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Haiku

June 26, 2011

When it comes to poetry, both reading and writing it, I am more inclined towards the syllabic and what Stephen Fry refers to as the ‘exotic’.  I adore haiku and the concept of meeting in a pub/cafe for haiku competitions/parties.  I recently came across the ‘River of Stones’ project which will be running again in July.  The idea is to write a ‘stone’ or short piece of observational writing (haiku/nano/tweet) on each day of the month and submit it to http://ariverofstones.blogspot.com.  (Let me know if you take part.)  Unfortunately, I will not be able to participate on this occasion as I will be in Corfu at the start of the month.  However, I have often written haiku to capture either a moment or a sense of a place whilst on holiday, so I may come back with a few of these ‘alternative postcards.’

Another use of haiku which fascinates me is the Japanese custom of writing a “death poem.”  Although I am neither a zen monk nor a samurai warrior, I have taken up the tradition and prepared my own death poem entitled ‘Katsu’, which is a sharp cry uttered at the moment of enlightenment:

Katsu

As golden leaves fall,

I leave this world for the next,

until the wheel turns.

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From → Poetry

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