Haiku & Magical Implantation

Have you seen the meme floating around facebook of how words are magic? How a few sounds we make with our mouths can create images in others’ minds?

13007221_1739508729604231_8531605147468396796_n

To me, nothing does this better than a haiku. So few words that make such a complete picture. I’m a purist when it comes to haiku (and pizza. Only pepperoni and cheese will do. If I get fancy with the sauces and the toppings, its good, but it just doesn’t satisfy that pizza craving. You feel me? But I digress…). Haiku are now accepted in all syllabic form, with greater flexibility of subject and style. And that’s fine. But for me, I like traditional. I like the restraint, the magic created from the rigidity. What does that say about me? Umm…

So what is a traditional haiku?

First, the structure. Three lines 5-7-5 The first line needs to have five syllables, and so on.

Second, the subject. A traditional haiku is usually about nature.

Third, the images. It includes a word or phrase called the kigo which symbolizes or implies a season (usually using nature themes). Then there’s also the kireji (which is my favorite, I have no idea why? Maybe because I adore juxtapositions?) which is a cutting word that resonates and causes the poem to end reflectively. Wikipedia calls it “a kind of verbal punctuation mark which signals the moment of separation and colours the manner in which the juxtaposed elements are related.” Isn’t that lovely? Here are more random fun facts about haiku.

And here’s my haiku that I’m excited to have published in this month’s issue of Haiku Journal.

13450233_1757387377816366_1432801627996517216_n

Blue filters through oak

leaves, catching the green on fire

like copper burning

 

My kigo is the oak leaves, green, implying spring or early summer, while my kireji is the juxtaposition between the images of new, fresh leaves and burning copper.

This one didn’t make it into the journal but it’s my absolute favorite so I want to share it with you guys:

The red snapdragon

growls at the chirping cricket:

No one can hear me!

There are many beautiful poems in the latest issue of Haiku Journal and they have them online for your viewing pleasure here. Mine is in Issue #44. They don’t charge reading fees so why don’t you submit one too?

So how do you feel about haiku? Are you a traditionalist or do you embrace the modern form? Tell me what you think about mine or comment with your own haiku. And then submit it to the journal and you could be as awesome as me and take bookshelfies with your copy, hahaha.

Advertisements

Miss Bookshelf USA

Last night was the Miss USA pageant. I didn’t watch it since I was catching up on Outlander but all the chatter about it on social media got me thinking…

How much fun would it be if I held a bookish pageant of sorts?! Miss Bookshelf USA

(Oh, you didn’t realize I’m a big dork? When it comes to books and random fun facts, then yes. Yes, I am.)

I read twenty-one books last year that I reviewed on Goodreads (I realize that’s not a lot but when you factor in the amount of picture books I read to my kids and manuscripts I beta read, my plate is full.) You can find the complete list here.

Sgbl7JW3

These are some of my Miss Bookshelf USA delegates.

After much deliberation, (i.e. rereading random chapters, getting lost in stories until I abruptly recall why I’m in here) here are my Top Ten Delegates in no particular order:

Laura McNeill’s CENTER OF GRAVITY

Maria Semple’s WHERE’D YOU GO, BERNADETTE

Marissa Meyer’s SCARLET

Carrie Dalby’s FORTITUDE

Yuval Noah Harari’s SAPIENS: A BRIEF HISTORY OF HUMANKIND

Carol Goodman’s BLYTHEWOOD

Jane Nickerson’s THE MIRK AND MIDNIGHT HOUR

John Green’s THE FAULT IN OUT STARS

Maggie Stiefvater’s THE DREAM THIEVES

Laini Taylor’s DAYS OF BLOOD & STARLIGHT and DREAMS OF GODS & MONSTERS

As you can see, a pretty eclectic mix. Be sure to check out my Goodreads reviews to see why they made it on such a prestigious list (I know, I snorted at that too).

Without further ado, or weird commercials…

I0J29Pc8

Miss Amity goes to FORTITUDE! Seriously, Claire O’Farrell is one of the nicest characters out there.

Miss Photogenic goes to THE MIRK AND MIDNIGHT HOUR! Gorgeous cover, absolutely brimming with atmosphere.

And Mr Style goes to SAPIENS: A BRIEF HISTORY OF HUMANKIND! Yes, it’s an odd award for nonfiction, but it’s written so well and engaging. I mean, I chortled. Who chortles while reading nonfiction??

Second runner up is THE DREAM THIEVES with a tie for first runner up because there’s no way I could choose between the two: DAYS OF BLOOD & STARLIGHT and DREAMS OF GODS & MONSTERS!

zmpU66uw

And now… the moment you’ve all been waiting for…

Miss Bookshelf USA is BLYTHEWOOD!!!

lWSafuw5

I was sucked into this book from the first page, as surely as if I had played a game of Go Fish in Faerie.

So what do y’all think? Did I pull a Steve Harvey? I’d love to know what your favorites are!

(Special thanks to my daughter for sharing her Rapunzel tiara)