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triveni spotlight: 13th March 2023

triveni spotlight A FEATURE EVERY ALTERNATE DAY! hosts: Teji Sethi and Kala Ramesh GUEST EDITOR: John Stevenson



Deathbed . . .

    my old friend’s imitation

             of a firefly


vincent tripi

The Heron’s Nest, 5.11


John Stevenson (born October 9, 1948, Ithaca, New York), professional actor, especially in playback theater, and haiku poet and editor. He began college as a visual art major and finished with a degree in theater. Before retiring in 2015, he worked as a human resources administrator for the New York State Office of Mental Health. His first poetry publication occurred at age 8, and his interest in haiku dates from 1992. He is a founding member of the Route 9 Haiku Group and its journal Upstate Dim Sum, and has served as regional coordinator, president, second vice president, treasurer, associate editor, and editor of Frogpond for the Haiku Society of America. In 2013 he received the HSA Sora Award for service to haiku, and from 2018 to 2019 he was the honorary curator for the American Haiku Archives at the California State Library. Since 2008 he has served as managing editor of The Heron’s Nest. His haiku collections include: Something Unerasable (1996), Some of the Silence (1999, 2008), Quiet Enough (2004, 2008, 2016, 2018), Live Again (2009), d(ark) (2014), and emoji moon (2018). He has received over 200 awards for haiku and haiku-related poetry. Since 1985 he has resided in the Village of Nassau, New York. _()_ Thank you so much, John.

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9 Comments


lakshmi iyer
lakshmi iyer
Mar 14, 2023

This reminded me of my father's last days in ICU. Almost there yet not present there!

Bone Cancer - we came to know of it only in the last few days.... its almost ten years now.

Deathbed in ICU

His breath was so strong and yet flickering like this firefly. Not an imitation.

Thank you!


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John Pappas
John Pappas
Mar 13, 2023

Poignant. I can imagine the friend's consciousness surfacing and submerging like the blinking light of a firefly until it is no longer visible.

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Barrie Levine
Barrie Levine
Mar 13, 2023
Replying to

yes, remarkable image for a deathbed scene, I share your appreciation

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Rupa Anand
Rupa Anand
Mar 13, 2023

Unusual poignant. Life wrapped up in just eight words.

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marilyn ashbaugh
marilyn ashbaugh
Mar 13, 2023

What a range of emotion elicited by eight words! So masterfu!

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Kala Ramesh
Kala Ramesh
Mar 13, 2023

Deathbed . . .

my old friend’s imitation

of a firefly


vincent tripi


This is most poignant.

I've always enjoyed vincent tripi's haiku and this is no exception. Fireflies live only for a day or so and they die. I can imagine the friend imitating a firefly. What a positive way to take death.

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Dipankar Dasgupta
Dipankar Dasgupta
Mar 13, 2023
Replying to

Yes, I saw this in Wikipedia too. Or else, I wouldn't have written to you.

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