Sunday, December 15, 2013

The rear gear haiku

I’m in backwards mode
again today, where I want
nothing of this world.

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

Do you ever go through these moods where everything seems futile? Where cell phones, movies, social media hoopla, poems, paintings, consumerism and poop seem all the same? Where you sort of feel like Buddha, wanting to spend the rest of your life sitting at some intersection somewhere in Bihar, having nothing and wanting nothing? You do? Then you know what this haiku is about.

Monday, November 25, 2013

The thanks haiku

For S.

Thank you India,
thank you Sadhana! Thanks!
You’ve been good to me.

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

It's the thanksgiving time of the year, and I'm joining in along with Haiku Heights.

I must admit that the first line was inspired by Alanis Morisette's song Thank U, so I'm also giving thanks to that song:

Friday, November 22, 2013

Writing in Montreux

The Jethro Tull said hi,
bonjour, grüezi* in Montreux
and proceeded to play.
And I’ve almost finished my
seven lines in Montreux,
looking out on the lake,
listening from far away.

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

*Swiss German greeting (more or less like "good day!")

The challenge was to write seven lines in a place where one has never written before:

One poem.
7 lines in length. 
Make it perfect.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Selfie, helfie, shelfie, footsie - new words explained and illustrated

While watching the news on Al Jazeera this morning, I learned some new words from a short special they did.

Selfie – a self-portrait shot with a smartphone and shared on a social media site. Apparently invented in Australia in 2002.

(The example shown is actually a double selfie. Looks like I'm about to say something to myself.)

Helfie – a self-portrait showing only the hair or top of the head of the person.

(Low-quality, taken with front camera.)

Shelfie – a self-portrait taken in front of a book shelf.

(Shows my erudite and eclectic taste in books and some knicknacks gathered over the years, just like a proper shelfie should.)

Footsie – well, that's my own little gift to social media. A traditional footsie (foot shot).

Common features of all four are a. shot with a smartphone and b. shared using social media.

Bless the weird world of social media!

All pictures taken with a Sony Ericsson Xperia.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Jotted down

Don't just get caught up in the rush of the day, LEONARD. You could have a feeling of acceleration, like time is flowing by too quickly. But if you can take a few minutes and breathe, you could have some important insights. Your analytical mind is processing lots of information now, and you could come up with some exciting concepts. Take moment to jot your thoughts down so that they aren't lost!

(Today's web horoscope)

So the first thing I jotted down right on command was the horoscope itself, easy as 1-2-3. Thank you, Windows, thank you, Cut, & thank you, Paste.

Time is flowing by too quickly. I've been complaining about that for years to that elusive goddess called Time.

That is the first important insight, no matter that I've had it many times before. And what good has it done (like most important insights)!

My mind is indeed processing lots of information, albeit in a somewhat dazed state. Comes with Monday morning.

So these thoughts jotted down. No guarantee, though, that they won't be lost.

PS1: I love that personal computerized LEONARD. My horoscope knows me!
PS2: Added a picture from the scene of the crime.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

The seven days haiku

Seven more days! I’ll
be waiting at the station
for her to arrive...

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

A contribution to Haiku Heights and Seven.

Actually a very abbreviated version of one of my favorite Bob Dylan songs – Seven more days.
This one is more or less fictitous (but I do wait for my love regularly, about five days out of seven).

Seven more days in a live performance by Ron Wood:

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

The limited appeal horoscope

This was in the mail this morning:
Today, being slightly more aggressive than usual would heighten your appeal, which is limited by Neptunian fog.
I'll try, I'll try! I am worried about my appeal.

(But could anyone explain to me what Neptunian fog is and why Neptune has it out for me?)

– Leonard Blumfeld

Happens to include the words aggressive, heighten and limited, which were demanded by 3WW today.

Monday, November 4, 2013

The Let Them Eat Cake Variant Haiku

Grass cake, grass pudding,
grass soup, grass dumplings in grass
sauce should fatten you.

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

Written on the theme of grass at Haiku Heights.

Alludes to the quote ‘Let them eat cake’ misattributed to Marie Antoinette, queen of France, beheaded in 1793, and a satirical film about the Ceausescu regime of Romania, in which the dictator’s wife recommended grass as a solution for the starving Romanians.

The lifetime achievement haiku

Pointed hats, pointed
people in undershirts and
different attire.

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

First haiku in the artists haiku series.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Tarot and horoscope today

Tarot says:
Your emotional situation isn't that great today. With the Hanged Man and the High Priestess there's precious little chance of you spreading your wings. You're feeling rather discouraged and apathetic about work and towards those close to you, or towards your partner if you have one. Don't let it get you down - the sun's bound to shine tomorrow! At work, you may feel that your abilities are not being fully appreciated. Despite the obvious talents lavished upon you by the Empress, the Hanged Man is about to sow the seeds of doubt in the admiration of your colleagues or your friends. You'll do everything right and then you'll be criticized for doing a bad job! The image people have of you today will be enough to drive you crazy!
 Horoscope says:
You could feel lighthearted and a bit silly. Your sense of humor will be stimulated. People don't always realize that you are a kid at heart! You might spend some time cracking funny jokes. Or you could have fun sending some silly e-mails to your friends. You'll be entertained by TV or movie comedies. You might even come up with a comedy routine of your own. Celebrate the laughter in your life. 
Theoretically, if there was some universal truth to tarot and horoscope, these two should have something in common for the same person on the same day.

So – what to make of this?
a. The two do not seem to have a common denominator.
b. Thank God I don't have to work today, so will hopefully do without the seeds of doubt in my colleagues and my poor image.
c. In view of b., I'll skip the silly e-mails to my friends suggested by the horoscope.
d. Pretty poor universal/celestial/spiritual showing from whoever did tarot/horoscope.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

The den haiku

The lion’s den – used
to be the dragon’s lair – what
awful putrid strench!

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

Written for Haiku Heights and den.

More than anything, this one plays with fixed expressions and treats them literally.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

The black haiku

I have to turn my head until my darkness goes
– The Rolling Stones, Paint It Black
You said, paint it black,
so I did. Now everyone
calls me negative.

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

Written for Haiku Heights and black.

Goes to show that you should not always listen to what people say.

Friday, September 20, 2013

The myth haiku

Myth is alive, myth
is afoot, myth never died.
Naked myth does thrive.

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

Instigated by Haiku Heights and myth, with a huge dose of inspiration from the Leonard Cohen/Buffy Sainte-Marie song God is Alive, Magic is Afoot.

Myth is rampant in this oh so scientific age. For example, the myth that we should get a new cell phone at least once a year in order to always stay connected in the latest ways, to keep up with the Joneses and to fill the pockets of Tim Cook and other CEOs. Or the myth that freedom can coexist with the NSA spying on everyone and everything in the whole wide world. Etc.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Proverbs from the Chinese XIII

Easygoing handsome facts are in the air for you today.
This was today's original Chinese horoscope.
Can't wait to be faced with these easygoing handsome facts!
(It's usually the hard and ugly facts that cause you pain.)
As to their carrier – the air –, it is cool and breezy today – full of the promise of those pleasant facts ...

– Leonard "Loves Facts" Blumfeld (© 2013)

Posted for 3WW (easygoing –  handscome – fact).

The butter haiku

You sweet and creamy
thing! How you get slandered as
saturated fat!

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

Written for Haiku Heights and butter.

No comment needed for this one.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The chirpy haiku

Be chirpy, show this
rotten day some teeth, smile, go
beyond yourself, chirp!

Written for Haiku Heights and chirp.

Written not because today is a rotten day, but just in case.
It's always good to have that kind of encouragement – good for pulling oneself out of the dumps.
Especially for writers. Go ahead: chirp, twitter, tweet or write!

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

The dreadful haiku

Dr. Dread hands me
another exciting glass:
dread or be dreaded.

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

Inspired by Haiku Heights and dread.

This one is about choice, but actually more about the fundamental error of black versus white choice situations into which we see ourselves put occasionally. The choice is not between dread or be dreaded. The choice is not to have to accept the glass from Dr. Dread.

Monday, September 16, 2013

The carnival haiku

Thoughts and feelings in
a spin, force-pulled blue horses
jumping up and down.

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

Inspired by Haiku Heights and carnival.

Inevitable author's note
Can't shed much light on the workings of this one.
The word carnival reminded me of the little permanent carnival in the neighborhood, which hardly ever seems to get visitors, so I'm wondering how it manages to survive.
My thoughts (more so than my feelings) are indeed in a spin, probably as a result of having strong coffee.
That's all, folks, I'm afraid.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

The rain in Rome haiku

The Italian
nation wilts in rain, stays home
or visits temples*.

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

*These, of course, are no longer the temples of Jupiter or Jehova, but their modern equivalent: the shopping centers or temples of consumerism, which offer free shelter from the wet element.

Author's note
As if I could ever leave a haiku without a note!
Once again, what this one says is (mostly) the truth and razor edge of time reporting because it is raining in Rome.
Also, I must apologize for using the present of wilted.

Written for Haiku Heights and wilted.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

The long lost river haiku

The long river flows –
song heard on radio long
ago. Who sings it?

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

Evoked by Haiku Heights and river.

Completely true once again – nothing invented. Heard this song on the radio about 40 years ago. Never have heard it again. But have never forgotten it. Or should I say: never forgotten the memory of it. Memory works in the strangest ways.

Friday, September 13, 2013

The no shit haiku

I’m lucky, I’m lucky,
I can walk under ladders

– Joan Armatrading
You saw a black cat
killed under a ladder on
Friday the 13th?

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

Written upon inspiration by Haiku Heights and superstition.

Author's note and disclaimer
Rest assured: no such thing happened.
No animals were harmed during the making of this haiku.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

The tradition haiku

Abolition would
be a good and proper end
to some traditions.

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

There are some silly traditions (for example, that my family always had to have cheese fondue on New Year’s Eve even though I, for one, hated it), and then there are some that are downright nasty, like bull fights in Spain and female circumcision in some African countries.
All in all, I tend to be more wary of than gung-ho on things traditional, though, of course, there are also many good traditions that deserve to be retained, such as honesty, fairness, modesty, literacy and the like.

Written for Haiku Heights and tradition.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The kitchen haiku

Smell of onions fried
last night still wafts up – open door
or not? Mosquitos ...

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

Instigated by Haiku Heights and Kitchen.

If there is anything I dislike about Rome, it is the plenty of its noiseless, blood-thirsty mosquitos. These guys give you no acoustic warning.
Once again, this is an all-true, razor-edge-of-time piece of poetry. Nothing invented, no artificial ingredients. About to go down to kitchen to open that door and see if there's some fruit for second breakfast.

Friday, September 6, 2013


The unwritten Warsaw
ballet remains unwritten
until return.

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

A contribution to Haiku Heights and ballet.

I'd promised myself that I would write one poem a day during my recent trip to Warsaw, Poland, and failed miserably. My diary contains entries from just two days out of four, and these are just notes on what happened or what I saw, nothing that could be called a poem. Of course, there are many valid excuses: lack of time alone, tiredness after lengthy excursions in Warsaw and other places in Poland, etc. You can't always write what you want, to quote the Rolling Stones.
However, I liked Poland so much that I'm ready to return any time, so that there is a chance that the Warsaw ballet will be written some day after all...

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

The rock, the mountain doubts the validity of his objectives

Today's horoscope read:
Do you doubt the validity of your objectives? Is it possible that you, the rock, the mountain, the bulldozer are having doubts? By golly, it is possible. While you are the master of concrete details, it seems you stumble when it comes to understanding the philosophy behind your plans. Assuming, of course, there is a philosophy. If not, this is the time to consider just what motivates you in your life...
Finally a horoscope that is halfway interesting and relevant!

a. Yes, it is possible.
b. Most of the time I don't even feel like a rock or mountain.
c. I never feel like a bulldozer. It's nothing I aspire to be. Probably my tough luck!
d. I am into concrete details. Guilty of that.
e. Yes, I admit to stumbling.
f. Yes, I assume.
g. I am considering. Will let you know the results real soon.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Wake-Up Song

Most mornings I wake up with a song in my mind. I've been trying to determine what causes a particular song to be it on a particular day. Without any success so far.

This morning's song, for example, was a chanson by Serge Reggiani, the French singer and actor (1922-2004). I could not remember the title of the song, so I looked up the album on the Internet just now – it was simply called "Serge Reggiani" and released by Polydor in 1973. Reading the track list had me confused – had the song playing in my head been "Le vieux couple" or "Hôtel des voyageurs" or even "Contre vents et marées"? I could recall all of them in memory, even though I haven't listened to the album in years.

Confusion resolved: it was "Le vieux couple" after all – listened to it on Youtube (see link below).

So much on wake-up songs for now. Will probably explore this topic again soon.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Morning impression

Neighbor's out
on her balcony

Taking quick
decisive puffs

It's that neighbor
whose age

is in hot dispute
between Sadhana

and me. I
make her younger,

she insists on
beyond forty.

It's difficult
to tell

because we
only ever see her

in the shade
of the drawn

sunblind, always
puffing away

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Proverbs from the Chinese XII

"Never ponder a heave unless it is valid."
One more of those puzzling Chinese proverbs, but possibly just another bad translation. Anyway, it nicely contains today's three words from 3WW: heave, ponder and valid.

Somehow this leaves me pondering ...

Was it meant to say "Never heave a ponder unless ..."?

But even that does not seem particularly valid.

– Yours in Chinese mode Leonard Blumfeld

James M. Cain, The Cocktail Waitress

Waitress is
the potboiler that
is boiling in my pot right now.

– Leonard "Crime Reader" Blumfeld

First fibonacci in a long time ... written upon inspiration by Poets United.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The filthy poor rhyme

The filthy rich get
rich by making sure
that most others
remain filthy poor.

– Leonard Blumfeld  (© 2013)

Inevitable note
Somehow yesterday's Filthy rich haiku stuck in my mind, demanding more treatment. This resulted in the above poem, which is no longer a haiku by count of syllables & lines. For obvious reasons, I'm calling this filthy poor metric companion to the filthy rich a rhyme.

The filthy rich haiku

The filthy rich get
rich by making sure others
get very little.

– Leonard Blumfeld (© 2013)

Inevitable notes
Who ever said haiku should be limited to gentle muzings about bonsai in the mist and could not be used for succinct statements of fact? Facts such as that the gap between rich and poor has never been more extreme than right now.
Last year, Apple’s CEO earned about 1 million dollars a day while the workers making Apple products at Foxconn in China earned about 10 dollars a day.
China, a nominally communist* country, now boasts the world’s second largest number of billionaires, right behind God’s own USA.
*Part of the communist doctrine, if I remember right, is a very negative attitude towards private property.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Infinite wisdom I

I was going to start the year with a new column titled "The infinite wisdom of Leonard Blumfeld" or something along those lines, imparting to the world my precious gems of infinite wisdom.

But the fact is that I have come to dislike aphorisms and most of the pearls and beads of wisdom quoted or shared on Facebook or in other books at any opportune and inopportune moment and time of day, telling you in flashes of deep or shallow insight how to live your life, how to be happy or unhappy, how to treat thy neighbor or thy neighbor's dog or how to make or keep friends, enemies, etc.

Therefore, instead of adding to the heap, the above little rante & rave shall remain the first infinite wisdom of the year. That's all, folks!

– Leonard Blumfeld