Posts Tagged ‘haiku’

in gusting wind
the coloured leaves
swirl away

on every lawn
rests a patchwork
of gold and red

fall … fade … die
all autumn leaves
reach the same end

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When I introduced my blog in 2011, I hoped to publish 50 posts before I ran out of ideas. What has carried me far past that goal is the development of a sketch book: crammed today with new ideas, topics, websites, scraps of poetry, and nature photos galore. It has helped me reach post 200 which features the art of photo/poetry.

The Japanese art form of Haiga, is one in which a short poem is accompanied by an image. The art lies in the relationship between the two. The image is not an illustration of the poem, nor is the poem a caption for the image. Each should stand alone, yet in juxtaposition the two must resonate to create a deeper and more complex meaning.

Traditionally haiga included two parts: an ink brush image (sumi-e), and a haiku, hand-lettered on the same paper. Today the development of digital imagery and the internet have allowed haiga to expand into new realms. Drawings or paintings are now scanned and presented with little or no adjustment, or they are manipulated in Photoshop and other software until the original is nearly unrecognizable. Photographs are often used as a starting point, or a purely digital image is created from scratch. The poem can be hand-lettered, scanned and pasted on the image, or applied directly over the image using the software’s font capability.

Below is a gallery of  my new and old selected haiga images. You may even decide to play with photo/poetry yourself, and I’d enjoy receiving samples of your work. Send your images to:  km3highnote@bigpond.com 

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these leaves
once breathed sunlight and rain
into life-giving oxygen

here they rest
fallen, scattered, and torn
these leaves

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as spring arrives
our hearts expand
like peach blossoms

spring sings
as daisies awaken
to a warm sun

flaming tree –
nature’s spring paintbox
a red dazzler


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Beautiful spring lends itself perfectly to the medium of haiga, (photo/poetry). Today we have an opportunity to take digital photos and to add a text directly to this image. The art of haiga lies in the subtle relationship of the two elements. The photo, drawing or painting should not be an illustration of the text, nor is the text or short poem a caption for the picture. Each element should stand alone, yet the two must resonate to add a deeper and more complex meaning to the total work.

Following are four more examples. Hopefully one or more of these will fulfil the goal of a well-composed haiga. Your comments regarding these are always appreciated.

Sky rockets haiga

Winter sun daisy haiga



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Seed pearls front cover

‘Seed Pearls’ presents my collection of short Japanese verse forms. Within this little book are examples of the three line haiku, (the experience of nature or the seasons), the three line senryu, (human foibles spiced with humour) and the five line tanka, (dating back 1200 years, its content is passionate and descriptive, the perfect vehicle for expressions of love and loss).

Many themes are explored in this chap book and the messages can be deeply felt when reflected upon—a mindful meditation of sorts.

‘Seed Pearls’ can be purchased through Amazon and retails for $0.99 USD and in Australia from Amazon.com.au. Go to the Kindle store then type in, Seed Pearls. The book retails for $1.43 AUD.

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Photo/Poetry Reflections

First spring bloom 1

from its wintery bed –
first spring hatchling

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Starry Night, Vincent van Gogh, (1889) oil on canvas
Image courtesy of the Museum of Modern Art, New York

who can count the stars
gleaming on night’s dark curtain
in the infinite shining heavens

        “This morning I saw the country from my window a long time before sunrise, with nothing but the North Star, which looked very big.” Van Gogh penned these lines to his brother, from Saint Remy in France. After gazing at the vision, van Gogh later produced this painting. Rooted in his imagination and memory, Starry Night—with its thick sweeping brushstrokes and swirling energy—embodies the inner and subjective expression of the artist’s response to nature.

During my early years in Minnesota, I was also fascinated by the night sky. Its stately procession of constellations circled through the year beneath the North Star – that fixed point located at the top of the heavens. The winter skyscape was enriched by the presence of the Big and Little Dippers, the mighty hunter Orion, his faithful dog, Sirius, at his feet, Taurus the bull, and the exquisite open star cluster of the Pleiades. Imagine my surprise when after moving to Australia, it was the summer sky that held these heavenly wonders, and all the familiar constellations now appeared upside down.

Stars and Galaxies, image courtesy of NASA

Writers and musicians also draw inspiration from the vastness and beauty of the night sky. The 19th century Irish composer, John Field, first wrote a peaceful and lyrical set of piano solos that he entitled, Nocturnes. In the following generation, these night songs reached their culmination in the hands of Chopin. All of this evocative music is enjoyed as pianists continue to play these Nocturnes along with the many others that are still being written. Relax and dream of the night as Irish pianist, John O’Conor, performs John Field’s, Nocturne Number 1 in E Flat.

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life without love
is like a vine
without flowers or fruit

It’s time for me to take another blog break
and my next post will appear on June 19th.
In the meantime, enjoy happy blogging and writing.

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clings to the hand
that gives roses


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