March 16, 2018

Wanna play?

Friends, my #haikuversary is coming up on Saturday, March 17th!

I hereby invite you to join me in celebrating the art of haiku.

Here are some ways that you might decide to join in the fun. (Put whatever you decide to share either here in the comments or over on Twitter, where I am @butwait.)

  • Poke around in the archives, find a favorite, and share it! Bonus points if you tell me why you like it. (But sometimes it's hard to say why, so no pressure.)
  • Find a photo that you think pairs well with one of my haiku, and either tell me about it or create a haiga (image + haiku, e.g. this one)!
  • Pick a date that is meaningful to you - just the date, not the year - and let me share a haiku I wrote on that date. Bonus points if you tell me why the date is significant to you.
  • Send me a word that you'd like to see me try to incorporate into a haiku (no promises!)
  • Tell me about a moment that seemed "haiku-worthy" to you, but that you haven't quite managed to capture in the way you were hoping to
  • Share a haiku of your own! (And don't focus too much on the whole 5-7-5 thing.)
  • Tell me about your haiku reading practice! Do you come here and read mine, or do you only read them on Twitter? Who else writes haiku that you enjoy?
  • Got any other ideas? Last year at least one friend wrote a haiku in response to one of mine, which was lovely and thrilling.
Thank you for considering putting some time and energy into making what is sure to be an already excellent day even sweeter!

1 comment:

Alan Summers said...

Share a haiku of your own! (And don't focus too much on the whole 5-7-5 thing.)

I believe I might have attempted one or two 575haiku when I started out, but that's about it. Then due to ongoing debate about the 575 issue, plus so many haiku competitions expect a count of 5-7-5 syllables, I decided to have a go, or learn to write good 575 haiku.

As we know not all 575verse is haiku, it's just, well, a verse in syllabic pattern. A 575 haiku, in English, or Italian, is very different, and hard to achieve.

So I was first of all incredibly delighted to not only enter and win a 575 haiku contest set by the World Monuments organisation based in New York City, but asked to judge the following year. I did request that non-575 haiku be accepted, and an incredible haiku video result was achieved.

When I won the World Monuments haiku contest:

When I judged the World Monuments haiku contest the following year:

When I started in earnest to write 575 haiku (but not 575verse):

575 haiku need not be flat and gimmicky, or actually fail as haiku, they can be a choice, an extra device or technique, to be used sparingly, and not factory produced verses.


night of small colour

a part of the underworld

becomes one heron

Alan Summers

Poetry as Consciousness - Haiku Forests, Space of Mind, and an Ethics of Freedom
Author: Richard Gilbert / Illustrator: Sabine Miller. ISBN978-4-86330-189-4 Pub. Keibunsha (2018, Japan)

Extracts from Pages 223 & 224:

This haiku is classified as mythopoetic reality. The mythopoesis [is] evident in the semantic twist of “small colour” of night, a part of which “becomes on heron.”

What lies between realism and imagination, between living and dreaming, [as] a particular form of sanctuary; a space of poiesis. It seems most most fragile and nuanced, insignificant and ephemeral—yet it calls or we call, in seeking deeper, more enriching, increasingly multiple, multifarious dimensions of knowing in psyche.

Wallace Stevens refers to this poetical process as “enlargement”.

Richard Gilbert, Japan

Haiku is much more than its perceived form, but sometimes, just sometimes, we can produce one in a 575 pattern.

warm regards,

President, United Haiku and Tanka Society
co-founder, Call of the Page