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Saturday, 3 May 2008

More from my April Haiku Challenge

April having now left us, and the challenge to write a poem a day departed, I have both a feeling of profound relief and one of regret that April could not have gone on a little longer. Who am I kidding? I didn't have to stop writing. Seriously though,my grateful thanks to Sorlil at Poetry in Progress for the inspiration and for awakening me to the fact of April being Write a Poem a Day month (I might never have known!) and to Jim at The Truth About lies for the suggestion that for the second half of the month I try to break away from the 5-7-5 format. (For the earlier set see My April Haiku Challenge.)It certainly relieved the strain on the brain's musculature. Whether it has improved (or dis-improved) the quality, I am not sure. Too close to them all to judge, I will have a looksee in a month or so. And to those who didn't like my presentation last time (and I was one of them), an attempt to break up "the wall". So, for better or for worse, here is a selection:

presented this time
on a single string -
kite-flying, if you like.
With two strings, though, this tanka might
have turned a somersault.
under the bird table
pigeons gather the crumbs
that small birds drop.
even humble water cans
will form a landscape
at the touch of snow
at my approach
the larger birds
are always first away
one spring-like day
the one bee in the daffodils
prefers the one bedraggled bloom
trying to give light
by striking endless matches
- that's lightning for you!
low cloud cover
keeps the earth frost-free,
dark - and dry as desert sand!
hammer the conservatory roof
drowning out the thunder
incessant rain
this year the flame
merely smoulders
snow on the pony's blanket
and we see in his back
an echo of the distant hills
council workmen
strimming the grass verges
strim a sleepy hedgehog.
three feasting on the table
blue tit and sparrow unaware
the third one is a mouse?


Marion McCready said...

well done you! I really like the snow on the pony's blanket, wonderful! I also really like the image of lightning as striking matches.

Dave King said...

Thanks sorlil - and thanks for the inspiration to do it in the first place.

Jim Murdoch said...

I like this one best:

at my approach
the larger birds
are always first away

but I think

council workmen
strimming the grass verges
strim a sleepy hedgehog

is weakened by the two 'strims'; I'd change the second one to 'clip' besides Larkin's already covered this in The Mower

Dave King said...

Thanks for that Jim, I did know the Larkin poem, but I'm not sure about the repetition issue.

Ken Armstrong said...

I really do like the one Jim singled out and I freely confess that I might not have singled it out for myself if he had not done so. I more often find poetry I admire by having it specifically pointed out to me rather than finding it for myself. A sad reflection of something, I'm sure!

On my customary trite note - my experiences of going-to-dances was that the bigger birds stayed around longer than all the others.

And finally - just for the 'crack' (as we say over here) - I *like* the re-use of strim. :)

Jim Murdoch said...

Just to explain myself a little, I've always been in the habit when it comes to unusual words of not using the same word twice in the same sentence. I try and make sure I don't use them twice in the same paragraph. In my first novel I distinctly remember going through and looking for instances of odd words so that I didn't use them twice in the entire book!

Rachel Fox said...

My favourite bit is
'the one bee in the daffodils'
a lovely line...I like it just on its own.

As for the strimming...I tend to just check with myself that my reason for keeping the repetition is a good one. If so, keep it...if not...find something else. I like the idea of 'worry a sleepy hedgehog' or 'trim' or...so many other choices. So is your reason good?

Dave King said...

thanks for that, I never danced, but otherwise my experience did not differ from yours.
As for needing to have things pointed out, rachel fox has pointed out to me the line: "the one bee in the daffodils" which I had not appreciated for itself, having been focussed on the verse as a whole, but now realise I like it more than I knew.

Dave King said...

Many thanks for the comments. As I have just mentioned to ken, the line you singled out I had not seen except as a part of the whole. I do now, and must admit I do rather like it, so thanks especially for that.
As for the repetition, I had considered changing the second "strim", but I have no particular aversion to repetition as such. I tend to make such decisions quite subjectively, unless there are reasons of word derivation or echoes of other meanings etc. In this case I was guided purely by the sound.

Dave King said...

Thanks Jim
I do take your point, but as explained to rachel, I am quite laid-back about the issue. Obviously, there are times when it would be crying-out wrong to let the repetition stand, and others when it adds considerably to the piece. (I don't think this was either of those.)

Tommaso Gervasutti said...

I am enjoying your haikus, I feel their pace and taste for detail and soaring coming from it dear Dave, and thank you for the comment on my latest post.
Best wishes, Davide

Dave King said...

Hi Tommaso
Thanks for the feedback and the very kind comments.