5-7-5 x31

You’d be forgiven for thinking that I had intentionally waited until the last day of July to post this “month of daily haiku” recap, but that’s not really why I’m writing this now. (This isn’t much of a recap anyway, being such as short post. I suppose this is just to mark the end of the month.) I would have written and scheduled a post for Monday if I’d had time on the week-end. I did not.

The week-end was exceptionally busy — partly of my own doing, partly not completely of my doing (house stuff, appointment, long walks, book club, meet ups, airport pick-up, lunchtime catch ups, long chats, live music, etc, etc).

This upcoming week-end is looking like it’s going to be equally full, so I’m basically forcing myself to sit down and write this now (on a Wednesday night when I should already be in bed, asleep) so that I can stop worrying about breaking my weekly blogging streak.

I suppose in a similar way (but kind of on a smaller scale) I’ve been trying to not break my daily haiku streak. And I’m glad (and quite proud) to say that I haven’t broken it!

Thus ends haiku month,
But the journey’s just begun.
More haikus coming…

potatoes, cold mornings and bridges

We’re approaching the final stretch of my month of haiku now, and I’m feeling like I could actually continue this beyond July. Imagine how many haiku I could write in all the life ahead of me?

What I’ve started to worry about, however, is that I’m going to repeat certain themes, lines or phrases from one haiku to another. I actually pondered this back on July 11th, and wrote this piece:

How many haiku,
Already written, and still…
Many more waiting

Is it possible to exhaust all possible compositions of these three-line poems? With such finite syllables, surely you could only do so much? Continue reading

mad rush

I heard this on the radio the other day, and knew I’d heard it before. I just wasn’t sure who the composer was or what the piece was called.

I was cooking at the time, and continued to tend to the pot on the stove, but I listened intently, determined to hear the presenter give the details of the piece once it was over.

It was Philip Glass’ Mad Rush.

Incredible, captivating music for thinking or not thinking. Maybe just for feeling.

and the haiku-writing continues…

Looks like July has become the month of haiku-writing for me. I’m really enjoying this, and it really makes me smile to be able to look back on the haikus and the little memories they contain. I’ve tried the 100 Happy Days Challenge before, and I’ve kept daily gratitude journals before, but I think those things always focussed on the obvious joys (e.g. went to a concert, hung out with a friend, had dinner at this place, watched a movie, had a sleep in, etc)

And some days I had to search for little things to be happy/grateful about, but I also feel like it got repetitive after a while too.

It’s only two weeks into this daily haiku thing, so maybe it’s a bit too early to judge, but it feels like this challenge is making me look outside myself more, to seek wonder more so than happiness. I’m sure there’s a scientific paper somewhere that says wonder is an important feeling/sensation that all people should try to experience as much as possible.

But I think the other thing that sets this apart from other gratitude projects, is that instead of just taking and captioning a photo, or simply recalling every good thing that happened that day — instead of these relatively quick processes, haiku requires you to take inspiration, and then mould that to fit your finite syllables. In this process, you might have to shuffle words around, find alternative ways of describing something, and really focus on the most important aspects that you want to convey.

In short, there’s a lot involved! But it’s still pretty simple, and I maintain that anyone with a basic grasp of language can do it. Continue reading

daily haiku: week 1

I’ve now finished seven days of writing daily haiku, so I thought it would be a good idea to look back and share some of my favourites. It’s actually been more than seven days, if you want to get technical about it, since I actually started thinking up haikus before the start of July. My mind was sort of preparing itself for the challenge, like warming up before a marathon.

Since July started on a Monday, the start of the work week, I tended to think up haiku on my way to work: while walking to the bus stop, on the bus, in my car, or while cycling. (Yes, my commute was very varied last week.) This meant that several of my haiku are related to the outside world: nature, meteorological phenomena, animals, etc. Whatever I observed gained automatic consideration for haiku topics. Continue reading

poetry in every day

I’ve been feeling like I want to get back into writing again, and I’ve had this itch for a while now. And by “get back into writing” I mean proper creative writing. I know blogging technically counts as writing, and I suppose there’s some element of creativity, since you are creating something, but I think I really want to write stories again.

The problem is I don’t know what to write about. My last serious attempt at writing a decent-length story started getting rather depressing, so I ditched it. (I couldn’t really handle churning through so much emotion, and I wasn’t sure how to pull the whole thing from the depths of misery it was drowning in.) Continue reading