Hanoi Warms Up


Early one morning I circle Hoan Kiem Lake (“Lake of the Restored Sword”) in Old Hanoi. The lake is a rich jungly green. In its centre on an island stands the Turtle Tower, commemorating the return to the Golden Turtle God of his Magic Sword. A shrine, joined to the lakeshore by a red lacquered bridge, attracts wedding parties, brides in crimson ao dai and grooms in white. The lake is a focal point for strollers, families, and lovers. Elderly men and women practice their morning martial arts on the manicured grass. I photograph a young couple beside the lake in the shade of a bamboo grove.

tai chi class―
two lovers turning it



(senryu published in ‘Asahi Haikuist Network’, May 1, 2015 and ‘Under the Basho’, 2015)

8 Responses

  1. Jano Says:

    I really liked this – such a great snapshot on life.

  2. Alan Summers Says:

    I really liked the build up to a well chosen haikai genre choice that is senryu.

    Delightfully cheeky, and oddly respectful.

    warm regards,


  3. marykendall Says:

    A surprise that I didn't see coming. It is just perfect, Marietta. Well done.

  4. Jan Benson Says:

    So good to read you here.
    Fun haibun.


  5. seaviewwarrenpoint Says:

    Ha – I enjoyed that ending, Marietta! Nice one.


  6. janewilliams Says:

    Loved this, terrific depiction of Hoan Kiem Lake and the life around it, took me back …

    spring date in Hanoi
    her modest dress creeps up
    riding pillion

  7. Marietta Says:

    I love your haiku too, Jane. So true! Those floating butterfly dresses!

  8. Marietta McGregor Says:

    Thank you all for the very kind comments! I had somehow dropped off the tinywords emailing list, so didn't even see this was up until a friend on Facebook gave me a shout-out!

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