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In-Depth Discussions => In-Depth Haiku: Free Discussion Area => Topic started by: G.R. LeBlanc on January 27, 2011, 11:30:23 PM

Title: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: G.R. LeBlanc on January 27, 2011, 11:30:23 PM
Hi everyone,

I was wondering where everyone's inspiration for haiku comes from? Do you write haiku purely from personal experiences, or do some of you also write haiku based on things you've seen on TV, movies, read in books, etc.?

Also, I'm curious, do you write haiku when they come to you, or do you sit down and purposely think of haiku to write? Do they come easily or do you have to work hard to craft them? And on average, how many haiku do each of you write in a week or a month?

Just thought it might be interesting to share this information.

Gisele :)
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: cat on January 28, 2011, 06:06:10 AM
Hello, Gisele,

I am in my third year of writing at least one haiku every day.  I have not missed a day yet, no matter what kind of disaster was going on around me.  In 2009, I wrote 558 haiku, and last year, I wrote 535. 

I do not believe in "inspiration", because it's an excuse not to write: Oh, I don't feel inspired today, so I don't have to work at my craft.  What I do believe in is actively seeing out things that trigger the impulse to write, whether it's close observation of my surroundings (including photos, art, books, whatnot) or a thorough combing of memory, or once in a while an experience or feeling someone else has talked with me about.  All these are IMHO my "personal experiences".

I participate in several kukai and various themed competitions (as well as the haiku trains, full deck haiku, and ekphrastic haiku here at THF), so sometimes it does come down to making the great sifting and "purposely think[ing] of haiku to write".  I don't see anything wrong with that.  If the question is a slant way of invoking the dreaded "desk ku", yes, sometimes that is the case, but I believe that even then, the seeds of the haiku lie within us or the juxtaposed images would not have come.

Every haiku is different -- some spring up fully formed, like Athena from the head of Zeus, and some take months of labor.  But when they're in final form and I look back at them, it's hard to tell which is which.

Just some thoughts.

cat
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: AlanSummers on January 28, 2011, 06:25:33 AM
I'd agree with what Cat says about haiku and this dreaded word "inspiration" because it can be misleading for newcomers to creative writing.

Of course we need a smidgen of inspiration, although I feel the word "catalyst" might be more accurate to use.  

re desk-ku, this has long been misunderstood.  Some early schools of thought back in the 1970s, and possibly even the 1960s, believed that any haiku not immediately written were desk-ku.  Also any haiku written at home couldn't be haiku regardless of the fact they may have been written about an experience.

Anyone seriously wanting to develop their creative writing skills has to spend time honing their craft, and honing individual pieces of writing, whether it's haiku, a short story, a novel, or a song.

There are some haiku I successfully write in less than a day, but others take a week or go into months, and sometimes a couple of years.

I prefer to write from direct experiences, out in the street or countryside, and don't like to fictionalise or part-fictionalise them.  

I find most creative writing, even non-fiction, tends to lean towards fiction, so I use haiku as the exception, and go for direct or indirect reporting and autobiographical poems.

I also teach haiku as a tool to a number of different types of writers, both creative writers and also professional report writers, so it needs to be grounded in actual real life situations for me.

I'm quite happy to read fictionalised haiku if the craft is there in the writing, but I love to follow a person's real experiences and journey through their life.

Alan

Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: Gael Bage on January 28, 2011, 07:08:42 AM
Hi Gisele, Cat and Alan, interesting question,  for me, most come from an idling mind, those free moments... often in nature, but not always.. it's like they are gifts that stop by to say hello, an empty mind seems more receptive, then as you say a some come easy, others feel more elusive and winkling them out seems like drawing teeth... I must have a vacant mind, because I never seem to get writers block   ::)
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: newtonp on January 28, 2011, 07:37:12 AM
Gisele,

Hi, I'm new to this Forum thing. But I enjoy reading it.

Haiku for me has become a way of life. Some people meditate, some people go to church. I write haiku and other short poems. At the start of each day I try to sit still. A hybrid prayer-meditation-caffeine-induced trance. Being snowed-in helps, or maybe I'm coming down with something. I make excuses to put the world on hold. So I can sit awhile and feel the world wake up around me.

Am I inspired to write? I don't think so. It's just that a quiet mind does seem more receptive to that elusive haiku moment. Which, by the way, is rare. Usually something strikes me but let's not forget that haiku is a form of poetry. An act of creation that requires work to refine and edit. Hopefully, well. The thing is, I've written poems a long time. But haiku is different. There's a quality in the process of creating one and sometimes, yes it feels like I'm a reporter, just the facts please--that I find freeing. No heavy emotional poetry just a slowly somersaulting leaf in sunlight and somehow I feel young again. Like I can start over just like the seasons do. Each haiku is like that. A beginning.

A poet friend of mine once said: "Create the space in which the poem can happen." And how do you do that? I asked, a little frustrated with his tendency for the obscure. "One word at a time." Great, I said. Thanks.

--Peter

                 "Whisper to me some beautiful secret that you remember from life"       --Donald Justice
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: wrheath on January 28, 2011, 07:52:49 AM
Gael, I like your "idling mind" phrase.  After years of doodling senryu and haiku and other ditties, I have found that the ones I am most pleased with come without effort.  Perhaps something I observed just for a second while walking the dogs or driving the back roads to work, forms a haiku in my mind.  Sometimes it needs a little polishing and structuring, but many of them come to me when I am not trying so hard to write one.  My periods of writer's block invariably occur when I am trying too hard to write haiku.  The best ones come when I have nothing on my mind, but am receptive to the thoughts that come from everyday observations.
Exercises like Full deck are fun and great practice for the structuring part.  I need the "idling mind" to truly see what I observe.
Will
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: AlanSummers on January 28, 2011, 09:02:32 AM
The best time for writing poetry, for me, was in Queensland, because I was either working very hard on landcare projects as a volunteer, and arriving around 5am so I'd have a couple of hours to myself; or when I had the occasional day off and sat on the farmhouse verandah for five hours or more observing and writing.

Writers block might occur for me due to my background in other careers, so I see everything in a practical and logistical sense, and it can take over my creative side. ;-)

As a freelancer it's a rare privilege to have an idling mind, as I constantly have to look for income, and forever checking through magazines and daily bulletins I'm afraid, and writing proposals. ;-)

I do strongly feel as a professional I should be reading quality published work. Just as much as a poet outside the haikai world should read Milton and onwards into 21st Century poetry, so should a haiku poet (whether as a freelance or otherwise) be reading hokku by Basho right up to haiku being written in the 2000s.

As someone who is an editor and a judge I have the double or triple obligation to be as aware as possible of good haiku from Basho to 2011 of course! ;-)

Alan

Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: Gael Bage on January 28, 2011, 11:11:48 AM
Hi Peter, welcome, and Will, its nice to hear some new voices  :)
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: G.R. LeBlanc on January 28, 2011, 12:35:09 PM
Thank you, everyone, for chiming in! What a wonderful thread!

Cat: Wow! Over 500 haiku--that is amazing! And to think I was proud of the 145 I wrote last year...lol  :) You've inspired me to get into the habit of writing at least one a day.

And, Alan, I like the use of "catalyst" instead of "inspiration". That makes a lot of sense.

I'm glad to hear a few of you mention desk-haiku. I tend to be of the mind that dreams, thoughts, and images from the imagination are "real". I believe all reality begins with thought, so I'm not against desk-haiku at all, especially when it comes to haiku for (or written by) children because imagination to me is an inherent part of childhood. However, I would call these "fun-haiku" and I realize that many people would not consider them haiku at all.

In fact, one of the very first haiku I had accepted was a totally fabricated desk-haiku, before I even realized there was such a term. The image in my mind was so vivid that it felt very real to me. So I guess I don't believe there is anything wrong in experimenting with desk-haiku.  :)

And in the end, whether a haiku is fabricated, comes from memories, or personal experiences, it still has the power to resonate with others if it is well crafted. With all that said though, most of mine do come from things I've experienced or witnessed.

Gisele
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: G.R. LeBlanc on January 28, 2011, 12:37:13 PM
Oh, also, Peter and Will, welcome aboard!

Gisele :)
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: Gael Bage on January 28, 2011, 01:09:18 PM
Gisele, I agree, we are part of nature and it is in our nature to imagine, so if they come from imagination, or if imagination adds to them its still all nature, inclusively so  ;)
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: cat on January 28, 2011, 01:52:25 PM
Hello again,

A fascinating thread!

We might do well in the context of this discussion to ask where imagination comes from; while scientifically it is believed to originate in the pineal gland, in the exact center of the brain (the "third eye", some call it), there has to be more to it than that.

Beyond being perhaps some kind of electrochemical reaction, doesn't it seem reasonable to think that imagination is rooted in experience -- fed by everything we've experienced through any of the five senses as well as through the intellect?  Does that not make what we create "real" at some level?  Or does only physical experience count?

Gisele, maybe that is one of the tests -- does the haiku, whatever its origin, feel "real" to the reader?  It may take more skill to make a "desk-ku" seem real, but if it does seem so, if it has what in fiction we call "verisimilitude", then it works, IMHO.

Gael, I love this:  "we are part of nature and it is in our nature to imagine."  Right on!

Peter, welcome to the forum.  I like what you said about the "quiet mind".

And Will, "idling mind" is also a great term, implying not only being still, but also the engine running, receptive to the adventure of writing and ready to start.

Alan, "catalyst" is a perfect word to replace "inspiration".  (I may steal that for my creative writing classes.  I often use the word "trigger", but I like "catalyst" better.)

Gisele, Alan, Gael, Will, and Peter, all your posts have been so interesting and thought-provoking.  Thank you, Gisele, for starting this thread.

cat
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: Don Baird on January 28, 2011, 01:56:24 PM
This is a great thread with a tickling question - at least to the mind.  :)  I believe all haiku, in the end are desk haiku to some extent.  I don't dread the word or the action.  We all sit at a computer or with a notebook and hone these images down to the best ones we can create.  The "inspiration" may come from a moment of recognition of the importance of something  seen/witnessed/read (from real life to magazines and photos ... or even something heard).  But, in the end, the haiku is adjusted at the desk ... possibly for years to come.  I've revised haiku that had more than a couple of birthdays roll by  ...  :)  

I'm older now (63) and I draw on several areas for writing haiku:  experience (something I saw in the past and I'm now writing about it);  something I see/witness now;  a given such as the "Card Game";  and finally, fantasy ... such as the Train (being stimulated by the poem in its entirety as well as, by the preceding verse of which I play off of). Even then, however, I attempt to write a verse from an experience I've had that will relate to it.   (I'm not sure we can devoid ourselves from what we try to create.)

Interesting thread.  Thanks for posting it.

best,

Don



Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: sandra on January 28, 2011, 02:33:34 PM
The inspiration is all around ... it's up to me to stop and look, to poke my tongue out (at a haiku poet's gathering, one writer was found during the ginko to be licking a tree!), touch things, listen ...

I don't analyse too hard where my poems come from. I write what I write. But I can say that memory plays a very strong part - and that's both my own memory and the memories of others. I love listening to people telling stories about their past (and, in fact, am sometimes paid to do so!), about places I've never been or times gone.

Sometimes I can be inspired by words in a book. I have recently finished reading (the translation of) a crime novel set in Iceland and found myself scribbling a haiku or two after having read a phrase or a description of the landscape. I recently watched a film adaptation of a book by this same author and one particular outdoor scene in that (nothing to do with the characters, you understand, but what was behind and all around them) immediately inspired a haiku. The difference-ness of the place may have had something to do with it.

I try and write something each evening, sitting in bed with an exercise book and a pen (five on the bedside table, but only one apparently works!). The first few will be about things that have happened during the day and what is happening outside my window now - rain, heat, etc.

Then my mind wanders and I let it go where i will. Sometimes it refuses to go any further. Oh well. Sometimes it rambles all over the place, through time, across the world. If nothing much is happening I go back through the book and find something that I like but which hasn't succeeded and have another go, or three or four.

"Genius is 1 pecent inspiration and 99 percent perspiration": Thomas Edison.

And ain't that the truth?
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: G.R. LeBlanc on January 29, 2011, 01:51:02 PM
Beyond being perhaps some kind of electrochemical reaction, doesn't it seem reasonable to think that imagination is rooted in experience -- fed by everything we've experienced through any of the five senses as well as through the intellect?  Does that not make what we create "real" at some level?  Or does only physical experience count?

Gisele, maybe that is one of the tests -- does the haiku, whatever its origin, feel "real" to the reader?  It may take more skill to make a "desk-ku" seem real, but if it does seem so, if it has what in fiction we call "verisimilitude", then it works, IMHO.

Cat, I think it is quite reasonable to think that all imagination is rooted in experience of some sort. It truly is a fascinating subject. And I agree on what you said here about the "desk-ku" as well. :)

And Gael, I also agree that we are all part of nature and that it is in our nature to imagine. Unfortunately, once we become adults, many of us stop using our imagination. I think the world would be a much happier place if more people used their imagination and creativity as well. 

Sandra and Don, I also loved reading your posts!

This has been a great thread, everyone! Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts.

And yes, I'm addicted to exclamation points and smileys.  ;)

Gisele
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: AlanSummers on January 29, 2011, 02:05:01 PM
I'm all for a rich imagination, in fact I'm relying on it for my children's novel which is part social realism and part fantasy (or magic realism). ;-)

A long time I also did research on lucid dreaming for a book plot but dropped it after it got too dangerous. 

Imagination is fine as we need it, and sure we can couple it to the haiku train, because we'll avoid drab straight reporting, and add a little magic.

My only concern is that I'm not so sure imagination is actual experience in a concrete sense.  People have imagined flying when in actual fact they've stepped off a tall building.  Sorry about the two sentences both having sand and cement in common. ;-)

When I've been going back on my haiku, while collating them, I can remember each day I wrote those haiku, even the ones back when I started in 1994.

I'm honestly not sure I could do that if I made them up from imagination.  I suppose because everything else is  written from imagination, even non-fiction, and newspaper accounts, and not just gossip features, that I kinda like my own haiku to have direct physical experience inserted into them.

That's not to say I don't mind adding a little imagination, if it's clear on that, and I'll read other's that are only imagination.

Going back to the lucid dreaming, this didn't just happen at night and early morning, but started to invade my perception during the afternoons.  I could tell it wouldn't be long before it took over completely.  That's the danger of researching into, and writing, a novel. And not the first time I got into trouble researching, and writing a novel. ;-)

Alan
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: Don Baird on January 29, 2011, 06:35:44 PM
In the end, I believe it's incredibly important that we protect the integrity of haiku - it's genre as a whole. It's commensurate in importance that we discover our haiku voices, our haiku selves, and write from intention and integrity combined.  Haiku is an experiential genre.  First, the hajin experiences something:  secondly, he/she composes a haiku to share that experience in a haiku way. 

I couldn't agree more with your thoughts of concrete memories and what they mean to you later on down the road of life.  They're real:  they're yours!  It's as you mention, concrete! 

Regarding:  "Where does your inspiration come from"?  My thoughts:  from rocks, to birds, to the sea, to children at play, kites, snails, frogs, neighbors with snow on their hats, ants and on and on.  We live in an Eden of sorts and inspiration is everywhere.  I think it's harder to find the realm of "non-inspiration" than to find the realm of inspiration.  It's right under our feet ... and just over our heads.  It's in a bathtub or a shower ... or under the moon.  Inspiration is everywhere:  we just have to keep our antennas clear and our egos at peace to tap into it.

Don

Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: G.R. LeBlanc on January 30, 2011, 09:10:58 AM
My only concern is that I'm not so sure imagination is actual experience in a concrete sense.  People have imagined flying when in actual fact they've stepped off a tall building.  Sorry about the two sentences both having sand and cement in common. ;-)

Yes, I know what you mean. I guess I wouldn't say that it is actual concrete experience so much as an amalgamation of things seen, heard, and experienced? Our subconscious combines all these things together and then we perceive it as imagination, when in reality all things stem from something we experienced at some point in our life.

Even the thought of flying isn't totally fabricated. We've all seen birds fly. It exists.

I think this is where most fiction stories come from even though the writer is probably not aware of it.

I've done this myself, taken as step back and analyzed all my fiction novels and realized that I had one major theme running in almost every one. Most of my stories at the core are basically the same, and they stem from the experiences I've had during my life.

Even dreams are not totally fabricated. They come from our subconscious and are all mired in some form of reality. But here, I think the lines between thought and imagination overlap somewhat.

Also, from a quantum mechanics perception it might be more accurate to say that all concrete experience stems from thought/imagination? Thoughts do vibrate and are real; this has been scientifically proven. They affect our reality. Global consciousness affects our reality.

People imagined of going to the moon, and it became a reality, so who's to say that all those thoughts aren't "real"? Who's to say that the thoughts aren't more real than reality as we know it?

This comes to mind:

I dreamed I was a butterfly, flitting around in the sky; then I awoke. Now I wonder: Am I a man who dreamt of being a butterfly, or am I a butterfly dreaming that I am a man? ~~Chuang Tzu

I think everything is intertwined...and I am going off topic. lol. Sorry. I love talking about this kind of stuff. :)

But yes, I know what you mean about wanting your haiku to come from direct physical experience. I do as well--I'm just saying I'm not against letting thought/imagination step in at times. :)

Oh, and on the lucid dreaming, I know someone who dabbled in that before and had a very bad experience as well. Same thing happened to him and it came to a point that he couldn't turn it off and felt like he was caught in a nightmare. It really, REALLY freaked him out.  :o
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: AlanSummers on January 30, 2011, 11:44:25 AM
Hi Gisele,

All good points, and yes everything is interconnected, and everything we experience is maya anyway. ;-)  Although it's hard to have root canal work and still think everything is illusion, thankfully mine two hours root canal work was so relaxing I dozed off at times, and just stopped myself snoring.  A very successful operation and I got to catch up on lost sleep (only local anaesthetic was used, no sleep induced stuff). ;-)

I wanted to be quite firm about the concrete experience side of things because there was that famous or infamous attempt by someone to get a haiku published where he was in a cage with a lion in one submission, and with a black panther (animal) in another haiku submission.  Now that's desk-ku! ;-)  It was just plain silly, and there was no attempt at writing well, or using it as metaphor, or in a gendai manner.  It was just sensationalising his life and expecting everyone to be equally excited.

Writers do keep dream journals and they are very useful by the way. 

re lucid dreaming, it's a shame he didn't get out faster.  There was a very chilling documentary on British TV that coincided with my attempting my first draft, it helped to make my mind up to let it go. ;-)

Alan
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: G.R. LeBlanc on January 30, 2011, 04:35:25 PM
I wanted to be quite firm about the concrete experience side of things because there was that famous or infamous attempt by someone to get a haiku published where he was in a cage with a lion in one submission, and with a black panther (animal) in another haiku submission.  Now that's desk-ku! ;-)  It was just plain silly, and there was no attempt at writing well, or using it as metaphor, or in a gendai manner.  It was just sensationalising his life and expecting everyone to be equally excited.

Hi Alan,

Oh, yes, that is definitely desk-ku! LOL! And I totally agree with the point you were trying to make. Not all haiku are created equally. ;)

And ouch on the root canal! Glad you got through it okay. The dentist office is probably my least favorite place to be.  :-\

And yes, on the lucid dreaming, or it might have been astral projection--I think they are quite similar and one can probably be confused with the other? I think a lucid dream can result in an out of body experience? Anyhow, it's freaky stuff. I've always had an interest in it but I'm too chicken to try.

Gisele
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: G.R. LeBlanc on January 30, 2011, 04:42:05 PM
In the end, I believe it's incredibaly important that we protect the integrity of haiku - it's genre as a whole. It's commensurate in importance that we discover our haiku voices, our haiku selves, and write from intention and integrity combined.  Haiku is an experiential genre.  First, the hajin experiences something:  secondly, he/she composes a haiku to share that experience in a haiku way.

Don, very well said! Although I have to add that I consider imagining something vividly as an "experience". ;)  I also love what you said about where you get your inspiration. I think I need to observe the world around me more because some days I just can't seem to find any haiku-worthy moments. I'm sure I'm missing a lot of them because I know that they are everywhere.

Gisele :)
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: AlanSummers on January 30, 2011, 05:34:55 PM
Hi Gisele,

Actually the root canal work was incredibly relaxing throughout.  I think the mouth grip was pretty cool, and I did have a great rest for those hours. ;-)

Whether astral projection has anything to do with lucid dreaming, I don't know, but it wasn't practical to carry on with it as I had a responsible demanding job to do. ;-)

re protecting the haiku integrity, I don't know, I feel the 'establishment' could take it away and own it if they wanted.  I remember David Cobb saying something that the Poetry establishment do that very easily.

We just do what we do, and we'll enjoy it far more than any controlling parties. ;-)

Alan
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: David Caruso on February 09, 2011, 05:41:17 PM
I keep my eyes and ears open like a retired detective who still looks for clues to the one unsolved case that haunts him.  Sometimes they way a person walks down the street inspires me.  Sometimes it's the sudden call of a bird.  An overheard conversation.  I'm inspired by reading as well.  I often come across a word that begs to be used. 

David Caruso 
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: Mary Stevens on February 09, 2011, 06:59:41 PM
Don wrote:
Quote
Regarding:  "Where does your inspiration come from"? (. . . .) We live in an Eden of sorts and inspiration is everywhere.  I think it's harder to find the realm of "non-inspiration" than to find the realm of inspiration. (. . . .) Inspiration is everywhere:  we just have to keep our antennas clear and our egos at peace to tap into it.

Thank you, thank you, Don. Your words inspire me. My greatest aspiration is to get out of my own way when writing haiku. Thanks for the reminder that the number of inspiring events and beings are greater than me, if I just change the channel.

David wrote:
Quote
I often come across a word that begs to be used.

Fascinating!

Mary
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: Mary Stevens on February 09, 2011, 07:16:08 PM
Someone mentioned dreams as inspiration for haiku. Do you all ever write haiku based on dreams?

I generally don't because my dreams are so often surrealistic, and I find it hard to relate to the few surrealistic haiku I've read. No one would understand them but me. On my birthday recently, I dreamed I was being fitted for a kimono! While I believe kimono are generally one-size-fits-all (except for sumo wrestlers), I was happy all day. A pretty, new outfit! There was also a healing component to the dream, which I interpreted as auspicious. I wrote a haiku to honor the dream.

Mary
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: Adelaide on February 09, 2011, 09:29:20 PM
I write a haiku every day and have been doing so for years.  Some come quickly, inspired by something seen, heard, tasted, felt, touched or remembered.  Others have required a quiet moment (make that several moments) of letting my mind wander and remember events of the day and the experiences of the day.  Not all my daily haiku are good haiku, but I keep them in a notebook to be revised later. If I waited for that illusive "haiku moment" I doubt if I would have written as many haiku as I have.

Adelaide
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: chibi575 on June 25, 2011, 08:34:46 AM
all poetry: bemusement

all poetry: be-MUSE-ment

ciao...
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: Snow Leopard on April 25, 2012, 11:29:34 PM
Hi,

I've just realized that this topic and another about username (which I found quite engaging and pertinent to writing) are old posts. I hope it's okay to reply to these old posts.

In answer to the question : Where does your inspiration come from? I would have to say people. On the road, at work, in the market/shops, everywhere. Observing people helps me to tune into and appreciate the unexpected turns and links that nature provides almost as a parallel but different experience. Most of my so-called 'moment' in haiku come from this people/nature interplay. Often nature seems to mirror, contrast with, even contradict and put into context human experiences  with our prejudice, ignorance, insecurities and also aspirations of beauty and contentment.


Snow leopard
Title: Re: Where does your inspiration come from?
Post by: whitedove on June 17, 2012, 11:41:28 AM
I find your choice of topic very interesting, and I have enjoyed reading the comments of those who have responded to it.  Without actually intending to do so, I find myself living the way of haiku in a way.  As I go through my day, I'm relaxed yet alert to special moments that seems to have an expanded sense of time, something that arrests my attention or sometimes something that transports me to another place or time.  These everyday experiences are one source of inspiration for me, but there are several others.  I keep haiku journals.  In them, I record haiku available to me on the internet, comments from essays about haiku and my own responses to work I'm encountering.  I also collect haiku philosophies when I find the work of poets who express what they believe to be the heart or the essence of haiku.  I love reading haiku.  Often, I draw inspiration from my favorite haiku poets and their poems.  This week, I am reading the international saijiki by the late William Higginson, Haiku World.  As I read his season words and phases for summer, I'm combining my own experiences with his seasonal references to make new poems.  Sometimes I find EL haiku can become flat or formulaic.  When I need to recharge my creative batteries, I turn to Japanese translations for energy and creative spirit. I recently encountered work by the Gendai poets, and I've been experimenting with using fantastic images in some of my haiku.  I've been reading haiku for quite sometime, but writing for only the last few years.  When it comes to looking for inspiration, I'm still on a journey.  The latest leg of my journey has lead me here.  Thanks for sharing your valuable experiences and insights. Rebecca Drouilhet