Monday, October 29, 2012

Good Hunting

something different - while reading this, watch! out! for ferocious dire-ogres and fantasy pandemonium - you've been warned - 

Good Hunting

As I stride this busy cobblestone 
road on my way to a surprise bash deep
in Darkening Forest, ravens perched upon
lightning-decimated remnants of the old
hanging tree chortle “good evening, good
evening,” a huli jing in human form with
long red hair, a thick luscious tail and a
sensuous smile undulates across the road-
way in front of me licking her lips as our 
eyes meet and I would choose to follow her,
but, “good evening, good evening!” from
the dwarves sitting beside the roadway,
belongings in their broad backpacks and
fear across their faces, and a “you’re late,
you’re late, for a very important scrape!”
insists an upright marmot holding a time-
piece as he scurries by...finally!! - the 
thirteen foot (and some few inches) dire-
ogre, its four arms with taloned hands
swinging assorted deadly weapons snarls
“good eating, good eating” as it leaps toward me
from the shadows of a weeping willow’s drooping
branches - I block a descending spiked mace
with my titanium razor-sword by shearing through
the waist-thick forearm, dodge the venomous spear-
shaped tongue flashing past my face and counter
with a slash across the protruding lipless lower jaw
shearing off 3 of 8 two-foot incisors while spitting
chewing tobacco into the beast’s flat, fist-sized right
nostril (note: I am not fond of chewing tobacco, but
as we all know, tobacco spittle forced up dire-ogre
nasal passages - both nostrils is best, but one works
well enough - inevitably results in a berserk, unfocused
desire to maim, mutilate and dismember all nearby
flesh and bone plus a tree or two) engage the three
remaining arms, the lower right arm swinging a tree
limb, the upper left jabbing with splintered remains 
of a circus tent pole, tattered flags still attached (one
has to wonder where that came from) and continue to
evade the ever-flailing forked tongue as I yell to the
ravens circling low overhead and the lovely red fox
peeking from a wild forget-you-never bush, “now this,
my friends” - parry, slash, cut - “this, friends” - scrotum
kick, stab - “this” - whack, screeeech! - “is good hunting!”

see you in a moment - ayaz daryl nielsen

Saturday, October 27, 2012

a followup on last entry (which I didn't quite complete)
for those in other countries than the US who would choose to email poetry for consideration by bear creek haiku, the email address is    or

and, a sequence I have named warku -


not quite an adult
our youngest, a Marine
not quite a boy

young conscript 
trading his weapon for
a one-way ticket

familiar weapon
another khaki sunrise...
familiar weapon

popping corn
the haggard veteran

snowstorm -
homeless veterans gather
around a bottle

among the homeless
   so many
      service medals

the doorbell
her youngest’s
first tour of duty

(also, just realized haven't been giving credit where credit is due for the fine homes, print and online, that have published the poetry I am sharing in this blog - new verse news and Lynx have, in the past, accepted one or another of these poems - actually, I think maybe Barbaric Yawp did, too
(best quesses, am at the library and the records are at home  - gotta love libraries)

see you in a moment - ayaz daryl nielsen

poetry submissions from countries other than the U.S.

  Every now and then (and not often enough) I receive poetry for consideration from countries other than the United States (usually from Canada) - how a poet presents accepted poetry has seemed (and still is) important (handwritten or typed, font, even typos if not too many, a coffee spill or so, preferably no blood stains, etc), but, it is much easier to communicate via email with poets of other nations and I encourage your doing so (that is, if you live in another nation, and if this blog reaches any/many of you) - do include mailing address, of course.  
  And! 48-page issues can be mailed with one first class stamp (except to other countires) so am increasing page numbers from 36 to 48.  bear creek haiku started as a 12 page print pub (in '91) (maybe it was 8 pages, I have lost my copies of many of the early issues).  The first issue presented the poems of three poets (Don Wentworth was one, Denver Stull another, a third was a brief quote attributed to the Mohawk Native American nation as best I recall - was Dorothy McLaughlin the third poet?)  
  For many years now, have included mostly my own squiggles ( I dare not call it artwork) and it has become a meditative practice for this editor beyond writing poetry (fascinating).  Eva Alexander, originally from Prague,  Czech Republic, very much a worthy artist in her own right, was the contributing artist for the first several issues - she returned to her native country 15 or so years ago and I have lost touch with her (unfortunately).  Laurel Starkey, Michigan (?) was the artist for a number of years, and have also lost touch with her (my fault, I think, also unfortunate).  Currently Robert D O'Rourke (Fort Collins CO) has contributed his art forms and they are truly appreciated (the smiling bear which has been in most recent issues is his) - Bob is in his nineties, I published some of his poetry (and art forms), a new experience for him, and he now teaches 'writing haiku as a meditative practice' at the Senior Center in Fort Collins. 

  Enough!  (well, not quite)  I will relate one episode especially appreciated about a past issue.  Perhaps it has a less than civil aspect, but, you have been forewarned.  Some time ago, I decided I could serve our homeless population (so many, and so many of them veterans) by giving them copies of bear creek haiku to sell as they stood on their street corners (maybe some folks would be inclined to exchange spare change for a few poems).  I chose two homeless fellows for an initial experiment (they had been around a long time), they agreed.  One fellow I never saw again.  When I asked the second fellow if anyone had given him spare change for poetry, he stated, 'well, not so much, but it made good asswipe'.
  Perhaps bear creek haiku is the only poetry publication around that also is 'good asswipe'.  
  An aside, 2-3 months later, an entire article in our local paper was written about this fellow's life and his passing (he was a well-known presence on our streets).

  Some poems for you

any moonlit night
if no one’s looking
bristlecone pine
zumba and salsa
(the raven says so)

this morning just before waking - mystical 
guardians!  grey-whiskered beaver build
circular pathways through thought, action 
and word - “the strengths of your heart”
trills grandfather beaver “revealing it’s gifts” 

eight crows caw
while old crow
squats and sulks
and just what have 
you done this time?


of writing
among wild things

see you in a moment - ayaz daryl nielsen

Thursday, October 25, 2012

first snowfall along Colorado's Front Range (the eastern side of the Rockies) - a forest fire deep in one of our rugged, remote areas continues to burn fueled by six foot (!) of dry underbrush, several heavy snowstorms are needed to actually dampen its spirits (humans aren't physically threatened, yet it is unaccessible by firefighters)

some poems, for you...

this far trail
under restless boots
the unknown

otter and 
sea gulls
an old boat 
upside down

early bird special
ranchers at the
Crane Hollow Cafe
discuss hay sheds
and slurp breakfast

So different
our faces

the shape
the words
beliefs and

so it is

yet all
are given
this blessing

see you in a moment - 

ayaz daryl nielsen

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

anthology update and a blessing

bios coming in from the 35+ poets asked to participate in upcoming bear creek haiku anthology, am honored and also humbled -
still hoping to have project completed and a copy in the mail to each poet by the end of this year -

two poems for you -

As the Heart of Spring

You will spread the wings of spring
You are soft rain’s first blooms
And there will be legends about you
Legends of enchanted beginnings.

So different
our faces
the shape
the words
beliefs and

so it is

and all
are given
this blessing

Friday, October 12, 2012

as bear creek haiku stated in Poet's Market and Blogging Along Tobacco Road, 'write, create your poetry - the heart, spirit, ancestors, readers, other poets, an occasional editor, etc, will benefit deeply' - and this, for me, summarizes the essence of haiku/senryu.  Within, beyond, underneath, before and after all poetry, there is haiku.  A poetic essence  within/without and embracing all ever-changing cultural, political, philosophical and analytical entities of the past, present and future.  An intertwined, mutually nourishing vibration - within ghazals, the essence of haiku, within haiku, the essence of ghazals - the same with sonnets, triolets, free verse, you name the 'form', the essence of haiku is there and vice versa.  Haiku, as with all poetry, is a beginning (which poets can always return to) - Red Pine says of Basho's teachings in Narrow Road to the Interior (and I paraphrase) 'learn, abide by the rules, and wham!  you are in the realms of ancients, elders, the young and as of yet unborn and beyond to the genuine, wondrously transcendent poetic of us, of ours, of your very own!' 


Your yearning is a peregrine
seeking, lost, and sought
From within your heart
exquisite longing raises 
lithe wings into terrains of 
emptiness, of divine rights 
melting into blood and 
passions, melting into holy 
mischiefs within the fierce 
wicked funhouse of poetry


living within awareness 
of our footsteps upon 
cement asphalt and earth, 
aware of the oneness 
within each and every 
step, as if all
are upon 

luck to your day's endeavors - ayaz daryl nielsen

and progress with bear creek haiku the anthology, featuring 35+ intimates of bear creek haiku, continues, hopefully to be completed before years end 

Sunday, October 7, 2012

very first post by loooongtime poet and editor ayaz daryl nielsen! welcome, friend!

Welcome, friend, to this, the very first blog post from ayaz daryl nielsen and his print poetry pub bear creek haiku...excited, uplifting, cool beans and all suchness! 

forty years
a wanderer 
my own mapmaker

Backgrounds, whys and wherefores...

bear creek haiku came into existence in 1991, issue #110 will be in the mail tomorrow.  1991, living on bear creek, in bear canyon, beside bear mountain in Boulder Colorado (the post office address for submissions dates to then) - bears (mountain lions and raptors, oh, my!) live and thrive in bear canyon - I had published a fair number of poems in various publications, with, of course, many, many more rejections than acceptances.  Second and third reasons for creating bear creek haiku (the first being love of poetry and poets) emerged - second, interactions with editors dissing haiku/senryu, and, third, with those editors/publishers of haiku who (to me) could not contemplate the best interests of other poets, a 'haiku mafia' mindset.  bear creek haiku is an umbrella for all types of well-written, necessarily short poetry, cover letters aren't encouraged, aren't read until after a poem is accepted (it's the poetry that counts).  And I have developed close bonds with so many of bear creek's poets, from Robert D O'Rourke, 90+ years of age who, inspired by his poetry and artwork appearing in bch, now teaches 'haiku as meditation' at the Senior Center in Fort Collins, Colorado, to Martha Christina who began submitting poetry as a 'tweener'.  And, bear creek haiku  the anthology, featuring bios and poetry from 35+ poets who have established homes within bch, will be released and available before 2012 ends. 
grandfather raven

oh, grandfather raven!
here you are again, with 
us for another season!  
please, sir, stretch your 
wings beyond these 
cold winds and teach 
us the hidden stories!

What I consider dear friendships via postal service (may it survive and thrive) also emerged - bear creek haiku is modeled after (and was strongly encouraged by) editor Don Wentworth's diminutive, excellent Lilliput Review (bear creek haiku is 3" by 11", legal-sized blue cut into thirds lengthwise, stacked, stapled, 36 pages, about to become 48 pages, and can, at least so far, be mailed with a first class stamp).  Dorothy McLaughlin, then editor of Piedmont, offered her support and encouragement, as did poet Norm Davis, then editor of Haz Mat, also, especially, a fine, gentle man named Denver Stull of Parnassus Literary Journal (a recent collection of my poetry haiku  tumbleweeds still tumbling is dedicated to the memory of Denver, and, should also been dedicated to poet/editor Giovanni Malito).  And I have to mention the internet support/interactions/friendships more recently established with poet/editor Peggy Dugan French (she's the best) and her print pub Shemom and with writer/editor/outrageous Cindy Crosmus and her online pub Yellow Mama.   

autumn seeking form
winds from high mountains 
thumping on our door

(autumn is, at this moment, thumping on our door, and, with it, suggestions of winter)

Will conclude this post with poetry (of course!) and reflect on what this blog might include, might become - should it have featured poets?  reviews of poetry collections, sites, chapbooks with the hope of enhancing their recognition? (would only present strongly positive reviews of well-received collections) and/or what else, what else?  This, this is exciting.  

perhaps a new mirror
this one reflects 
last year’s fool

twilight flickers
among the saguaro 
moonbeams or chindé?

spring, come soon
grandpa insists his 
tractor is restless

homeless elder
cardboard sign
the corners of
Alpine and 9th
I miss him

leaves crackle underfoot
baskets of apples and plums
stacks of grains and years

setting aside
the holy books
a long walk 
among fireflies
under stars

a path lined with
bristlecone and juniper
dreaming of home

a vase with red
and yellow roses
upon the glossy
mahogany table   
falling  a petal

all these grandchildren
and another great-grandchild
the old woman sighs

best to all your endeavors,
     ayaz daryl nielsen