The Renga Party

First published in Brussels Sprout XII:1, January 1995, page 39. Written from 1992 to 1994 (many verses in January of 1994), mostly in Foster City, California.

The Renga Party: To Boldly Go Where No Link Has Gone Before

the renga party—

       a choice between

       sake and wine



a bird book

       in one hand—

the master’s fingers tremble



a moon verse—

all I can think of

are puns



between links,

his blank poem slip

becomes a paper crane



the master rejects

the verse without a kigo—

harvest moon at the window




       at last

              for the missing link



not her turn—

she picks up a dictionary

. . . the hall clock chimes



in the quiet

after the night cuckoo,

sound of erasing



a sudden sneeze—

I must be allergic

to flower links



the master’s thumb-worn saijiki

       . . . my slip of paper

folded as an airplane



renga party over . . .

       breeze from the window

       scatters all the paper