Miles from Innisfree: A #haibun response to Yeats…#haiku #poetry #dversepoets #writephoto

Jilly serves up the poetry as a guest pub tender at dVerse. She challenges us to write a response poem, a poem that directly replies to another poem. When I saw Sue Vincent’s Thursday Photo Prompt–distant, I thought of Yeats’ The Lake Isle of Innisfree. I knew he and I needed to talk!


The Lake Isle of Innisfree

W. B. Yeats1865 – 1939

I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,
And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made:
Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee;
And live alone in the bee-loud glade.

And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,
Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;
There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,
And evening full of the linnet’s wings.

I will arise and go now, for always night and day
I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,
I hear it in the deep heart’s core.




Miles from Innisfree

I, too, will rise, but I am miles from Innisfree. I am beside these standing stones that mark a bog’s edge. Water pierces the sea of its entrapping grass like a drowning swimmer. No soft footprints along what passes for a shore, save my own.

Where is my path forward? The bog yields no trail or solid ground. And beyond it, a line of trees before dark foothills–themselves towered over by whitecaps.

Where will I make my cabin? Where, my bean rows and honey hive? Where will I hear  lake waters lapping along a serene shore? Not in a heart too disturbed by the terrible beauty before me.

sweeping clouds …

still walking the long path

to Innesfree





Categories: haikai, haiku community

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34 replies »

  1. Breathtaking beauty in your words and the images that you create, Frank. This line “Water pierces the sea of its entrapping grass like a drowning swimmer” had me rereading to savor its perfection. The questions you pose are of great depth, and of course- master of the Haiku – that leaves a grand and empty longing. Excellent response to an excellnt poem.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. What a beautiful response to the Yeats poem (one of my favourites too). Your haiku at the end says it all really – like you I am still walking that long road to Innisfree.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I adore your haiku and Yeats is the poet of my heart. you captured his mysticism in your haiku and the lines flowed into each other. so rare to read a haiku that flows like this without halting. beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

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