I’ve been asked to do something ... one of my more spectacular failings is that I find I hard to refuse anyone who asks me to do anything. (Please use this information humanely) .
In particular, when someone I love asks me to do something for them, I find it impossible to refuse. No, that statement doesn’t quite tell it like it is – When they ask me, I don’t even want to refuse.
So my beloved Linenhall Arts Centre have asked me to do this and I don’t even dream of saying ‘No’ because I 'heart' the Linenhall Arts Centre in a great big way. The Linenhall is my town’s Art Centre, and they have supported, entertained, and befriended me ever since I came to live here in Castlebar. They have premiered - what is it now? – five of my theatre plays. I have appeared in three plays there (none of them my own) and I… just love the place. That’s all.
So, The Linenhall have a programme of events for Culture Night next Friday night – 25th September 2009 - which is part of a nation-wide endeavour to get more of the general public involved in ‘culture-stuff’. The Linenhall will be crammed with diverse events and opportunities for fun. You should come along.
And, yes, I will be there. Here’s what the brochure says about my bit:
Haiku 4 U
Want to write Haiku?
Ken will show you how it’s done
or else die trying
Fifteen minutes in
You’ll know all you need to know.
A good deal or what?
My brief is to show the good people of Castlebar how they might go about writing a Haiku poem in fifteen minutes or less… it wasn’t my idea but it’s not a bad one and that’s mainly why I will do it. I reckon I will have a little ‘stall’ or corner of a room where people can come and talk Haiku and hopefully give it a go.
I have several valued readers who are themselves established and talented poets and I hope they won’t look too dimly on my little excursion into this territory. Jim Murdoch has written well on the subject, as he has done on so many subjects. Sorry Jim.
Allow me to be the first to clearly state that you could fit all that I know about Haiku in a Haiku. I know this and Marie Farrell, the Director of The Linenhall, knows it too. But she’s a smart cookie, is our Marie. She knows I have an enthusiasm for writing which I’m passably good at sharing, that I will approach the subject from the basement up and that I am brilliant at taking the piss out of myself. These are the qualities that I hope will carry my Haiku evening off.
But, like I said, I would sure welcome some input from you guys. We did it a few times before, with Limericks 1 and Limericks 2, and they were a blast.
Could you write me a Haiku in the comments section or else, tweet me one. If you let me, I will use them on the night to help illustrate how a toe can be dipped in the Haiku pool by simply expressing yourself within the confines of the most basic of Haiku rules. This may seems frivolous and perhaps downright disrespectful to some but I actually have a serious writing point at the back of my head.
I firmly believe that creative writing can be strengthened by the at-least occasional imposition of confines upon it. There!
Take a blank page and write anything – it might well be great, it will probably be crap. But nail yourself to a subject and a point of view and a timescale and a tone and a setting and… the end result will be more focused, considered, and points will arise along the writing of it that you never thought would occur.
Anyway, I’ve lost you, I know. If you’re still here, please write me the simplest of Haiku – three lines, 5 syllables in the first, seven in the second and another five in the third. Tweet it or comment it and let me use it for Friday – all copyright remains with you of course – it’s not really Haiku at all but it’s a toe in the door of the form and that, for now, might be enough.
If you want a subject for your poem, here’s a couple of possibilities, Autumn, Myself, Swine Flu, Impotence, cinema-talkers and grass. (I thought of those as I wrote them, can you tell?)
Look, I’ll have a go at a few, ‘top of the head.
Please movie talker
In between your popcorn crunch
I’m longing to hear
Shout at it or sing
It just won’t stand up today
Better call Pele
Something in the air
Not summertime anymore
Better season nigh