flowers, haibun, haiga, humor, photography

Be(e) in the Moment ~ 😉

Learn from the past and

be ready for the future.
Live in the present.
Crabapple with Flying Bee_crop.3_blem_840x892

Choosing images to go with the lines of my aphoristic haiku was easy (for the past), serendipitous (for the present), and beset with false starts (for the future).

I remembered one of the photos I took among the ruins of ancient Greek temples at Paestum in the 1970-s.  So stark, so sad, so in the past.  Dwelling on the past would rot the mind.  Learn from it and move on.

The future is fluid, unpredictable, possibly dystopian.  Plan and prepare, but be ready to change plans if an unlikely future unfolds.  (It will.)  I wanted an image that was noncommital but not just blurry.  After several false starts, I took a tight closeup of swirling brushwork in a small painting by an unknown artist, bought decades ago at a charity sale.

Wanting something joyful and ephemeral for the present, I culled some photos of flowering trees taken in 2020.  One jumped out.  The camera catches a bee hovering for a moment where it enhances a larger overall composition.  The admonition to “be in the moment” is like the haiku’s final line and could be tweaked to give this post a title that winks at the final image.

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haiga, history, math, photography

Mystic’s Math


Simple shapes
sing silent songs
for those who listen.

Best known today for his theorem about right triangles, the ancient mystic Pythagoras was also big on numbers.  How do they relate to each other in pure math?  How might they help explain the natural world?  How does changing the length of a lyre string affect its pitch?  Pythagoras and friends took the first tentative steps toward understanding the physics of music.

While many haiku poets don’t count syllables, those that do often abide by rules that Pythagoras would have liked.  In the traditional 5-7-5 form, the total number of syllables is prime (as are 5 and 7).  Likewise in the shorter 3-5-3 form.  Prime numbers were a big deal to ancient mathematicians.  They are still a big deal for encrypting credit card numbers in e-commerce.

Pythagoras would have liked the syllable counts 3-4-5 in this post’s haiku for a different reason.  They form the smallest Pythagorean triple.  (A right triangle could have sides that are 3, 4, and 5 units long.)  While most triples like this are too big or lopsided for 3-line poems, somebody might use 6-8-10.

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birds, haiga, haiku, photography

Vocal Visitor

Caw from unseen bird.
Crows are louder and shriller.
Could be a raven.


Overlay © John Cobb | Unsplash

While my own sightings are few and long ago, I believe ravens still inhabit the region where I live and am confident that I can distinguish the croaking caw of a raven from the canonical caw of a crow.  (Don’t hike much any more; still big on alliteration.)  I also have some of indigenous folklore’s admiration of ravens, so I celebrated hearing one with a haiku.  That posed a problem.

An ordinary image of a raven would not work for my haiku about an unseen bird thought to be a raven.  I considered posting the haiku by itself, but I like images.  Hmmm.  I can photograph the nondescript view toward where the call seemed to originate.  Can I then find and tweak an image of a raven to make a ghostly overlay that fits the mood of the haiku?  Yes!

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