Category Archives: haiku

Winter Haiku Strings

Tis the blog’s tenth anniversary and since we start in the dawn of the year, I would like to offer you a string of seasonal haiku penned within these past few years.

First light –
Two hooded crows
found breakfast at Fladdabister.
#haiku fae #60N #geopoetics

The edge –
samurai’s sword,
dawn redefined the horizon.
#haiku fae #60N #geopoetics

Crisp –
icicles clad every pavement,
Bressay bathes in pink & blue.
#haiku fae #60N #geooetics

Kirk –
an austere house biggit by man
to park their folk into one faith.
#haiku fae #60N

Happiness –
as magical as Geminids,
furtive shooting stars in winter.
#haiku fae #60N

Imbolc –
from indigo dawn to snowflakes,
Brigid’s spirit rises from ice.
#haiku fae #60N #geopoetics

Look at
our planet as a peach –
that wee layer right at the top
is where we walk…
#geopoetics fae #60N


Ice Age

in absence of your human warmth,
I feel heart from wandering
wolf that
trudges through
silent snowflakes, still
framed icicles from a sky,
once forgotten
as they
touch down.
never makes 2.
Will be looking for
long shadows, howling echoes
around Yule, since I ran
away from the

Sandwick, 8 Dec 2013

60N Yule

When sky awakes,
smell green of pine, cinnamon night,
Yule has its ghouls,
gales and gold
#micropoetry fae #60N

———— Lerwick, 16 Dec 2013

Mother Night –
dreamer of
clad inside lace,
whatever crescent of the moon.

-//————————– 20 Dec 2013

Upside down world –
icicles inside Everglades,
power from the polar vortex.
#haiku #geopoetics fae #60N

Arctic vortex –
Stalactites downtown
the latest trend in media world.
#geopoetics fae #60N

Polar vortex –
16 km up in air,
where jet streams yield to 60N
#geopoetics fae #60N

—————–/————- 8 Jan 2014


Who wants a world filled with silence and
chairs, where
shadows hang coats on
slate roofs, and bold
divas sing to
snails and
sniggering starlings on
starved snow?

Don’t tell me twice,

winter wanders like a brother
without socks, shoes or
wooly hat.
just aware of
my glowing green
solitude you too can glean on
every blade in a garden
left to wild gales.


Come to
Mareel when all is dark;
its gentle light
through the surface of raindrops,
slides against panes of
icy glass,
feeds high moon and
tide – as she keeps
her voice in
a jar…
conversation de

——————————- 8 Jan 2014

Winterlight 60N –
in between first light & pale blue,
fire Phoenix above Mousa.
#haiku fae #60N #geopoetics

—-11 Jan 2014

Bressay sprinkled with icicles,
blackbird hides –
a little closer to Norway.

— 17 Nov 2016

With seasonal greetings fae Nordicblackbird at 60N.


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   They say Gertrude has fingernails ready to slash through waves & land…
Whatever the colour of warning, putting a name onto a storm personifies eyes from the sky.

I don’t particularly like purple in such context. A storm’s coming.

For the first time, have dressed my neck with an ancient binding rune from the viking world. The one that’s said to fulfil your wishes. It has its place between Wunjo & my angel. I hope it will bring good fortune.


a haiku de rigueur, as my dreams jigging with gale gusts.

Veillée d’armes. 

Every storm has its own paraphernalia of bullets… Tonight, the sky turned a sniper.



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I can only imagine it, as clouds forbid me from such sight.

So, in a haiku,

wolf moon – 

there, in the claws of January,

           blackbird preens at the moon. 

#haiku fae #60N



Filed under 2016, Arcania, geopoetics, haiku, home, poetry, shetland, shore, spirit, verse, winter



Who said mathematics was void of poetics?
I dedicate this triptych to Mademoiselle Wuscher, my most human teacher of maths, back in Pertuis, Provence (1983-84) – as well as my peerie African sister, who embraced them as poetry 🙂
Thales & Pythagoras deciphered the mystics with flair.

Here, as shared with both the Westside Writers & then my peerie sister from the heart , as well as in anticipation to tomorrow’s Higher Mathematics’ exam for all pupils: (as inspired from a recent Prelim)


blue morning light on
Bressay Sound,
cheery starlings chuckle
in style,
wrestle with pi,
between questions,
rippled silence –
eyes wander
parallel worlds:
wired cherry trees for Japan,
leaning giraffe,
red Australia…
through sashed
world –
stretch of
blue dividing isles,
rolling backbones on green
hillsides, where stones
shelter wrens
from gales,
holds your
heart with two hands,
I’ll frame Friday through that window.
In true spirit,
Je suis l’enfant de Claude Roy,
celui qui battait la

Claude Roy: French poet & essayist (1915-1997)

———————– 18/4/2014

Prelim –
algebraic world from
deeper space,
stikkit mist,
nebulae –
so many sighs in a cold room.
#micropoetry #geopoetics fae #60N


Mathematica –
too many letters,
squared or
let loose around
x + 3
a factor of cubic expression.

With renewed thanks to Shetland Times‘ Columnist Doug Forrest for the kind words below:




Filed under 2014, 60N, Arcania, celebration, geopoetics, haiku, home, images, island, poet, poetry, shetland, shore, spirit, verse, world, writing

micropoetry past dreamtime

Very few words gone past Dreamtime

For Tai

Tequila sunrise –
splash of lemon,
salt fae North Sea.
shaken, not stirred,
with Mousa on
the rocks.
#geopoetics fae #60N
——————————- Nat 🙂



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Happy Yuletide!

Our Nordic sun might have peaked at 6 and a bit degrees’ elevation on the day of the longest night, tis the season to be merry!

Yule, also known as Midwinter, Mother’s Night or Winter Rite, is that moment of blackness, crowned by candles & cinnamon scents around many homes, including my own 🙂

Tis also the moment to exchange a present, as well as to embrace the hope for the return of the sun.
Since my South African gang is reunited with Austral summer, I opened my peerie sister’s gift today, knowing she opened hers before she flew off to Gauteng. We are bound by love & spirit.

a peerie string of micropoetry for your pleasure 🙂

60N Yule

When sky awakes,
smell green of pine, cinnamon night,
Yule has its ghouls,
gales and gold
#micropoetry fae #60N


Mother’s Night –
dreamer of
clad inside lace,
whatever crescent of the moon.



Oh, and the rainbow flag will fly on 25 December fae Shetland, since have just been invited to spend the day with my South African friend Paula & Magnie at Girlsta 🙂

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Filed under 2013, 60N, Arcania, celebration, colours, december, earth, fire, geopoetics, haiku, images, island, life, north, poet, poetry, shetland, shore, spirit, verse, verse poetry, winter, wishes, world, writing, Yuletide

the hitcher


I spent so many nights on the roadside, I came back home with a lantern.

Miles of darkness, cloaked inside white, with an ankle strapped to endure grit and tarmac, the very edge of the known world – with resilience as an ally, I made my way amidst hitchers, kindred spirits. On my way home, I found all sorts of cars and other four-wheeled vehicles. Apocalyptic, teenagers’, knitted (aye, a very Shetland tradition) – even a Volvo filled with free running spirits that came alive as dancers glided through darkness – amazing cars and occupants. A camper van so hospitable… And a bus. A bus filled with wild stories. “Through the window, I can see, I can see, I can see…”

I braved the unknown after dusk and dared to knock on car windows – hopped my north in between Brae and Cullivoe, via Bigton, Levenwick & Ninian – where theatres are void of walls; where The White Wife (originally from the most northerly isle of Unst) waves at lone cars, eyes and hitchers. She too travels in the same way. In any case, she seems to protect


us with one reassuring waving hand. And then we find her once again inside a village hall, where she serves tea & ignites smiles


with her army of white aproned choir-waiters. each journey starts without control.

Have you ever wondered about strange and peculiar things that happen through your life? Your car or sense of ignition? Have you ever noticed how life can sometimes fall under a spell or a strange jinx?

Such was my own journey in the past months… Funny how tarmac turns into the middle of nowhere – a headland or a precipice. You never know till you taste tarmac and the kerbs. “Sit back and enjoy the ride!”


As a hitcher,

I find my way in between junctions & ferry terminals. From Hay’s Dock to Cullivoe, via narrow roads, miles of  dreamt cats’ eyes, white lines and stops. I, forgotten ghostly figure, suddenly turn storyteller, who sometimes waves at The White Wife… Meet with others who have their own story to share,

whatever they carry with them – a broken shoe, heart, or milk jug…

a frozen trow, gnome, skimming stone,

camera or ukulele…

In the footsteps

of one

white wife.


And then,

the Final Gathering.

NTS IGNITION Community ProjectWe all gathered for a last leg of ignition, inside the middle of nowhere, where we could burn and ask where next…

Dancer, hitcher, storyteller, free runner-performer, choir-waiter or musician.

We shared our words through the beauty of ignition,

made new songs, drank tea & soup,

thanked hosts and friends,

and sang our hearts out to the world.

Some felt a new journey has begun. It is my case. Let us define the next stretch of road 🙂

IGNITION through CAR YARNS – with shared notable words:

Road runner –
roaring rubber & clicking clutch,
red scent of dead flesh on tarmac…
#haiku fae #60N

Boy racer –

to every change of gear,
quartet of ravens by the road.
#haiku fae #60N

Stitch-hiker –
needles off the speedometers,
I knit,you knit by the roadside.
#haiku fae #60N

Shiny alloys,
rings of fire on wet tarmac,
cyclops’ eyes
with numbers inside
circles of chrome –
somebody left
cold wax on hazelnut dashboard.
#micropoetry fae #60N

Now, let me enjoy my lantern 🙂


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half & half world

Beyond the stars, light, equinox

Nothing prepares us for such cosmic rite of passage. Not even the dazzling displays of aurora borealis that filled our sky since last summer’s dusk… As we wandered through February, the island began to display precocious signs of revival. Strangely, our trees began to share so early buds… Winter bowed out without complaint, as milder air filtered through March. Not ice, but rain dominated our Nordic skies. March, month of rainbows and wild hares!

Revival, renaissance, a promise of return
From Imbolc to Ostara, our earthly calendar of life feels more than generous.
Celandine popped up with a good fortnight in advance… Avian movements have turned our skies into fantastic motorways! From wildfowl to waders, via blackbirds, skylarks and common guillemots, the island gradually welcomes back its summer visitors. 

And wherever you decide to walk, Greylag geese feast about everywhere! Their sound and sights slash days and nights. I love to listen to bird calls in a crepuscular sky. Geese make the best use of stars for night navigation. Somehow, I think of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s Vol de Nuit.

Night. The one that weaves solace and fears  through a curtain of love & hate… 

Yet night will shrink even further as we jig with spring equinox! What began from late January will now accelerate at some amazing speed. So until then, I shall make the most of our stars and walk through spring till they faint away past Beltaine – enjoy a walk through the meadows and re-discover my world’s palette of colours, though quite timid at first, when petals open to the sun. On Sunday morning, I heard my first skylark. Now I can truly welcome Voar, that wonderful dialect word for spring.

Voar haiku string 

Voar –
wind of spring in rattling blind,
distant echo of wheatears.
#haiku fae 60N

Let it out –
March, month of rainbows, ghosts & angels,
my grief still tattooed in grey sky.
#haiku fae 60N

Les choristes –
in their chocolate & white suits,
on every corner of the stack, guillemots sing.
#haiku fae 60N


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Arctic Sunday

back to whiteworld

We have been warned. That exotic (anything above zero Celsius) air would not last long… Kate’s 50 words for Snow is playing inside the hut, as am I’m savouring a bowl of warm porridge. The island once more caught in some Arctic spell, with a thin, though icy sheet of snow, has clad every meadow, garden and geo. Our three felines ventured fully clawed on the icy blue.

Peewit the Cat clambered over the crab basket and watched geese in mid-morning sky from his post. He looked a sphinx in this ocean of ice.  Frozen garden in glorious light on Sunday morning. Overnight gales let us enjoy more magic from our Nordic sky, with yet another luminous display of aurora. Mirrie Dancers delighted eyes late in darkness. So cold though through this Arctic air. If at the start of February, I felt on the shore of the Labrador, today makes me think of Svalbard, or somewhere near the horizon of South Georgia, South Shetland or Orkney Islands, or even Iles Kerguélen…  A short walk around my patch transports my heart to those desolate freezing realms. Scott, Charcot and Shackleton  belong to this catalogue of famous polar explorers, and yet, other names, no so well remembered, adorn this list. No leopard or elephant seal, just common and grey ones can be found all around my shore. Each print of snow boot has its rewards. I heard a snippick (snipe) in the nearby field, and geese calling above my head. So was the theme of my stravaig before lunchtime.

Everything belongs to the ice.

In defiance to eyes and claws of February, sparrows and starlings sang during snowfall on Saturday. So eager to chase this spell of desolation, they stood and chirped all around us. Every tree began to feel the weight of winter. Sticky snow whitened our world. But still, birdsong filled in sound this myriad of snowflakes. My Nordic world sounded so light. 

Such desire to feel alive and sing in Saturday’s bleakest moments…

June & Richard’s Old Manse looks so romantic clad in white. The old stone walls harbour comfort and secret worlds fit for a starling, gull or wren. They too feed birds that come to shelter from harshness. Among bits of twisted branches and frozen garden, tubes of peanuts hang from bareness. Birds know it so well. later they will find a suitable tree to love and fare for their offspring… In the meantime, they have to make do with whiteworld.

Recent haiku & tweets from 60N

Morning distorted by raindrops that could crystallize by Saturday – will have to tell curlews & wrens…   

Magic words –
 inside book of incantations, 
one spell for snow.

Garde-barrière – 
sur le rebord du monde, 
deux étourneaux attendent la neige.
  fae 60N 

Now found your footprints in the snow – echoing round the 
whole island! 


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Draco dans les étoiles

time to reconvene with fire

It has gained in stature. It is now known around the world. It leaps from island to island… It fills our sky with sparks and light and parrafin lingers in our hearts forever.

Each last Tuesday of January, fire fever sparks off all around town. The dragon’s back around our walls, and with it, hordes of boys and men in starting blocks for merriment. In my night sky, Draco awaits curtain of night to show the way. 

On this last day of January, young islanders turn warriors and invest corridors inside their own institution. Everyone gathers to applaud and marvel at shiny helmets. The atmosphere is bon enfant, as staff and pupils play the game until our squad of young Vikings join their elders by the harbour. It is indeed a special day for those young men who represent our school. They too have their own galley to set on fire and walk in footsteps of elders. 

Fire fever animates hearts throughout the day. It kicks early and will demand another day to recover from party time! It culminates with the now famous procession. In the meantime, boys and men have to endure a much accepted marathon by visiting schools, hospital, care homes and whoever wants to see them before sunset. 

The procession well after dusk shines as highlight. Folk from the world come to marvel at boys & men ready to march and  turn their boat into ashes. Impressive prints left in your eyes. As night progresses, the guizing men will engulf halls where women wait to serve and feed with tattie soup (or reestit mutton) and other liquid concoctions until next dawn… For those of you familiar with the opening scene from the movie Beowulf mind you, minus Grendel and treasures! the allegory won’t feel too strong. In our depth of winter, Up-Helly Aa feels so welcome as light begins to override night in a much more assertive way. 

February born off ashes 

This year, Imbolc follows so close to Lerwick’s Up-Helly-Aa.
Imbolc, the Earth’s true beginning of Spring, and with it, the very first and timid steps to renewal. 

Our dawns have become precocious – our afternoons linger longer… Sometimes sunsets turn pink and blue in pastel style and this precious nordic light carve smiles in eyes and hearts. It gives us time to wander (“stravaig”) around our shore.

 Long-tailed ducks mingle with Eiders & Goldeneyes, common Scoters, kittiwakes and selkies… Little auks have been seen. Ravens re-started their acrobatics, as courtship begins on roadsides at breakfast time. Ravens, once captured by Vikings around the island to be used as scouts & seekers of land beyond seafarers’ horizon… Starlings and sparrows filled this morning’s sky with calls and chirps, so quarrelsome can they become. Even if the land feels desolate, precocious signals are noticed. Our path to the Vernal Equinox looks now lit. And until then, we shall keep our beacons alight, watch out for ice at every dawn and salute Draco in our sky.

The hearth is keeping us warm. Candles bring smiles when all feels dark. And when our sky feels generous, the entire universe fills our eyes. In moonless night, we can enjoy our Northern Lights. Without a doubt, 60N is a magic place! 

Today, prolific day at the wordbench. So here, a string of fresh haiku 🙂

Nuit de feu – 
dry wax & ashes for Imbolc, 
we have been burning wood all night. 
Haiku fae 60N 

Stravaig – 
in-between ditches & potholes, 
follow rock doves & hooded crows. 
Haiku fae 60N 

Parrafin – 
elixir to sun worshippers 
that lingers through depth of winter. 
Haiku fae 60N 

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