I discussed haiku with Margo, my Hungarian ex student and ex police officer. And I read Jane Reichhold, discussing haiku techniques with Margo in green parks, on windy mountains, while wading across streams and on bus rides into the Highlands.
And yet it would be years before I attempted to write my own haiku. I studied haiku since those early days, but only really started writing haiku again from prompts at the Carpe Diem Haiku Kai website, run by haiku poet Kristjaan Pannemann.
Yesterday, in the early hours of the morning. I learnt Jane Reichhold had died. I learnt she had probably taken her life due to the unbearable pain caused by an illness she suffered silently with, while maintaining her smile, dignity and composure to the last.
I remember many of her haiku, and will no doubt be referring to a few on these pages shortly. Today I chose the one below because of the sensitivity. loneliness, sensuality and humaneness in her words:
desire by a warm stove
for an affair
I will attempt to emulate this warm, sincere haiku, with a tanka of my own.
she remembers his touch
under the maple tree
in pouring rain
-her touch mirrors his