Bill Waters ~~ Haiku

Haiku + Tanka, Haibun, Rengay, Shahai, & More

Haiku poetry day 2019

gusty!

scattered showers

of plum blossoms

 

Happy International Haiku Poetry Day, everyone!  :- D

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Reblogged: Why “Just write” isn’t exactly sophisticated advice, by Miriam Sagan

My “virtual guest-blogger” today is the wise and wonderful Miriam Sagan, who provides thoughtful insight into why “Just write!” — a common bit of writing advice — isn’t the universal writers’ panacea that many suppose it to be.  ;- )

Miriam's Well: Poetry, Land Art, and Beyond

Why “Just Write” Isn’t Exactly Sophisticated Advice

Although I’ve benefited from this advice—and no doubt given it—I’m starting to think it isn’t specific enough. And that’s because advice could be more tailored to who the writer is:

1. A professional or well-trained writer who feels “blocked.”
2. A person who has “always wanted” to be a writer.
3. Someone suffering from writing anxiety.

I have no idea how I learned to write. I can create a romantic version of my experience—dyslexic failing elementary school, strict but kind teacher, discovering poetry, etc. etc. But this may all be hindsight.

And so, “just write” may be good for the person who knows how to write but just can’t at the moment. This approach tends to the quick and spontaneous, to overriding self criticism, and to productivity. However, as a person who “wrote” at least three failed novels, I can say that filling…

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Final update: Postcards from the Edge 2019

A couple months ago I mentioned that Canadian artist Lorette C. Luzajic and I collaborated on an entry for the Postcards from the Edge art show, a fundraiser for an organization that helps artists with AIDS called Visual AIDS.

I’m happy to say that our postcard — one of more than 1,400 exhibited — was bought! Here is our piece, plus a few photos from the event, which was held in late February at Bortolami Gallery in Tribeca, NYC. :- )

PFTE2019: Waiting to Get In

Waiting to get in… Photo courtesy of Visual AIDS.

 

PFTE 2019: Racing In

Enthusiasm was at a fever pitch! Photo courtesy of Visual AIDS.

 

PFTE 2019 :The Gallery Space

Checking out the gallery space. Photo courtesy of Visual AIDS.

 

PFTE 2019: Looking at the Artwork

Searching for that perfect piece… Photo courtesy of Visual AIDS.

 

PFTE 2019: Paying Out

Paying out. Photo courtesy of Visual AIDS.


Related posts:

–> Postcards from the Edge

–> Update: Postcards from the Edge

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Four Instagram photo-poems

Here is a small selection of haiku and senryu photo-poems from my Instagram account: two from my “typewriter series”, and two from my “handwriting series”.

I hope you enjoy them!  :- )

Bath Towel

 

Ginkgo Tree and Me

 

Bursting

 

Out on a Limb


More of my Instagram photo-poems can be found at www.instagram.com/billwaterspoet.

Oh, and regarding my poem “out on a limb”, I used a broken twig I found on the ground for that shot. I would never stick a thumbtack into a living tree.  ;- )

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Five poems

last in line
his son touches
the casket

our failing cat . . .
I pet him with both hands
as time grows short

frozen footprints
in dying light . . .
with his fingertips
the tracker traces
the contours

you had me
in the palm of your hand
and didn’t notice . . .
collateral damage
of adolescence

from below the horizon
the sun touches
her high-flying jet . . .
my eyes
touch it too


Published in the University of Chicago’s Memoryhouse Magazine, issue 21, 3/2019. Theme: touch.

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This goldfinch

this goldfinch

perched on the edge

of spring

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Two on spring

freshly mown —

a whiff

of wild onion

 

stones in the road

their shadows

blacker than asphalt


Published in Akitsu Quarterly: Spring 2019 (http://www.wildgraces.com/Akitsu-Quarterly.html), 2/2019.

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NaHaiWriMo 2019: post script

What do dirty diapers, computer crashes, and drool have in common? They were all . . . writing prompts for this year’s NaHaiWriMo?!

Michael Dylan Welch, founder of National Haiku Writing Month, explains:

[T]his month’s writing prompts have been produced through random numbers and letters provided by NaHaiWriMo participants, using the number to choose a page number from a particular book, and the letter to indicate a particular line on that page (for example, the letter L indicates the 12th line on that page). … I’m happy to reveal that the book I used for this inspiration is Lia Romeo and Nick Romeo’s 11,002 Things to Be Miserable About (New York: Abrams, 2009). It’s a parody of the book I used as the source for our prompts in 2018, Barbara Ann Kipfer’s 14,000 Things to Be Happy About (New York: Workman Publishing, 1990).

Just as Kipfer’s book is a wonderful resource for any haiku poet—you can open it at random and find countless subjects (okay, 14,000) to write haiku about—so too is the Miserable book, even if many of the prompts are a bit darker. Quite a few of the items it lists aren’t that miserable, though, such as black cats or Vegemite, although Vegemite might be a matter of opinion. Others, though, I edited a bit, such as reducing the original source text of ‘Elderly people falling on the sidewalk’ (not fun) to just ‘sidewalk,’ and changing ‘Being the only boy in the school play’ to just ‘school play.’ In some cases random numbers produced possible prompts that I just didn’t want to use. Do we really want any haiku about poor vaginal hygiene, Colombian assassins, or Hitler? You might not have cared for dirty diapers, either, but I thought that was worth a try. So, I hope you’ve enjoyed these prompts, or have at least been challenged by them, many of which we’ve never used before. And whether some of them are ‘miserable’ or not, I hope they show that haiku can be written about almost anything. As James W. Hackett once wrote, ‘lifefulness, not beauty, is the real quality of haiku.’

So that’s how “dirty diapers” was selected as a writing prompt!  ;- )

Of the 28 poems I posted — some of them haiku, some of them senryu — one far outpaced all the others in terms of social media likes:

grooming the cat —
enough fur in the brush
to make a mouse

LOL! Three other reader favorites include the following:

using a towel
for a superhero cape . . .
childhood

home from the burial . . .
the kindness
of casseroles

center of town —
raising the sidewalk
a gnarled tree root

And so ends NaHaiWriMo 2019.

Thank you to everyone who followed along on this somewhat strange month-long journey!  :- D


Prompts, posts, and participant submissions: https://www.facebook.com/NaHaiWriMo/

More on NaHaiWriMo and writing haiku: http://www.nahaiwrimo.com

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NaHaiWriMo 2019: week 4

unable to see the forest
for the trees . . .
political myopia

[2/22 prompt = nearsightedness]


home from the burial . . .
the kindness
of casseroles

[2/23 prompt = casserole]


long, long ago
I was a tree . . .
school play

[2/24 prompt = school play]


grooming the cat —
enough fur in the brush
to make a mouse

[2/25 prompt = hair brushing]


what price progress?
studying the balance sheet
of history

[2/26 prompt = bank account balance]


ghost town . . .
in the general store
a lone can of pork and beans

[2/27 prompt = canned meat]


on the weekend
the school principal
is a nice guy

[2/28 prompt = school principal]


Prompts, posts, and participant submissions: https://www.facebook.com/NaHaiWriMo/

More on NaHaiWriMo and writing haiku: http://www.nahaiwrimo.com

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NaHaiWriMo 2019: week 3

stinkbug!
I catch it
and put it outside

[2/15 prompt = deportation]


swanky restaurant —
the ghost of a lipstick print
on my water glass

[2/16 prompt = drinking glasses with lipstick marks]


beating the odds:
all our friends
who have survived

[2/17 prompt = coin toss]


staying home from school
with a cold and a good book . . .
sick days of childhood

[2/18 prompt = diagnosis]


“I’m home!”
a slobbery kiss
from the bulldog

[2/19 prompt = drool]


babies
and more babies . . .
maternity ward

[2/20 prompt = babies]


family movie night —
everybody
double-screening

[2/21 prompt = cell phones, or movie theaters, or both]


Prompts, posts, and participant submissions: https://www.facebook.com/NaHaiWriMo/

More on NaHaiWriMo and writing haiku: http://www.nahaiwrimo.com

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