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Haiku and How to Read

It’s curious going through a thick pad of haiku in journals and without reading the names, 2 poems called out to me by people I was already fond of. The individuality comes out in so few syllables, and the perspective on the world that clicks is still there, even remotely. Interesting.

Poetry matters more when you care about the person making it.

Two others got third reads because they are people I care about. Looking at the poem and their known parts of life, with more empathy than before I knew whose it was.

We need that in reading. If a person puts their heart out there, risks some show of self, why categorize it first a poem, not poem, quality of writing. It is something from the person. Even if the creation is imaginative fiction like Norman Rockwell feeling the ugly so making what he wanted to see, even if the creation is quaint attempts at wildly chaotic from a safe ordered position.

There’s the reader in the perceiving. There’s the writer in the perceived.

As much as I try to make a gap between myself and “what I produce”, the model is faulty. The Buddhist insistence of removing ego and that one can’t be hurt if one one has non-attachment, the Christian idea that one is disconnected, in the world but not of the world, separate from the body, the workshop idea that there is divide between created and creator. They are all binary ideas.

reading The Truth About Stories: A Native Narrative by Thomas King (CBC Massey Lectures Series, Anansi Press, 2003) has me pondering the underlying givens.

What would a collaborative model that doesn’t put self against self, self-against other, other against self look like?

What is reading as a collaborative, community act?

Conversational acceptance, curiosity, kind questioning into, less rule-based, more exploring for truths or exploring for its own sake?

 

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Categories: Mulling.

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