Author Topic: Sailing 14.5 How Do You Spell Haiku?  (Read 24371 times)

onecloud

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Re: Sailing 14.5 How Do You Spell Haiku?
« Reply #60 on: March 03, 2012, 10:45:44 AM »
                                              How Do you Spell Haiku?

Have you read Martin Lucas’ essay “Haiku as Poetic Spell”? What he discusses there has great relevance for what we’ve been looking at, and beyond. What I’ve been referring to as “sound image”--  (how a poem is experienced or felt prior to being taken up by the conscious mind), he calls “Poetic Spell”. They are not exactly the same thing, in part because while Lucas speaks of the importance of sound (including, and emphasizing, rhythm) he also includes image, and says “It’s possible to approach the Poetic Spell through both imagery and language”. But he seems to give primacy to sound.

So one way to look at what we’ve been calling “vigorous language” (or "living language"), is to say it is language which casts a Poetic Spell. Of course, Lucas’ essay is all about what that is.

Here’s Jim Kacian’s poem again, with some of Lucas’ criteria for Poetic Spell below.

          the high fizz nerve the low boom blood dead silence

There is a “significant contribution of word music/language effects, notably rhythm

It is “essentially irrational—prose paraphrase not possible

It “cannot be analyzed in terms of information content alone

It is “an oral form, readily memorable

He gives other elements as well, but from these alone, I daresay he would include Kacian’s haiku with others, such as Duro Jaiye’s

       hatless the seeds of winter in the morning sky

and

       sharpening this night of stars distant dogs

 by Stuart Quine,  as casting a Poetic Spell.

He says: “That’s what I mean by Poetic Spell. Words that beat; words that flow”. And, “This is what I want from haiku: something primitive; something rare; something essential. . . . It’s not the information content that counts, it’s the way that information is formed, cooked, and combined. Poetic spells don’t tell us anything, they are something, they exist as objects of fascination in their own right”. (My italics).

By the way, Lucas presents all this in opposition to what he calls the “International Formula” approach to haiku. But to learn more about that, you’ll need to read his essay.

So, what do you think about this orientation to haiku? Or to any of the points Martin Lucas makes? Do you know of haiku which fit his view of the Poetic Spell?

His essay is included in Evolution, the latest volume from the Red Moon Anthology series. Or you can nibble the link below and find a version which, however, does not include his criteria, (“battle positions”) contrasting the "International Formula" with Poetic Spell.

http://www.poetrysociety.org.nz/node/456

 

onecloud

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Re: Sailing 14.5 How Do You Spell Haiku?
« Reply #61 on: March 03, 2012, 10:47:18 AM »
Kigo and its use is analogous (to me) like making fire.  There are many ways to make fire and over the years the refinement of technique has given us the match.  Saijiki to me is analogous to the match box.  So now, if one wants to ignite their words...

(I can imagine going back in time to meet Bashou, perhaps, walk a spell with him on his journey to the interior, enjoying the perplexing look he would give to you if you mentioned, "haiku", "kigo", and "saijiki".)

ciao...  8)

onecloud

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Re: Sailing 14.5 How Do You Spell Haiku?
« Reply #62 on: March 03, 2012, 10:58:59 AM »
Kigo is challenging for me being a north american poet.  i like haiku, i like the tradition of the form, i also like western english verse. sometimes i feel that haiku poets need to expand the list of kigo to international language and temperate zones of the globe. i think if i write english language poems of l s l form with a seasonal word recognizable by contemporary readers it is modern haiku. 

here is an essay of my personal relationship with haiku and poetry.
i have revised my poetry book and changed the name of it, but only the original version is on line at this time.

Haiku thoughts, gripes, and loves…
All about mystery.
Part of my artistic sensibilities is to break conventions. I don’t really have a position on the rules of form and I don’t really want to convince anybody I am right. Yet I do desire recognition for being a serious artist outside these arguments about form. I love haiku. I do not understand the rules. I know the rules and most of them are broken almost always. In my mind poetry begins in a personal place. Poetry is almost all about personality. So in my personal relationship with poetry, haiku and, “little lamb who made thee” and Huckleberry Finn all entered my young imagination the same time in life. Without concern for anything beyond the plain joy in sound, rhyme, and adventure of imagination I forged an adolescent emotional relationship with the thought of haiku.  As well as western forms, and church hymns and psalms. I had no prejudice against choosing freely from these influences and mixing them in whimsy. In university I knew more and understood the way art and reason are categorized into disciplines. Also my contemporary influences were rebellious to institutional regulation on thought or art, sex and politics. I subscribed to my peers value to remake poetry as well as society.
When I heard the argument that the Japanese use of sound is markedly different from English syllable parts, so English haiku should be of only 11 or so English syllables too reflect the truer brevity of the form, my feeling was why try to force haiku into other languages. The Japanese form never cared for rhyme or meter. It was never meant to employ complex rhymes, narratives, or poetic images.  The things I chose to use from haiku were brevity, the visual beauty, line length and meter. I just wanted to marry the values I loved in the English language with the visual and musical qualities I felt haiku demonstrated. I chose to use the 5/7/5 form so that I could compose work in a consistent style over a number of years.
My method was western, I am from Ohio, I wanted my writing to be truer to western literature than worry about Japanese classical form.  The reward in working my ramblings into a 3 line form, composed of a 5/7/5 syllable count was that I learned to reduce the most important event into its most basic parts consistently.  The practice trained my poetic mind over the years. Finally after 30+ years of practice I perceive the most basic elements first, most clearly from my experience. My poetic mind converts experience into language. I love to paint pictures with language.
After self publishing my work I began to share it with other poets in Toronto at readings and art festivals and on the internet. Mirco poetry and rap and such contemporary short forms have general acceptance with North American poets.  Still short form poetry is the least popular.  I found my poetry very difficult to present. People who don’t know what haiku is say, “very nice, is that haiku?” and haiku poets say, “you missed the point of haiku.”   I changed the name of the second edition of my book to “passionate creation, illuminated poems by onecloud”. 
Now I have spent the last two years listening to haiku poets and learning on line by joining many of the groups and submit some work for publication in haiku journals. And I find the community of haiku poets online interesting, talented and courteous. I enjoy the playfulness on many of the groups also. I just feel a rose smells as sweet by any other name. 

http://www.docstoc.com/profile/martysmith1


Gabi Greve

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Re: Sailing 14.5 How Do You Spell Haiku?
« Reply #63 on: March 03, 2012, 03:18:53 PM »
Part of my artistic sensibilities is to break conventions.
Poetry is almost all about personality.
onecloud


That is a good point.

Japanese haiku as formal poetry to start with
gives plenty of opportunity to do that.
Maybe this is one factor why many feel so attracted to it?

I always wondered if haiku were short free verse to start with  and no conventions to break
... would it loose its attraction ?


For me Japanese haiku  is not about personality, not about improving my big ego,
but on the contrary, trying to loose my ego in the nature of things.

Gabi
(Maybe I lived too long in Japan
with the constant whacks of my Haiku teachers  ...  :o )
.

Don Baird

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Re: Sailing 14.5 How Do You Spell Haiku?
« Reply #64 on: March 04, 2012, 12:57:12 AM »

For me Japanese haiku  is not about personality, not about improving my big ego,
but on the contrary, trying to loose my ego in the nature of things.

Gabi


I agree ... :) "Trying to lose my ego in the nature of things" ... Or, in simple terms - just losing myself!  :)
I write haiku because they're there ...

through
the hole of a cheerio,
spring!

onecloud

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Re: Sailing 14.5 How Do You Spell Haiku?
« Reply #65 on: March 04, 2012, 08:02:11 AM »
Don, & Gabi,

I agree, writing haiku is to lose ego and merge self with nature even. I think personality is different from ego.  I am suggesting the poem or, (experience),  may begin with the personality of the poet.

marty

Don Baird

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Re: Sailing 14.5 How Do You Spell Haiku?
« Reply #66 on: March 04, 2012, 12:54:33 PM »
I am suggesting the poem or, (experience),  may begin with the personality of the poet.

marty

Interesting you mentioned this ... I was pondering a similar thought last night - the reader's importance in relationship to the poem's meaning ... and also, what era the poem was written versus what era the poem is read ...
I write haiku because they're there ...

through
the hole of a cheerio,
spring!

onecloud

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Re: Sailing 14.5 How Do You Spell Haiku?
« Reply #67 on: March 04, 2012, 02:32:12 PM »
Don said,
Interesting you mentioned this ... I was pondering a similar thought last night - the reader's importance in relationship to the poem's meaning ... and also, what era the poem was written versus what era the poem is read ...

I wonder....  is the old pond timeless?   
conveying a sentiment that can transcend culture and ages is a lofty goal for a poem.  if it is possible, it will be about the relationship between nature and humans, so haiku is the form for the job.   


btw.   i am not using the quote function correctly. help.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2012, 02:34:45 PM by onecloud »

Gabi Greve

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Re: Sailing 14.5 How Do You Spell Haiku?
« Reply #68 on: March 04, 2012, 02:53:46 PM »
Quote from "Speculations of Robert Spiess"

608
A genuine haiku is the 'testament' of an aspect of the world process itself,
apart from any intervention of human ego.

627
As human nature tends to be deflected from its original unity and simplicity by ego and its constrictive and seductive illusions, haiku are salutary in mitigating this tendency, and to bring our nature back to its original mode.

653
The haiku poet does not need ego in order to be self-aware.

717
Haiku poets should be aware of the tyranny of the ego,
for it clings to its obsession with being special.

726
By forgetting one's ego,
the haiku poet's true being is confirmed by all things.

867
In a haiku’s now-moment (whether immediate or from memory)
the ego and the intellect are to be left behind.

871
In genuine haiku the heart annihilates the ego.

Speculations of Robert Spiess
long-time editor of Modern Haiku.
.

Sue

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Re: Sailing 14.5 How Do You Spell Haiku?
« Reply #69 on: March 05, 2012, 05:41:29 PM »
I take issue with this "ego" thing. We don't possess a 'something' which we can point at as *the ego* and in any case the existence of an 'ego' is theoretical, based on the Freudian Psychological theoretical model, it is not factual. The Spiess quotes seem to reflect that kind of sloppy misunderstood westernized Zen which someone was complaining about elsewhere. What exactly does he mean by "forgetting one's ego" or  "human nature tends to be deflected from its original unity and simplicity by ego and its constrictive and seductive illusions"?

Yes, there is something which can get in the way of 'seeing' haiku with clarity, but to call this something 'ego', (pejoratively, like having an (tyranical) ego at all is a universally bad thing) is quite inaccurate. Often what 'gets in the way' could be instinctual and subconscious aversions or desires; or critical judgements or assumptions of belief. In which case, according to the Freudian model it would be the Id or the super-ego, therefore not the ego at all.

Some of the best haiku shows me the writer as well as the subject. Read Issa, you can almost see him! So if I can see the writer how can they have expunged their 'ego' in order to be a "...testament of an aspect of the world process itself, apart from any intervention of human ego." ?  Isn't he making a false separation between the "world process" and "human..." (whatever) here? ...apart from being rather pretentious in addition.  ::)

Sloppy Zen, sloppy psychology, sloppy language, sloppy teaching. Whatever it is that actually happens, attempting to extinguish one's ego (assuming you can find it) won't get you there. Learning how to observe, how to look deeper, might.

Don Baird

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Re: Sailing 14.5 How Do You Spell Haiku?
« Reply #70 on: March 09, 2012, 07:02:25 PM »
Ego: "a person's sense of self-esteem or self-importance."

I posit that if we look at ego in terms of the general definition above, it would be true that an "excess of such a thing" would be an inhibitor, at minimum, to the methodology of natural writing.  There is no question in my mind that a flatulant ego dulls the senses of "what is" within the Tao.  This dulling, through a magnified self importance occurs in athletic performance, music performance, writing poetry and so forth. There's much evidence these days that validates the thoughts "to lose ones self is to find ones self"; "to lose ones skill is to find ones skill."

It might be impossible, at the mercy of a self absorbed ego, to be in tune with nature including, and especially, in a balanced synergy of the human/nature interactive experience (which is inseparable).



edit spelling ...
« Last Edit: March 09, 2012, 07:36:37 PM by Don Baird »
I write haiku because they're there ...

through
the hole of a cheerio,
spring!

Sue

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Re: Sailing 14.5 How Do You Spell Haiku?
« Reply #71 on: March 11, 2012, 03:58:20 PM »
Ego: "a person's sense of self-esteem or self-importance."

I posit that if we look at ego in terms of the general definition above, it would be true that an "excess of such a thing" would be an inhibitor, at minimum, to the methodology of natural writing.  There is no question in my mind that a flatulant ego dulls the senses of "what is" within the Tao.  This dulling, through a magnified self importance occurs in athletic performance, music performance, writing poetry and so forth. There's much evidence these days that validates the thoughts "to lose ones self is to find ones self"; "to lose ones skill is to find ones skill."

It might be impossible, at the mercy of a self absorbed ego, to be in tune with nature including, and especially, in a balanced synergy of the human/nature interactive experience (which is inseparable).



edit spelling ...

Yes Don, but my whole point was that what you are calling "ego" is not what Freud meant by the term. It has been corrupted to mean ...well arrogance, or self-centredness, self-absorption, or narcisism, or attention-seeking, or neurotic self-consciousness, or all of the above and anything else that someone disapproves of. Self-esteem is necessary to a healthy mind. A sense of self-worth is necessary to a healthy personality. From a Freudian perspective the ego is necessary. Fortunately Psychology has moved along a pace and we have better models to work with these days.

Don Baird

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Re: Sailing 14.5 How Do You Spell Haiku?
« Reply #72 on: March 11, 2012, 07:45:42 PM »
Yes, I understand.  But;

Webster:  ego: "the self especially as contrasted with another self or the world".

Oxford:  ego: "a person's sense of self-esteem or self-importance".

These two definitions probably apply to what Mr. Spiess was referencing.

all the best,

Don
« Last Edit: March 11, 2012, 08:06:31 PM by Don Baird »
I write haiku because they're there ...

through
the hole of a cheerio,
spring!