Winter 2013 Showcase

Hiroshige winterIt never ceases to amaze me just what comes up in the submissions. I’m glad I make suggestions rather than insist that such-and-such a Showcase will entertain submissions on Spring, on the moon, on such-and-such, on so-and-so. As a result I receive pieces of writing which have been responses to all kinds of transitory phenomena, and although an image of winter may (I haven’t decided yet… a here it is, dropping into the moment of ‘going to press’) accompany this editorial, that doesn’t necessarily reflect the content.

However, I would like to widen the scope in a few ways, firstly to attract more readers and secondly to attract more writers. To that end I am considering appointing a ‘Guest Editor’ for a future Showcase. Maybe even for the next one. The Guest editor’s duties will not involve tinkering around with the web site; they will include finding new writers and new ways of promoting the zen space, selection of items for that Showcase, and writing the editorial for that Showcase.

Yes, I still have in mind the possibility of an anthology based on content from these Showcases, but that’s in the future. Meanwhile I will shortly be announcing the launch of the Aval-Ballan Poetry Competition – expect an announcement with a link to the web site in due course.

Enjoy the current Showcase.

Marie Marshall
the zen space



Máire Morrissey-Cummins


evening breeze
in my candle holder
a spiders web


over the moors
sheep drifting


winter night
the moon and the stars
walk me home


December noon
the sun cradled
in bare branches


icy day
his breathe
in mine


Christina Nguyen


the flicker
of cheap LEDs
silent night


first snow
the fine crumb
of artisanal bread


frozen crabapples
the dry rattle
of yesterday


snow covered
the cotton candy stand
in December


winter storm
the snowplow
in the ditch


Peter Butler


Haiku Sequence: In administration

our local Theatr –
something missing

empty stage
too much left

inside the drapes
so many great

car boot sale
the one-time star
framed b & w

two elderly actors
signing on

next season’s productions
in graffiti


cracks in the pavement
early snowdrops
a little shy

tax demand
the snail
in its shell


Rick Daddario

 ©12 wine and seeds 3 sml


S M Abeles


with every new sun
I am more brick
than graffiti


desert rain
I share a drink
with the Buddha


leave me better
than you found me


30-day course
in enlightenment practice …
the moon whittles itself


between mountains
the shape
of time


above and below
the garden buddha


Steve Bowman


My hand is covered
with you. Your sweet inside is
the flavor of dreams.
It perfumes the dark of my
sleep — incense filling my soul.


My alarm clock hums
all through the night; a harsh voice:
I AM eternal!


Kitten purrs around
your feet.  Furry figure eights
warm as morning sun.


Orange leaves rain down;
a halo revolving slow
between feet and ground.


I smell your morning
warmth on my hands.  It lingers
in my nose and dreams.


Your breath, the soft sighs
of sleep at story’s end.  Slow,
rhythmic Mother’s sound.
Enfold me there between your
dreams and the warmth of your heart.


Samuel Snoek-Brown

 s s-b 1

 s s-b 2


Veronika Zora Novak


swift current…
the wing span of
a swan


dog days…
flies gathering on
the winscreen


wintry day…
paper cranes unfold
like cherry blossoms


dandelion seeds
collecting in a web…
this old dream


blazing stars…
a slab of limestone
cools my skin


summer field…
a grasshopper’s


apple blossoms…
another spring away
from home?


Angie Werren


too beautiful (these dreams of bird-filled fruit) to carry water


black butterfly moon
in all the rooms of my house
her furniture


red leaves –
the girl in the crosswalk
touches her face


Rick Daddario

©12 winter trail 5 sml


kate s godsey


a raven shadow
passes over my face
the choice is clear


children after school
their voices the orange
of Rowan leaves


blue twilight
scent of the distant sea
and plums blossoms


moon halo
a pearl for the Madonna
this Christmas eve


childhood summers
rabbit tracks on the berm
and our secret willow


august moon
standing back to back
to see who’s taller


Review – A Piece of Shrapnel

A Piece of Shrapnel: A Haibun Collection
Peter Butler
Hub Haiku Series, Hub Editions, Spalding, 2012
ISBN 978-1-930746-96-7, pp.37
Reviewed by Marie Marshall

‘There are light and darkness… joy and menace, a mix of past experience and home truths with flights of the imagination,’ says Peter Butler himself of this collection, and, not wishing that his haibun should reveal everything, tantalizes us with the promise of a slow-release dose, saying that there are ‘… shades of in-between light and feeling which tell their own story.’

Almost… I didn’t want to review this book, for the simple reason that it meant reading it all the way through at one sitting. So I’ll confess: I have indeed left chunks of it unread, so I can keep coming back to it. Also I always feel apologetic when having to give my opinion of haiku and such like, because it defies, or ought to defy, literary criticism and close textual analysis. The best haibun, like the best haiku, is deliberately unpoetical; at the same time it is never prosaic. It takes ordinary things, leaves them ordinary, but gives the reader the impression that something extraordinary is going on – a performance of The Importance of Being Earnest is rained off, Poirot solves a murder, Bashō’s batman tries out variations on a frog theme, GIs leave for Omaha Beach. Peter’s themes are as disorderly as the way he commits them to the page, and that’s a good thing. Sometimes the brief, stand-alone lines occur at the end, sometimes in clumps in the middle, never precisely measured but always… right… exactly where they ought to be. I’ll quote the following vignette (Peter will say it isn’t a vignette, I say I love the compound words in it, none of this actually matters) and leave you to buy the book. You’ll not regret it.

a private person
with the butterflies

Bold Ethel, potbound in a virgindrab bedsit, invites him in.

Adonis, out to conquer, pleasures the world at a price.

Sad Ethel, an empty purse and ‘not feeling so very different’, watches him leave.

her diary reads


The next Showcase at the zen space will be Spring 2013 which will be released, subject to karma, on 1st April 2013. Please note the copyright of all written work and images used in this showcase and elsewhere in the zen space is held by the creating artist/author or by the zen space, even where not explicitly stated, and may not be used elsewhere without permission.


Would readers kindly inform the editor of any instance where the lay-out of the Showcase looks odd. Please give details of the internet browser you are using. Thank you.



12 thoughts on “Winter 2013 Showcase

  1. angie werren says:

    lovely showcase. nice to see a bird or two, flitting in.

  2. eikenlaan says:

    Thank you, I am honoured to be published here 🙂 Maire x

  3. peter butler says:

    Thank you, Marie, for your thoughtful review of my Haibun Collection ‘A Piece of Shrapnel’. For readers wishing to buy a copy. it’s £5.75 (inc. P & P) from me: Peter Butler, 22 Kinnaird Avenue,Chiswick W4 3SH, or via All profits will be donated to the Katie Piper Foundation for burns victims. Cheques made out to the Foundation may be sent to me for forwarding, or directly to the Foundation’s website:
    With much appreciation. Peter Butler

  4. aloha Marie – a very cool collection of work to set the new year off. I am delighted to be included in this, thank you. aloha.

  5. A lovely collection – pleasurable to read through the different styles – some I connect with more that others of course – but all clearly written and chosen with care.

  6. Patrick Sweeney says:

    Fine work here. I’m grateful.


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