haiku writing as a way

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  • Taigu
    Blue Mountain White Clouds Hermitage Priest
    • Aug 2008
    • 2710

    haiku writing as a way

    I am currently preparing a worshop on writing haiku and I wrote the following notes that happen to convey exactly what I really want to say most of the time:


    Please, try to avoid desk haiku. I often write haiku as I walk, work, lie down. Please, speak haiku, give them a voice, whisper them, shout them, spit them chew them. Haiku come from my experience of the world. I compose haiku not because I am a poet, or to make poetry, I don’t give a dam about poetry, I write haiku to be alive and present in this world. Not to live in my head and through my senses. To unfold my being-seing-perceiveng in all this. And meet what comes and goes. Death can take place anytime, haiku is like Hanami, to watch blossoms. I am going to die, and haiku writing haiku doing is a celebration of a fragile and floating existence, it is sheer gratitude. Gratitude. And gratitude again.

    Don’t write too many words. Many haiku in English are too wordy. Cut. Keep it simple. You should be able to speak any haiku in a single short breath. Don’t pack poems with fancy words be careful with adjectives, bad writing is often over using adjectives. Don’t use special poetic words and reject words like plastic, telephone or can. Avoid likes and dislikes. In the haiku world, everything is precious, worth looking at and worthy of appreciation. Don’t be afraid of words and things. Call things by their name. Go for what is, what is real around and inside you. Go where you dance, go even where it hurts. Haiku is a tool of discovery and self inquiry. Pick up things unnoticed, left aside, pick up what people don’t even see or pay attention to. Pick up garbage and practice garbage arrangement. Celebrate the ordinary. In the simple activity of seeing, of being you will find love. Jizo or Kannon are not statues in fancy temples and museums but your very attention to the world, your activity in full bloom and the very people and things you meet everyday. This is the real magic. And it is available here and now. And it is now or never. Each second passes and won’t come back. You won’t be given a second go. There is only one. This one. Here and now.

    gassho to all


    Taigu
  • Myoku
    Member
    • Jul 2010
    • 1487

    #2
    Re: haiku writing as a way

    Wow ! Haiku ... something I never approached, but its getting a whole new meaning to me now.
    _()_
    Peter

    Comment

    • Rimon
      Member
      • May 2010
      • 309

      #3
      Re: haiku writing as a way

      Haiku and tankas always interested me, but I so far I always ended giving up as my own didn't sound "poetic" at all, After reading your text, like Peter said, now it has a completely new meaning.
      Is it going to be an online workshop here at Treeleaf?

      Gassho
      Rimon Barcelona, Spain
      "Practice and the goal of practice are identical." [i:auj57aui]John Daido Loori[/i:auj57aui]

      Comment

      • Taigu
        Blue Mountain White Clouds Hermitage Priest
        • Aug 2008
        • 2710

        #4
        Re: haiku writing as a way

        No Da5id, It is going to be a workshop in Japan for people interested in writing free form haiku in Santoka and Shiki's style. A long time ago I was a respected University lecturer and I used to lead creative writing worshops inspired by the OULIPO, a fun approach to writing made famous by a bunch of European nuts. These days i am just a modest and very happy ( :P :P :P ) language teacher but I have been asked to share my linited experience of writing this junk ( i also call it happy s...).

        Don't mind about poetic or not poetic, beautiful or not...Short poems are excellent friends, they bring us to where we really belong. Not always pinky, rosy, cheerful. So the whole thing is to be true. Just true. Sentimental true. Poetically true. Realistically true. Stupidly true.

        We are all dying, a great slow death called life. We are all living an amazing multiple and puzzling death. Eventually the way in is nothing but the way out. Same door. Same gate. Haiku is a great way to celebrate this being-action of getting in and out.

        So please, scribble down those things, let them arise from what or who you meet.

        No need to be talented, gifted.

        Not even a craft.

        What is it?

        Haiku?
        three simple lines
        one breath


        something like that


        gassho

        Taigu

        Comment

        • Ryumon
          Member
          • Apr 2007
          • 1706

          #5
          Re: haiku writing as a way

          Originally posted by Taigu
          We are all dying a great slow death called life.
          One of the profoundest sentences I've read in a very long time. Thank you.
          ---
          Ryūmon (Kirk)
          流文

          SAT/LAH

          I know nothing.

          Comment

          • Earthling
            Member
            • Oct 2010
            • 39

            #6
            Re: haiku writing as a way

            There is poetry and then there is haiku. The beauty of haiku is the "artlessness" of it. There is no need for haiku to put on "window dressing," using metaphor, personification, etc.

            -- this reminds me of a story about the composer Igor Stravinsky... He was at a rehearsal for one of his pieces (Persephone), and there was a passage where the women's chorus were singing in a very saccharine way. He stopped the orchestra and chorus and asked what in the world were they doing. Members of the chorus asked him, "This melodic passage appears like it is supposed to be sung sweetly, right?" He told them (I'm paraphrasing here) "Why add sugar on top of sugar? Sing the passage as it is written and the sweetness will come appear of its own accord-- don't add to it."

            Haiku is like that-- there is no need to make "Poetry" of it, just let the moment shine in its own unique beauty. The more I reflect on it, the more I realize haiku and zazen are so similar!

            Here is a good bibliography of haiku books (books of haiku and about writing haiku) that some people might find handy:



            Sadly,it seems all of R.H. Blyth's books on haiku are out of print, but they are worth every penny if you can find them.

            () josh
            [i:2c6lh4g4]Not “Revelation”—‘tis—that waits,
            But our unfurnished eyes—[/i:2c6lh4g4]
            ~ Emily Dickinson

            Comment

            • Taigu
              Blue Mountain White Clouds Hermitage Priest
              • Aug 2008
              • 2710

              #7
              Re: haiku writing as a way

              Sadly,it seems all of R.H. Blyth's books on haiku are out of print, but they are worth every penny if you can find them.


              I completly agree, Earthling, just one thing: find your own book (not yet written), and write it ( without you around).


              gassho

              taigu

              Comment

              • chessie
                Member
                • Jun 2008
                • 266

                #8
                Re: haiku writing as a way

                Thank you Taigu for bringing out the depths of haiku, and Thank You Josh for the list of books. I've been writing haiku since 1968 (I just found my first one written in a book buried in my library Sometimes I think I see the world through haiku eyes. It's usually the first form of expression that comes to me when something is busting out to be expressed. Gassho, Ann

                Comment

                • Nenka
                  Member
                  • Aug 2010
                  • 1238

                  #9
                  Re: haiku writing as a way

                  Originally posted by Taigu
                  Don’t use special poetic words and reject words like plastic, telephone or can.
                  I like telephone and can. They are real-world words, everyday and concrete. If anyone can find a good haiku in them, great!

                  I cringe at stuff like heart, soul, ephemeral, gossamer. Oh, for the love of God, stay away from gossamer.

                  Originally posted by Earthling
                  Here is a good bibliography of haiku books (books of haiku and about writing haiku) that some people might find handy:

                  http://haikuist.wordpress.com/library
                  I can vouch for Bill Higginson's Haiku Handbook. And Lee Gurga's Haiku: A Poet's Guide is indispensable for beginners.

                  Comment

                  • chessie
                    Member
                    • Jun 2008
                    • 266

                    #10
                    Re: haiku writing as a way

                    New postby Jennifer G P on Thu Dec 16, 2010 10:55 am

                    Taigu wrote: Don’t use special poetic words and reject words like plastic, telephone or can.



                    I like telephone and can. They are real-world words, everyday and concrete. If anyone can find a good haiku in them, great!
                    [/quote]

                    I agree on the telephone (but perhaps not in person) however I can tell you that can is not concrete but rather metal ability. :P
                    (sorry, couldn't resist G, ann

                    Comment

                    • Nenka
                      Member
                      • Aug 2010
                      • 1238

                      #11
                      Re: haiku writing as a way

                      (Ann: )

                      Also, here are some really good haiku journals:

                      http://www.modernhaiku.org/

                      http://www.theheronsnest.com/

                      http://www.hsa-haiku.org/frogpond/index.html

                      http://www.simplyhaiku.com/SHpages/arch ... hives.html
                      (stopped publishing but I think they may start again)

                      http://www.acornhaiku.com/acornhaiku/Home.html

                      Comment

                      • Jinyu
                        Member
                        • May 2009
                        • 768

                        #12
                        Re: haiku writing as a way

                        Hi!
                        Haikus are great friends indeed! Especially the free and open style of Santoka, so direct and intuitive!
                        Don't hesitate to share some with us! (as you sometimes do).

                        gassho,
                        Jinyu
                        edit: a small one from Santoka for all the Leafers who are still sewing:
                        feel of the needle
                        when at last
                        you get the thread through it
                        Jinyu aka Luis aka Silly guy from Brussels

                        Comment

                        • Rimon
                          Member
                          • May 2010
                          • 309

                          #13
                          Re: haiku writing as a way

                          lovely! we just arranged a virtual workshop with all your comments, descriptions and references.
                          I'll throw poetry to the bin, then I'll try to throw my-self to the bin too and start writing without me messing around.
                          About OULIPO. I enjoyed Perec a lot when I read him like hmmm... Ten years ago. In his way, he was very zenish... And all the OULIPO's ideas on giving atypical formal rules to write in order to get a new vision on how you write and improve your creativity also look to me as a way to remove your ego from the writing and be more free.

                          Let us know how the workshop goes, Taigu

                          Gassho
                          Rimon Barcelona, Spain
                          "Practice and the goal of practice are identical." [i:auj57aui]John Daido Loori[/i:auj57aui]

                          Comment

                          • TrevorMcmanis
                            Member
                            • Oct 2010
                            • 43

                            #14
                            Re: haiku writing as a way

                            taigu
                            he doesnt give a damn about poetry.
                            basho speaks.
                            As the ultimate instruction there is simply no teaching that is superior to the true practice of the awakening to one's own nature.-HAKUIN

                            Comment

                            • ezzirah
                              Member
                              • Dec 2009
                              • 56

                              #15
                              Re: haiku writing as a way

                              I have often wondered about haiku writing. I think it would be interesting to learn. I love reading haiku, I know that much. I may give it a whorl and see what I come up with.

                              Thank you for this thread!
                              gassho!
                              ezz

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