During the desultory days, reaching for a degree, the phallus of a god, the Dionysian bottle shaped to fit the world’s hands; I was lost in the liminal space between myelinated nerves. Colors were brilliant, enticing for a flash, then at once lost their integrity. Naked, I reached for what wasn’t mine and fell for consequence. Has anyone found their way home in monochrome? Calcified matter grained and sloughed off like muted memories. I settled into melancholy forgetting I was far, far from home.

cloud sheaths bare branches
heavenward-reaching for key
offending the gods

©2018, Amaya Engleking

Björn asks us to reflect on gray in haibun form. If you’d like to participate, head on over to dVerse for the complete prompt and instructions for linking your work.



  1. saynotoclowns · February 19

    Stunning piece, Amaya!

    • Gospel Isosceles · February 20

      Thanks, Vanessa. I liked your latest piece too but wasn’t able to listen, as it was not available “in my country.”

  2. qbit · February 19

    So many excellent parts of the narrative!

  3. petrujviljoen · February 19

    Truly unique piece of work.

  4. Allie · February 19

    So tantalizing yet out of reach, like Forbidden Fruit. I’m in awe.

  5. kim881 · February 19

    I love what you’ve done here, Amaya, starting with the opening sentences and the haiku, where you have continued the thread of ‘phallus of a god’ and ‘Dionysian bottle’ with ‘offending the gods’. I was blown away by: ‘Has anyone found their way home in monochrome? Calcified matter grained and sloughed off like muted memories’.

    • Gospel Isosceles · February 20

      Thank you, Kim. It’s easier to see it for what it all really was, now. So far away (and much closer to home.)

  6. Björn Rudberg (brudberg) · February 19

    Amazing thoughts… love how you brought that melancholy part of grey.. the aspect of loosing oneself and being blinded by color. I can sense a moment in life when you are to close to adulthood… the last moment of being young.

  7. Jane Dougherty · February 19

    Ingenue reaching for colour, hiding in the grey;

  8. sarahsouthwest · February 19

    Oh, the fall from some kind of grace – or thereabouts. What a come down.

  9. kanzensakura · February 19

    Interesting take on the prompt. The question if anyone has found their way home in monochrome? I have, many times. Monotone seems to sooth my soul as much as riotous colors. The haiku carries the theme through to the end of depression and perhaps, dystopia.

    • Gospel Isosceles · February 20

      Dystopia is right; it’s as is the clouds saw my shame and did what they could to cover me, even if it made everything even more foggy.

  10. alisonhankinson · February 19

    A beautiful piece and it has that sense of wistfulness.XX (did I make that word up?)

  11. Beverly Crawford · February 19

    Plaintive and evocative … finding one’s way home in monochrome.

  12. Margaret Elizabeth Bednar · February 19

    A lesson learned the hard way (perhaps of college age?) – and the despair that often follows. That’s how I read it. I really liked the last three sentences.

  13. rothpoetry · February 19

    Ingenue… the story of your life!! Very interesting. I liked your idea of coming home being sluffed off and still being very far away from where you started! Interesting Video. very well done.

    • Gospel Isosceles · February 20

      That video with all those dresses! Ha, I just wanted to link to the song:) Thanks, Dwight.

  14. Frank Hubeny · February 19

    Good question about finding one’s way home in monochrome.

  15. oldepunk · February 19

    brilliant Amaya, every line.

  16. peterfrankiswrites · February 19

    Lovely imagery – the nerves, the bones, colours and monochrome, and love your sad, French(-ish) video choice – whatever happened to Life in mono?

    • Gospel Isosceles · February 20

      Merci, Peter, and I have no idea. That’s the only song I’ve ever heard by that band.

  17. Singledust · February 20

    I felt the monochrome more stark than colour which distracts.

  18. paul scribbles · February 20

    Deeply thoughtful piece that echoes a phase that we all perhaps, must pass through.

  19. Vivian Zems · February 20

    Weaving words into this tapestry of beauty. Good work!

  20. memadtwo · February 20

    It seems we are always reaching–(K)

  21. D. Avery @shiftnshake · February 20

    That is quite a colorful take on gray. Very cool.

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