Home Again Dancing a Haiku?
Thanks to poet Emily Wall and the Skagway writers symposium last week, I'm learning to write haikus. You know, those short poems with typically-- and best to begin with this form-- three lines of five, seven, and five syllables each that you compose by counting on your fingers while tapping the beat? She said it is best to begin with two lines of images, and add a twist-- a thought, an idea, a question, or even a unexpected image in the final line. She said haiku writing can become a meditation, and the start of a good writer-ly habit or practice. So, naturally I decided to write one everyday for a year, and this morning I spent three hours composing my first one, and no, it is not a Pulitzer Prize winner. Heck, I won't even publish it here, and I share just about everything. It's a practice. Breathe. Think. Compose. Count. Write. Re-Write. Begin again.
Here are two images of Skagway's steel wave barrier that I am struggling with because Haines is going to build one of these-- only longer, about twice as long I think-- across Portage Cove from the breakwater to within a few hundred feet of the cruise ship dock.
Can you conclude the haiku of these two images with a five syllable thought?
At the conference we also learned that writers have an obligation to reveal the truth of things-- and often that involves the fundamental goodness of people in spite of what's usually in the headlines. Reporter Karen Garcia from the Chilkat Valley News wrote a terrific, kind, and compassionate story about Haines' own transgender teen last week, that made me proud to live here. The CVN isn't on-line except to subscribers, but the radio station, KHNS, is and followed the story up with our girl, her name is Ice, competing at the state track meet, and the attention she drew and how it was handled.
Also this week, the summer library programs are in full swing, T-ball has begun, there are the First Friday happenings with all kinds of fun events downtown from 5-7, and you can sign up your child (or grandchild) for Lynn Canal Community Players summer youth theater conservatory by calling Annette at 766-2708 and earn a discount if you do it before June 8. The program begins June 30. You may want to take a few bike rides too-- the annual Kluane to Chilkat bike relay is June 18.