Sunday, December 10, 2017

Carpe Diem #1323 serenity

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Welcome at a new episode of our wonderful Haiku Kai. I hope you all have had a nice weekend. Here in The Netherlands we had almost the whole weekend heavy snow fall, so the world around me has become white. It's an awesome sight, because it has been a while that we had that much snow.

This month we are finding our inspiration in the novels by Paulo Coelho. And today I have a wonderful quote from his novel "The Witch Of Portobello", one of his most beloved novels. I read "The Witch ..." several times and every time again I read new things.

The quote for today points to a skill which we maybe know ... calligraphy. In ancient Japan calligraphy was a high art and all the classical haiku poets used it. The leading character of "The Witch ..." learns this art in the middle of the desert.

Japanese calligraphy by Aoi Yamaguchi (great website)
 Of course the quote to use I will not give you as a calligraphy. Here is the quote for your inspiration:

[...] "Naturally, if she respected the brush that she used, she would realize that in order to learn to write she must cultivate serenity and elegance. And serenity comes from the heart." [...] (Source: The Witch of Portobello - Paulo Coelho)

And here is my response, I wasn't inspired, so I dived into my archives:

back in time again I write
with a quill pen
screeching paper
the poet writes his poems

© Chèvrefeuille

Have a great week ...

This episode is open for your submissions tonight at 7:00 PM (CET) and will remain open until December 17th at noon (CET). I will try to publish our new episode later on.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Carpe Diem Extra December 8th 2017 - Call for submissions !!

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers, 
I would love to create a special CDHK E-book for the holidays, so I have a call for submissions for you. Send your haiku, tanka or other Japanese poetry form themed "holidays" (Christmas, New Year) to our Haiku Kai email-address: Please write "ebook holidays" in the subject line. 

You can submit your poem(s) until December 19th 10:00 PM (CET).

I am looking forward to all of your wonderful poems themed "holidays".
preparing Christmas
decorating the Tree of Light
brings peace and joy

Christmas stockings
hanging above the fireplace
awaiting presents
(C) Chèvrefeuille


Carpe Diem Weekend-Meditation #10 Fibo-ku winter time

!!! Open for your submissions next Sunday December 10th at 7:00 PM (CET) !!!

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

What an awesome month we have. All those wonderful quotes from the novels by Paulo Coelho. I have read wonderful responses already, but I have to apologize, because I am behind with commenting on all your beautiful posts. I hope to catch up a.s.a.p.

It's almost weekend and that means time for a new CDHK weekend-meditation. This weekend I love to challenge you with a special kind of haiku-ing which I introduced a few years ago here at CDHK and at our CDHK Specials weblog. This weekend I will challenge you to create a so called "Fibo-ku" and as the name already says it's based on the Fibonacci sequence. Let me give you a brief explanation of this special way of haiku-ing.

Logo of Carpe Diem Fibo-ku
I love to introduce a new kind of haiku to you all. It's based on the Fibonacci sequence and I think it's fun to write these new haiku-form. I have given it the name Fibo-Ku and the goal is to write a "haiku"-like verse following the Fibonacci sequence (1 + 1 = 2, 1 + 2 = 3, 2 + 3 = 5 etc.) The numbers of the Fibonacci sequence aren't numbers in this form, but syllables. So the first line has one (1) syllable and the second line also. The third line has two (2) syllables, the fourth line has three (3)  syllables, the fifth line has five syllables and so on. As I give the sequence it looks like this:

1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21 and so on

I will give you an example of a Fibo-Ku titled "this summer morning "

star light
the breeze
this summer morning
birds singing their beautiful songs -
young sparrows playing hide and seek in the dry sand of the garden 

© Chèvrefeuille

Of course you can make this Fibo-Ku longer by using more numbers from the Fibonacci sequence, but in this example I have reached the 7th line with 13 syllables. I think it's fun to compose these Fibo-Ku and I think you all will like it ...

Winter Time (image found on Pixabay)

For the Carpe Diem Weekend-Meditation I have chosen the theme "winter time" and the goal is to create a Fibo-ku themed "winter-time"

It's a real challenge I think and I think you will need the weekend to create your Fibo-ku.

This weekend-meditation is open for your submissions next Sunday December 10th at 7:00 PM (CET) and will remain open until December 17th at noon (CET). Have a great weekend full of inspiration.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Carpe Diem #1322 follow the dream

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

This month we are finding our inspiration through the novels written by Paulo Coelho. Several of his novels I have used earlier here so sometimes there will be a "deja vu" I think. Today, while I am seeking a little bit time in between the things I have to do, I will use a quote from "Aleph", Paulo Coelho's most personal novel ever. Recently we had an episode about this novel, in our anniversary month, so maybe this quote you will remember. I used it for the first time back in 2014 when we were on a trip straight through the former USSR with the Trans Siberian Railway.

Here is our inspirational quote from Aleph:

[...] "I am not a foreigner because I haven't been praying to return safely home, I haven't wasted my time imagining my house, my desk, my side of the bed, I am not a foreigner because we are all travelling, we are all full of the same questions, the same tiredness, the same fears, the same selfishness and the same generosity. I am not a foreigner because, when I asked, I received. When I knocked, the door opened. When I looked, I found." [...] (Source:'Aleph' by Paulo Coelho)
And here is one of my haiku inspired on this quote:

another day ends
reaching for the stars and the moon
into the dreamworld
© Chèvrefeuille
A short episode, but well ... enough inspiration I think. Have fun, be inspired and share your Japanese poetry with us all.
This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until December 14th at noon (CET). I will try to publish our new episode later on.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Carpe Diem #1321 miracles

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Welcome at a new episode of our wonderful Haiku Kai. I had a very busy day at work, I had the dayshift on the so called "chemo-unit" and it was a tough day, a real tough day, but ... well my co-worker and I "survived". Every day I work with very sick people, all have a kind of cancer, but they all are strong and look at their life with gratefulness.

Back in 2015 we spent a whole month in the Altai Mountains of Mongolia were we discovered the way of the shaman and maybe you remember that we read "The Zahir" by Paulo Coelho, another wonderful novel.
This month I hope to inspire you through quotes taken from a big part of Coelho's oeuvre. Today I have a nice quote taken from "The Zahir". Let me give you a brief overview of this novel, like in "The Pilgrimage", this novel is also about a pilgrimage, but not as we know it. It's more a pilgrimage to find inner peace.

Altai Mountains Mongolia
Brief overview:

The Zahir means 'the obvious' or 'conspicuous' in Arabic. The story revolves around the life of the narrator, a bestselling novelist, and in particular his search for his missing wife, Esther. He enjoys all the privileges that money and celebrity bring. He is suspected of foul play by both the police and the press, who suspect that he may have had a role in the inexplicable disappearance of his wife from their Paris home.

As a result of this disappearance, the protagonist is forced to re-examine his own life as well as his marriage. The narrator is unable to figure out what led to Esther's disappearance. Was she abducted or had she abandoned the marriage? He encounters Mikhail, one of Esther's friends, during a book launch. He learns from Mikhail that Esther, who had been a war correspondent against the wishes of her husband (the protagonist), had left in a search for peace, as she had trouble living with her husband. The author eventually realizes that in order to find Esther he must first find his own self. Mikhail introduces him to his own beliefs and customs, his mission of spreading love by holding sessions in restaurants and meeting homeless people living in the streets. He tells the narrator about the voices he hears, and his beliefs related to them. The narrator, who only too frequently falls in love with women, (also known as Michael Gardiner) consults with his current lover, Marie, about his encounters with Mikhail. She warns him that Mikhail could be an epileptic. However, she also advises him to search for the Zahir as is his desire, even though she would prefer him to stay with her.

The narrator eventually decides to go in search of his Zahir. As it was Esther who had initially brought Mikhail from Kazakhstan to France, the protagonist suspects that she may in fact be in Kazakhstan. At first, he is curious about what made Esther leave, but later he realizes that troubles in her relationship with her husband may have been a major reason. As he discovers, she was interested in getting to know herself through the making of carpets. Eventually the narrator meets his Zahir and the outcome of this meeting constitutes the climax of the book. (Source: Wikipedia)

Cover The Zahir
And here is the quote for your inspiration:

[...] "The great advantage of writing about spirituality is that I know I’m bound to keep encountering people with some kind of gift. Some of those gifts are real, others are fraudulent, some of those people are trying to use me, others are merely testing me out. I have seen so many amazing things that I no longer have the slightest doubt that miracles can happen, that everything is possible, and that people are beginning to relearn the inner powers they long ago forgot." [...] (Source: The Zahir by Paulo Coelho)

As I look around me in my own environment than I can feel that I am surrounded by miracles. Miracles we are taking for granted, but that's not enough, we have to be part of it, we have to see, feel, hear, smell and taste our environment ... than we can see the miracles. The miracle of the coloring leaves, the sound of the wind, the rain on our faces, that sweet perfume of the wet earth. It are all little wonders and miracles.

Find Your Inner Child
As we regain our inner child again, bringing it out ... than the miracle is there ... than there is the healing of our body, soul, heart and mind ... This is what The Zahir is about ... this is what The Altai Mountains and the Mongolian shamans tell us, are anxious to learn us all ... nature is healing and ... if I take that feeling, that idea to our beloved haiku ... than every haiku can be healing, can be a little miracle.

That's our goal today ... try to write/compose a haiku and let it be that little wonder, that little miracle that makes you happy.

one heartbeat
a flash of light cuts through the sky
a shooting star

© Chèvrefeuille

Well ... I hope I have awakened your muses ... your source of inspiration ... maybe I have awakened that Inner Child ... 

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until December 13th at noon (CET). I will try to publish our new episode later on. For now ... feel like a child again and enjoy nature's miracles.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Carpe Diem #1320 Falling in Love

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Falling in love is the greatest thing that can happen to someone. I think a lot of you have experienced that somewhere in your life. I fell in love almost 30 years ago with the woman I am still married to, but I also fell in love with the beauty if Japanese poetry especially haiku. I remember that moment as if it happened yesterday. I love haiku and through the years I have learned a lot about haiku, but as I started with CDHK I discovered that all around the globe there are lovers of haiku, but also other Japanese poetry forms. A few years ago I started creatinf other forms from the land of the rising sun. Forms like tanka, choka, dodoitsu, kyoka and sedoka. All beautiful ways to give words to your feeelings. However that's not the theme for today ... that's not what the title means.

This month I hope to inspire you through the novels of Paulo Coelho, one of my favorite authors. Today's quote is extracted from "Eleven Minutes". As I read this novel I was surprised, because "Eleven Minutes" is all about sex and the beauty of it, but also the sad site of it. I was really surprised as I read that novel it was ... different from all his other novels I had read, but after reading it and reading it another time and another time ... I fell in love with that novel. Surprisingly there was a deeper layer hidden in it, a spiritual approach of love and sex ... sacred sex ... as it is described by Paulo Coelho.

Spiritual Love
spiritual love ...
like bees seeking honey
giving life

© Chèvrefeuille

Let me give you a brief overview of "Eleven Minutes" than you maybe can imagine or relate to it.

"Eleven Minutes" is the story of Maria, a young girl from a Brazilian village, whose first innocent brushes with love leave her heartbroken. At a tender age, she becomes convinced that she will never find true love, instead believing that “love is a terrible thing that will make you suffer. . . .” A chance meeting in Rio takes her to Geneva, where she dreams of finding fame and fortune.
Maria’s despairing view of love is put to the test when she meets a handsome young painter. In this odyssey of self-discovery, Maria has to choose between pursuing a path of darkness—sexual pleasure for its own sake—or risking everything to find her own “inner light” and the possibility of sacred sex, sex in the context of love.

Re-read that "quote" in italics "love is a terrible thing that will make you suffer ..." Is that what love means? Something that will make you suffer? I haven't that kind of feeling with love ... to me love isn't something terrible that will make me suffer. The love I have found in my wife and my family is love straight from the heart, that love is sacred a warm blanket. Of course there will be situations or relationships that are not such a warm blanket. I even know several people that actual feel love like it's suffering ... to those I love to say ... "there is real love and it will cross your path one day".

Everlasting Love
everlasting love ...
the waterwillow and the brook
living together

© Chèvrefeuille

Okay ... this episode will be to big, but the theme touches me ... I believe in love ... that love we show here at CDHK ... a loving family of haiku poets. Back to our source of inspiration ... "Eleven Minutes" written by Paulo Coelho. A novel in which love, sacred love, is the leading theme.

Here is the quote for today:

[...] “When we meet someone and fall in love, we have a sense that the whole universe is on our side.  And yet if something goes wrong, there is nothing left!  How is it possible for the beauty that was there only minutes before to vanish so quickly?  Life moves very fast.  It rushes from heaven to hell in a matter of seconds.” [...] (Source: Eleven Minutes by Paulo Coelho)

universe explodes
as sacred loves finds it way
two hearts become one 

© Chèvrefeuille

Awesome ... what a strong haiku full of love (how immodest), this haiku came straight from my heart like erupting geysers. Isn't that what real love is? Strong as nature!

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until December 12th at noon (CET). I will try to publish our next episode later on.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Carpe Diem #1319 Inner Beauty

Dear Haijin, visitors and travelers,

Back in 2013 I created a whole month about one of Paulo Coelho's most wonderful novels I have read, next to "The Alchemist" and "Aleph". That novel is titled "Manuscript Found In Accra" a really nice novel to read. Let me tell you all a little bit more about this novel.

As I read his first novel "The Alchemist" I was sold ... really a wonderful novel full of spirituality. In his "Manuscript found in Accra" he describes a wise young man who is answering all questions on life on the day before the city in which he lives and the people live will be attacked. In the novel this city is Jerusalem and it tells us in wonderful words how the people of Jerusalem are anxious to know how their life will look after the attack of The Moors ... all very spiritual questions and the wise young man gives wonderful answers.

"Manuscript found in Accra" is very similar with the novels of Kahlil Gibran e.g. "The Prophet", but in a very different and vivacious way Paulo Coelho's "Manuscript" touched me deeper.

Manuscript Found In Accra by Paulo Coelho (2013)

Today's quote is taken from this wonderful inspirational novel "Manuscript Found In Accra". I think this quote will be a great source of inspiration for you all ...

[...] "Outer beauty is inner beauty made visible, and it manifests itself in the light that flows from our eyes". [...] (Source: Manuscript Found In Accra - Paulo Coelho)

Isn't that something. As I look at myself I always say "Inner beauty is more important than the outer beauty", but as I read this quote ... Than I have to change my idea, because it's true ... outer beauty is the reflection of the inner beauty and through the outer beauty we learn about the inner beauty. This quote brought a image to my mind of a wonderful stone ... maybe you know that stone too ... I saw an image appear of Lapis Lazuli ...
In its rough form lapis lazuli is not very attractive, but once cultivated its inner beauty starts becoming more brilliant ... can you imagine that?

Lapis Lazuli (cultivated)
Lapis Lazuli's meaning:

Lapis Lazuli is a good protection stone because of all the protective energies that it holds. But it’s also a manifestation stone because it can help you make your dreams a reality!
It will help you gain the knowledge that you need to look at different situations clearly and objectively so that you will come to the best decision. It will also enhance your intellectual abilities, activate your higher mind, and sharpen your memory.
Lapis Lazuli is also what you need if you wish to experience spiritual growth. Just clutching the stone in your hands can help you reach a meditative state that will give your life peace and serenity!

Awesome! This gem is really powerful as is "Manuscript Found In Accra", in which you can find wonderful spiritual knowledge. By the way ... that strong presence of spirituality you can find in all the novels by Paulo Coelho. 

hidden beauty
finally brought into the light
the blue sky

© Chèvrefeuille

This episode is NOW OPEN for your submissions and will remain open until December 11th at noon (CET). I will try to publish our new episode later on. For now ... awaken your muses and become inspired.