Haibun Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Welcome to Go Dog Go Cafe’s Haibun Wednesday!

What exactly is Haibun?

In his old age Basho, who may be credited with establishing the haiku form, undertook a long journey to the remote regions of northern Japan, fully expecting to die before completing it. He did complete the journey, and his record of it has become a classic of world literature and an example, in the broadest sense, of haibun, autobiographical poetic prose accompanied by haiku. 
Journey to the Interior, American Versions of Haibun, Edited by Bruce Ross

Autobiographical poetic prose accompanied by haiku.

Bruce Ross

Let’s get to writing…

[Defining Haibun] A short prose essay in the humorous haikai style, usually including a haiku, often at the end. “Haibun” is sometimes applied to the more serious diary or journal writing typical of Basho’s and Issa’s longer works, though technically they are part of the diary or journal literature, which is usually more serious than haibun. But is is not unusual for haikai elements to enter into these longer works.

Haiku Society of America, “Draft Definitions Submitted for MemberComment” (January 1994), 2

Salt Air, Kristen Lindquist

A friend of mine keeps a herd of goats on a small island off a slightly larger island way off the coast of Maine. From across the harbor you can often see the goats picking their way, one after another, along trails they’ve worn in the thin soil. Other times, they’re out of sight for days, the fog amplifying their bleats.

following seas
the toll of a bell buoy
grows louder

My friend was off-island for several days and returned to utter chaos: the goats had broken into her house and trashed it. The animals ate all the grain, as well as anything else they could find that was remotely edible, and despoiled every surface, including her bed. Days later when I ask how the clean-up is going, she says that even with all the windows open, everything in the house still smells like goat.

each lobster boat
trailed by a cloud of gulls
mouths to feed

Serious or amusing? The choice belongs to the poet and oftentimes haibun includes both elements. Also, here you see two haiku…there are no rules on the number of haiku or their placement within the prose.

Now over to you…

  • Add the link for your poem in the comments below.
  • Read one or two of other writer’s links…we all get better together. 

“We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.”

-Anaïs Nin


Hey y’all, thanks for visiting the Go Dog Go Cafe and reading today’s selection. I am Donna Matthews, a born and bred Texan who can usually be found writing at the DJ Ranch, doodling, taking pictures, and traveling the world on foot. I’m all about love, people, sharing, and exploring life together, and would love to get to know you. Come on over for a visit sometime 💙

6 thoughts on “Haibun Wednesday, December 15, 2021

  1. Pingback: The Art of Blessing the Day – Life and Times of a Quirky Character

  2. Pingback: Haibun: The Art of Blessing The Day - DJ Ranch

  3. Pingback: Haibun Wednesday, December 22, 2021 | Go Dog Go Café

  4. Pingback: Haibun Wednesday, December 29, 2021 | Go Dog Go Café

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