I ... entered the poem of life, whose purpose is ... simply to witness the beauties of the world, to discover the many forms that love can take. (Barabara Blackman in 'Glass After Glass')

These poems are works in progress and may be updated without notice. Nevertheless copyright applies to all writings here and all photos (which are either my own or used with permission). Thank you for your comments. I read and appreciate them all, and reply here to specific points that seem to need it — or as I have the leisure. Otherwise I reciprocate by reading and commenting on your blog posts as much as possible.

26 May 2017

Prelude to a Romantic Weekend

Arriving on my doorstep suddenly
he thrust at me a bunch of roses, red
for passion, offered awkwardly,
suggesting now would be the time for bed.
My house-mate and her children, luckily,
were going out. I whispered what he’d said,
that he’d decided we should ‘break the ice’.
She winked and said she’d stay out longer. Nice!

We’d planned a beautiful weekend away
to change our new romance to an affair:
a seaside venue meant for holiday
where we could play, let down our hair …
but that was some time hence, he said – and hey,
we’d want to be relaxed then, free of care
about performance, revelation, trust,
and all those issues that might hinder lust.

And so we had our first time then and there
inside my double bed, too long unshared.
Now, understand, we were not young; we were
the later end of middle age. We bared
imperfect bodies to each other’s stare
and moved like adolescents newly paired –
like clumsy virgins! But we worked it out
quite soon. And yes, his bright idea was right.


In twenty years of happy marriage, till
he left me when the angels called him home,
we loved each other thoroughly and well.
Reality was sweeter than a dream.
And memories can sweeten my heart still,
as if he never left – so it can seem.
He loved to give me roses. In my head
he still says: ‘Get yourself some roses – red!’

Written for Poets United's Midweek Motif ~ Flowers, and simultaneously for dVerse Form for All – Ottava Rima.

24 May 2017

Ancient Road – tan renga

ancient road…
the trails of the masters
absorbed in fallen leaves                            © Adjei Agyei-Baah

thickening over the years
rarely disturbed by new feet                 © Rosemary Nissen-Wade

the road climbing higher
towards the mountaintop                          © Rosemary Nissen-Wade

For Carpe Diem's Tan Renga Challenge 2017 #15

Springtime – tan renga

Springtime in Edo,
Not a day passes without
A temple bell sold.                                    © Kikaku

Happy sounds rise on the air –
laughter and hopeful prayers.                    © Rosemary Nissen-Wade


I think of how little I know
of Edo and its temple.                                © Rosemary Nissen-Wade

Written for Carpe Diem's Tan Renga Challenge 2017 #14

Bamboo – tan renga

waving candlelight into the night
wind                                                        © Jane Reichhold

the scent of the tropics
when you and I were young                         © Rosemary Nissen-Wade


thin stems rattling together
by my father’s fernery                                   © Rosemary Nissen-Wade

Written for Carpe Diem's Tan Renga Challenge 2017 #13

And linking to the latest Tuesday Platform at 'imaginary garden with real toads'.

20 May 2017

Fragment and Phrase

rainy night
my cat wakes up 


my friend cooks
in my kitchen
purring cat


cold night out
bent over the stove
she warms food


morning fog lifts
the warble of magpies
fading as they fly

At Carpe Diem we are asked to write 'fragment and phrase' haiku in honour of the late Jane Reichhold. (Hope I got these right!)

Dandelion, dandelion – tan renga

dandelion dandelion
on the sandy beach
spring opens its eyes                    © Ogiwara Seisensui

a new morning 
blooms shiny gold                        © Rosemary Nissen-Wade


awakening to sunshine
and sparkling ocean                      © Rosemary Nissen-Wade

Written for Carpe Diem's Tan Renga Challenge 2017 #12

(I found this one really difficult to extend – probably because I regard the original haiku as complete and perfect in itself.)

17 May 2017

Taste of Nature – tan renga

taste of nature–
sweet blackberry bushes
sing to child and bees                           © Sara McNulty

the hum of pleasure deepens
through the sunny afternoon                 © Rosemary Nissen-Wade


the tart-sweet juices spread,
reddening mouths and fingers               © Rosemary Nissen-Wade

For Carpe Diem's Tan Renga Challenge 2017 #11

And linking to Poet s United's Poetry Pantry #354

16 May 2017

An Autumn Leaf – tan renga

now it reveals its hidden side
and now the other—thus it falls,
an autumn leaf                                        © Ryokan Taigu

the light face, the dark face, 
are only one leaf, one whole                 © Rosemary Nissen-Wade


a butterfly rises
its bright wings flickering                      © Rosemary Nissen-Wade

For Tan Renga Challenge 2017 #10 at Carpe Diem

Also linking to Tuesday Platform May 16 2017 at 'imaginary garden with real toads'

15 May 2017

Leaves Float Away – tan renga

autumn evening
like whispered prayers
leaves float away                             © Dolores Fegan

darkness settles slowly
warm like prayers answered            © Rosemary Nissen-Wade 


my outdoor temple breathes
peaceful in the soft breeze               © Rosemary Nissen-Wade

Another  prompt from Chevrefeuille at Carpe Diem: 
Tan renga challenge 2017 #9.