The Abandoned Haibun

A poem is never finished, only abandoned.

This is the post that gave me the thoughts and the photographs for the haibun I recently provided the link to.

It was originally about the passing of the old families and the way the houses have become country parks and similar things. The editor preferred it as a haibun about a place, and I preferred to be published, so it’s now shorter and it’s about a pond. It is more in the haiku tradition in this form, stressing nature and lightness, where the original was less light and more about humans.

However, they were only words and there are plenty more where they came from. I am already at work on a new version of the original piece, which will be back, and will feature a lake when it next appears. It will also be longer, though It will probably remain unpublishable It will live again in  hope if not in print. I was going to make a clever point about haibun, matter and anti-matter at this point but I googled “matter” to check my accuracy and now realise I’m a lot less clever than I thought. Same goes for my witty linking of quark the particle and quark the cheese – I didn’t realise that cheese could be so complicated. I’ve given it up as a bad job.

Sometimes you have to know when enough is enough. It is probably better to leave you with a vision of purple rhododendrons and thoughts of voles, than it is to make a bad joke about cheese.

In the haiku, I note the mention of history is slightly discordant now that the main focus has moved away from. If I’d thought about it longer I may well have altered that too.

As the opening quote suggests, we just keep working on things until we decide to leave them. Time to leave this one and move on to the next imperfect work.



21 thoughts on “The Abandoned Haibun

  1. Laurie Graves

    So true! I would edit endlessly, if I didn’t have a publishing deadline. I always find something, a little error, a better way of phrasing a sentence. At some point, I just have to let it go. But Paul Valery was right.

  2. Lavinia Ross

    Thoughts of voles? I have seen enough of them this summer. They dug holes everywhere. They scurry underfoot! There was a population explosion of voles this year.

    1. quercuscommunity Post author

      You clearly need more owls. Or cats. 🙂

      Our water voles are under pressure but the field vole is still common and, like yours, has a population surge every few years. We’ve never had as many as you describe though, and I could see that being too many for comfort.

      1. quercuscommunity Post author

        We used to have owls at the end of the street (we have a scout hut with woodland 100 yards away, despite living in town) but they seem to have moved on.

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