Afro Zen: Haiku from the Rain Tree
Jacqueline Johnson

Green bamboo, jasmine
this rainy Saturday
stay, stay right there love.

Ocean waves ebb, rise
millenniums, epoch’s dawn
still your long neck beauty.

On the day I met
you I gave birth to myself
seven times, seven times love.

Boar bristle brushes my hair
shea butter, lanolin wild
geese glide across skin.

Old sage calm this storm
flesh of new acorn squash,
pumpkin on my blue plate.

Odd this autumn rain
brown, metallic, sulphuric
of human, heart, bone.

Fufu pounding in
my mortar. Ade, remember
taste of my spice?

Metronome beats tin roof
red earth coconut leaf –
sweat on Nana’s arms.

Sifting flour, apples
peeled. Juice laden slices
tastes of your heaven.

Dry scruffy beach surf
girl from Ipanema, brown, big
legged, size sixteen.

Young Buddha’s call
a didgeridoo sounding
Ommmm ashe ashe.


Jacqueline Johnson is a multi-disciplined artist creating in both writing and fiber arts. She is the author of “A Gathering of Mother Tongues” published by White Pine Press and is the winner of the Third Annual White Pine Press Poetry Award. She is a graduate of New York University and the City University of New York. A native of Philadelphia, PA., she resides in Brooklyn, New York. Ms. Johnson is at work on several new projects: a novel “The Privilege of Memory” and a poetry book “A Woman’s Season.”

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