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Wonderment – A Haibun

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I arrive at the wetlands, bundled up for winter rather than spring. The trail beneath my feet is the same. The scene to either side is always different. One more cat tail swaying in the breeze or the entertaining sound of geese overhead making their semi-awkward landing on the pond. Where did they come from? How long were they gone? Who, pray tell is the leader and why? I don’t want to know the answers. I would rather be intrigued than informed.

My walks become my thoughts. That is the usual experience but today is different. I am walking for ten toddlers. Ten spongy toddlers absorbing new sights, sounds, textures and words.  My mission is to collect six different pieces of nature. These will be used to fill six plastic bottles, at which point they become “sensory bottles”, an activity of visual exploration and appreciation for the earth. As my steps become automatic, my eyes scour the ground for interesting specimens.

Sticks in a mixture of earthen colours, evergreen sprigs with intricate needles,  maple tree buds bursting, beach sand with driftwood and shells, a dried milkweed plant left open and exposed from winter’s freeze and finally, ten tiny pine-cones for counting. I imagine seeing these gifts for the first time through a two year old’s eyes. I head back along the trail’s paved loop. My pockets are full. My heart is fuller.


curious gosling

downy sun-kissed and wind-blessed

wide eyed and waiting




It’s Haibun Monday but this prompt is open all week! Bjorn is our host at dVerse Poets Pub and he has asked us to write a haibun about walking. Doors open at 3 p.m. EST.



25 responses »

  1. I like the intention of picking things up to show those toddlers. I prefer being intrigued rather than informed as well about what I see when walking. Answers aren’t always as important as the wonder of the questions.

  2. Walking with an eye to what a child’s eye will appreciate- wonderful. Prep those goslings to walk with you later.

  3. A wonderful purpose to walk. To enlighten children of the things in nature. Sweet!

  4. I like the difference you describe in walking – walking with a purpose, walking more acutely, walking on behalf of someone else. Those lucky kids.

  5. A wonderful wetland walk, Mish, with cat tails and geese – similar to our landscape in North Norfolk. I love the way you connect with the landscape and wonder about the geese and prefer to be intrigued rather than informed What a wonderful activity for ‘spongy toddlers’, to explore nature through “sensory bottles”! I especially enjoyed the final paragraph and the haiku!

  6. ” I would rather be intrigued than informed.” … love this, when you couple that to the creation of experiences for a toddler… and I can also see how the toddlers will keep that curiosity in their own exploration of nature.

  7. The love for what you do came through very clear. To see things through a toddler’s eyes may very well be good advice!

  8. My kind of walk. I smiled at your collection and the wonder they hold. Your haiku at the end was perfect!

  9. Oh, what a special moment and to see the world anew with a toddler’s eyes. I love this statement, “I would rather be intrigued than informed.” It is a conviction I’ve shared forever, it seems.

  10. A beautiful haibun Michelle and thank you for letting us join you on this wonderful wetland walk! What a joy for these young children to spend time in and with nature – I love your description of ‘spongy toddlers’, absorbing everything 💜

  11. It’s nice to walk without purpose at times and at others to have a mission such as you had…the results look inviting. Your comment about being intrigued rather than informed touches a chord. Being informed can be fun but being intrigued takes me much farther…there is so much nobody knows and the more I realize this the more I simply observe. ( my morning thoughts 😉

  12. hypercryptical

    Love your words.
    I think we see more of our world when searching with children. I love how they open my eyes.
    Anna :o]

  13. How delightful. I love the sentence “my walks become my thoughts”. It describes the walking experience beautifully.

  14. What wonder-full sensory bottles for your “spongy” (I like that) toddlers!

  15. Pingback: Intrigued | Gospel Isosceles

  16. May we all remain curious goslings, this was exceptionally fun… and brimming also with depth (if that phrase does not intrinsically mix metaphors- hehe).


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