Per Diem Archive: D. Wentworth April 2014, Transcendence
Transcendence — Haiku as the in-spira-tion of the moment
Haiku, as a form, is poetry of the moment, in the moment. Often in traditional haiku with the coming together of two disparate elements a moment of clarity or instant connection, a moment of understanding, is evoked. Transcendence is that moment of clarity, an almost pre-linguistic, pre-cognitive state of revelation. Capturing such a revelation in words so it evokes a moment akin to revelation, for both the poet and the reader, is, for some, the haiku poets ultimate goal.
My instruction to poets in soliciting this month’s Per Diem selections, however, reflected none of this after-the-fact rationalization. What I wrote simply was: “The topic for the month I've chosen is 'Transcendence.' I won't be defining it; we all do that for ourselves.”
We do, indeed, and so I would never dream of holding either the poets herein chosen or their poems to the standard I describe. What I would like to think is that each of these poems, in their own way, refract the essence of what I was seeking when I put out the original call.