Bound through Time: Haibun

This haibun is for Colleen Chesebro’s Tanka Tuesday. This week we’re supposed to use synonyms for bond and seek. This is also for dVerse, where Björn is hosting. He has asked us to write about mirrors. I am fascinated by mirrors and art with mirrors.


Jan van Eyck, “The Arnolfini Portrait,” [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

I first see this painting in an art book of my parents that I like to flip through. I am drawn to it and its mysterious, infinite mirror world. The couple looks young. The man’s hat seems too large for him, as though they are playing dress-up. The woman is in an elegant, heavy green gown; her hair is shaped into elaborate “horns” that peek out from her lace-trimmed headdress. She is not pregnant, I learn, merely fashionable. Is this a wedding or an engagement? The artist announces in a bold script above the mirror that he is here–a boast for the ages. He sees everything, but is he also one of the guests reflected in the mirror scene?  Here in this painting, life goes on endlessly through the looking glass, while remaining unchanged. The couple is forever young and forever bound together. I, however, grow older, still looking for answers, though no longer sure of the questions.


Reflections of souls

time-caught hands clasped, now timeless

eternally spring




27 thoughts on “Bound through Time: Haibun

  1. The mystery of the moment…and yet it continually changes as you do, doesn’t it? That is what makes it timeless. (and those colors, the glow!) The mirror is a perfect metaphor. (K)

  2. Interesting photo. A great response to the prompt. It’s interesting that I barely looked at that hat initially. On second look I kinda like it. Reminds me of something Pharrell might wear, lol. Love the haiku.

  3. This was fascinating, more so after I read your interpretation of this portrait, Merril. I learned a few things about this period, too.
    The mirror was really well painted, so interesting that we can enlarge out screens and focus on the blue dressed (gowned) figure. Is this the priest or a guest?
    Also, thank you for mentioning the artist’s signature. Your tanka was lovely including the use of timeless and your apt title!

  4. Pingback: Colleen’s Weekly 2018 #Tanka Tuesday #Poetry Challenge, No. 70: “DESTINY & CHALLENGE” #SynonymnsOnly –

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.