I posted the hokku (the first verse) of our renga yesterday, and, from now on, it’s my job to be a diligent sōshō . The sōshō makes sure that the renga is completed and that the renju (renga poets) adhere to the complex rules.
Verse 2 should be in 7-7 format, and Leslie (the second poet) had lots of options. She could have continued with winter, or moved on to autumn, or onto love, or onto some of the minor (but allowable) themes such a summer, travel, mountains and shores. The only topic off-limits today was spring (you can’t mention spring until after the 8th verse!).
She needed to use a kigo word (to identify the season) and not repeat any previous images. She needed to demonstrate some kind of link with verse one, but also a shift in direction.
Leslie stuck with winter and this is what she came up with :
Lone wolf sings a lullaby :
bear dreams the new icy day.
So, there is continuity because we are still in winter, and there is a shift : the temperature just dropped! Leslie also introduces animals into the image and a she alludes to hibernation too.
You can get the full low-down on today’s episode of The Big Renga Round-Up.
I am just going outside and may be some time.