Latest from Līgo Haībun!

Fly Indie bookshop, in conjunction with 

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Williamson Books

a small publishing company, is collecting haibun for an upcoming haibun anthology.to be published in early summer.  Please visit here, where more details will be published shortly, as well as this blog site.

We are currently open for submissions. Please click on details on ‘About Haibun‘ in the link if you are not sure about requirements.

DRAWINGS/PHOTOGRAPHS  We are in need of artwork and photographs too. Be aware that in many ebook versions and possibly on the paperback version this will be rendered in black and white!

If your work is accepted, payment will be equal distribution of profits if this sum exceeds GBP500.00, and an automatic free copy of ebook. All paperbacks purchased by haibun contributors will be sold to them at cost, which is at about a 70% reduction on the listing price. Haibun authors are then free to resell these with no restrictions. Should minimum profits cover paperback costs then 1 free paperback will be allocated to each contributor.

Un-published material only please. Haibun previously published on a blog will be happily considered pending the publishing date, and upon agreement that the haibun be deleted from the blog upon acceptance All rights revert back to the artist after publication. All writing should be in Times New Roman, 12 point font, 1.5 line spaced, by pdf file.  Please include a five-line bio.

All submissions should be sent to williamson@flyindie.today

or by skype to fly.indie

Thanks!

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Procession (Haibun – Adventure)

Originally posted on Blog It or Lose It!:

friday fictioneers dee lovering

With any luck, the procession will come my way this time.

While the breeze slowly disassembles the web of streamers overhead, I grow anxious.  The locals are hostile, and I am exposed.   I shift from foot to foot and listen carefully.

whispering /
wind in paper fingers /
mimics rustling leaves //

My job is to radio the Special Response Team the moment I see the bride.

from ancient alleys /
hints of muffled voices /
sound shadows //

What kind of gown does an assassin wear?  Lost in thought, I almost miss the distant roar.

Gone. Again.

motorcycle revs /
unseen bird flutters /
in its hidden roost //

Our task for Friday Fictioneers was to write a 100-word story about Dee Lovering’s photo.  I chose to write an action-adventure haibun. (Sorry purists – I had to do it!)

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Notes on the LĪGO HAĪBUN CHALLENGE, the Web’s Original Haibun Challenge

Come join us in our weekly LĪGO HAĪBUN CHALLENGE! Here’s some notes about haibun to help you get started.

 

  • Haibun is a passage of prose with at least one haiku.
  • Haibun usually relate to a journey, whether the travels are exploration or  internal, and/or should be in contact with nature.
  • They can and ought to contain an epiphany received through experience.
  • The concept of a haibun being part of the series, or an ‘episode’ is a very important one, and often overlooked. Your haibun should tie together by some strand, either theme, location, journey or other.
  • The haiku describes a moment or happening. As part of the haibun it might serve as a ‘mirror’ or look at the prose in a ‘different’ way.
  • Use of a ‘season’ word is a classical way of writing a haiku. These are words that signify a given season and give the haiku earthing or anchoring.
  • Each week, at the Līgo Haībun Challenge here is a choice of two prompt words, quotes, or visuals. Please choose one for your haibun.
  • Wear the Ligo badge below with pride on your blog! And pin the Circle of Appreciation to your blog  if your haibun is one of the monthly  Honourable Mentions in Dispatches

Click on the url below to join the challenge!

Haibun as a literary form really started when Basho, the ‘father’ of haiku set off on a 2,400 km walk through Japan, deliberately straying into the mountains when he could. The travel journals were a mix of prose studded with haiku, and were published titled ‘Narrow Road To The Deep North’. Frankly, it is a wonderful book, and started a very special form of writing. Basho claimed the art and heart of haibun as his with his reflective writing, awareness and sharp imagery.

While seen as a classical form in Japan, haibun has seen a revival in English over the past decades.

People should write their haibun in the way they like to write. However, I do think that the register of the language used, not the style, is important. There is a difference.

The above looks difficult, but in fact we are not talking about a story with a twist here – at all, though a moment of discovery or epiphany in a haibun fits very well.

The first thing I look to in a haibun is if the writer was at the scene or not him or herself.  The scene may be a memory, or a plan, merely witnessed or interacted with, or a mix of many or all of those.

It is not a story, though is a narrative. Personally I find it hard to read a haibun not interacting with nature. Indeed, an emphasis on emotion and not imagery is something that does not work in a haibun as a whole.

I am personally not a fan of direct speech, or lengthy direct speech in a haibun.

Remember that with the prose comes one or more haiku, and they must relate – when they do it is wonderful reading, but those who write a beautiful prose and don’t carefully tie it together with a powerful haiku miss something, I think.

I do very much see haibun coming in a series, rather like a diary, so would accordingly expect each haibun written by a given writer not be completely and totally separate from the one before. But if you are writing about your thoughts, actions, journey or a period in your life this seems logical to me.

A deeper meaning to the haiku might be found by the reader, but that is the reader’s prerogative, not the writer’s.

  • Līgo is the largest summer solstice festival in the world very much connected to nature, and located in Latvia. Of recent years a similar New Year festival at around the same time has been gaining popularity in Yakutia and will probably catch on in Kazakhstan.

 

 

Naughty Sunday Haiku

Today’s Naughty Sunday Haiku prompt was found on Tumblr. I don’t know the details, but I have an idea some women drawing might. All traditional haiku forms apply to this challenge. 3 lines, or 1 line, and a haiku or senryu with imagery, or strong moment, without simile or metaphor. Dare yourselves to ‘paint’ this haiku and link it in the blue critter below! The challenge is only open till Monday afternoon Helsinki time, and opens Sunday morning, so make your seductive words count quickly!

nsh

 

Carpe Diem Haibun – Beach

Beaches don’t come much colder than Aberdeen beach, in the northwest of Scotland. But before people bustled onto planes to get drunk abroad, Aberdeen beach was a popular holiday destinations for hardy Aberdonians. They don’t make folk like that anymore. Nowadays, of course, none venture in such cold waters when their are holidays further south to be had.

Advances in technology have brought a fair amount of improvements to our lives, but for every action there is a reaction. Isn’t that the first law of Physics?

Our food is worse now, not better. Our health and fitness worse. The food is less nutritious, and there is much less variety of it, a little known fact. There are many less varieties of apples around than there used to be 50, or a 100 years ago, for example, as industrial production seeks the cheapest to produce, the farthest away. One day we will learn more by looking back, except that many of these varieties have disappeared, forever. In fact there are storage centres desperately being arranged and built in an effort to preserve seeds of disappearing varieties of foodstock. It is that bad.

Our ancestors never got to see and experience what we do, but not everything they believed and lived by was wrong. Our social fabric is torn. Today we have what has become the propagandist aggressive negativity of Feminism, for example, while before we had gentlemen, and decency towards women. Even, maybe, in Aberdeen!

Scottish Comedian Billy Connolly gives an account of Aberdeen beach in his particular style which gives a fair idea of Aberdeen beach – start at 4.40 mins for his account of swimming in Aberdeen.

And the emptiness of Aberdeen beach today…

88beach_1

loneliness by the sea
what is found over horizons
is found here too

Carpe Diem Haibun – Raindrop

Everyone remembers rain. I think rugby players have a special affinity for rain, when it is pouring down, and you are losing by 2, or 3 points, with as many minutes left to play. Chests are heaving after a break in play, trying, fighting to get oxygen and energy in, and vapour is rising in steam.

The rain pours, the drops skirting eyelids, sliding on the vaseline smeared there if you are a forward, part of the pack, but not noticed anyway. The captain making a secret signal, ball in hand, ready to take the free kick, the referee about to blow his whistle for the kick to be taken, but checking his watch anyway.

The ball about to be tapped, then thrown like a bullet into my chest, where I must grab it and hold, and be pushed over the line to get those 5 points. Must not fumble that slippery ball, or tumble when my team hit from behind to shove me over the line, as the other team line up, ready.

Then my team mate sees the butterfly in our path. Breaks away, scoops it up carefully, runs to a woman with an umbrella, watching, puts the butterfly on her arm. The referee looks on, bemused, then blows the whistle. The ball slaps into my sodden chest in the pouring rain. We charge, hit, hard.

But the butterfly is safe.

in the monsoon
one raindrop lands
on a butterfly

I learnt something that day. And life goes on.