Last weekend we went hiking in a state park where there is a large outcropping of rock towering above a creek that winds through the valley. We ate lunch on the top of the ridge with a view that scanned the clouds floating on the horizon, the forest hills, and the tumbling whitewater far below.
could be trout
far out of casting distance;
We climbed down the trail twisting between trees that sometimes clung to the very rock wall on our left. We passed climbers strapped into high tech gear and trail crews scrubbing graffiti. Everyone was in a cheerful mood. I got an ache in my neck from straining to take in the sheer awesome bulk of the rock that rose above us. Trees grew below, beside, in the midst of, and above rock in every shape an size. Roots exposed or sunk into the crevices, each one found a way to flourish and catch the sun.
roots in the air
from trees clinging to cliffs;
rocks in the treetops
Down at the bottom of one of those formations, under a trickle of spring water sliding over mossy rock, we found a tiny pool of muddy water.
I bent down to get a closer look and discovered a tiny frog sitting under a leaf in the puddle. He held still for me to take several photos and didn't seem startled to see me hovering over him. Perhaps he is accustomed to ignoring massive shadows looming over his head. He was secure in his fortress; stone wall at his back.
little frog at home
under the rock wall;
all else is sky
This type of haiku story-writing is called Haibun. It's an old form of prose poem/travel log or journal with haiku poems interspersed between short narrative descriptions, made famous by the 17th c. Japanese poet Basho in his writing The Narrow Road to Deep North. Read more about the form here.
Today's Friday Poetry roundup is hosted at Dori Reads. Enjoy!