Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Haiku

I read a book recently that was a rather good suspense novel, Death Match by Lincoln Child, a bit predictable, but a good ride nonetheless. However there was a piece of haiku poetry quoted in it, a piece by Kobayashi Issa, that struck me while I was reading it.
Insects on a bough
floating downriver,
still signing.

What an amazing and powerful image. As well as lovely, impactful, and serene. I can see the cicadas humming their midsummer night song as a tree branch floats lazily down the river, the heat of the summer and the cool of the water causing the songs to be more melodic than the regular hum associated with steamy nights.
I love finding little bits of beauty in unexpected places. Words have always held a strong sway over me, and poetry, good poetry mind you, can stir the senses in ways I can not replicate. Of course, poetry can be non-verbal and unwritten as well. A moment shared, a vision glimpsed, a memory unbidden, these can all be poetic and in their own right, poetry. But the written word. That holds itself separate. Haiku is so evocative, so simple, so full of the senses, it can stay with you for days. As this piece has with me.

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