A few days ago Carpe Diem Haiku Kai did an exercise on, what else, haiku: specifically form. The challenge was to stretch ourselves by doing three haiku in slightly different ways: one 3-5-3 stanza, one traditional 5-7-5, and a free form stanza. It took me a little longer than usual to get this done; I had an idea but it took several tries to get something I was pleased with. Consequently I missed the deadline but have a chained haiku that I really like.
Smoke wafts from
A burning ember
In my pipe
Enchanting dance of smoke rings
Drifting by my eyes
Lulling me into
A tranquil state of mind
Induced by rolling smoke rings
As you can see, I stayed with the guidelines using stanzas of 3-5-3, 5-7-5, and 5-6-7 for the free form ending, while, in my mind at least, chaining them into one poem. Even though I ran over the deadline, I found this exercise to be a fun and thought provoking challenge which I thoroughly enjoyed.
The weekly challenge this Sunday from Haiku Horizons gave me a bit of a challenge, as the name would imply it should I reckon. The word was “refuge” and the topic came to my mind with ease. But the haiku took some thought and a couple of attempts before I got something I was satisfied with, which is a little unusual for me; normally I have an idea and it pours out in moments but not with this one.
As some of you may know, I enjoy smoking a pipe filled with a good tobacco. It relaxes me and oftentimes enhances my thinking and creative abilities. I enjoy the rituals that go along with the hobby of being a pipe man, as well as restoring the old ones that have seen better days to like-new and useable condition again. So, I knew that my “refuge” was my pipe from the onset of the exercise.
The smoke circles up
Clearing my head as it wafts
My pipe, my refuge