one-off at the wrist

one-breath thought

I appreciate that many may feel that my effort yesterday was not in the strict sense of course a Haiku, which in Japan traditionally follows a rhythm of 5-7-5 ‘sound units’ [on] rather than as widely thought in English 5-7-5 ‘syllables. So for example, the word haiku is two syllables in English [high-koo] but three sounds in Japanese [high -a-koo]. Outside Japan, most practiced haiku writers utilise about 10 to 14 syllables to approximate the brevity of a Japanese haiku.

But other than perhaps my use of 5-7-5 ‘metrical beats’ [rather than necessarily either syllables or sound units ie Di-a-monds could be read as three syllables in English whereas I am using one metric beat Diamonds] I believe I am being true to the ‘sort of a meditation’ ideal of the form, and in spirit at least it does attempt to ‘capture a feeling or image’, even if it does not obey all the supposed rules of Haiku it does follow most:

Focuses on nature and uses a kigo (season word) that indicates the season. Composed of two juxtaposed parts, [with one of the parts filling two lines) grammatically independent as well as imagistically distinct. The use of a kireji (cutting word) to create an ‘intuitive realization’ leap between the two parts. It even tries to include some form of metonym; more difficult and often overlooked in English as unlike Japanese, being non-pictorial, these packed-in double meanings are harder to find.

At the very least I imagine the piece to be a jiyuritsu {free form) haiku. Certainly I hope it is an ‘unfinished’ poem requiring reader completion. As the 17th Century poet Matsuo Bashō said, “The haiku that reveals seventy to eighty percent of its subject is good. Those that reveal fifty to sixty percent, we never tire of.”


Inspired by the repeat colder weather today, a second effort from a long ago remembered day:

Frost-scattered field-stones rot
Heaven-ladder on a broke-back spine
Used-to-be-mountain scaled


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3 thoughts on “one-breath thought

  1. michael hampton on said:

    I find there is too much stress on the enjambed ‘rot’. Maybe try something more empirically believable here instead (ie vegetation rots, not mineral), with all the syntactical and phonetic consequences that will ensue? Yes an expanded Haiku seems a fair description, although it also comes across as if a roughish translation from old Norse (‘kenning’ type figuration) or something equally impenetrable, even Henrician (viii) English, still poised awkwardly between Chaucer and the Elizabethan effflorescence to come. As you can see this is a reply rather than  acomment. What does “clear cache” actually mean? 


    • Thanks for comment. Rot was as the clumps of stone scattered around the field were covered in moss so looked like they were rotting back into the earth [not pictured].

      Glad the comments are open again 🙂
      Still having a whizzbang contretemps with WP about Advent XII post Dec 13th – dont feel can censor any further …

      • clear cache = clear your browser’s cache [saved baggage] Chrome – click on the 3 horizontal bar symbol top right of screen – choose History – choose ‘clear all browsing data’ make sure ’empty the cache’ selected – then hit clear …

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