Space Haiku and Harpooned Comets

Space Haiku and Harpooned Comets

Philae_touchdown_node_full_image_2For those of you that haven’t heard: mankind landed a robot (Philae) on a comet today. A harpoon was meant to be involved.

Scientists are celebrating with hugs and champagne.

Xkcd is celebrating with comic strips.

I, being my own silly but no less appreciative self, thusly celebrate the only way I know how. And thus, there was space haiku.

Star dust settles on

the soundless expanse of hope

a harpooned comet.

Better watch out, space whales. Science is coming for you, next.


Guest Posts and Going to Mars with Maven!

Image of Mars showing northern Drylands (ochre...

Image of Mars. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hello all, and happy Tuesday! It’s a hot one out there (85 by 10:00, which does not make for a happy Chris), so I do hope you’re all keeping cool, or at least keeping sane.

I have two things for you today. First of all, I’m participating in the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Studies (Mouthful? Yes. Awesome? Also yes.) of the University of Colorado in Boulder’s “Going to Mars with Maven” contest. What do all those words mean? It means I wrote a haiku for them that has a chance to be sent into space, spiraling toward the Red Planet. Click on the poem below to go over there and vote if you like what you see!

Red lay our passion
from time immemorial
the drive for starlight.

Help me achieve a dream of Haiku in space! I am, after all, just a humble terrestrial-bound writer, but for my words to be able to bound free as such…well, suffice to say, the head would swell with the distinct majesty of it.

Second: Guest Posting!

I’m doing the rounds this morning over at the White Picket Fence blog, a delightful culture blog for the young and restless (Hello fellow Millennials) as run by, in their own words, “three women in our 20s slowly going crazy.” They discuss the challenges of youth and the struggles with disillusionment, as well as the changing battles for success in the modern world (among many other timely current issues). My friend Lane, one of those wonderful ladies, sent me the invitation earlier this month and I could hardly resist.

What am I talking about over there? Well, as much as I’m inclined to say “Read and find out!” I also realize one needs to throw a bone here and there. Suffice to say, I’m discussing some of the travails of being a writer and a young Millennial in this crazy modern world of ours. It’s a bit heavy, but it comes from the heart, discussing many of the challenges I’ve found myself facing.

Link: A Writer’s Worry.

If you find yourself in an air-conditioned room, hiding from the great outdoors, take a time to check these things out—but most importantly, tell the sun to take it down a notch, alright?

Rough Covers and Nature’s Would-be Bounties

Today is a mixed bag for me. Truly. Thus I shall put forth the week’s announcements in a bad-good-bad-good format.

There are those times sees your plans and tells you this instead.

There are those times sees your plans and tells you this instead.

Let me begin by saying this little author was supposed to be mucking it through the wild this weekend, camped along a lake shore, in a land of naught but dirt and trees and lake shore. You will surely note, in posting this, I am not actually doing that. Alas. Implosions were had. Things did not quite pan out.

At the same time, for those that might have missed my moment of squee on social media outlets earlier this week: Artwork! Which is to say, Cover Art. As in, the talented Matthew Watts has deposited a host of inspiring roughs for the cover of “At Faith’s End” in my inbox. No less than SEVENTEEN different selections to ponder. His speed and talent both continue to amaze. I can’t share at this point, lest the picking process become biased, but when I can put up a preview I shall, and in the meanwhile, BIG DECISIONS. Also: check out his blog. It is filled with wonderful artwork and you should surely commission him for more things. Or all the things. Your call.

In the meanwhile, enjoy this blatant non-sequiter of a gryphon. You shall see more of them in the novel.


Gryphon (Photo credit: Atelier Teee)

A friend and fellow writer’s heart has broken with a loss no heart, large or small, should ever have to face…and it is breaking my own to watch the shadows seep across hands so accustomed to the feverish lightness the world can bring, and darken a smile from which energy was born to spring eternal. Death never touches but the dying and the dead. It has a grievous tendency to consume the light around it.

A new page shall be opening on the blog later this weekend. It shall involve potentially helpful services for fellow writers. Keep your eyes peeled…it may well sneak up on you.

And to end on a hopeful, creative note for you all, a touch of haiku:

Scattering moonlight
the weight of the world eclipsed
in her waking smile.

A Haiku Afternoon

Tomorrow, a more fantastical post. Today, a short dose of the poetic:

Rose petals drift

perilous bedside seas–

her breathless touch.

Night gown nonsense–

heat beckons through wood and wind

wild by moonlight.

Note: Don’t forget to check out my guest blog appearance on Jessica Kristie’s “Inspiring Ink” segment today! I may be talking fantastic tomorrow, but today, I’m delving into the imagination…

Poetic Spotlight: The Works of Buson

Last week took us to China, on a journey of peach blossoms. This week, we cross the narrow divide between China and another nation of legendary poetic prowess, hopping seas and centuries to step into the island of Japan. Known best in western circles for its haikuand tanka, today I appropriately offer up a man regarded as one of the haiku masters: Yosa Buson.

Buson was a poet and painter from Japan’s Edo period (a period from roughly 1603 to 1868 dominated by the Tokugawa Shogunate). Born in what is now a suburb of Osaka, his was to be a life of learning and travel, wandering the northern lengths of Japan in the example of fellow poet Bashō, and even writing a travelogue called “The Narrow Road to the Interior.” He devoured poetry. He wrote poetry. He taught poetry. Today, he is regarded as one of the greatest poets of the Edo period, and of Japan’s history-at-large.

This week, I offer you not one poem to devour, but four! Japanese haiku is powerful, after all, but short, and one brief piece I feel is not enough to give you a full taste of Buson’s power. So without further adieu, I offer you the English translations to some of this master’s works:

Before the white chrysanthemum
the scissors hesitate
a moment.

Blow of an ax,
pine scent,
the winter woods.

Blown from the west,
fallen leaves gather
in the east.

The short night–
broken, in the shallows,
a crescent moon.

~Yosa Buson

Also: Be sure to check out my guest blog today over at Jessica Kristie’s realm today, where I’m talking imagination for “Inspiring Ink.”