Haiku fragment and phrase


“First and foremost, and certainly the guideline which I have consciously or unconsciously followed the longest, is the one that a haiku must be divided into two parts. This is the positive side of the rule that haiku should not be a run-on sentence. There needs to be a syntactical break dividing the ku into two parts…

For the purposes of this discussion, I would like to call the shorter portion, the fragment and the longer portion, or rest of the poem, the phrase.”   Jane Reichhold

prompt:   http://chevrefeuillescarpediem.blogspot.com.au/2017/05/carpe-diem-universal-jane-17-fragment.html

Seeking ‘Ma’

Despite spammers hijacking my blog last night and filling the comment threads with gibberish and despite the current threat of the global cyber attack I am still utterly addicted to online research.   When  the artist and haiku poet, Belinda Broughton commented on my last post – ‘Ma’, the Japanese aesthetic of space, is similar to the ‘Buddhist emptiness’ that you’re referring to, isn’t it? I call it ‘dreaming room’ – I was off on another binge.

In an article in the online magazine Rice Paper by Colleen Lanki I read –

Ma is a Japanese aesthetic principle meaning “emptiness” or “absence.”  It is the space between objects, the silence between sounds, or the stillness between movements.  The term describes both time and space, and is much more than a “lack” of something.  The emptiness is, in fact, a palpable entity.

Simply put, ma is the aesthetic of space-time.’     https://ricepapermagazine.ca/2013/02/%E9%96%93-an-aesthetic-of-space-time/

In a Kyoto Journal article by Gunter Nitschke  I read –

‘Many waka and haiku poems begin with a phrase that employs ma to paint the atmosphere of energy of the setting.   For example –

木の間 (ko-no-ma) Among trees (literally: place/time/mood of trees)’  Kyoto Journal – ma

Tracking down what Belinda meant by ‘dreaming room’ I discovered an essay on writing haiku by Denis Garrison https://denisgarrison.wordpress.com/2015/02/16/dreaming-room-an-editorial-essay/   He writes – ‘By “dreaming room,” I mean some empty space inside the poem which the reader can fill with his personal experience, from his unique social context.’

Reading these articles I had my own ‘aha ‘ moment  –


prompt – https://haikuhorizons.wordpress.com/2017/05/14/haiku-horizons-prompt-road/

Lines of flight

Looking through the archives of ‘Art and Life’ for a poem I know is hiding there somewhere I came across this one.  All week in this neighbourhood my eyes have been reverberating with the sound of ride on lawn movers, chain saws, hedge trimmers and brush cutters  – the burbs in Oz!     Today seems like as a good as any to reblog this …

… A line of flight (French: ligne de fuite) is a concept developed by Gilles Deleuze and used extensively in his work with Félix Guattari. Translator Brian Massumi notes that in French, “Fuite covers not only the act of fleeing or eluding but also flowing, leaking, and disappearing into the distance (the vanishing point in a painting is a point de fuite). It has no relation to flying.”[1]     Wikipedia – line of flight


   Sometimes I long to follow

       a personally delineated line of flight.

       Not so much flying out of sight

               but disappearing beyond the vanishing point

       to a destination yet to be defined.

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DSCN0486   Walking alone by the lake I see the grey heron standing so perfectly still my heart either leaps in joy or stops for an instant, I am not sure which.

from – http://www.whats-your-sign.com/meaning-of-the-heron.html

The meaning of the heron deals with being comfortable in spaces that are neither here, nor there. It prefers hunting at twilight, which is a symbolic and magical time of ‘in-between’. The heron will have one foot on land, and one foot in the water – this action has been recognized by ancient cultures as a sign of liminality – of crossing into the a space that is neither here, nor there.


So often these days I feel like I am floating between one reality and another.   Out in the world I see the busy people rushing about.  Sometimes I rush too and get caught up in the worries and the fears.  The grey streets, the grey faces, the wind like a torrent of grey air sweeping down from grey sky –

I turn away then and walk alone beneath trees.  I see the way the branches stretch out against the dove grey sky and the leaves hang in slate grey ikebana arrangements of exquisite understated beauty.

This morning on the radio I heard a song I didn’t know.  “The soul got out of the memory box,” the woman sung.   “Ah that explains it,” I thought.   “My soul’s gotten out of the memory box and beats now in synch with my heart.   I am neither here nor there but somewhere in between.”

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prompt – https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/gray/

The enchanted forest


Beyond the road side carpark a long flight of steps wound down a cliff face.   At the bottom an earthen path led me into a dark forest.   The guidebook told me the trees were ancient Moonah trees.


The path was damp beneath my feet and all sounds were muffled.   I was aware of an ancient primordial energy that was far stronger than my worldly worries.   A sense of enchantment crept over me.DSCN8803-02

As I ventured deeper into the forest moisture dripped from the tangled trees.


Contorted tree roots twisted in and around rocky mounds.  The magic of fae gathered in the secluded crevices and I felt the presence of elemental beings peeping out from the shadows.


On and on I wandered.   I felt utterly immersed in the mystery.   The feeling of enchantment was so strong I began to think I could wander here forever and never find my back home.   I took photo after photo.  Focusing on the mechanics of photography grounded me.

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Deep in the forest the light was dim.  The veils between the worlds thinned and I felt I had stepped out of time.   It was then that I came across a clearing where other visitors had built small cairns.   I gathered some rocks and made my own cairn as a offering to the deep forest magic.


The way became lighter after that and it wasn’t long before the vegetation changed.   I had a sense that I was leaving the forest and returning to the world I knew.   The problems that had bought me there no longer seemed so pressing.  Simple solutions presented themselves to me as the path began to climb back up towards the road.


prompt – https://colleenchesebro.com/2017/04/18/colleens-weekly-poetry-challenge-30-wish-magic-2-birthday/





Self doubt

Searching through old blog posts I wade through layers of crap to find posts I don’t remember writing that actually say something interesting.

self doubt

While reading a book on Basho  –     Basho – The Complete Haiku by Jane Reichhold –   this paragraph jumped out at me:_

‘Often, as a haiku writer’s understanding and experience with the form grows and changes, he will return to previously written poems and revise them – as did Basho.   It is vital to remember that a poet writes a poem with all the knowledge and skills available to him at that moment.   With more study, wider reading, and deeper understanding, the poem would evolve, but we can still value the inspiration and capabilities under which it was written.’