Tag Archive | Haiku

National Poetry Month (US)

April is National Poetry month in the US and the great thing about the global Blogosphere is that we can all share in their celebration.

Regular readers here will already know that three years ago I went public about my depression. One of the results of that admission was a release of creativity which I had suppressed for almost 3 decades. As a child and young adolescent I was always very creative and artistic, but once depression struck, all my energies were focussed elsewhere and I had nothing left for creativity. It was buried deep and long.

My first creative release came through writing. I couldn’t stop writing. I took a notebook everywhere and wrote lots of poems mostly in Haiku format. Haiku is great for me as it combines expression with use of language and vocabulary with a structure.

One of my first efforts was to describe my take on depression.

In celebration of National Poetry month, here it is again.

BeFunky_0014

Depression-what does it feel like?

Wings clipped, feathers oiled
Aborted daily take-offs
Wading in treacle

Lacklustre. Can’t breathe.
Manic inactivity
Encroaching numbness

Confused, forgetful
Endless lists, tasks for the day
Sleep; insomnia

Dark introspection
Fatigue, every effort blanked
Fortified shutters

Rainbow long faded
Black and white and shades of grey
Monochrome living

Endless shivering
Blue ice pumps through veins
This polar cap never melts

Deflated, let down
Weighted to the ground; handcuffed
Every bubble bursts

No winner’s medals
Struggle to the starting line
Not at the races

Creativity
Dries up. Flourishes; small steps
Something from nothing

Callous self-hatred
Stricken senseless. Alien
Crushed by fate. Friendless

First hurdle faller
The conspiracy of life
Odds on a loser

Inevitable
Break down, break up, no breakthrough
Corralled, reined in, trapped

Frustration, anger
Crescendo of emotion
Threatens to burst forth

Regrets, lost chances
Tears of disappointment well
Lost soul, futile search.

That’s what it feels like to me.

BeFunky_0014

Write a Haiku about something that drives you nuts….

Depression drives me completely nuts. Here is a poem I wrote based on the Haiku format 5-7-5.

Wings clipped, feathers oiled
Aborted daily take-offs
Wading in treacle

Lacklustre. Can’t breathe.
Manic inactivity
Encroaching numbness

Confused, forgetful
Endless lists, tasks for the day
Sleep; insomnia

Dark introspection
Fatigue, every effort blanked
Fortified shutters

Rainbow long faded
Black and white and shades of grey
Monochrome living

Endless shivering
Blue ice pumps through veins
This polar cap never melts

Deflated, let down
Weighted to the ground; handcuffed
Every bubble bursts

No winner’s medals
Struggle to the starting line
Not at the races

Creativity
Dries up. Flourishes; small steps
Something from nothing

Callous self-hatred
Stricken senseless. Alien
Crushed by fate. Friendless

First hurdle faller
The conspiracy of life
Odds on a loser

Inevitable
Break down, break up, no breakthrough
Corralled, reined in, trapped

Frustration, anger
Crescendo of emotion
Threatens to burst forth

Regrets, lost chances
Tears of disappointment well
Lost soul, futile search.

That’s what it feels like to me.


Haiku

You may, or may not, know what a haiku is. I can’t say I had come across them until my son  had to compose a haiku for his homework some years ago. With the on-line help of Wikipedia, I soon found out how a haiku should be written, and rising to the challenge, we had some great fun composing a few verses together.

If you haven’t come across a haiku before, it is a traditional form of Japanese poetry and consists of 3 lines per verse. The first and last lines of a haiku have 5 syllables and the second, or middle line, has 7 syllables. The lines rarely rhyme. You can have as many, or as few verses as you like. Strictly speaking, haiku don’t have titles but I have taken the liberty of assigning titles to mine which gives the reader at least an idea of what’s coming. I had forgotten about haiku until I recently read a funny post on the internet.

 It read;

Haiku are great fun (5)
But they often don’t make sense (7)
Refrigerator (5)

This tickled my sense of humour and so began my re-born enthusiasm for haiku. I like haiku because it provides a structure. 5-7-5. But you then have to draw upon your grasp of meaning and depth of vocabulary to create meaningful but technically correct verse. It is a challenge but very rewarding and children often enjoy this exercise.

Have fun with haiku.