earthgrazing haiku

moon and bay

moon and bay

In Dorset last month one evening after tea – and till well after midnight – there were some excellent meteor showers.

Spread out on our backs, on a tumulus on the clifftops above Higher Eype, we watched them.

I wrote this haiku chain about it:

(meteor showers over the dorset coast)

peckish at tea-time:
pot warmed, kettle on the boil
as the light draws in

around the cottage –
fog furling up from the sea
all this moist evening

our minds soaked, softened
in warm cups of reflection,
dunked choccy biscuits –

scones with clotted cream
and jam, gentleman’s relish
on hot buttered toast.

we climb up the hill
to the clifftop tumulus,
sheep and cows around –

the sky inking in
those unscrolled constellations
crawling with time’s myths,

scanning heaven for
asteroids and meteorites,
bright trails clustered in

radiating lights,
mirrored waves, blank deep waters
where night takes a breath,

and then we look out
– wide-eyed, longing no longer –
appetites replete,

scattered meteor showers
sketch the intermittent sky
with points of parting:

radiant perseids,
earthgrazers, cosmic debris –
while we watch, starstruck,

and only the dog
is still on the hunt for more,
chasing her own tail…

dorset, august 2013

coco looking for her own tail

coco looking for her own tail

(“earthgrazers”, by the way, are meteors which fly close to the horizon, slowly, in the early evening… i like the way it could just as well describe us humans – and animals, too – grazers all upon this earth)




  1. Sandie Zand says:

    It is a beautiful poem… as is the photograph… oh, and of course, Coco too.

  2. Sandie Zand says:

    Oh but there is something awry with this comment posting thingie as it doesn’t let me just log in and post, thus avec gorgeous (photoshopped) image etc. etc. and now I feel like a strange grey ghost posting randomly around the web…

  3. I like the poem, it gives a lovely feel of a special summer evening.
    Some words keep resonating …

    night takes a breath
    longing no longer
    we watch
    intermittent sky
    earthgrazers … like us, too 🙂

  4. Jackie Buxton says:

    Lovely! Nice contrast with the atmosphere and the cheeky humour at the end. I know exactly how that dog feels.

  5. James Wood says:

    Daring, extraordinary poem, tackling the largest, most metaphysical themes.

    Complex, scientific imagery mixed with domestic, homelly detail. Respect shown to both.

    The meaning of the one grounded in the other.

    An echoing resonance…

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