Haiku

Haiku

Do you know what a Haiku is? Do you know what Haiku are? Both questions are grammatically correct according to the dictionary. I checked with Grammarly which does not agree. What can we depend upon? It seems with Haiku there are as many questions as answers. Surely someone out there can help!

Poetry was not greatly appreciated where I went to high school. It seems a farming community had more important things to learn, like Home Economics and Agriculture. Reading a little Robert Frost is what I remember passing for poetry in my literature classes until college and then no one mentioned Haiku.

I didn’t hear about it/them until I was middle-aged and the local newspaper presented a Haiku contest. I read all the entries printed and mostly scratched my head. Recently I read a Haiku written by another blogger and appreciated it but still, I must admit that I didn’t “get it.” So let’s learn together. Are you game?

Definition

Haiku – a Japanese poem of seventeen syllables, in three lines of five, seven, and five, traditionally evoking images of the natural world.  (According to Merriam-Webster)

Haiku (plural haiku) is a very short form of Japanese poetry. Modern Japanese haiku are increasingly unlikely to follow the tradition of 17 on (sic) or to take nature as their subject, but the use of juxtaposition continues to be honored in both traditional and modern haiku. (Per Wikipedia)

Adding the word “juxtaposition” didn’t help me, how about you? But let’s keep learning.

More Information

How to Write a Haiku Poem by Stephanie Wong Ken  Updated: August 21, 2019

A haiku (俳句 high-koo) is a short three-line poem that uses sensory language to capture a feeling or image. Haiku poetry was originally developed by Japanese poets. They are often inspired by nature, a moment of beauty, or a poignant experience. To write a haiku, start by brainstorming ideas for the poem. Then, write the poem with strong details and detailed imagery. Make sure you polish the haiku and listen to how it sounds out loud so it is at its best.

Examples

  • An ocean voyage.
    As waves break over the bow,
    the sea welcomes me.
  • A winter blanket
    covers the Earth in repose
    but only a dream
  • The warmth on my skin.
    Fire falls beneath the trees.
    I see the sun set.

Are You Ready?

Let’s write Haiku! I will post mine first just to be fair. I have no idea what it will be like because I’ve never said anything in a few syllables, but I’m going to give it a go! Please work on yours and send it via email so that the lines and syllables will be clear as opposed to in the regular comment section. I will post each one with your name. Here is my email address: suebmattingly@gmail.com

Let’s go!

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2018

Happy New Year 

New Year’s Eve is a time to reflect on the year ending but also to look forward to the one about to be born at the stroke of midnight. As I write I know it is already 2018 where some of you live in other time zones and on the other side of the world, so it is not at one magical instant that we simultaneously experience this event. Regardless, within a span of a few hours, we all contemplate and celebrate a new year.

I have always liked new beginnings, fresh starts to “get it right” and I imagine that there are many of you who feel the same. Isn’t that why we make New Year’s resolutions year after year? I used to love the fresh clean pages of the new calendar in January but now they are a thing of the past for most of us. With our electronic calendars, we can enter or delete appointments, goals, and plans too easily perhaps leaving no trace of unfulfilled hopes.

Regardless, in a few hours, it will be a new year all around the globe and we all have another chance to do better, to get it right. What are your plans? Are you making resolutions? If so are they serious about world peace perhaps or attaining a new educational degree? Or typical, such as to lose a few pounds? I’ve learned that resolutions are an exercise in futility for me so I no longer set myself up to fail.

I have been asked in the past few days by two individuals what my plans are for 2018 and this is different I believe from asking what my resolutions are. Even before asked I had given thought to how to best invest my time with an emphasis on what I most enjoy. I know there will be wasted hours and perhaps even days, but by keeping focused daily on what I have identified as most significant I believe that I have a better chance to see 2018 end with a sense of having lived.

 

The Unlived Year
Midnight strikes and the old year's gone.
We close the tablets we've written on.
And torn 'twist hope and doubt and fear,
we open the book of the unlived year!

An unlived year! Ah, stained with tears
are the well-thumbed volumes of other years!
Soiled by blunders and black regret 
are the pages we read with eyelids wet. 

But fresh in our hands once more is laid
a clean, new book by the Master made.
Unmarred are the pages lying there--
Twelve new chapters fresh and fair.

It is ours to write the daily tale,
of how we conquer - or how we fail;
Of struggle and effort and hope that makes 
like a song in the heart, when the bright day breaks.

Yes, fresh in our hands with the title clear, 
is the challenge now of an unlived year!
Author Unknown

My Mother loved the poem (above) entitled “The Unlived Year” and each New Year’s Eve she would read it once again. I am looking now at a copy of that poem which was in her Bible when she died. Although the poem’s point is that we have an unlived year before us, I can’t help but think of it in another way. What if we looked back on the year behind us and realize it was unlived? How sad to have fretted over the trivial, to have reacted to things we cannot change and therefore to have missed opportunities to actually live. I plan to be more consciously aware of the gift that is this coming year and I do have plans to live it to the fullest. 

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Theme Photo by Pixabay

May your 2018 be filled with love and peace.

May our world be lit by harmony and understanding among all of creation.