Wednesday, May 31, 2006

we will survive

urban vermin proud to bite
when he feel he may be right
never mind he may be wrong
always sing this clever song

rats and mice they will survive
when no one else is left alive

whats the secret you may wonder
not the lightning not the thunder

speaking of their humble choice
whisper in a still small voice

ch ch ch ch ch ch ch ch

questions and answers

It's been a while since the New York Times provided a real haiku forum. However else the form is defined, it thrives on poets tossing verses back and forth with each other. That's gone now and this isn't the place for it, either, but maybe an introduction to haiku will encourage some of you to try it yourselves.

Haiku is a Japanese poetry form. There are many styles of haiku because of the different traditions that gave rise to it, but formally, it's simple.

The basic format is three lines, of 5 syllables, 7 syllables, and 5 syllables. There is some room for changing the syllable count, especially in languages other than Japanese, where that rhythm can be difficult to achieve.

The subject is supposed to be a brief description, preferably of a natural scene, with parallels to the human condition.

From Jane Reichhold, and others, Aha! Poetry is probably the best single website introduction to haiku and its many poetic relations:

Here are a few of mine:

crossing the skyline
one lone hawk circling slowly
with no prey in sight

rosebuds in winter
dusty cheap plastic flowers
behind worn curtains

clicking rapidly
beetles produce background sounds
like living machines

Here's a pair of haiku i wrote together:

the night winds howling
like wolves calling to the pack
through the city streets

can you run with them
whispering their hidden names
scenting the fresh blood?

We used to write these back and forth to each other, dozens of them every day, sometimes. Whole conversations in haiku, not alway true haiku, but sticking to the format:

sunshine diminished
the day is finished, but fun
has only begun!

night time comes

night time comes and another rat goes
out to the street
to find something to eat
everyone knows
what it takes to defeat
the feeling that we'll never beat
big black bad old ravens and crows

but if you really care
all you have to do is share
and the birds won't mind if you show up there

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

seriously -- or not

With the heat in the 90s, my friend suggested packing the car and driving somewhere north. Toyota rhymed with Minnesota ...

all the fuss about global warming
leaves me in a funk
not that a little sweat is harming
but donuts in iced coffee i will dunk

i would vote for minnesota
minnie mouse
just as long as skies are blue
and i'm inside a cool dark house

Urban Vermin

I love the struggling rat.
Now what do you think of that?

He never tries to reach the skies,
He never sighs or alibis;
He always honors family ties --
He's better than a lot of guys
Who sneer, and then avert their eyes

As servants put out poisoned bait,
So much the working rat they hate.

here i am

urban vermin on a quest
searching for what he does best
knowing he is such a pest

watching humans mill around
leaving trash upon the ground

see they always fail the test