New haibun by Anne Brooke

A journey with my father
You walk in shades of brown and metal. My tiny hand in yours is lost. A leaf consumed by the tree, I laugh and jump imaginary puddles. My yellow boots mark time on the ground and you smile.
autumn sifts your blood
sugar and spice and all things
drowned in your dark eye
I smell of spring, you of grass and gunshot, the acidity of apples, green and red, the emeralds and rubies my mother wears for Christmas. You are a fox or a badger hunting as the sky turns brindled-grey for winter.
the crows do not sing
their black wings weighed down in ice
penetrate my flesh
The trees are silent now and even the apples, like jewels, have fallen, rotted to mulch on the infertile soil. My hand hangs loose, a seed in the wind, unplanted. A torn leaf. The boots are packed away and the puddles are dry.
thirty years after
I bear just your one gold ring
and carry your name

• Anne Brooke was born in Essex but lives in Surrey. Nobody's shopped her yet. She can be found at which also includes details of her latest novel A Dangerous Man.


  1. Beautiful!

  2. Ooh, thanks, Padrika – glad you enjoyed it!

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