Note: April is National Poetry Month
Last year after the lockdown began and Backstreet Gallery was closed for three and a half months, various artists began sharing through email attachments their wonderful artwork they were creating at home. I wondered what I could do as the only writer/non-artist in the group. Then it hit me that I could do some Haiku. I hadn’t done any in many years, but I had always enjoyed doing them. It is very structured with its five-seven-five syllable format. So I gave it a try.
The Covid series
My first efforts ended up being about various aspects of the pandemic—masks, gloves, Zoom meetings, staying home, and social distancing––and I was encouraged to make cards with them, which led to more cards. I loved being able to create something new.
Then nearly a year passed before I wrote another one. It was inspired by trying to get my vaccine shots. It was part of my blog post––“#280––Vaccine–Bring it on . . .” This Haiku turned out to be very simple, but said exactly what I was feeling.
About a month ago, when I was on duty at the Gallery, Floyd Bidwell, manager of Restock, stopped by to let the artists at the Gallery know about the upcoming Art Show for Earth Day at Restock. He wanted to spread the word that Restock was looking for artwork made from recycled materials. A week later, he called with more details, and I told him that I was a writer and wouldn ‘t be entering anything. Without missing a beat, he said, “So, write a poem on a used paper bag.” So, I did.
I wrote a three-stanza Haiku about recycling, and entered it in the show. After all, it was his idea! He was there, when I brought it in last Friday. He loved it! I told him that Restore could keep it after the show. He was thrilled and said he would frame it. I was very pleased.
I didn’t really write on the used Fred Meyer bag, I composed the poem on the computer and then printed on expensive cardstock, recycled from an old Florence Festival of Books poster. The back hadn’t been used and looked brand new. I then cut jagged edges all around and used a couple of the left-over pieces to frame the poem, which also showed that the paper the poem was written on was recycled. That whole experience was great fun!
Spring Glorious Spring Series
So, when the Gallery decided to do “Spring Glorious Spring” as its theme for May and to allow all Gallery artists that want to create something for spring to do so, I immediately thought of Haiku.
Last weekend, I played around with words and tweaked again and again until I came up with three, three-stanza Haiku poems to go with three cards of mine that have flowers on them. Actually, Haiku is supposed to be about nature, so these are my only Haiku truly in the tradition of Haiku.
One is about Daylilies for the card with beautiful, orange daylilies. A second is called Springtime in Florence for the card with lovely pink Rhododendron blossoms. And a third is called O.H. Hinsdale (Secret) Rhody Garden and goes with a card showing the garden filled with several blossoming rhodies.
I already had the cards for sale with blank insides. Now, I have a few of each of these with Haiku poems inside that will be for sale in May.
I woke up the other morning when the alarm went off, and I had been dreaming of writing a Haiku poem. I tell ya, Haiku has taken over my life!