Saturday, April 23, 2016

What is Haibun?


   Today I attended Wordspring, a writer's conference at Butte College.  I took a workshop on cross-genre writing from author Gabrielle Myers, where we looked at the intersection of poetry and prose.  17th century Japanese poet Basho combined prose with Haiku, and called it Haibun. The form includes segment of prose followed by a 17-syllable poem, which is Haiku.  It often was used to describe travel scenes and experiences.  We each gave it a whirl.  Here is mine, a travel scene from my life, that happens daily at 8am.

       Reminders start a half hour before. "Fifteen minutes!" I lie. She is coiled, cobra-like, all seventy-two pounds of her crouched at her mirror, liquid liner in her hand. I yell to be heard over  the squeak of a Youtube make-up tutorial. Fifteen minutes later I call five minutes, then "Now!"  I pass her lunch, gather homework, fill water bottle, find socks.  Now, now, now, I beg. Combat boots are zipped.

      We emerge into the morning. "Forgot something!" she sings, dashes in again. My frazzle meter rises. Too many minutes later, she climbs into the car next to me. Belts click, door closes, we are off, late again.

  Annoyed, mad with love
I glance sideways at this girl.
Who will she become?

         Tee Hee.  After writing so much about our India adventures, it feels fresh to write about something, well, ordinary and close to home.

Haibun is easy and fun... try it!  Tip: most haiku are three lines:  Five syllable-seven-syllable-five syllable.  Feel free to post yours in the comments below.