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!

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.

Carpe Diem Haiku Special, Soen Nakagawa’s “illumined by the moon”

As Chèvrefeuille says, the goal of this CD-Special is to write a new haiku in the same sense, tone and spirit as the given one of our featured haiku-poet. Here is the haiku, written by Soen Nakagawa, for inspiration:

how solemn
each patch of grass
illuminated by the moon

 

There is the visual aspect to this haiku, but the clear emotional attachment is also there, with the use of moonlight as a melancholic influence on each and every blade. My turn now:

a lantern dispatches shadows
where none existed before
-it takes light to see dark

 

Carpe Diem Haiki, Mandara-ji

I could show you a magic trick. I could give you a book for you to take home, for those long rainy nights alone. I could bake a chocolate cake for you, or show you my favourite film, or fashion a copper bangle for you, that shines in golden evenings.

Under a streetlamp, as the last snowflakes of winter drift downwards, I could kiss you. And then I would write a haiku for you.

of this emptiness
that cannot be filled with words
-even snowflakes melt

rain-dancer

Friday Fictioneers: The Night Before The Morning That Will Not Be

image rochelle wisoff-fields

image rochelle wisoff-fields

In order to justify them killing you, you invent the crime. “I deserve to die,” you say to yourself. It doesn’t pay to get too religious on these occasions  —  the next thing you’ll be doing is repenting.

In our cells waiting to be shot we are a club with the same aim: to get out alive. Personally, I think of childhood. Maybe I should have played with dolls. Instead bullets will be my last medals.

If anyone finds this note; “I died a man.” That is, I fought till the end, and ran, blindfolded, hands tied behind my back, in my last faltering steps of freedom.

images

friday fictioneers 100 Word stories ¤ run so well by ms rochelle wisoff-fields

If Jesus Was a Woman (For Magpie Tales)

el greco feast-in-the-house-of-simon 1610 (1)


Feast in the House of Simon, 1610, El Greco

If Jesus was a woman
and not a lesbian
Would there still be feminism?
Would religion start to make sense to me?
And would she have worn a bra?

Could she possibly have had
better hair?
Along with line in fine lingerie
for those seeking salvation
in the arms of a woman

Would her twelve disciples have been women too?
Would they have cross-dressed
or simply just had more style?
And would she have hung from the cross?

And would Peterina
Upon arrival in Rome
have been hung upside down?

If the Buddha had been all-woman
would she have sat under tree so long?

If Stalin had been a little girl
from somewhere deep in the Urals
would the gulags have functioned so well?

Its only Mick Jagger
that would remain the same
if history could be changed
To be herstory
And of course me
Though then
I would be une Lesbienne
-as I secretly am

magpie tales statue stamp 185

Somewhere (for wedrinkbecausewerepoets.com)

there’s a place
in my past
that I passed by
with a smile
when I should have stopped
and taken that turning

perhaps then I would not
have dropped
swatted like a fly
and instead I would have hovered above
like an eagle dressed as dove
pretended to care
for the welfare
of those with too much love

I would have worn fur coats
paid politicians to sit in my pockets
employed slaves
for my factories
and from my big fat car
I would always gaze afar
and learn to ignore
those polluted streets

but as I look back on that place
somewhere in the past
at a crossroads in my life
I’m still glad I chose me
even if they stole my dream, in those years in-between

For I still feel the taste of victory
despite it all
they never destroyed my home
never droned
me, never bombed in shock and awe
and instead just took my health
slowly
bit by bit
those criminal corporatist rich
and their itch
for more of what I do not have

And I’m still
alive

crossroads

wedrinkbecausewe’repoets

Friday Fictioneers – Teeth

Patterns.

“D-d-d don’t look like much to me,” had started ol’ Dawkins, but his job was to tether the mules.

“I’ll take a picture of the markings from above, and get a better idea,” said KZ, her white scarf fluttering across her face, disarming my thoughts.

“Tough flying through those mountains,” I replied.

“I do tough,” she said.

Her white scarf had flowed in the air stream as she flew over the high plateau in her prop plane.

She landed smoothly in the sand below us.

“So what are they?” I shouted down.

She motioned with her gloved hands.

“I think she’s sayin’ p-p-p-penis,” Dawkins stuttured.

“Probably ones that bite, knowing KZ!” I grinned aloud.

lengai_summit_from_crater-danny-bowman

Thanks very much to Rochelle! Pic this week by Danny Bowman. For Friday Fictioneers 100 word stories.

Moonlight Thoughts – An Amusement

Henri Rousseau - the sleeping gypsy

Henri Rousseau – the sleeping gypsy

I slept in dreams bursting at the seams
in deserts alone, my kingdom of no crown
on roads with no name, no shame to blame

I called out to shadows to rape me, take me,
but no-one dared move,
no one dared to play the fool
just me

they pretend to applaud while they yawn
and still I sleep alone
sacrilegious under my gown

but tomorrow I will make myself king
or queen
they’ll come, they’ll bow, low, in the sand
and I’ll rule only by words
“you sheep, you sheep, by this lion you will be mauled,”

for now the gypsy in me
just roams
just dances, a clown
for an approval of frowns
…a one-handed applause

¤¤¤

scribed for

under the magnificent guile of Tess Kinkaid

The View – Friday Fictioneers

hay-bales-sandra-c

”That’s a nice view you’ve got over the village, Count.”

”Indeed, Inspector. So what was the visit about again?” The Count arched an eyebrow of inquisition as he loomed forward behind him to better hear.

”The missing young village women,” the Inspector said turning sharply at the window to the sudden shadow.

”Ah yes, rather unfortunate affair, has somewhat punctured the village’s image as a location of private repose,” the Count said humbly, as he proffered a plate of dark cakes; ”biscuit?” he added.

”Why thank you, Count,” the Inspector said, ”chocolate?”

”Dried blood, actually,” replied the Count, absentmindedly.

,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

99 words, pic this week by Sandra Cook  ¤ un grand merci pour Rochelle!

Ligo Haibun Challenge – Image Week

Thanks to everyone participating in the Ligo Haibun Challenge – if you would like you can post your haibun at Medium here, and label it under the “Beautiful Haibun” collection. This gives you further readership and gives you a step out of the ‘WordPress world.’

My apologies for the lateness of the post this week. I was a bit exhausted after travel and duties, and have a lot of catching up to do. There are a lot of fine people out there and I don’t want to lose them…so I will be catchng up, especially as I want the Ligo anthology out soon – so send your haibun!

I will be contacting folks very shortly about their haibun – that probably means you reading this!

This week is picture week. As usual choose one to write your Beautiful Haibun. I certainly encourage all glancing here to have a read of the haibun, which are of very high quality in an art form that in itself encourages beautiful writing.

If you are new to the form ask here for details..

H167F40-Product-Productfront-1000X1000Cropped

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H992RBD-Product-Productfront-1000X1000Cropped

Please give us some beautiful haibun! Link up with the blue critter below..

http://goo.gl/KAbZf4

Ligo Haibun Challenge – Word Prompt

…Here’s 3 haibun we particularly liked from last week  and are mentioning here:

After two hours yesterday and nearly an hour today, I still cannot and will not nominate one over the other. The haibun are all so good for both very similar and different reasons.

See what I mean….

The prompts for this week are continued