Monday, February 8, 2016

Butterfly Dream: Yellow Rose Haiku by S.M. Abeles

English Original

petal by petal the yellow rose on her inner thigh

Frogpond, 38:2, Spring/Summer 2015

S.M. Abeles

Chinese Translation (Traditional)


Chinese Translation (Simplified)


Bio Sketch

S.M. Abeles lives and writes in Washington, D.C.  He composes poems on dog walks and train rides, and elsewhere when the moment strikes.  His work appears frequently in the usual haiku and tanka journals, and he posts at least one new poem daily on his website, The Empty Sky

1 comment:

  1. Each phrase in this haiku brought me to a different image and meaning. With “petal by petal” I thought of a man or woman pulling petals from a daisy. “He loves me. He loves me not.” How often have we played this game?

    With the phrase “yellow rose” I see that a man or woman lacking a daisy, uses a rose. He or she wants to know the future, and pulling petals from any flower will do.

    When reading these two phrases quickly I can also imagine the petals falling at the end of summer, being blown by the wind and rain.

    The third phrase, “on her inner thigh,” pulled me up short. This is not about an unsure lover, but a woman getting a tattoo. The entire scene is changed, from a garden to a tattoo parlor. I cringe at the imagined discomfort. But, that scenario changes. The woman already has the yellow rose tattoo, and her lover is tracing it with a finger, “petal by petal.”

    This haiku has gone from a playful game, to the end of a season, to discomfort, to eroticism. Quite an accomplishment for only ten words and fourteen syllables.

    -- excerpted from “Re: Readings” by Adelaide B. Shaw (Frogpond, 38:3, Autumn 2015, p. 120):