Category Archives: haibun


Once there was a well known philosopher and scholar who devoted himself to the study of Zen for many years. On the day that he finally attained enlightenment, he took all of his books out into the yard, and burned them all.

From John Suler’s Zen Stories to Tell Your Neighbour.

no writing. reading only.

One of the nervous moments people experience is the thought of their parents – you know – doing it. Not doing it, doing IT. Somehow the thought of our grandparents doing it isn’t so bad, and great grandparents – well, no one thinks about it. The ‘it’ I’m writing about is keeping a blog – a journal – a diary. What if we found our parents had kept a diary – oh horrors – what would it contain? And meanwhile we write like creatures possessed and think this online stuff is all new and exciting. We are the first generation to share our intimate (sometimes TOO intimate) thoughts with the rest of the globe. You know who you are.

My life, it seems, lately, has involved no writing here. I’ve been writing elsewhere, and now, slutty reader that I am, reading elsewhere too. Honestly, no shame, I’ll read anything. It’s not as though I’m addicted, I could give up at any time. I’ve found this new haibun/haiku writer – can you guess who is the author?

  Dense mist in evening.
Yellow moon.

Hey, good for you – I would never have guessed George Orwell. Yes, that George Orwell. George has started to publish his diaries online. And the haibun/haiku is from August 10, 1938. Makes me think George would’ve been a first class writer using Twitter.

There’s something addictive to reading George’s writing – he’s as attracted to (or at least documents) the banal and mundane as the rest of us – he would’ve been a blogger or tweeter or whatever as much as anyone else these days, except, of course, it’s 70 years ago. Startling. Addictive. And when he’s got his writing going on, baby, it’s going on.

updates done

Right, that’s that done then – I’ve finally got the AkoNet web site sorted. It hasn’t been a huge upgrade, more of the annual tidy up that should’ve (ahem) happened back in January/February (when, instead, we were packing ready to move off to our new home).

I’m most pleased with my first online tiddlywiki – I’ve created a presentation of classic haiku and while this is not an interactive wiki (a la wikipedia) it does make use of some of the rather more succulent delights of tiddlywiki. For people who’re wanting to explore their own web site (but don’t have html skills), a tiddlywiki is a great place to start.

rain is the new sunshine…

coolcatWellington, at the end of a relentlessly wet season.

july rains
even cool cats
feel the blues

The weather has been wonderfully overcast and wet for days, and the sun finally broke through today. I’m begining to sound completely british at this point, because the only thing to discuss is the weather.

deep green moss

Walking in the autumn afternoon, the botanical gardens seem indecisive. Is it autumn? Should my leaves change colour and fall?

Angst filled moments about whether it is going to be winter soon, or not.

The native plants seem more self-assured. ‘Harden up’, they say; with their leaves ever green.

No matter what, the bush always smells better after some rain – it just smells right somehow.

the new season

We’re starting to move steadily into the autumnal season. We’re experiencing those indecisive days – hours of rain with some heat and the fret wafting in from the sea. It can be so lovely, as long as you’re not needing the weather to be anything changeable.

Sandburg wrote about it:


The fog comes
on little cat feet.

It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on.


As a result of this changeable season, I’m working on creating a new template or two for the blog – I’ve got a couple of designs underway, and I need some more time to get them done. I’ve noticed how the weekends rush past when I’m working for us, but it’s all a bit less convenient when I’m working for my job as well. The bible talks about a time to work and a time to put work aside. I want to do my stuff, I need to work as well. It’s hard to balance everything.

Which is interesting to me – balance is the theme of my new template.


music for sales

The other day,

I went to bennetts bookshop, the one next to irks.

There were at least three customers, and one staff member, singing along to the ‘music to buy books to’.

Recoiling in horror I stumbled up the stairs into what I thought was notepaper etc but it was kirks on sale with bints and baggages in blue rinses and the eyes of a judas chicken.

More jowls than a pork meat inspection convention.


leaves of grass

Well, you come into the world like a blade of grass,
    you flourish through the summer,
then the winter comes and you blow away.

You’re gone and you never come back, so just enjoy life now.

Burt Monroe in ‘The World’s Fastest Indian’.