Haibun – The Duckpond

I did say a while ago that I really ought to post some haibun. Unfortunately, I can’t remember which ones I’ve already posted so you may have to be bored with repeats at times. There’s also, I suppose, the chance that you will be bored even if I haven’t posted the poem before. The header picture is the actual pond I used to walk round and think about ducks. You don’t get that sort of service from Wordsworth do you? Did he bother to draw you a bunch of daffodils? It’s strange how bleak a duckpond can be in winter. There are few places to equal it, though Siberia and a tax man’s heart both come close.

This is the post I was originally going to do for my first of the day. It’s now the second because I treated you to a discourse on blood tests and rejection instead.

On the header picture you may be able to see something white standing up at the front of the island. It is the stump of a tree that had to be taken down, and it has, as you can see from one of the lower photographs, become a wood carving ofย  heron and duck.

The Duckpond

a mallard calls
and I recall last winter
dark water

The black water reflects passing clouds and the birds feed quietly. There is no courtship, no disputing of territory and no chiding of wandering offspring.

Low sun flashes off the green heads of the mallard drakes and a shopping trolley shimmers just below the surface, a reminder of more riotous times. Across the water, the lights of the cafรฉ come on, drawing us in towards the scent of coffee.

north wind
rattling in the tree
the last brown leaf


This was one of my first published haibun, from four or five years ago. First published in Wales Haiku Journal.

Mandarin Duck – Arnot Hill Park

Heron and Duck – Arnold

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