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writeALONG! 26 December

Updated: Dec 26, 2023

A TUESDAY FEATURE

hosts: Muskaan Ahuja, Lakshmi Iyer

guest editor: Billie Dee


Please note: 


Only the unpublished poems (that are never published on any social media platform/journals/anthologies) posted here for each prompt will be considered for Triveni Haikai India's monthly journal -- haikuKATHA, each month.


Poets are requested to post poems that adhere to the prompts/exercises given.


Only 1 poem to be posted in 24 hours. Total 2 poems per poet are allowed each week (numbered 1,2). So, revise your poems till 'words obey your call'.


If a poet wants feedback, then the poet must mention 'feedback welcome' below each poem that is being posted.


Responses are usually a mixture of grain and chaff. The poet has to be discerning about what to take for the final version of the poem or the unedited version will be picked up for the journal.


The final version should be on top of the original version for selection.


Poetry is a serious business. Give you best attempt to feature in haikuKATHA !!

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Death and karumi


As contemplative poets, we become aware of the fragility of life and our own transient place in nature’s cycles. Yet, even the heavy topic of death can be approached in a “light-handed” manner. In Japan, there is a long tradition of writing death-awareness haiku. Poems actually written on one’s death bed are called jisei, while last poems written before an unexpected death are zekku. In a tradition that dates back to the seventh Century, jisei often refer to death only tangentially or metaphorically. Again, the element of karumi focuses our attention to the details of place and season, occasionally with a wry sense of humor.



my old body—

a drop of dew grown heavy

at the leaf tip


—Kiba, Japan (died 1868 at age 90)



asked if I’ve written

my death poem. . .

aren’t they all


—Bill Kenny, USA (died 2022 at age 89)



Prompt: Write your own death-awareness haikai without direct reference to the actual event. Use plain speech and imagery that transcend common cliché. One might say a life has been well-lived if, in its parting, it is tinged with a subtle sense of humor, coupled with an awareness of the beauty left behind.


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