Answering a challenge to condense three of Basho’s wonderful ku into one.  To see the whole challenge visit the original post

It is unexpectedly cold tonight and I am curled up under two quilts, wondering how I came to be in this unknown place.  The moon is lost among drifting stars that call to me with a strange intensity.

falling sick
in a field of dry grass
autumn wandering




I planted a small deciduous Azalea in the front garden when we first came here.  I didn’t have much hope that it would survive because our soil is poor and damp, and at one stage I thought it was dead.  But this spring these beautiful, tightly furled buds are finally open, looking like crushed silk.

a geisha
swirls the creases
from her kimono


That Christmas Eve in 1953 when a lahar swept down the Whangaehu River from Ruapehu’s crater lake, carrying away a train packed with people and presents.  151 people were killed that night, including the engineer and the fireman.

sadness of the water swirling
across the battered rocks and buttresses
where nothing remains
but the memories
of a Christmas that never was
and some who never made it home

(Ironically Tangiwai in Maori means weeping water)