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Messages - Scott Terrill

Other Haiku News / Beyond the slag moon
October 15, 2022, 01:55:17 AM
beyond the slag moon
clouds and jellyfish
journey together

For Brendan Slater
An old pond ku

in a letter from Minami Tadao
Basho's frog


I don't get much interest in this ku but I like it:)
I wrote this tonight... seems like the right place to leave it.

It may occupy a physical line in space:

it will not change its course after the death jellyfish

Bloody hell! That was impressive!


Well done

Hi Devora

I did find this on a recent search:

Haiku Clinic #3:
From One-line Poems to One-line Haiku
Part One: The Invitation

"Van den Heuvel experimented with all lengths of brevity, and had already written his famous poem "tundra"—the ultimate one-line haiku. (11) (Evidently, van den Heuvel did not recognize the one-line aspect of "tundra", for in a footnote in his introduction to the second edition of his Anthology, he says "The first edition had only a single one-liner, Michael Segers' 'in the eggshell.'" (12) Accordingly, I will consider "one-word poems" as a different category from "one-line poems" for the purposes of this essay.)"

— Bill Higginson, Haiku Clinic Editor

I think Cor can be found and messaged on Facebook

Hope this helps

Thanks Don,

I greatly enjoy and agree with your ponderings and thank you for the examples

Re Lamb's poem:

the blind child reading my poem with her fingertips

all I can say is it stirs something inside my body

As human beings our orientation to the world often begins with and lives off of the fuel of our bodies; images of the world are absorbed by our bodies. But we are also narrative creatures.

I think there is a totally understandable drive within the species toward understanding those images of the world, particularly something that is written down — words and phrases being, as they are, the tools of logic. I suppose one way of looking at it is that narrative provides purpose and meaning in our lives, which may be considered the cognitive default of the human condition.

For me haiku, experiential or otherwise, are always narratives, but incorporate narratives that function on different registers. The recording of an experience would primarily be an exercise of the intellect, whilst the experience itself, operating not in the regions of cognition primarily, but rather on a pre-cognitive, imaginative register, is an engagement in our world at a level that is fundamentally aesthetic; an aesthetic that is intimately linked to our bodies and through our bodies, our minds.

Our bodies are just as much a part of interpreting our space as is the intellect and our imagination enables us to absorb a fundamental orientation of the world that has a more visceral quasi-logic about it. Imagination provides a narrative, which allows for a sort of pre-intellectual way in which we perceive and move through this world.

I suppose you could call it a bodily way that, at least for me, primarily functions ahead of the intellect. It is here that I feel haiku imparts most of its raw power; as an entwining of body and story, of kinetics and poetics. But it is always still a narrative.

I think Lamb's ku could be viewed as just a written record of events and if it were primarily to stop there it would fail as a haiku but I sense, I think as Alan did, something so tactile that my imagination and body cannot help but be activated. Though I am aware that this is a very personal response as the poem obviously does not work for everybody.

In fact, I think a haiku succeeds or fails based in large part on our ability to contort this imagination into an intentional form without appearing contorted, forces and obvious. This may be why I like to think of haiku as existing without lines.

I would like to think also that this is why Haruo Shirane draws attention to: Bashō, like his great rival, Saikaku, felt that it was not form that counted [but] what was called haikai spirit.

Hi Devora, I think this quote by Jerzy Grotowski, which is one of the most articulate descriptions of what actor training should be is relevant and might help explain what I meant when I said,
"It is almost as if the words themselves, placed as they are become self-adjusting and through that process, self-limiting.":

"The actor no longer lends his body to an exclusively mental process but makes the mind appear through the body, thus granting the body agency. In training the actor, we attempt to eliminate his organism's resistance to this psychic process. The result is freedom from the time-lapse between inner impulse and outer reaction in such a way that the impulse is already an outer reaction. Impulse and action are concurrent: the body vanishes, burns, and the spectator sees only a series of visible impulses. Ours then is a via negativa — not a collection of skills but an eradication of blocks."

I think this could also be a good description of haiku and what haiku is.

I have this vague sense that for haiku to truly succeed the words in some way annihilate themselves and we are left with only a series of visible impulses.

just bumbling around inside my own head, trying to make some sense of it all :)

I personally am a little uncomfortable with this notion of 'show don't tell' as a/the defining characteristic of 'true' haiku (whatever that may be) and to bang on about it is a dead end. I think there exist degrees of both in all haiku.

I think it may be the case that 'tell' is being mistaken for 'spell it all out'. To tell is to communicate, to impact upon another, and I know it is possible to communicate without spelling it all out.

To show without degrees of telling I don't think is possible. Even in a poets choice of what to show they are telling us something about themselves.

Here's another statement which tells us something:


I think Marlene's essay might be relevant to this conversation:

I noted with particular interest the Hosai haiku (English translation) at the very end


Nothing unique about this cliché:

old shed –
he claims 1966
for a pillow

A Hundred Gourds 1:4 September 2012
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