By the Lake

A haibun of reflections and realisation

A.H. Starlingsson
2 min readNov 11, 2021

This morning, I spent a few hours shaping copper into leaves, but the tapping became a neverending solitary machine gun, so I tried bending words into memories instead.

Finding words to forge is a bit like foraging for leaves to trace on copper sheets — or searching for something unseen. They are all located in the same place; in my forest.

Often, I wander without real destination, much unlike a bullet. Today I found a tiny cove full of unsettled driftwood, lying like leftovers of a small battle.

Sandy stayed in the warmth of the caravan. Sandy is the squirrel who hopped into my open window months ago, and is a squirrel who enjoys having his tummy tickled. Mine is still bandaged.

Of course, there are those that mumble about captivity and claim Sandy would be happier in the wild. Well so would I, but I have not the large number of predators he has, apart from my regrets and traumas from countries of deserts and war.

And anyway, Sandy has a far better chance of making it here in the safety of the caravan…

in a cage made from my past
I learn about freedom
among the trees
from my friend

Written for dversepoets

Photo of Sandy by the haibun haijin (this writer)



A.H. Starlingsson

—dispatches from Ukraine🌲currently writing "Distant Taps The Woodpecker,* Mastodon contact: starlingsson@gmail.com_