or leave you with that cookie cutter ending all’s right in the world?
Last night in our local writing group we discussed a haiku for twenty minutes.A traditional Japanese haiku is a three-line poem with seventeen syllables, written in a 5/7/5 syllable count. Often focusing on images from nature, haiku emphasizes simplicity, intensity, and directness of expression. Imagine that twenty minutes of animated conversation over seventeen syllables. The group sitting at the table all had different perspectives on the piece. It was a philosophical poem by a younger poet in our group, he was trying different forms to expand his poetic skills. I was very happy to see and hear what he brought to the group after all isn’t that what makes us all great in our ways.
From the time we’re born we absorb information in all manners and that data is processed and stored for future use. As we age, we see it in action and reprocess it forming new skill sets. Writing, observing, reading, talking all are essential tools in a writer’s tool basket that must be continuously honed to improve our craft.
The question last night that arose is should the author end a poem providing the reader the answer or at the very least a strong clue as to the writer’s intent. My own opinion is no, The reader should fill in the necessary information, ask questions, ponder and then formulate their own conclusion. The author is only the instrument to guide the reader in the journey. The beauty of poetry is to take the reader from the darkness and hopefully awaken beauty in the reader’s mind. That ah ah moment when the reader feels connected to the author experiencing the moment or vision. Poetry opens the mind to possibilities outside of the daily norm to me.
My question to you is what do you feel poets should do?
Provide you a window to and let you decide what you’re seeing or provide you a window and the answer.
These are a few of my personal favorites my Buson, Jess, Waters and myself I hope you enjoy:
The light of a candle
is transferred to another candle—
Written by Copyright © 2007 by Yosa Buson
my motto for life
– merit, not sympathy, wins-
my song against death.
i stroke piano’s
eighty eight mouths. each one sings
hot colors of joy
keys raise up high into bliss,
born to sing my name
whippoorwill, hawk, crow
sing madrigals for blind men.
forests blooms through each note.
my eyes: buried deep
beneath earth’s skin. my vision
begins in her womb.
darkness sounds like God
flowering from earth’s molten tomb…
writhed wind. chorded cries.
rain, flower, sea, wind
map my dark horizon. i
inhale earth’s songbook
written by Copyright © 2016 by Tyehimba Jess.
on my hand
written by Bill Waters Published in Brass Bell: A Haiku Journal
Words boldly impressed
Scribbles upon broken soul
An author’s remorse
stood strong alone at sunrise
a beacon to me.
Struggling flowers bloom thru ice
A joyous moment