A Quarterly Journal of Contemporary English Language Haibun
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September 2008, vol 4 no 3

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Jane Whittle


Enfolded in spongy grey cloud even grass loses its colour. Grey seeps from water and stone into hills and trees, dissolving their edges, smudging the details of shadow.

Damp rots the bones. I am solid and cold as the land, almost too heavy to breathe.

Low skies cry out for beaten drums to shift them. What songs did they sing to 'make the welkin ring'? They feasted through the night to see how long it would last.

huddled together
blowing sparks from their damp fires
to tickle the stars

One night the cloud clears. The moon—an outsize silver hole in the sky—never had so much black space to travel through. It rises and sets so far north all the shadows go the wrong way.

considering a hip operation
I see dewdrops dance

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