walk along the bank -
Iīll never ever keep pace
with the river

—Dietmar Tauchner

About the author: Dietmar Tauchner, living in Austria as poet for short poetry in english and german, prose and playwrights; published already in such magazines as South by Southeast, The Heronīs Nest, Asahi Shimbun, Tundra etc.

His web site, which can be viewed at www.bregengemme.com, showcases some of his haiku in english and offers the opportunity to submit haiku and related short poetry.


Responses to the haiku for 14 March 2003 by Dietmar Tauchner

    bob richardson (orgbob at webtv dot net)
    2003-03-14 09:18:39

    "last chime...
    midnight announced
    new haiku arrived"

    that's the way it begins. this time is it to be as one taking a tour, while viewing the world through another's eyes... or would questions be raised by being presented with something defective due to lack of full development...

    there were hunger pangs felt. sure, it was early morning, but these feelings were from something else; my suddenly feeling mentally stressed.

    dietmar, with his opening line, created a wealth of possibilities, nary a question was produced. i embraced the next line, while thinking, we are moving now, there was this flow, but for some unknown reason, there was this pang again. yet, i should have stayed with the "flow" instead of reading the last line. sure, there was an explanation of what one was contemplating keeping pace with, but a question was born.

    are we to assume a raging river, or an extremely slow walker. some may think this is unimportant, yet i wondered. some hint alluding to the reason for one lagging behind would have been filling.

    case in point:

    can't keep pace...
    walking along river's bank -
    it raced, was it late...

    some may say, "well, bob, you most certainly asked a question". true, but my thought was complete for the "moment", what awaited the raging river might set the stage for another haiku.

    then came another question, in reflecting back explained my previously unexplained acute, sharp, though brief pain; then i went spasmic.

    might the usage of "never ever", mean one day, somewhere, someway, one might be able to keep pace.
    or might the writer be using "never ever" for double emphasis. i wonder.

    in gaining control of my suddenly having become spastic, a sense of reasoning returns, enabling me to further explain, and present additional foundation for my conceptions.

    this being, if given too much to "assume", a haiku's imminent self destruction is borne on the prevailing winds, and they bear ill will.

    2003-03-14 14:49:44

    Not an image at all, just a sentence. He uses the words, "never, ever" to complete the syllable count, it seems. And if you follow pure sullable count, the last stanza is short... Needs work...

    Gillena Cox (bgeecee at wow dot net)
    2003-03-16 08:46:24

    Giving nature her status as changeable, and perennial, the poet contemplates as he strolls along the river bank . Does he have a hankering to master the flow of the river? thus in resolution he reasons that this is a futile reserve. A lovely haiku which leaves much to the imagination and contemplation of the reader.

    bob richardson (orgbob at webtv dot net)
    2003-03-16 21:41:11

    "one's self...
    looking in the mirror...

    truth looks back"

    your words rang true, however for one to contemplate that much from dietmar's word, rendered me "almost" speechless.
    i was reminded of a game i haven't seen over the
    previous years, or for years, if that matters. it was called, forgive me if this is not accurate, "battleship".
    two opposing players, each had a turn to call out different points or positions on the grid, and if perchance your opponent had a ship at that location, though sight unseen, relying on the honesty of your opponent, they would yell, rather solemnly, "hit", if not, they'd say gleefully, "missed", and the game went on and on...

    your analogy, i totally "missed", and i trust you were being honest. in your words there is the apparent "fact" that rivers exist in nature.

    factual, nature does have a perennial air surrounding herself, entitled spring, summer, fall, and winter, each recurring year-in and year-out.

    please, do not take this personally, it is not a criticism of you, but your "parallelism".
    in his own words, the "pacer" is totally engrossed in trying to keep up with this assumably flowing "water", if not in pace, then in mind. at "the moment", i felt his thoughts were about very little else, other than somewhere in the future. to think his thoughts were weighing the fickleness or the changing ways of nature, i sedately doubt if his thinking went that deep.

    mind you, this is a personal opinion just as yours was. however, from my analysis, i heard "footsteps" along the path, as it meandered along side the meandering river. though correct me if i am in err, it may have been a footstep, for the writer may have taken one step, and realized he was lost somewhere in "never never" land.

    "keeping pace", in the most lenient sense of the words, has no apparent meaning, even barely, minutely, nor microscopically resembling "mastering".

    i whole heartily agree with your last sentence, this piece "leaves much to the imagination and contemplation of the reader".

    i feel moved by your comments, as you might be able to tell, from my elaboration, almost as much as i enjoy reading a "bad haiku".
    only try remembering, "bad" doesn't necessarily means anything senselessly negative. in my way of thinking, i am applying it as "not coming up to a certain standard", as this haiku failed to do. if perchance i'd said "it came down to a certain level" then that would have been negative, vicious, noxious and debasing.

    i respect the author and i respect their works, however, i feel your words, concerning this haiku, are purely your interpretation, while giving unbridle freedom to your imagination...


    Stella Siador
    2003-03-20 16:00:11

    Why does Bob Richardson yap so much?

    bob richardson (orgbob at webtv dot net)
    2003-03-22 15:10:52

    stella stella stella...
    please e-mail me for personal responses on questions that flutter from the discussion...

    however, on this question, i will answer in open forum, and because it found me in such good spirit.

    first, allow me to examine your words.

    the question asked, "why"

    the answer being, "because"

    "yap", hmmm, this one is a little tougher.
    to yelp; to bark snappishly. surely not this meaning, though it's meaning is more current.

    stella, allow me to digress even more.

    perhaps the colloquial meaning.
    snappish, noisy, or foolish talk; the mouth.

    i think you are right on this point.

    now, if i may, might i ask you a question, "if i gave you my number would you call"

    "blind date...
    for lack of flowers
    whispers heard"

    stella, i think i like you...

    sorry dft, i couldn't help myself...
    next time, brevity

    akin to tomorrow...
    never to come"


    Stella Siador
    2003-03-24 16:44:47

    I believe there's something contemplative about this haiku. I don't see anything about it that needs fixing. I think it's good.

    As for Bob Richardson's response to my comment about his long-winded commmentary, I was a bit surprised that he actually answered back. But still . . . puh-leeze spare me!

    bob richardson (orgbob at webtv dot net)
    2003-03-24 18:07:23

    "i believe in santa claus, i once said"

    stella, this is a line from a piece i called, "i believe".
    my mind was open anew, to rererereread the piece again, but with your words being my eyes.

    "to believe"; i must admit the meaning has not changed, "to be convinced about "something" without demonstrable evidence"

    "contemplative"; hmmm, to observe thoughtfully, to think studiously upon past and and future possibilities, now, i really really like this one.
    stella, it is thought provoking, "overly"

    i "think" you may be right, stella, but i could be wrong.

    stella, no, i am not reversing my stance, at least not yet.

    "please", reread my comments in totality.

    i still feel as though you are a nice person, sight unseen, "just something i feel within your words". i "think" i was waiting for you to come along, so i might share my words.

    "puh-leeze", the offer still stands...

    "lone traveler...
    trying to remember...
    that first step..."

    bob richardson (orgbob at webtv dot net)
    2003-03-24 18:32:37

    "her words..
    magically appeared...
    no address, stella"

    your prerogative...

    Ellen G. Olinger (ElinGrace at wi dot rr dot com)
    2003-03-26 12:15:43

    Very nice: a humility about what we can accomplish and the need to make thoughtful choices. I remember Eudora Welty speaking of time and a river, also. Guess water gives us that feeling.

    2003-03-27 14:29:32

    Bob is a comment troll.

    But back to the poem... in this case, I am with the other commenters who have expressed negative opinions on it. It missed me.

    2003-03-28 18:12:04

    Well I like this haiku. At first glance it looks quite subjective, but the description evokes sensations of personal limitation in the face of nature that anyone who has walked with a river has experienced.
    (I always see how heavy the river is - the experience seems to be mine uniquely, does no-one share this? Someone pointed out to me that the ground underneath the riverbed must be even heavier - wow! I'm still getting my head around that).

    As for 'syllable count', give us a break Phil. Syllables are not onji, English is not Japanese.

    "Needs work..." Well Phil, the constructiveness of that criticism is overpowering.

    Good stuff, poet. More like this please.

    bob richardson (orgbob at webtv dot net)
    2003-03-28 20:48:45

    the "comment troll" strikes again.

    i must confess, i actually had to read this one, one more time. after having read my fellow constituents' comments, i was absolutely sure they were referring to an entirely different haiku.
    to borrow a word from stella, ""PUH-LEEZE",
    people, this guy, this character from dietmar's piece, not you, guy, was simply walking along the river's bank, contemplating the river's and his pace. there is a possibility he was whistling "when johnny comes marching home".

    endless possibilities
    maybe not"

    or just maybe, there was a web-site exhibiting a visual, off in never never land.

    or it could have been what one had for lunch, to cause one to hallucinate in this manner...

    "scent of smoke...
    nary a fire alarm
    delicious brownies"

    hmmm, ellen...that's ellen g. olinger..."accomplishments"???
    "need to make thoughtful choices"???
    were there two individuals strolling along the river... puh-leezeeeeee