summer haiku series: cancelled / postponed

Just dropping in to say that I’ve decided to withdraw from my Summer Haiku Series. Perhaps I’ll pick it up again next summer, but for now, the form feels more constricting than freeing, and since this project was self-imposed, I have the freedom and the right to abandon it. I realized quickly after starting the series that limiting myself to a topic per week inhibited the free-flowing creativity I experienced with my haiku-a-day project. It felt too academic, too restrictive; I want my writing here to feel not like a chore but a portal through which I can escape—detach from the cruelty of the world to explore fully the wildness of sentiment.

And that’s what I plan to do, what I will do. But I will do it in the form I feel most in the moment. I have the rest of my degree to abide by imposing rules. So, to the few of you who visit this online diary every now and again, you can expect more prose and longer poems, short reflections, recapitulations of memory. I might also share some photos I’ve taken, and although I’ve just spent a paragraph griping about it, a haiku or two. It was through this form, after all, that I rediscovered my longing to write not only creatively but consistently.

summer haiku series: nature

I intended for this category to be about the natural world, but somehow it morphed into a reflection on human nature.

I.
July’s sunshine blinds
Cloaks me thick like muggy fog
I melt, gleam, glisten

II.
Sensitivity
By nature consumes me whole
Alone I am free

III.  Smile
The predator hunts
The prey cowers, then defends
Don’t be a rude bitch

IV.
Two generations
Of drinkers course through my blood
Second day sober

V.
Outstretched before me
The skinny shadow beast glides
Son of the stark sun

summer haiku series: love

Pair with this album.

I.
Violet evening
In your eyes, the warmth I seek
Soul of my solstice

II.
Not a feeling but
A place, the space between you
And me: a repose

III.
Moments before sleep
In my grandparents’ side room
Cocoon of covers

IV.  Emily
She captivates me
How she lives, perceives, creates
Integral ally

V.
True intimacy
Exists not through limbs fusing
But devotion voiced

summer haiku series: identity

I.
Your long, bony nose
Like a woodpecker’s, they said
The sting that made me

II.
Secondhand clothing
I don to invoke the past
Assume former selves

III.  Caucasian (Steal)
Lacking tradition
Appropriate to belong
The rootless privilege

IV.
Two thousand fifteen
The year I poisoned myself
With drink and grave men

V. 
Mere leaves on a tree
Uniform yet specific
We are each other

summer haiku series: youth

I.
From the beginning
You and me: free, safe to be
Because of their love

II.
The smell of roses
Drifts through a weak-hinged screen door
My first memory

III.
Ripe with bright promise
Lemonade and endless play
Lawless summer days

IV. 
Since growing older
I yearn for youth’s innocence
The crimeless lilac


I’ve found this new method of composing—deliberately choosing a subject to write about instead of writing about a moment in the day, letting it come naturally—to be more difficult. It is an exercise I will continue to pursue, however. Part of combating writer’s block is writing even when you’re not inspired.

Writing about my youth made me feel sad, nostalgic, like I wasn’t quite capturing its essence. I must return to it again, refine it, explore it further; it made me who I am. But how do you capture who you are, how you were made, in a mere 17 syllables?

haiku-a-day: group 5 + future plans

Fifth and final installment of this series.

Monday, May 29
Alabaster, stiff
Spotless as copy paper
Brand new tennis shoes

Tuesday, May 30
What they call presence
Is mere immersive doing
You find through writing

Wednesday, May 31
Mid-to-late morning
Fueled by coffee, ambition
Favorite time of day


For the rest of the summer, I plan on posting a group of haiku every Sunday pertaining to a particular theme (i.e. Death, Friendship, Nature, etc.). This form of poetry has proved to be incredibly stimulating—it allows me to capture a transient experience or profound sentiment through precision and control. I feel more creative and close to my authentic, true self than I have in a long time.

haiku-a-day: group 4

Fourth installment. Pair with this song.

Thursday, May 25
History’s allure
Is that by knowing the past
We see the future

Friday, May 26 / Sister
I look up to you
Your warmth, your boundless spirit
Eternal playmate

Saturday, May 27
Peering into rocks
Insects busy and at rest
Worlds we seldom see

Sunday, May 28
During long drives home
Follow avenues of thought
Collect endless time