The River Between

Proudly presenting mine and my youngest daughter’s first publication, a tan renga:  Blithe Spirit 22:4, November 2012.

~ ~ ~

The River Between

Claire Everett and Amy Claire Rose Smith (15) 

black spot on the sun
the shadow of a minnow
steels the heron’s eye
   how does it feel to spend life
   cowering in weeds and ignorance?

the plumes of a rain cloud
   stirring summer stillness
   a wing blue as ice
   grey as slate
every mood
of the river
is yours
   an impenetrable haze
  where bird ends and water begins
the clink of the brush
in the water-glass
   still blinking
   the reptilian eye
   of the long-dead
in a dream
I wade against the current
flint knife at my hip
   sifting fish through silt
   two scaly feet
fishtail and underbelly
   neck curved
  to meet the breast
  morning flight
nag champa
a Chinese brush makes water
of the air
   gentle as washing a newborn
  preening each soft feather
ashes of roses
the heronry fills with wings
   from the dagger-bill
   the last croaks
   before going to roost


Amy and I would like to thank Alan Summers, former Linked Forms editor for Notes from the Gean who initially accepted this piece before the journal went on hiatus. Special thanks to Colin Blundell who then accepted it for Blithe Spirit.



8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Kirsten Cliff
    Dec 02, 2012 @ 01:04:03

    Stunning! Congratulations to you and your daughter; and how very cool to be able to write together. Cara and I are looking into writing some tan renga together and I couldn’t have had a better example appear in my email inbox! Thanks so much for sharing it here.


    • Claire
      Dec 06, 2012 @ 19:43:43

      Thank you, Kirsten! So pleased you enjoyed our work. I look forward to seeing some tan renga from you and Cara!


  2. bussokuseki
    Dec 02, 2012 @ 02:04:57

    So great for you to write together! Be well…


  3. Robert
    Dec 02, 2012 @ 10:14:59

    Wonderfully visual, like the best wildlife photography.


    • Claire
      Dec 06, 2012 @ 19:44:59

      That is praise indeed, Robert, thank you. It helps that Amy is a keen birder and young wildlife artist.


  4. Ella Wagemakers
    Dec 03, 2012 @ 15:51:50

    Lovely verses!


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