Close-up of drying maple leaf, red and maroon, atop a weathered silver-grey roof with silver scratches in it.
©F.L. Blumberg 2024


F.L. Blumberg

Yanaka Bochi 1

Atop the fluttering gold of the gingko,
a crow chases away small birds.
He wants the glory all to himself.

A richly gold gingko tree; a blue sky with with white clouds; and a black crow soaring away from the treetop.
©F.L. Blumberg 2024

Yanaka Bochi 2

In keen November,
gravestone flowers grow steely—
at last, skeletal.

A bouquet of long-stem flowers partly drying out, partly already dried out and brown at a gravesite.
©F.L. Blumberg 2024
Close up of a dried-out spiky flower-structure, now black and brown. A memorial monument and gingko tree are blurry in the background.
©F.L. Blumberg 2024

Late morning by the Katsura River

Sunlight sparkles on the water
lapping the rocks
beneath the little egrets’ feet.

Branches of evergreen pine needles frame sunlight sparkling on a river with a few rocks jutting out and two small little egrets in the middle of the water.
©F.L. Blumberg 2024


Maple tree, you have drawn
quite a crowd with your bursts
of cinnabar stars.

Tofuku-ji 1

Moss on old maples—
the sturdy, grey trunks become
ever more handsome.

Tofuku-ji 2

A slip of the moon
murmurs near the temple eaves:
it is time to leave.

On the left, a frontal view of the roof of Tofuku-ji temple. To the right, the moon emerging in the blue late-afternoon sky.
©F.L. Blumberg 2024


The bell blankets
the burial grounds
in resonance.

A little stone Bodhisattva amid stone slabs, rocks, grass, and moss.
©F.L. Blumberg 2024


The maple trees by the pond:
cardinal, carmine pink, faded oxblood.
Which of these were you?

A temple pond with maple trees of varying red hues partially overhanging the water. In the foreground, the pond is bordered by manicured round shrubs and small flowers. Large stones are both in and around the pond.
©Wendy Gan 2024