Thursday, July 14, 2011

An older haibun

A haibun is a hybrid form that consists of prose passages written in a haiku-influenced style, with one or more haiku included as well. When it's done well, the prose not only provides context for the haiku, but also tempers the sharp concentration of the haiku. Anyone who has read many haiku in one sitting knows how quickly you can lose the focus necessary to really dig into each one. In haibun, there is more room for the writer to play with a broader dynamic range. And there is some relief for the reader from the constant tight focus required by haiku served straight-up.

The best place I know of to sample current haibun is contemporary haibun online, edited by Bruce Ross, Jim Kacian, and Ken Jones -- all three great practitioners themselves.

I haven't written many haibun yet, but here's one from a couple years ago. I have some hesitations about it, but I'll save those for another time.

January 20th, 2009 (Inauguration Day)

We don't often get snow in central North Carolina. Even less often is it this heavy. The sound of it falling in the woods outside is a steady static. The silence when it ends is palpable, felt deeply in your ears and in your temples. The physical world has remade itself, undeniable again for a while.

gray mare


a patch




No comments:

Post a Comment