Blossoming dreams . . .

cherry blossom . . .
the baby’s hand unfolds
around my finger
     –Sakura Award,
     Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival Haiku Invitational 2011

My haiku path, like all good paths, is a winding one.  So why do I bother with such a circuitous route when I could follow a more straightforward path through life and, most likely, get to my destination faster and easier?  The answer (not that you asked) is that haiku helps me to focus on what’s important, to take time to notice the little things, which are, of course, the big things, in life, whether real or imagined. 

When I met my grand-nephew, Logan, for the first time last December, he clasped his hand around my index finger the way that babies do.  A simple reflex action.  Nothing more.  Nothing less.  But when his small hand began to unfold and fold again around my finger, the action reminded me of something bigger and more eternal than the two of us.  It was, for me, a haiku “moment.”

In my garden, the cherry tree I planted the year before Logan’s birth bloomed for the first time last spring . . . about the same time I began thinking about entering the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival Haiku Invitational.  Cherry blossoms are, for both Eastern and Western gardeners, a harbinger of spring, of new life, of beauty.  They are, quite simply, a heady and delicious reminder of all that’s right with the world.  It’s a reminder I often need to help me through so many moments that don’t seem, somehow, quite right . . . or that are in fact far more disturbing.    

Throughout those first few weeks of early spring, I watched my cherry tree set buds and slowly release the buds into small white, fragrant blossoms that, one by one, broke free of branches to make way for new foliage.  By then, the blossoms–shattered and lying fallow on the garden’s ground–were yesterday’s memory.  I know, however, that with luck and grace and a certain amount of nurturing that memory will become reality again when my tree, now dormant, awakens to new life next spring.  By that time Logan will most likely have a baby brother who holds onto his finger . . . or perhaps mine . . . and unfolds countless small remembered moments.   I plan to keep on counting as many of those moments as I can, moment by moment, dream by dream.  That is the way of gardeners and haiku poets, I remind myself.  A dizzying, roundabout, hopeful way full of blossoming dreams. 

About Margaret Dornaus

I’m a writer and a teacher, as well as a haiku-doodler. I live in a beautiful woodland setting, surrounded by native oak forests, that inspires me to record haiku snapshots of luna moths and our resident roadrunner, and even an occasional black bear as it hightails it across the top of my road, my mongrel dog barking at its heels as I watch with wonder. My work as a travel writer has appeared in publications from The Dallas Morning News to the Robb Report. You can find examples of my travel writing–as well as excerpts from a travel memoir I’m working on–at my other WordPress site, Travelin’ On. What more than that do you need to know? Only that I started this blog with an eye toward collaboration. Got a haiku? Send it my way. . . . I’m all about new visions & voices. Best, Margaret
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10 Responses to Blossoming dreams . . .

  1. Melissa says:

    Lovely story, Margaret. I envy you people who get to see cherry blossoms in real life. 🙂

  2. Jim Sullivan says:

    Stunning story, Margaret. I love it. My 6 month old grandson does the same thing. You have given me a new look at this, a better way to remember. Thank you,


  3. Thank you for sharing your haiku moment, Margaret. You have a wonderful way with words that I enjoy reading very much. And congratulations on your Sakura Award!
    The cherry trees are just coming into bloom in New Zealand now and I hope to see some tomorrow in a place near my hospital appointments called Greerton Village, where they’ve just had their Cherry Blossom Festival 2011. I should come home with a handful of haiku moments and a camera full of photos! The perfect end to a day 🙂

  4. I may be your husband, but reading your posts always enriches my life experience and my relationship with you. I only wish other husbands could be as blessed as I.

  5. sanjuktaa says:

    Loved it , Margaret. Keep writing and congratulations on your sakura award! Why don’t you post a pic of your cherry tree for people like us who have never seen one 🙂

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