrops on fresh cut grass tickled her feet. She stopped a moment to listen to her friends chirp ‘bon matin’. Spade in one hand, box of marigolds in the other, she reached her vegetable garden. Kneeling at the edge, she set the spade aside. No need for metal when the earth was still loose and wet. Digging bare hands in the rich soil, the feel on her fingers made her feel alive; the earthy scents of soil, clay and last night’s drizzle awakened her sense of being.  She planted the marigolds outlining the entire garden and got a whiff of the pungent, musky scent, pleasing to humans yet, repugnant to insects.

Wikipedia

morning drizzle
oozes pleasant scents
petrichor

alluring scents,
insects run away
marigolds

© Tournesol ’15

CP Time Machine, ‘perfume’

High Tea at The Plaza (haibun)

Photo Credits: Palm Court – The Plaza

I remember accompanying my friend on a business trip to New York City in 2001. I had not been to Manhattan since I was a child. I was amazed how it had changed and it was so clean.  During the morning Jake was at his convention and we would meet later mid afternoon.   One afternoon we went to The Plaza for high tea in the Palm Court.  It was truly an experience, he said, I just had to see.  The waiters were elegantly dressed and walked like they were actually floating slightly above the floor;  there was a musician playing the violin in the middle of the court. It was quite impressive.  It was like walking into a 1950’s movie…well, for me anyway.

We sat on the elegant chairs and waited to be served.  We had arrived a bit late however and no one was in a mad rush to serve us.  I enjoyed listening to the music and observing people who seemed accustomed to this kind of attention. I wonder if my wide eyes and open mouth threw them off…the waiters, I mean.   Oh well, at $25 a person for a slice of cake and a cuppa we decided since it was  almost five o’clock, we would go up to The Rose Club for happy hour and I had the best Manhattan I had ever had.  The patrons were certainly more sociable.  And that was my experience with High Tea at The Plaza.

noble patrons
sip tea from fine china,
violin serenades

© Tournesol’15

Photo credits: The Rose Club – Plaza Hotel

Mister Winter (haibun)

© Clr '15
© Clr ’15

Walking to do some errands today was challenging but with the studs under my boots, my wool socks in my lamb wool lined boots (Saute Mouton), my warm Gortex mitts, cagoule and wool hat, long wool coat I was almost perfect…my cheeks and nose were so cold…my eyes cried…the wind so cold…brrrr at -20C. Fortunately, my son tells me it will go up to -2C tomorrow…yay!! It will be a lovely day to walk to work. I think I will take the longer route if it is this mild and maybe get some shots of winter scenes.

Mister Winter
stay a spell, drink a cuppa
warm up your innards

twenty below
bitter winds burned my cheeks
drink some hot tea

exhale that warm breath of yours
make me smile up at the sky

© Tournesol ’15

sans titre (haibun)

Walking home last night at the Métro Bonaventure Station, it was later than usual. It was passed eleven for I usually see several homeless persons lying on the marble sidings soaking up their last minutes of warm slumber. Between eleven and one in the morning, I am not sure if the police alert them of the time or if they have internal clocks but it was after 23:40 and I only noticed one man sitting by the door where late commuters rush off to catch their busses off the island of Montreal.

People kept walking by and the man was not holding out his cap nor mumbling anything as is usually the case when we go by some homeless persons…he looked so tired.  I felt bad no one was stopping…true it was late and many were coming home from work…not all late evening travelers are revelers.

I sat down for a moment putting down my backpack, rummaging through the mess looking for my change purse, searching for change to give to this man. I rarely carry money but change, mind you, here in Canada means $1 and $2 coins along with the quarters, dimes and nickles…we got rid of our pennies. Good I found enough to get a coffee and soup at Tims perhaps {I must pick up some coupons from Tim Horton to have handy}.

20150115_234334_Android smiling homeless

The man looked at me and I could not see he had a smile {without my glasses} but I did take a few photos} that I had noticed only after seeing the photo.  As I walked passed him, stopped to give him my coins, he thanked me so kindly with such a nice smile…the same smile I saw later on that photo.

20150115_234334_Android en tanka faded

Such a worry for the homeless people this time of year…last night it was dipping to below 20C and it snowed all night…a nightmare for anyone stuck outside in this bitter cold for more than an hour.

20150115_234334_Android fr tanka fading

© Tournesol ’15/01/16

farewell my friend (haibun)

Haibun Thinking

Haibun Thinking

LITERARY QUOTE PROMPT

“I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading!
How much sooner one tires of anything than of a book!”
~ Jane Austen (Pride & Prejudice)

Reading a book is like meeting a new friend. Getting acquainted with their family and friends. Once immersed into a novel, I often get lost in “their world”. Such an escapism for me is rewarding and therapeutic.   It is my brief vacation in another world allowing my mind, heart and soul to detach from realities of life. Every break, every free moment, long bus and metro rides, I get to meet up with my new friend of the week.  Waiting in a line at the grocery store or department store, I pull out my book.  I forget myself so much that I chuckle out loud or weep.

If I am on the last chapter and either on the bus or at a café,  I will put the book down and wait to savour that last chapter quietly at home. I turn each page slowly, reading even slower,  because I am saying goodbye to a friend. Putting down the book, I rewind and fast forward images and memories of my friend’s story before finally saying goodbye.

lost in letters
forming new friends
enchanted am I

savouring
precious last words
the last chapter

melancholy tides,
turning the last page
whispering farewell

(c) Tournesol ’14

Lise Lafrance

https://pookypoetry.files.wordpress.com/2014/05/write-a-poem-in-which-the-first-letter-of-every-line-spells-out-the-name-of-somebody-you-admire-and-the-poem-explains-why-you-admire-them.jpg

 

Let me introduce you to a special friend
incredibly compassionate and extremely
selfless, she cares for youths, friends and family
extraordinary benevolence for felines as well.
Lise would drive to a city park for many years
at the same time every night to feed feral cats,
furry felines fed in a park,  from food kept in her car,
ready to go, she had kibbles and moist food
available for the fussier kind…just in case…
no person, social worker, counsellor or friend
could be as generous, going beyond her call of duty
even digging in her own modest pockets to help clients in need.

 

A small tribute to Lise Lafrance, friend, former colleague, brilliant and compassionate person.

© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/05/18

Submitted for Prompt 18, PookyPoetry on Admiration Acrostic

 

Don’t you feel sad?

Since last December I have had many class interviews on the phone students about the work I do, working on a youth help line. One question that came out often, just warmed my heart. The fact that these youths were concerned about me!  So when I saw this prompt to write a poem and start it with a question, this came to mind.

 https://pookypoetry.files.wordpress.com/2014/05/write-a-poem-that-opens-with-a-question.jpg

 

Don’t you feel sad when you go home at night
listening to unhappy stories about this or that?

Why I guess sometimes I do feel sad alright!
That is really sweet of you to ask me that.

Do you cry sometimes?

Why yes, I may feel a tear
run down my cheek
from time to time.

So how do you feel better?

I think you are wondering
how I practice self-care.
I am very much aware
I need to be mindful
of my feelings as well
or else I would not be capable
working here as long as I’ve been able.
I talk to my supervisor
some of the time
or a counsellor friend,
they always will lend
a good listening ear
so I can continue working
day after day right here.
I walk a lot, write a lot too
I read for distraction
and love comedy shows
like The Big Bank Theory
gets me laughing quite loudly.
There is always a counsellor
or manager available
to allow me to debrief
which is a great relief!
Thank you so very much
for asking and caring such!

© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/05/10

Submittted for: PookyDailyPoetryPrompt # 9 Open with a Question

The message I am selling

2014-04-14 20.21.10

What am I selling? Well, when I first started my blog Stop the Stigma it was to get on my soapbox and bitch about stuff. You know, those who used politically incorrect words to identify people with special needs and people with any kind of mental health condition. I had followed a few blogs on various topics and the first one that stirred me to start this was Herding Cats.

I am not an expert but yes, I am an advocate and realized Stigma went a long way and I wanted to also talk about racism, bullying, sexism, homophobia and any label we put on anyone to discriminate them. And whether it is intentional or not…it is still NOT okay.

We often talk about the misunderstanding of mental health because we do not see it but there is also the misinterpretation of chronic pain. There are so many physical ailments and conditions that cause pain to people at various degrees. Unfortunately, these people are often misjudged or have little or no sympathy because no one can see scars or physical proof of the debilitating condition. So that too is included in this blog. And this latter item has touched me for suffering myself, with chronic pain, I feel supported here. I also admire these heroes that suffer so much more than me and share positive posts of support and encouragement to their readers.

If I were to choose a word of what I am selling, I guess it is awareness…creating an awareness on such issues that are important. I often read in comments, “Gee, I had not thought about that.” That is my bonus.

I never realized that I had joined a community that was so caring and the interests varied so much. Poets, writers would comment here and there and that gave me a glimpse on other possibilities to write. So that is when I started my other blog, Cher Shares. This was a place to express myself in writing with narratives and poems. I learned and am still learning from amazing and generous creative writers here to improve on what I do have a passion…writing. Thanks to interesting blogs that offer prompts to tickle my muse, I have produced more. What am I selling at Cher Shares? Nothing, really, I am just sharing with friends and WordPress friends my thoughts in stories and poetry.

I love to talk about things
that are close to me,
mean something to me,
and that is my message
at Stop The Stigma;
I enjoy writing
in prose and poetry
sharing my humble narratives
with WordPress relatives
at my blog, Cher Shares.

 

© Cheryl-Lynn 2014/04/24

Submitted for: The Dungeon Prompts, Season 2, Week 17.  The message we are selling