Fallen leaf (haibun)

For  Carpe Diem our task was to write a haibun on “Departing Summer”.  “Kamishibai” means “storyteller”. 

1)  A maximum of 100 words

2) Classical rules

     a)  5-7-5 syllables
     b)  Season word
     c)  Cutting word (interpunction)
     d)  Interchangeable first and third line
3)  For those of us who don’t speak English, the host is hoping to
     read the haibun in the author’s original language. I have decided to add a French translation since it is my second language and that of my mother and homeland.
Here is our host’s offering which I find delicious, reminding me of my grandson.

“Look granddad”, my grandson yells. He shows me a red leaf from a tree which I don’t know. “Where did you find it?”
“It’s from a tree I have discovered”, he answers. He takes me by the hand. “I will show you were I have found it”. He points at a painting of Van Gogh in the garden of our neighbours.  
“Look granddad, the red leaf fell from that painting”. 
first red leaves fall
Van Gogh’s painting comes alive
in a child’s hand
© Chèvrefeuille 

(c) Clr '14

“Mommy, look what I  found!” Justin came running from the lake, out of breath and gives his mother a maple leaf.

“Oh what a perfect leaf, sweetheart. Thank you. I`m a little sad that summer is almost over already.”

Labour Day is in two weeks and that means the end of summer as we all know it. September 1st school, colleges and universities will all commence. Even if the trailer and catamaran are still here,  there will be little opportunities to drive up now with fall activities quickly taking a life of its own. Summer will soon be old history.

a Maple leaf,
fled its shelter prematurely

kissed the sand
(c) Tournesol

« Maman, regarde ce que j’ai trouvé! » Justin arrive du lac en courant essoufflé et remet une feuille d’érable à sa mère.

« Quelle feuille parfaite, mon amour. Merci!  Ça m’attriste un peu que l’été prend fin déjà, » répondit sa mère.

Dans deux semaines arriva déjà la Fête du Travail et cela représente la fin d’un été comme nous le connaissons. Le 1 ier, septembre l’école, les collèges et universités débuteront. Même si la roulotte et le catamaran sont ici,  les occasions pour venir au lac,  seront moins fréquentes puisque les activités d’automne prennent vie très vite. L’été sera bientôt une veille histoire.

feuille d’érable
fuit son abri  hâtivement
embrasse le sable
(c) Tournesol ‘14

Posted by Cheryl-Lynn 2014/08/19




  1. The maple leaf .. of course! Everything hinged upon that 'prematurely' and a great sadness came over me. In one word so much said. For that the haiku, and tale that make up the haibun have the touch of sadness, To me, the leaf kissing sand can be autumn kissing summer goodbye, too.

    1. Your comment has knocked me over...wait, I have to get back up. I am so touched by your interpretation of my haibun! I am learning slowly and find that so much can be said with less, and there is a special reverence in saying goodbye to each season...even winter which gives us time to rest our minds.

  2. You said it so well.

    And so did Hamish.

    My maple tree are not losing leaves yet, but I had to have my horse chestnut taken down.


    1. Thank you so much,JzB, and I am sorry for your loss...saying goodbye to a tree is necessary as well. I am sure it held many memories.

  3. A sad story of departure, but also a story with joy. Look at the child who has found the Maple Leaf ... isn't it a joyful scene?
    We need to say goodbye to summer, because Mother Earth has to rest a while and become whole new and fresh as spring starts again.
    This is the full circle of life.

    Thank you Cheryl Lynn for this wonderful haibun. Merci Bien.

    I have tried to write a French haiku.

    une dernière feuille
    adhère fermement -
    Automne quitte

    This is the original:

    a last leaf
    adheres firmly -
    autumn departs

    1. Yes, autumn comes with mixed emotions for me, always. Your haiku are lovely, in both languages...adheres firmly is what struck me...I can relate to this "hanging on" feeling a bit. This haiku writing has consumed me somewhat and stirred my muse...I am overdue to write in my Traces blog. Your prompts are often like "une baume qui soulage et purifie l'âme."

  4. Those early harbingers of coming autumn.. that single leaf that make us think of change.. you have captured the melancholy perfectly.

    1. Thank you, Björn, that leaf I saw on the sidewalk end of August last year on my way to work and backtracked to pick it up. That is exactly how I felt when I saw it screaming in my mind "No" not yet".

  5. Ah, time that was summer - I am once again in the mode of watching my grandchildren and they fill the light of what is left of the day.
    I fear I will fall so far behind on my comments...
    So I have opted to write only one to CD prompt a day when there is a choice. Though I still write daily, and my favorite weeklies.

    Thank you for all of your visits. While I have maple leaves from my two silver maples it is the yellow eye shaped leaves of the willow that seem to be the first to fall at the slightest change of temperature.

    As you say though each season has its own blessings.

    1. Well, hey, grandchildren take first place and I am honoured you took the time to comment here. ) I must drive out ot my friend's place to see how her willow is:)

  6. Such a lovely haibun ... melancholic reflections as they cycle keeps moving on .. the consulation is that it does keep revolving ... like an eternal wheel of life ... so soon one will see the first tiny flowers poking their heads through the snow.

    1. Thank you, Georgia. Are thee trying to sugar coat winter, my dear? That is the only season I do not miss when it finally departs...haha, probably because it sticks around a bit longer than it should.


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