Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Hycoon Revisted

At the haiku class on Friday night, I gave the students a few themes.

The first was for us to come up with our own 季語 (kigo), the seasonal word that is the roux of haiku. Despite the night's chill, I chose of course to focus on autumn.  On the ten minute walk from Kyoto Station to the venue, a haiku had popped into my mind.  By the time I went to write it down as my own example, it was gone.

My pre-planned haiku
Drops from the mind
Like a leaf from the tree

For the second theme, I read a list of about two dozen autumn kigo commonly found in Japanese haiku.  I read them again slowly, asking the students to chose one from which to compose a haiku around.

The shape of wind,
Given form
In the waving of pampas grass.

For the third theme, I asked the students to recall an experience or place from the last week, and to capture it in haiku.  Mine had been on the train earlier that evening.

       Past the edge of my book
A girl extends a bare, beautiful leg.
Do I have your attention now?

Finally, I asked the students to come up with a theme.  One of them quickly said, "Winter," no doubt due to the sudden onset of cold weather.

Six a.m.
Below zero in my room.
Three months to go.

We'll do the event again next month, with new themes of course.   Do drop by...

On the turntable:  Shiv Kumar Parma, "Maestro's Choice"
On the nighttable:  Patrick Carey, "Rediscovering the Old Tokaido in the Footsteps of Hiroshige"

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