Haikai Challenge #140 (5/21/20): Memorial Day and dVerse OLN

Memorial Day, Graves, Cemetery, Military, american, national, burial, tombstone, dead, patriotic
image from this website

Breeze sways
spattered poppies
long after the sniper
is gone —
dark falls on a corpse.

*

Ravaged meat
in a box:
Special Delivery.
Worms finish
what maggots started.

*

He watches her kneel
in the wet grass
at his grave,
crying for herself
in her long black veil+.

*

Three nights she dreams
of red sands and blue eyes.
On the fourth day, they come
in uniforms,
hats in their hands.

*

He’s a ghost father
to a stranger,
the infant he watches;
dying again
when the man dons a uniform.

 

“Martha” is written and performed by Greg Miller.  The song is on Dutch Henry’s album, “1973.”

 

In honor of the fallen.

+taken from the song, “The Long Black Veil

Frank J. Tassone is the host of Haikai Challenge.  Frank says:
This week, write the haikai poem of your choice (haiku, senryu, haibun, tanka, haiga, renga, etc.) that alludes to Memorial Day.

Grace is today’s host of dVerse’ Open Link Night.

32 Comments Add yours

  1. Sadje says:

    A poignant poem Li

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Sadje.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sadje says:

        You’re welcome

        Liked by 1 person

  2. memadtwo says:

    One day a year is not time enough to honor their lives or fill the empty spaces they left behind. Well said. (K)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      You’re right, one day a year is not enough.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. badfinger20 (Max) says:

    I read this last night but I didn’t dare comment. It’s powerful…and I saw the Long Black Veil…may be why I did it subconsciously.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Max, very glad you posted the song.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. badfinger20 (Max) says:

        I should probably thank you lol. I’ve wanted to post it forever.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Reblogged this on Frank J. Tassone and commented:
    #Haiku Happenings #2: Jade Li’s latest #tanka sequence for my current #haikai challenge!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Glenn A. Buttkus says:

    Dark, topical, poignant, this one assaults us, gut punch, uppercuts, jabs. I like the strength and the vision within it, and I like the creative way you expanded on traditional haiku, senryu, tanka parameters.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Your comment is appreciated and humbling. To see someone sees means so much.

      Like

  6. Grace says:

    A lovely and moving collection. The last 2 specially touched me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Grace.

      Like

  7. Frank Hubeny says:

    I like your description of him watching her.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Frank.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. hank77 says:

    kaykuala

    A stark reality for one in uniform. One has to accept the fact!

    Hank

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Truedessa says:

    A moving series for memorial day. A dark reality that stirs the heart with a deep loss.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Truedessa, yes.

      Like

  10. rothpoetry says:

    Your poem takes me to Pete Seeger’s song Where Have All the Flowers Gone! Especially your last line… Full circle!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thanks for reading Dwight and for your wonderful comment.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. rothpoetry says:

        You are welcome!

        Liked by 1 person

  11. kim881 says:

    A poignant tanka sequence, Lisa, with some surprisingly stark imagery. These lines made me sit up:
    ‘Ravaged meat
    in a box:
    Special Delivery.
    Worms finish
    what maggots started’.
    The central incongruous ‘Special Delivery’ packs a punch.
    How tragic that the ‘ghost father’ can’t stop his little stranger son from repeating history.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you for your always appreciated comments, Kim.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Brendan says:

    Really fine quintet of haiku beading a melancholy Memorial Day remembrance. Well done.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Brendan.

      Like

  13. I love that song – ever since I heard it as a little girl and memorized the words.- Of course I sang along. I think even before I knew the words it epitomized irony and poignancy for me. You always make me think- it’s a good Memorial Day poem beats skin-to-skin partying among the virus carriers! I was just contemplating the way we shove the reality of death aside (rarely having to witness it in person) and so mistakenly consider it something other than life – one process, one whole.

    Our dead are dying alone now – un-witnessed.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Christine, thank you and glad you connected with the poems and the music. It is a terrible thing we do, as you say, shove death aside. Every other creature takes it as part of the whole, why not us. Dying alone, un-witnessed, is maybe the worst part of it all 😦

      Like

  14. What a lovely and poignant set of poems… wonderful

    Liked by 1 person

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you, Bjorn.

      Like

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