Tomislav Maretić, CR and Lynette Arden, AU




Renku ~ Yotsumono*


A perfect day


willows in the dusk–
the budding catkins
barely visible    /t

the boy wading the stream
sends a ripple through reed ears    /ly

finally looking
at the sunset... just
a perfect day    /t

the crystal glass stem
catches the blush of the wine   /ly



Morning calm


morning calm –
a butterfly's wings hover
over the sea    /t

a chequerboard of grass fires
slowly mottles the hills    /ly

tobacco scent
in the crowd someone
is smoking a pipe    /t

gliding around the corner
she signals him with a glance    /ly





the metal detector
uncovers her ring    /ly

the shells on the table
dried by the spring sun    /t

whistling into the wind
from the sloping rooftop
brave boy    /ly

a paper plane launched
from the attic...    /t





in the street tree
passing traffic    /ly

winding its way through
the spring field's colors    /t

after the bargain sale
the kelpie in the ute
barks at nothing    /ly

with a single nail tap
the painter hangs his landscape    /t



About Renku ~ Yotsumono*

Yotsumono is an exercise devised by the present author (John Carley, UK). It extends the historic Mitsumono exercise elsewhere on these pages by the addition of ageku as a closing verse (Renku Reckoner).

The structure of the resultant four verse sequence is similar to that of the Chinese Jueju (Wade-Giles: Chue Chu), known in Japanese as the Zekku. It may be that the Yotsumono comes to be viewed as having some merit as a distinct form in its own right.

Two poets take turns to compose a sequence comprising hokku, wakiku, daisan and ageku, the initial verses being shorn of such performative functions of greeting or augury as may be found in formal composition.

In order to guard against thematic development, all discussion of the meaning of, or intention behind, any aspect of a particular verse, the conceptual linkage between verses, or the overall direction of the poem is disbarred until completion of the text. By contrast active discussion of the phonics of the piece is encouraged.

~John Carley, UK

Renku Reckoner: Yotsumono









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