Poets and Labyrinths at Seabeck Haiku Getaway

Spiral labyrinth at Seabeck Haiku Getaway

This photo by Ida Freilinger shows the labyrinths we made at the Seabeck Haiku Getaway.

Gather a bunch of haiku poets in one place, say “Let’s make something beautiful together,” and we are on it. 

Friday, October 11, about 30 poets at the Seabeck Haiku Getaway joined me to make two big double-spiral labyrinths in about 20 minutes flat.

After making the labyrinths, we walked them together, inspired by opening lines to Bashô’s Narrow Road to the Interior:

The moon and the sun are eternal travelers. Even the years wander on.… every day is a journey, and the journey itself is home.
(trans. Sam Hamill)

Braided blue rope

One labyrinth was defined with braided clothesline rope that I’d brought with me to Seabeck.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Red Leaf

The other was formed with leaves, lichen-encrusted twigs, cedar fronds, wood chips, and other forest stuff, some of it gathered from the woods around my house, some from the Seabeck grounds.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The rope labyrinth is coming together in the foreground, with the leaf team in the background, in this photo by Kathabela Wilson.

The rope labyrinth is coming together in the foreground, with the leaf team in the background, in this photo by Kathabela Wilson.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The spirals are coming together in this photo by Kathabela Wilson.

The spirals are coming together in this photo by Kathabela Wilson.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bone, Leaf, Rope

We decorated the labyrinths with bones, feathers, shells, mushrooms, and leaves.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After making the labyrinths, we walked them together, shown here in Kathabela's photo.

After making the labyrinths, we walked them together, shown here in Kathabela’s photo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Throughout the weekend, poets wrote haiku inspired by life’s journeys and worked their poems into the labyrinth path.

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Making a labyrinth exercises both analytic and creative muscles. For me, the fusion of the two usually includes moments of confusion, and always results in an outpouring of joyful energy.

Weeks later, I’m still smiling, still feeling waves of joy wash over me.

In closing, here is a smile-inducing poem added to our labyrinth by poet Annette Makino of Makino Studios:

spiral labyrinth…
still hoping for a shortcut
to enlightenment

yours on the turning path, still hoping,

Margaret

About Margaret D. McGee

Comments

  1. ahhh

  2. Ida Freilinger says:

    How definitive of the labyrinth and the thoughts that made the zen work. Lovely. Ida Freilinger

  3. lovely!

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