Mountain Trail Tanka

yellow flowers,
along the trailside,
wave in the breeze;
butterflies flit
with random purpose


grazing livestock
trim the trail corridor
golf course neat;
not even the steepest
parts grow out shaggy


hear the burble
of the flowing water
where’s the creek?
it’s marsh-like in the grass,
awaiting a naïve boot

Cloud Ruba’iyat [Day 9 NaPoMo: Ruba’i]

[Ruba’i is a Persian form of poetry written in four lines, i.e. one quatrain. A ruba’iyat is a collection of such poems. [These quatrains aren’t necessarily thematically or narratively connected.] The most famous such collection in English translation is Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyam. In English language ruba’i, the most popular rhyme scheme is A-A-B-A, but A-A-A-A is also popular — not to mention dispensing with rhyme altogether.]

clouds drift, unrushed, across skies of blue
tranquil spies that follow stuck like glue
no gains or losses are made in this game
for “heed the wind” is the only rule

to hide a mountain takes a special cloud
the mountain may lack color, but it’s proud
its steely, silvery gray stands manly
so neither white nor grime will enshroud

still cloud, I find troubling your lack of speed
it’s like you’ve stopped to draw a bead on me
those untethered should take a roaming spree
hasn’t anyone told you that you’re free?

wispy crystalline cloud high above
your shape won’t be discussed by those in love
’cause no one’s lying back this frigid day
wearing fur-lined coats, and hats, and gloves

DAILY PHOTO: Kashmiri Tarns

Taken in August of 2016 on the Sonamarg – Naranag Trail.

Mountain Haiku

pounding drums
echo down the valley
birds calm

deep breath
fog dissipates
common peril

fog follows
will it catch us
before the pass

cow grazes
on the high trail

glaciers glow
in sunrise orange
forge iron, not

on the ridge
falls can be lethal
worth it

DAILY PHOTO: Mountain & Lake in Kashmir

Taken in August of 2016 on the trail from Naranag to Sonamarg