The Lighter Side of JzB

Here you will find photos, poetry, and possibly some light-hearted foolishness. For the Heavier Side
of JzB
see my other blog,
Retirement Blues. (There be dragons!)

I claim copyright and reserve all rights for my original material of every type and genre.

Every day visits*
From Moose, Goose, and Orb Weaver
All seized by Haiku

"Why moose and goose?" you may ask. Back on 2/04/13 Pirate wrote a haiku with an elk in it, and I responded with
one with a moose and then included him every day. A few days later in comments Mystic asked "Where's the goose?"
So I started including her with this post on 2/07. A week later on the 14th, Mark Readfern
asked for and received a spider. The rest is history.

*Well, most days, anyway. Grant me a bit of poetic license.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Carpe Diem #260, Caravanserai

I had to look up caravanserai and learn that it is a resting place on a trade route traversed by a caravan - a group of traders, pilgrims or other travelers.

We went to a funeral today for my wife's cousin - a man only a few months younger than I.  He was a wonderful person, a real mensch, dearly beloved by his children, grandchildren, and all who knew him. He was a military veteran, and at his grave site there was a military ceremony, and a presentation to his son, who is in the navy, of the flag used as a shroud on his casket.  It was a deeply emotional moment, and my eyes are tearing up again as I write these words. 

I dedicate this haiku to his memory.

R.I.P. Larry.  I wish I had known you longer and better.

last stop
on life's long hard caravan
hallowed ground

Carpe Diem #260

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Carpe Diem Special #49, Jane Reichhold's "Winter Solstice"

Inspirational haiku

winter solstice
warmth of friends
return the sun

(c) Jane Reichhold

deep snow
the horse walks the paths
of summer

(c) Jane Reichhold

My inspirations

~ 1 ~

alban arthan
from deep in the longest night
sun child is reborn

~ 2 ~
winter's longest night
old man holds his wife close
for warmth

~ 3 ~

winter solstice
moose shivers in the forest
goose basks in the sun

~ 4 ~
frosted garden
old orb weaver is dead
eggs wait in the cold


Carpe Diem Special #49

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Carpe Diem #257, Liberation

We're baaack! 
from a week at the lake.  
Took lots of pictures.  
Maybe  few will show up here.

Now back to business

~ 1 ~

notes running free
on a harmonic framework
just jazz

~ 2 ~

twelve distinct notes
ten of them work well with a
dominant seventh

~ 3 ~
traveling through life
without a boss

~ 4 ~

do moose and goose
appreciate their freedom
life in the wild

~ 5 ~

unfortunate fly
no liberation from
orb weaver's web


Carpe Diem #257

Friday, July 19, 2013

Carpe Diem #250, Credibility

one last post before i go off line for a while

~ 1 ~

that special flavor making
lies seem real

~ 2 ~

everything is fine
don't worry be happy
that's what they told us

~ 3 ~

there's walk and there's talk
to keep credibility
they need to match

~ 4 ~

there's no deceit in moose
goose always flies straight

~ 5 ~

no need to convince me
i know your weaving


Carpe Diem #249, compassion

what can it lead to
but sadness


on the kitchen wall
a drab brown house spider
compassion fails


Forgot to link in on Inner Beauty


I'm going to be mostly off line for the next couple of weeks.
Stay well, everyone.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Carpe Diem #248, Inner Beauty

long time coming
she managed to draw it
out of the beast


I'm going to be mostly off line for the next couple of weeks.

Stay well, everyone.

Carpe Diem #248

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Carpe Diem Special #47, Jane Reichhold's "sweeping the porch"

Inspirational haiku by Jane Reichhold

sweeping the porch
bright prints of raindrops
followed by splashes

my response

sweeping the porch
broom avoids silken mesh
plucked by a fly

Monday, July 15, 2013

Carpe Diem #247, Willpower

~ 1 ~

they want me to just shut up
but i won't

~ 2 ~

every year
grow a new set of antlers
fly a thousand miles

~ 3 ~

on a sticky thread
fly has the will to depart
but not the power


Carpe Diem #247, Willpower

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Carpe Diem #246, Inspiration

~ 1 ~

on life's bumpy road
searching for those elusive
haiku moments

~ 2 ~

look inside
it's in there somewhere
north of your spleen

~ 3 ~

what the light bulb does
so bright above your head
it's working

~ 4 ~

web of silken threads
orb weaver's masterpiece
driven by hunger


Carpe Diem #246

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Six Word Saturday

selling mom's house

dealing with emotions

Carpe Diem #245, Listening

~ 1 ~

today's pop music
good for dancing maybe
listening - not quite

~ 2~

her precious words
after a glass of white wine
as our fingers touch

~ 3 ~

moose and goose move
deeper into the forest
hunter snaps a twig

~ 4 ~

web vibrates
orb weaver heeds its call
spins a silken cage


Carpe Diem #245, Listening 

Carpe Diem #244, Mystery

Following up on yesterday's post:  our daughter-in-law's van will be repaired by midweek, and the insurance is covering all but a very small deductible.  That's a pretty good outcome.  Thanks for your good thoughts and sympathy.  No word on the police investigation.   Now on to today's topic, MYSTERY.


~ 1 ~

in these old bodies
nothing works the way it did
and yet love endures

~ 2 ~

each spring new antlers
and winged honker returns
to a fresh-thawed lake

~ 3 ~

in wind blown yarrow
without blueprint or compass
web in a circle

~ 4 ~
[with a H/T to Maggie]

the more we know
the more we realize
how little we know


Carpe Diem #244

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Carpe Diem #243, tribulation

parking lot morning
tires slashed paint job key-marred 
feces on the hood

Our oldest granddaughter is attending the Cecchetti Ballet Council of America Summer Intensive program at Hope College in the sleepy Calvinist town of Holland, tucked snugly into Michigan's Bible Belt.  Her mother is working at this program as head councilor.  As you can imagine, there are lots of drama possibilities with about 200 close-packed teenage girls on site.

But what greeted her this morning is described above in what might or might not be a haiku.  According to the police, it's gang-related vandalism.  That this happened in Holland and not the Detroit metroplex where we live is a bitter irony.

When Jane Reichhold advised us to be alert for the haiku moments in life, this is probably not what she had in mind.

Carpe Diem #243

Family Life

And, after the fact, a Carpe Diem Freestyle opportunity.  We have Nate and Em two days a week this Summer.  It can be a lot of work, but these moments are fleeting, and not to be missed.

Granddaughter Emily

playing othello
the seven-year-old says
use your noggin

and a Pi-ku

cheeky and smart


Carpe Diem Freestyle #2

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Carpe Diem Special #46, Jane Reichhold's "forgotten brook"

Picture Source and Info

Inspirational haiku by Jane Reichhold

forgotten brook
running the centuries down
locked in rock


does it contain a seasonal word
does it capture a moment in time
does it show or tell
is it successful
what then of rules


my inspirations

~ 1 ~

ancient coral reef
lost across many eons
now petoskey stones

~ 2 ~

in just this moment
water flow etches the rock
a little deeper

~ 3 ~

fast flowing brook
old man peers intently
sees no reflection

~ 4 ~

deep forest river
salmon jumps the rapids
into a bear's paw

~ 5 ~

ancient fencepost
amid ragweed and teasel
spider's foundation


Carpe Diem Special #46

 Wednesday, July 10, 2013 Joel D. Lafargue

Theme: CUES AND CUDGELS.  Each theme entry ends in a synonym for a round stave or pole.

20. Member of a "joint" military group : CHIEF OF STAFF.  A decision maker with a walking sick.  Two
disparate meanings of the word STAFF.

28. Franklin invention : LIGHTNING ROD.  A conductive metal pole fixed to the top of a building and grounded to deflect the energy of  lightning strike.   In slang, a person or thing that draws a lot of criticism.

46. Make a relay race connection : PASS THE BATON.  A relay is a race run in segments by a team of runners.  Passing the BATON, which is just French for stick, from runner to runner is the connection
between the segments. 

 55. Cocktail accessory : SWIZZLE STICK.  A small skewer used to hold garnishes and stir a drink, so named for the Rum Swizzle, the national drink of Bermuda.  Bottoms up!

Hi gang, JazzBumpa here.  I didn't recognize Joel's byline, but a quick Google search indicates he's been at it since at least 1988.  It looks like this is his 5th LA Times entry since this blog started.  Let's see if he passes the baton smoothly, or uses it to beat us up.


1. Urban rails : ELS.   Elevated trains.

4. "__ life!" : THAT'SSinatra.

9. Self-satisfied : PROUD.

14. 2002 NBA Rookie of the Year __ Gasol : PAU.  He played with Memphis until 2008, and since then with the Lakers.

15. Put back to zero : RESET.  Back to square 1.

16. Total : RUN TO.  Kind of an odd phrase, but legit.

17. " ... book by __ cover" : ITS.   It's what's inside that makes the difference.

18. Author Jong : ERICA.  Is she still afraid of flying?

19. Many times : OFTEN

23. "__ evil ..." : SEE NO.  At least when I cover my eyes.

24. Time of one's life : ERA.  Nice word play.  An ERA is a notable time span.  The time of one's life is a notable event.

25. Pub. of an oft-quoted journal : AMAAmerican Medical Association.

33. Full of mischief : DEVILISH.  But not usually in a malicious way.

36. Like much of King's work : EERIE.  I wonder if he ever wrote a weird story about an eagle's nest near the shore of a Great Lake?

37. Verbalized sigh : ALAS.  Woe is me.

38. Buddhist shrine : STUPA.  Here is where Joel got out the cudgel and gave me a sharp rap between the eyes.  The word comes from Sanskrit and literally means "a heap."  The shrine is a mound-like structure containing Buddhist relics and used as a place of meditation.

41. Injured, in a way : TORE.  A muscle or ligament.  Sounds awful.

42. Jazzman Jackson and cartoonist Gross : MILTS.  MILT Gross was a popular American cartoonist from the 20's through the 40's.  MILT Jackson was a vibes player discovered by Dizzy Gillespie in 1946 who was an original member of the modern jazz quartet in 1952, and went on to record well into the 80's.  Milt.

44. More easygoing : MELLOWER.

49. Kalamazoo-to-Cincinnati dir. : SSESouth by South East.  Wouldn't be a very good movie title.

50. Billion-year span : EON.  A bit more than the time of your life

51. Waits : BIDES.  I can't BIDE my time that long.

59. Traditional Islamic garment : BURQA.  It's like wearing tent.  The "Q" threw me.

62. Dough raiser : YEAST.  Not a fund raiser, though both involve bread.

63. One of the Khans : ALY.  Not AGA.  Needed perp help.

64. Words before "Gave proof through the night" : IN AIR.  I hope we all know what song this is.

65. Clerical residence : MANSE.

66. Short snooze : NAP.  I haven't had one in a while.

67. Incessantly : NO END.  Sometimes ON END, and that never seems right.

68. Like one's big brother : ELDER.  I wonder if this is how my little sister thinks of me.  I don't think I'll ask.

69. Chowed down : ATE.  Or, perhaps, devoured.


 1. "Lawrence of Arabia" and others : EPICS.  The story, not the man

2. Bat maker's tool : LATHE.  A small theme echo, perhaps.

3. "Wake Up, Little __" : SUSIEThe Everly Brothers, from back when I was a pre-teen

4. Girl Scouts emblem : TREFOIL.  French for three leaves, it's a stylized clover image with three profiles superimposed.  Also a cookie.

Image Source

5. Protagonist : HERO.  Is a protagonist sandwich made with provolone?

6. "Yeah, like that'll happen!" : AS IF.  Sarcasm

7. Sleuths, briefly : TECS

8. New York's __ Island : STATEN

9. Hardly G-rated : PROFANE.

10. Win by trumping, in bridge : RUFF.  That is the correct word.  If you say, "I trumped it," some stuffy bridge player will look at you funny.

11. Que. neighbor : ONT.  Quebec and Ontario, Canadian provinces.

12. Beehive State native language : UTE.  And eponym for the state.  Nice cluster of Native American words.

13. Put on : DON.  As in, gay apparel.

21. Doesn't need to be drafted : ENLISTS.  Two ways to get into the armed forces.

22. Bush spokesman Fleischer : ARI.

25. One-way sign shape : ARROW.

26. Wavy pattern : MOIRE.  Looks MOIRE less like this.

27. "Doe, ___ ..." : A DEER.  I still hate that awful song.

29. APO mail recipients : GI'S.  American military service personnel.

30. FDR's successor : HSTHarry S. Truman was president after Franklin Delano Roosevelt.  The S didn't stand for anything.  It's true, man.

31. Opposable digit : THUMB.  But I've never been opposed to THUMBS.

32. Start the assignment : GET ON IT.  I associate these words with "right away."

33. Moistens : DAMPS.  Dampens - sure; DAMPS - I dunno.  Looks like gratuitous verberization.

34. Inventor Howe : ELIAS.  He invented the sowing  machine.  HOWE 'bout dat!

35. Ballroom dance, in Burgundy : VALSE.  Waltz, in Brooklyn.  Ravel.

39. Green veggie : PEA.  Comes in a pod.

40. Flight stat. : ALT.  Altitude.  Not the usual 3 letter flight abbrv.

43. Wine list presenter : STEWARD.   Why did I want sommelier?

45. Maine dish : LOBSTER.  Another nice word play.  I've never been to Maine, but I did have LOBSTER in Rhode Island.

47. __ polloi : HOI.  Greek to me, meaning "the many," and used in English to insultingly denote the unwashed masses comprising about 47% of the population.

48. Digestive protein : ENZYME.  A protein molecule that acts as a catalyst in digestive processes.

52. Rigg who played Mrs. Peel : DIANA.  Of course.  Now Lady Olenna Tyrell, as you can see at the photo source link.

53. Brilliance : ECLAT.  A learning moment.  It comes into English via Old French.

54. Internet calling service : SKYPE.  The next best thing to being there.

55. One of 16 in a 4x4 tile: Abbr. : SQ. IN.  Square Inch - simple - no?  But here is where Joel beat me severely about the head and shoulders with a stout cudgel.  Having missing the "Q" in BURQA there was no way I could make sense of SKIN for this fill, no matter how hard I SQINted.

56. Enthusiasm : ZEAL.  But my ZEAL did not wane.

57. Catch, as a fish : LAND.  Can you LAND a fish if you're in a boat?

58. Being, to Brutus : ESSE.  Latin

59. Storage receptacle : BIN.  As, the dust bin of history.

60. Colorful card game : UNO.  Good game to play with the grand kiddies.

61. Actress Charlotte : RAE.  Edna Garrett, from  the TV sitcoms "Diff'rent Strokes" and "The Facts of Life", which I never watched.

Well, I'm a bit bruised, but survived.  How did you do?

Cool Regards!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Carpe Diem #243, companions

Guess who?

~ 1 ~

at carpe diem
far flung haijin gather
and share their souls

~ 2 ~

traveling together
on life's bumpy twisting road
companions in love

~ 3 ~

old man is happy
as he navigates this path
not to be alone

~ 4 ~

to be with her
makes me be a better me
the best companion

~ 5 ~

moose and goose
magically mystically
together as friends

~ 6~

alone on her web
orb weaver waits hungry
has no need of friends


Carpe Diem #243

A comment on comments:

Like most of you, I suspect, I write for my own reasons, and they are deeply personal.  I am also continuously self-evaluating.  But that is a reflection in a fun-house mirror.  Feed back is helpful, and if it's critical - well that helps me stay both grounded and humble [not that a trombone player has a great need for other humility prompts.] 

And, while its nice to know that some of you appreciate my writing, the real reason I want comments is not for accolades, but for what we get from today's prompt.  I love the Carpe Diem community, and if you comment you give me confirmation that we are both a part of it.   Otherwise, I might just feel like a voice crying out in the wilderness. [And yes, I have filled that roll, as well.]

Also, I encourage you to be critical, in a friendly way.   If something I write is awful, feel free to let me know in as much or as little detail as you are willing to spend time on.

Also, when I leave a comment for you, know that it is sincere, even if it is only a single word.

I appreciate all your visits.


Carpe Diem #242, ambition

It occurs to me that a lot of what I write is not really haiku.  Perhaps not even senryu, either - often just words arranged in quasi-haiku form.  Occasionally, I hit the mark, and I cherish those moments.  Mostly I write what resonates at some level, or possibly just amuses me.  I don't have the ambition [read: dedication] to become a great or world-renowned haijin.  But I do have the ambition to continuously improve my craft, in the hope that some small fraction of it might reach the level of art.

always improving
in both music and haiku 
there's more to explore


simple ambition
to create one perfect form
orb weaver's life work


Carpe Diem #242

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Carpe Diem #240, Joy

~ 1 ~

material things
bring no joy - you need
love in your life

~ 2 ~

seeing grandchildren
grow learn and accomplish
brings the old man joy

~ 3 ~

for moose and goose
the simple joy of life
in the wilderness

~ 4 ~

does spider get joy
from her round perfect web
the sour juice of flies

~ 5 ~

 sadness is blue
dispair is deep purple
but joy is golden


Carpe Diem #240 



Saturday, July 6, 2013

Carpe Diem #239, curiosity

~ 1 ~

my ignorant quest
that is why i blog

~ 2 ~

old man even now
after all these years wonders
about life and love

~ 3 ~

moose and goose are not
curious like the cat - and
they are still alive

~ 4 ~

spider's curious
only about one thing
next fly's arrival

~ 5 ~

envious is green
passionate is purple


Carpe Diem #239

Friday, July 5, 2013

Carpe Diem's Freestyle #1

For today's freestyle entry I'm writing a troika based on a slight modification of my lead verse from yesterday.  By popular demand, the old man makes an appearance that is expressed, not implied.

The menagerie are on assignment at the Tan Renga today.

The Sleigh:

old man's affection
wife children grandchildren
all in different ways


Horse 1:

old man's affection
still love in his touch with
a cooler passion

Horse 2:

wife children grandchildren
not perfect but loving across
three generations

Horse 3:

all in different ways
we haijin say with verses
what is in our hearts


Carpe Diem's Freestyle #1

Carpe Diem's Tan Renga Challenge #5, Basho's famous 'the old pond'.

See the link at the bottom of this post for an explanation of Tan Renga

the old pond
a frog jumps in -
the sound of water

moose and goose join in splashing
orb weaver ignores it all


Carpe Diem's Tan Renga Challenge #5



Thursday, July 4, 2013

Carpe Diem #238, affection

affection for my
wife children grandchildren 
all in different ways


affection for my
 carpe diem colleagues
don't we love our friends


moose and goose
denizens of the wild
best friends forever


orb weaver
single minded predator
feels no affection


Carpe Diem #238