Simply Haiku: An E-Journal of Haiku and Related Forms
November-December 2004, Volume 2, Number 6

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Haibun: Gary R. Ford


Crossing Paths

With the van tightly packed, I take final leave of this city where I grew up, raised my family and started a business.

I wanted to stay, to solve the problems of the failing company, to finish on a high. Instead, I move into retirement at too early an age.

As I drive on in the rain, thoughts drift and feelings move through like the songs on my CD player.

Suddenly a wet and bedraggled bear cub dashes onto the road and stops in front of me.

I skid to a stop and become this creature - lonely, hungry, lost and startled. Like the bear, I wasn't paying attention and wound up where I am.

Sun-dried road -
slug trails reflect
the morning light

What Legacy?

The twisted arbutus tree leans precariously, sheds its skin in rolls - like papyrus scrolls which hold ancient writings.

As I stretch, bend and exercise to shed my own excess, I wonder: What wisdom am I leaving as legacy?

Is this the habit of all men who pass this late season - to think about the personal wisdom they could pass on to others? Thoughts like "I wish I'd invested as much in my family as I invested in my work"; or "I wish I hadn't let fears direct my life." I don't wish to deliver mere clichés.

As I search for my own unique voice, I have little more to offer than "Peanut butter goes well with cheese."

empty nest -
the coopers fledged
and left

Newly retired, Gary Ford has just begun to write in the haibun form. Prior writing has predominantly been of a business nature and Gary is enjoying the struggle to find the words to describe more personal reflections. Gary lives in Victoria B.C., Canada.