Tuesday, September 28, 2010
I use this sleepy blog to report on my poetry activity; my two main interests are haiku and actualism. Actualism is itself sleepy; I'm not sure anyone has really taken up the flag and carried it, and I am really not ready, having a more-than-full-time job and eight children. I did run across the bio of one of my favorite actualists, Dave Morice, and I'd like to remember him here, not only because of all the cool poetry stuff he did (writing poems across bridges, etc.), but also because of the costumes he wore as Dr. Alphabet, which, in their own way, did more to promote poetry than anyone I've ever seen. Now his name came up in the course of a conversation about promotion, self-promotion, etc., but, poetry never needed more of this than it does now. Nevertheless, I am still dressing in plain clothes myself. Perhaps when I retire, I'll wear a top hat, and promote something or other.
On the haiku front I was pressured to introduce myself in my favorite e-mail haiku list and did. I told about my haiku project and how I use links, and I mentioned two things I was mulling over; both started discussion threads that lasted a while and were ultimately resolved. I listen in carefully to this list but many of my 600 standing e-mails come from there and are waiting to be processed, either here or at the haiku site, as they have links of active haiku writers and web-publishers. My first question involved the discussion of things printed on that list itself; it's really more of a private conversation, so I can't really repeat poems there, and I pointed that out. Second, was my eternal mulling over the benefits and drawbacks of 5-7-5 and how the haiku community itself, as personified by the people on that list, seemed to have universally rejected it. I however still find myself stuck to it at least for the purposes of finishing a large project that is all in 5-7-5; for a large collection, uniform syllable structure (whatever the one chosen) can be useful for unity's sake alone. The benefits and drawbacks of 5-7-5 are a recurring topic but one poster actually put into a poem the idea that discussion of its merits was like fingernails on a chalkboard. In other words, many are so beyond it they don't even want to talk about it.
I slog along, and produce a few poems a day, or maybe 5-19 a week, but this is only when times are good; when there are personal crises, all poetry goes out the window. I write a lot of prose on my personal blog but have done nothing to collate my short stories or my autobiography into concrete, sellable form. Same with my haiku. It could conceivably amount to something but at the moment is mostly an escape from the grinding overextension of my abilities in my daily life; it's like an austere, spare room that I seek refuge in, if only for a moment.
Visit me though; I'm not averse to comments. Do not take offense at the google ads here; they've been here for centuries, and never once have drawn a click, outside maybe my own.