Thank you to all the people who left comments on my last post. I’m beginning to come out of the state of inertia that led me to take a blogging break – not completely just yet – just peeking my head out of my hidey hole…
What drew me out was the WordPress prompt – https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/create/
I spent quite a lot of time this week attempting to create a haiku prompt site. It grew out of an online conversation with another haiku writer about the merits of Jack Kerouac’s haiku. We decided that the contemporary haiku we see online often lacks the gritty realism of Kerouac. The conversation captured my imagination and I came up with a new idea. I would create a haiku prompt site called “On the Road” that would offer prompts that (hopefully) inspired people to write haiku that spoke of the complex world we now live in – haiku that resonated with authenticity.
The idea flew well enough earlier in the week. One series of prompts would be called “On the Road” and relate to life on the road. The roads that would inspire the prompts would be both physical and metaphorical roads. The journeys the roads would lead to would be both inner and outer.
The second series of prompts would be called “Dharma Bums”. The name comes from a book Jack Kerouac wrote about exploring Buddhist ideas with the beat poet Gary Snyder while living in 1950s America. The prompts would focus on the dharma of writing haiku.
By Friday my enthusiasm for the idea was beginning to flag and it is now in limbo. I’ve set up the blog but there is a massive amount of work to do. I’m still intrigued by the idea though. In idle moments I find myself jotting down ideas. Reading haiku and haiku commentaries occupies much of my leisure time. At the same time self doubt is creeping in. I woke up this morning asking myself – is this project what I need to be doing at this time? Would it even interest others? Do I have the passion and commitment to push it?
Today is gloriously sunny and warm. After weeks of cold grey weather it is a blessing. The weather forecast for my corner of the world down here in southern Australia is for rain, rain and more rain next week. The temperature is expected to reach a high of only 14 C most days. Other days are predicted to be no warmer than 12C.
Rather than staring at the computer screen pondering whether the world needs yet another haiku prompt site I am going doing the beach for a very long walk.
Maybe the walk and next week’s appalling weather will bring me back to blogging with a clear sense of direction. Talk to you then…
Postscript: By the time I got myself ready to go out a thick sea fog had rolled in and the temperature plummeted. Rather than go and catch cold I did some more reading of commentaries about Basho and Kerouac, haiku and haibun. I got totally intimidated by all the learned experts and decided there was no way I could compete with them. The idea of creating a haiku prompt site is pretty much dead in the water now. I like some of the ideas I’ve discovered and find some of the commentaries thought provoking so I’ll probably just use them as the basis for future blog posts. That’s if I don’t decide to just crawl back into bed and sleep till next spring.