Poems, Pandemics, and Preservation

3 Jul

[Prefatory Note: with the help of a friend I taught myself to write poems in a haiku form following classic Japanese guidance. Poetry has long been a place of sanctuary for me, and in recent months it has also offered me the pleasures of ‘lockdown therapy.’ I hope I am not abusing readers of this blog by posting a sample, and hoping others will be drawn to join an invisible community of haiku lovers.]

 

Poems, Pandemics, and Preservation

 

Lonely despair wilts

Colorful blooming flowers

Can’t hide fragrance

 

 

Joy is a heart wave

Complacency vanishes

Blue replaces gray

 

 

black while jogging

Ahmaud Arbery

Then dead like King

 

 

By choice blue birds fly

Above the prisoners below

Singing their freedom songs

 

 

Enough of dreaming

The scent of this rose is real

Holding the stem I bleed

 

 

 

7 Responses to “Poems, Pandemics, and Preservation”

  1. Corinne Whitaker at 8:18 am #

    Dear Richard,

    You know, you can publish a second memoir just of poetry. Something to think about…

    Love,

    Corinne

  2. roberthstiver at 12:42 pm #

    Professor Falk, I am most impressed with your success with haiku! I’m not “into” that genre, but, as one whose 49-years-long wife Masako was Japanese (Okinawan-Japanese, to be a bit more specific), I am a longtime Japanophile (speaking fluent, while surely not academic, conversational Japanese)

    In hope that you will indulge me, I have these reflections anent your nicely alliterative “poems, pandemics, and preservation”:

    • roberthstiver at 12:13 am #

      Hmm. I’m not sure why my (e-mail) post to Professor Falk was truncated in this space. Perhaps no one will in interested in it at this point, but I’ll paste it here —

      Professor Falk, I am most impressed with your success with haiku! I’m not “into” that genre, but, as one whose 49-years-long wife Masako was Japanese (Okinawan-Japanese, to be a bit more specific), I am a longtime Japanophile (speaking fluent, while surely not academic, conversational Japanese)

      In hope that you will indulge me, I have these reflections anent your nicely alliterative “poems, pandemics, and preservation”:

      –My mom was a (minor but) published poet, mostly free verse, and I’ve come to admire her body of work increasingly in this last phase of my life.

      –I’m an amateur pianist…it helps preserve my life balance (more alliteration! — piano preservation). I’ve been trying for far too long to master and maintain a level of proficiency in Schumann’s profound “Der Dichter Spricht”; in a sense, dichter Mom is “speaking” to me via it. Here’s an elegant rendering by the incomparable Vladimir Horowitz: https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=Vladamir+Horiwitz+plays+Schumann%27s+Der+Dichter+spricht&view=detail&mid=021BFD455855105D4939021BFD455855105D4939&FORM=VIRE

      –Another musical connection to “poetry”: I recently re-acquainted myself with Fibich’s “Poem.” It is one of the most sublime, yet soaring, short compositions known to me, truly a “moment of magic” [yet more alliteration!]. I have no doubt that you will “soar” along with me: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YeNUV9_sCrM .

      Please allow me to conclude with my most sincere prayer that you are well and content. You (along with Ralph Nader and a very few others) are among my few heroes; you help to “preserve” me, even as HDThoreau’s “life of quiet desperation” always looms ominously in my mind and soul.

      (I was unsure whether to “comment” via your blog or use this method of communication….)

      With much aloha and respect from Hawaii…Bob

      P.s. (7-12-2020: Viva Palestine!

      • Richard Falk at 3:39 am #

        Thanks, Bob, for generous words of affirmation, and sharing your own ways of walking
        the tightrope of life in this period where staying healthy needs balancing with the joys
        of life.

        My own lockdown therapeutic program, aside from haikus, has been watching kittens grow from birth,
        losing ping-pong matches daily to my talented wife, losing chess games to a superior software opponent, and
        struggling to make my memoir short enough to be readable. From our fishing village in Turkey such
        setbacks seem bearable. Just before we were confined by COVID we had planned a trip to Hawaii, partly for
        a conference and partly to renew a love affair with the islands!

        You were lucky to have a mother who wrote poetry. Mine did little beyond excelling in tennis.

        Warm greetings from Yalikavak,

        Richard

  3. Maivan Lam at 1:47 pm #

    Beloved Richard,

    I love you, your poems, your feelings deeply. Promise that we shall meet after (Will there be an after? YES. We will WILL it.) we can travel again. The 2- and 4- leggeds here are complicitly doing well sustained by the lavish beauty and generosity of Waimanalo and its kanaka maoli culture. May Black Lives Matter make us all whole. Je t’embrasse. Maivan.

    Sent from Mail for Windows 10

    • Richard Falk at 1:58 am #

      Thanks, dearest Maivan, for your lovely affirming words, and the news of
      Waimanalo harmonies! Our destinies call for a meeting! love, Richard

  4. musiqdragonfly at 2:49 pm #

    c’est formidable

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