Sunday, August 26, 2012

Haiku à la Kerouac

The American Haiku is not exactly the Japanese
Haiku. The Japanese Haiku is strictly disciplined
to seventeen syllables but since the language
structure is different I don't think American
Haikus (short three-line poems intended to be
completely packed with Void of Whole) should worry
about syllables because American speech is
something again...bursting to pop.

Above all, a Haiku must be very simple and free
of all poetic trickery and make a little picture
and yet be as airy and graceful as a Vivaldi

- Jack Kerouac

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

after 40 years
can’t see her
for all the shadows

blue pot holder
red light on the stove
time for breakfast

shuffle of sandals
our neighbor
surveys the building

the taste of coffee
after four oreos
dark and honest

the gauntlet of outheld hands
cadging money replaced
with giant chess pieces

am I still working?
I am always working
as little as possible

funny little noises
coming from a cat
in a fetal position

the painters are gone
the movement now
is air and light

smack smack smack
the cat’s tongue
busy in his food

tic tacs and chocolates
flashlight and onion
share a bamboo tray

the gleam of knobs
make modest addendums
of kitchen light

bang! door slams
clump clump clump clump: K
home from Machu Picchu

a deviant galaxy
of spilled sugar
edges the demitasse

voices, clatter of metal
groan of a bus, buffet
of coffeehouse sounds

No comments: