Renhai Reflections 110: Glitter


A Renhai by Vaughn Seward & John W. Sexton

Mrs. Noman —
her eyes of coal glitter
in the moonlight. /jws

Our city of snow tunnels — /vs
Dad comes through the roof. /jws

We charge across
the schoolyard battlefield —
snowball artillery. /vs

Click here for notes and linking details:

[This winter Renhai, which was written with John Sexton from Ireland, was just published in the June, 2009 issue of the Lynx Journal for Linking Poets. ]


Renhai Reflections 109: Full Moon Over Manhattan

[Here is a double rengay I recently did with Karina Klesko. It appeared in the March/April, 2009 issue of Sketchbook:


In a Double Rengay two Poets reverse positions after the first six verses
and has a construction of a Renga-like / haiku structure.]

Full Moon Over Manhattan

produce aisle—
she reaches across
for an apple /vs

outdoor cafe—
fiddlehead ferns in season /kk

storm clouds—
the dog disappears
into a bush /vs

one-legged mockingbird—
bantering of the wind /kk

late dusk—
the street lights come on,
all but one.... /vs

the gate leads to darkness—
headstones with no names /kk

hopscotch lines—
a homeless man smiles
to himself /kk

svelte runway models—
exchanging glances /vs

clay pots
in different sizes
patio garden /kk

global greening—
an SUV for sale /vs

screen saver—
always a full moon
over Manhattan /kk

puppet theatre...
peeking behind the curtain /vs


Renhai Reflections 108: A Little Pickle

[Here is a children's poem I recently completed with Zhanna.]

A Little Pickle
Zhanna P. Rader (zh.r) & Vaughn Seward (vs)

A little Pickle
Jumped out of its jar,
But, being brickle,
Got not too far. /zh.r

Onto the floor
From table to chair,
Straight out the door
Came a Bartlett Pear. /vs

Meanwhile an Apple
Returned from the chapel,
Hopped up on a stool,
Still fragrant and cool. /zh.r

Then came a Carrot
Of the edible roots
Known for good merit,
To join the fruits: /vs

"Let us, for fun,
Begin to contest
And see just which one
Is the very best." /zh.r

For this competition,
They all came around,
Each full of ambition
To see himself crowned. /vs

"Now, here's my trick,"
The Pickle said,
And he was quick
To stand on his head. /zh.r

There's nothing to that,"
The Apple crowed,
Then tapped on his hat
His name in Morse code. /vs

The Bartlett Pear,
Fresh, shapely and fair,
Was happy to sing
While dancing Swing. /zh.r

The Carrot was next:
With great aplomb,
He put on his specks
And read his palm. /vs

Now, when it had ended -
Their evening of fun,
They felt it was splendid,
And each thought he'd won. /zh.r


Off-Topic: Salad Dressing Recipe

I recently decided to try and duplicate my favorite commercial Oil and Vinegar dressing. After some web-searching and taste-testing I created the following recipe which I have found tastes better than the original.

Sunflower (or Canola) oil: 100 ml (aprox. 1/2 US cups)
Extra virgin Olive oil: 50 ml (aprox. 1/4 US cups)

Red wine vinegar: 25 ml (aprox. 1.5 T)
Lemon juice: 25 ml (aprox. 1.5 T)

Onion powder: 1/4 tsp
Garlic powder: 1/4 tsp
Sea salt: 1/4 tsp
Oregano: 1/2 tsp
Dried mint: 1/4 tsp
Ground pepper: a few pinches
Dijon mustard: 1/4 tsp

Add the spices to the Acidics and mix well. Add the Oils and whisk together in a suitable container (e.g. a glass jar). If possible, marinate for a few hours and shake well before use.

I have found that the Dijon mustard, while contributing slightly to the overall taste, also acts as an emulsifier. This holds the dressing together longer so that every portion contains a more complete combination of flavours.


Renhai Reflections 107: Till Time is Up

Till Time is Up

A Renhai by Zhanna P. Rader (zh.r) & Vaughn Seward (vs)

A new minute —
I shift and sink down
with the others. /zh.r

This narrow glass passage, /zh.r
room for a few at a time. /vs

Finally through,
pushed to the clear-view wall:
eggs out of the pot. /vs

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Renhai Reflections 106: Footfall


A Renhai by Jerry McKenzie (jm) & Vaughn Seward (vs)

Asking directions —
as I depart, the ladies
resume their chatter. /vs

A lone dog shies away — /jm
a lap entices the cat. /vs

Footsteps in gravel —
the frogpond ribitting
suddenly stops. /vs

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Renhai Reflections 105: Sunrise, Sunset

Sunrise, Sunset

A Renhai by Vaughn Seward (vs) & John Daleiden (jd)

Coral ledge —
a seahorse expels babies
from his pouch. /vs

A piece of string in the beak — /vs
among tree buds, a new nest. /jd

In the garden rocks
a snake waits for prey —
sunrise, sunset. /jd

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[This is the last one in the triad series that was written with John Daleiden (US) a year ago.]


Renhai Reflections 104: Stringing Things

Stringing Things

A Renhai by John Daleiden (jd) & Vaughn Seward (vs)

In the Parlor
women stitch quilt blocks —
the twitter of birds. /jd

A piece of string in the beak — /vs
among tree buds, a new nest. /jd

Babbling brook —
for a fishing pole the boys
find a stick. /vs

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[This is another one that was written with John Daleiden (US) a year ago. It is the second in a triad series in which the middle verse is common but the theme and the 1st and 3rd verses are different. When I wrote the "string in the beak" line to start the Renhai, John replied with several lines for me to pick from. I liked them all equally so we decided to form each one into its own Renhai.]


Renhai Reflections 103: Another Scoop

Another Scoop

A Renhai by John Daleiden (jd) & Vaughn Seward (vs)

An orange crane
lifts immense steel girders —
changing skyline. /jd

A piece of string in the beak — /vs
among tree buds, a new nest. /jd

Backyard sandbox —
the boy's backhoe lifts
another scoop. /vs

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[This was written with John Daleiden (US) a year ago and was originally published in the Sketchbook, the Journal for Eastern and Western Short Forms.]