Fresh-cut grass soaks in the sun. Already sweaty and sore, I crank the starter rope of the chainsaw — the same one that leaked chain oil in the carrying case. After a prayer and several false starts, it roars to life.

The blade makes two cuts into the trunk. The barren peach sapling falls. I cut off branches and toss them into the overgrowth alongside our yard. Next, I repeat the trimming process with the hedge trimmer, the recipients this time the branches that overhang the deck stairwell.

The hardest job is the stones. I squeeze the tube gun so hard that my fingers nearly lock. The adhesive that pours out is so thin the stones may not even set.

Somehow, they do.

August afternoon
robins peck a manicured lawn
for worms


photograph by Ya-chuan Hsu

Image Curve’s Manifesto


Frank J. Tassone

Frank J. Tassone lives in New York City's "back yard" with his wife and son. He fell in love with writing after he wrote his first short story at age 12 and his first poem in high school. He began writing haiku and haibun seriously in the 2000s. His haikai poetry has appeared in Failed Haiku, Cattails, Haibun Today, Contemporary Haibun Online, Contemporary Haibun, The Haiku Foundation and Haiku Society of America member anthologies. He is a contributing poet for the online literary journal Image Curve, and a performance poet with Rockland Poets. When he's not writing, Frank works as a special education high school teacher in the Bronx. When he's not working or writing, he enjoys time with his family, meditation, hiking, practicing tai chi and geeking out to Star Wars, Marvel Cinema and any other Sci-Fi/Fantasy film and TV worth seeing.

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