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  • April 1st, 2009 | 8:46 PM
National Poetry Month - Haiki #1 Ceanothus

I did it. My first haiku for the month, based on the challenge I set for myself here. Is it brilliant? No. But that's okay. That's what revision is for, right?

I must have gone to the front yard a dozen times today and wandered around the plants, looking for inspiration. No luck. Then I told myself to just pick a plant, any plant, and write about it. That didn't work either. So I went back into the house, ate some tortilla chips and wished for something sweet to counter the salt.

When Cassie wanted to go out back, I went with her and watched her chase butterfly that landed in the Ray Hartman Ceanothus. And the first line came right up and settled in my mouth, filled with alliteration and imagery, two of my favorite elements and ones I am trying to learn how to use better. The second line was easy....I wrote what I saw. The final line is what needs work. It says what I want to say but it's just blah....and it needs a punch line that says something on two layers. And I think that's something that just needs time for pondering.


April Haiku count - 1

Edited to add: I changed my mind and I am going to post my daily haikus here because they are a painful process and heck, if I'm going to suffer, I might as well have some company, right? :) 

So here is what I wrote yesterday, or rather the evolution of it.

Whenever I see a Ceanothus in full bloom, the Ray Hartman, I always think of those purple popsicles we used to get when I was a kid, the twin pops that you had to break in half and share with someone else. So the first line came to me right away.

purple popsicles

Ceanothus is 4 syllables so I knew I needed to use it on the middle line or I would have no words left for anything else so first draft was

ceanothus in full bloom

And because the bees were buzzing around it like crazy I ended with this.

summer sweets for bees

So my first draft was:

purple popsicles
ceanothus in full bloom
summer sweets for bees

But it didn't feel very good to me.

So I brainstormed middle lines

ceanothus blooms for sale
ceanothus blooms don't melt
ceanothus opens shop
ceanothus sweet shop
ceanothus ice cream shop

Even though ceanothus ice cream shop doesn't make a lot of sense I like the sound of it.
purple popsicles
ceanothus ice cream shop
summer sweets for bees

I wasn't pleased with the ending because it's not summer yet and they don't bloom in the summer time.

More brainstorming.

summer sweets for bees
springtime feast for bees
springtime sweets for bees
bees line up to feast

And this is what I ended up with.

purple popsicles
ceanothus ice cream shop
bees line up to feast

--- Susan Taylor Brown
      April 1, 2009

@copyright Susan Taylor Brown 2009
There are so many stories only you can tell.Tell them, please.


( 4 comments — Leave comment )
April 2nd, 2009 04:07 am (UTC)
Nice. You told yourself you were going to do it, and you did. I think that's MORE than half the battle!
April 3rd, 2009 01:19 am (UTC)
Yep. And I've decided to post what I wrote so you can go back to this entry and read it if you want.
April 2nd, 2009 01:33 pm (UTC)
O, I can't wait to read how your process changes as the month goes on...
April 3rd, 2009 01:20 am (UTC)
Thanks, Liz. I've decided to go ahead and post them because it is a great way for me to workshop and show others how you don't have to be afraid to share the not-so-great stuff. LOL

I've edited this entry with the poem/more process so you can go back to this entry and read it if you want.
( 4 comments — Leave comment )

Who am I?I was born on the Cancer/Leo cusp and share a birthday with Ernest Hemingway and Robin Williams. The similarities don't stop there as I can go from depressed to ecstatic without ever passing go. I feel scared most of the time though my friends call me brave and I find it easier to believe in my friends than to believe in my own abilities to make what I want out of my life.

Who am I? A wife, a mother, a daughter, and even, gulp, a grandmother.

Who am I? A writer who never gets tired of playing with words, even when the words are hard to find. A writer of books for children and articles for grown-ups and many things in-between.

Who am I? A motivational speaker, writing instructor, workshop leader and full-time follower of dreams.

Who am I? Read and find out.

Susan Taylor Brown

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