courtesy of The Old Farmers Alamanc
Are we warm enough yet, haijin? The prelude to summer struck this weekend in New York, where the current temperature is in the mid-eighties! You withstood the heat and came through with your haikai!
Congratulations to last week’s contributors:
Haikai Challenge Participants
|1. Ken Gierke / rivrvlogr
2. Jane Dougherty
3. Dwight L. Roth
4. Janice (Ontheland)
|5. Xenia Tran
6. Revived Writer
7. Linda Lee Lyberg
8. Sue Vincent
11. Jules #2
12. Merril D. Smith
The United States celebrates Memorial Day this Monday, May 28, 2018. This Federal holiday commemorates those members of the US armed forces that have died in service:
Memorial Day is not to be confused with Veterans Day – Memorial Day is a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving, whereas Veterans Day celebrates the service of all U.S. military veterans. It is also not to be confused with Armed Forces Day, a minor U.S. remembrance celebrated earlier in May, which specifically honors those currently serving in the U.S. military.
courtesy of the Old Farmers Almanac
One of the observances associated with Memorial Day is the wearing of the Poppie:
The wearing of poppies in honor of America’s war dead is traditionally done on Memorial Day (not Veterans Day). The origin of the red poppy as a modern-day symbol of this day was actually the idea of an American woman, Miss Moina Michael.
This particular tradition evolved from World War I, when Canadian Lt. Col. John McCrae published his commemorative poem In Flanders Fields:
The remembrance poppy was inspired by the World War I poem “In Flanders Fields“. Its opening lines refer to the many poppies that were the first flowers to grow in the churned-up earth of soldiers’ graves in Flanders, a region of Belgium. It is written from the point of view of the dead soldiers and, in the last verse, they call on the living to continue the conflict. The poem was written by Canadian physician, Lieutenant ColonelJohn McCrae, on 3 May 1915 after witnessing the death of his friend, a fellow soldier, the day before. The poem was first published on 8 December 1915 in the London-based magazine Punch.
Take a look at the entire poem:
In Flanders Fields
by John McCrae, May 1915
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
(text courtesy of The Old Farmers Almanac)
Other countries have their own versions of Memorial Day, as well.
We in the United States often celebrate Memorial Day–particularly the weekend–as the unofficial beginning of summer. Beach visits and barbeques often prevail, although many communities celebrate with parades on the day proper. It’s too easy for Americans to take their freedom for granted. It’s too easy to forget that fallen soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines, and coastguardsmen bought that freedom in blood. We must never forget. Whatever the cause, and however contraversal the circumstances, young men and women paid the ultimate price serving their country. Remember them.
This week, write the haikai poem of your choice (haiku, senryu, haibun, tanka, haiga, renga, etc.) that states or alludes to our unconventional kigo this week, Memorial Day.
Here’s how the challenge works:
1. write the haikai poem of your choice.
2. post the link of your post to Mister Linky.
3. pingback by posting the link to the challenge on your site.
4. read and comment on other contributors’ posts.
Happy Memorial Day, haijin!