Various Projects

365 Haiku

Note: The 365 Haiku Project wrapped up in mid-October of 2013. To read commentary of the project end-results, visit the post "An Irregular Pulse," available on my web log.

In the middle of May 2010, I began a project of composing one nightly haiku as a means of ruminating on the day’s events. It serves as well for maintaining a sense of creative writing during the long, intense period of academic lectures and grading. Teaching summer college courses always floods over with excess paper work and limited personal time. By ritualistically writing one short poem, every night, I discovered a means of assuring myself moments of sanity and self-reflection. 

The poems provided a comfort and allowed a personal aspect of the day to be recorded in my notebook; likewise a brief observation or personal experience was placed in the realms of artistic levels. What resulted, often the haiku replaced my meandering style of journal entries: highlights of a busy day were often brought down to a terse, momentary, three-lined epiphany moment. 

On occasion the poems read with fractured logic—or broken fragments of thought. Utilizing the traditional seventeen syllable count oftentimes promotes a creative fragmentary language and shortens full scenes into incomplete shards. 

Honestly, some of these remain as weak constructions of sentences: factors of approaching sleep and impatience to end the day manipulate the poems’ full development. In addition to this, rarely are they reworked or shifted from their final constructions. By leaving them in a coarse outline appearance, an impulsive image emerges on the page. In the end, none of the poems have been altered or shifted from their raw state. By retaining their raw edges, what I hope to show is how a creative work in a sketched form has as much value as a polished, reworked, refined concept. Here, the verses remain closely linked to their initial “Ideal” form. They appear more instinctive, reactionary, and are not hindered by full logical rhetoric. 

What this ultimately proves to me, after a fashion, almost any personal experience can be turned into a poem—even a moment when no immediate idea emerges. The lack of inspiration can just as easily become verse as a fully well-structured thought. 

Starting with the first verse, written in May 2010—presented in August—I will post a record of the writing, sometimes with commentary—in chronological order.

  A persistent hum, 
sounding from the old floor fan,
drowns out sense of self.
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