jornales

for a moment of joy or moments no one pays for, i give myself a ‘jornal’. this makes me rich. try it.

“With Cherries on Top” (a NaHaiWriMo ebook, the first of its kind haiku anthology)

“More than something to keep like journals we’ve been published in, for me this is a treasure because I have a small hand in it. Like the 30 other prompters, on whose prompts I, too, wrote, I also had the privilege to select more than five for the collection out of which Michael Dylan Welch made the final choice; in other words, I know the process that went into its making quite intimately.

But most of all, I’ll always read each haiku loving it as the work of a NaHaiWriMo friend, most of whom I’ve written with on the same page every day and still do. Thanks again, Michael, for the great work you’ve poured into this superb anthology—the first of its kind, I believe. And congrats to us all, NaHaiWriMo poets!

Definitely a treasure! Superb haiku by NaHaiWriMo poets and awesome images so apt together!” —Alegria Imperial  

The history of this book is a major part of my personal history of writing haiku. I’ve written most of it in this blog. I’m sure you have noticed how my haiku has taken shape since I signed up on Facebook because of National Haiku Writing Month (NaHaiWriMo). All it asked of anyone is to write a haiku a day. I joined in mostly because I’ve met Michael Dylan Welch, who is to me everything to a haiku, and from whom I keep learning.

His role in my haiku life started with my first ever haiku award in the 2007 Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival (VCBF) Haiku Invitational, which was also my first published haiku. He was a judge that year and I met him at Van Dusen Gardens during the Cherry Blossoms Festival a year later. I had my first ginko walk with him, too, at the gardens. How could I not trust the Facebook site he created?

As well, Melissa Allen, who I met through our blogs, by then already on to her place in English haiku,  had announced NaHaiWriMo. Also at the fourth meeting of our then newly formed Vancouver Haiku Group, Jessica Tremblay, now of Old Pond Comics fame, also a VCBF winner, who came for her first member meeting,  reminded us of NaHaiWriMo.

It turned out NaHaiWriMo couldn’t end in a month. We, who hopped in, wouldn’t let up and so, it’s still on.  In August, Michael came up with this idea of a-prompter-a-day instead of just one for the month. This book is what it was.  I know, dear readers and followers of jornales, that you love haiku. Inflame it with this “With Cherries on Top”, a haiku anthology written by poets of varying haiku-writing stages, demonstrating the very essence of haiku which is: With senses wakened is how we find newness in the same things or what we think is the same day every day, and writing it down into a haiku renews the very thing as much as the poet and those to whom the haiku is shared. I’m sure our haiku will enrich you beyond its more than a hundred pages.

My haiku on ‘watermelon’ prompt by Stella Pierides

watermelon moon

our burdens lighter

than we thought

(Because I haven’t updated this blog to be able to encrypt a link, you might want to copy and past this on your browser or simply click on the link on my blogroll)

https://sites.google.com/site/nahaiwrimo/with-cherries-on-top 

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November 24, 2012 Posted by | background, culturati news/views, event, haiku, poetry | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

A haiku moment in Vancouver (report of a poetry reading by VHG)

first reading—
in the lamplight
oak leaves in rain – Angela J. Naccarato

The two-year old Vancouver Haiku Group (VHG) held its first poetry reading, Under the Cherry Tree: An Evening of Haiku, Free Verse and Music, on May 31 at Chapters on Robson Street.

Opening number were by teacher Brenda Larsen’s grade four and five students, Juliana Nunes and Matthew Zhao, of Panorama Heights Elementary School in Coquitlam, BC, reading their own poems and selected poems of their classmates. The third floor reading room display of cherry blossom sprigs made out of crepe paper and wooden twigs, as well as origami cranes with haiku written on the wings, were also their handiwork.

Next, Angela J. Naccarato, facilitator for the VHG, read Amelia Fielden’s tanka from an online series titled Sakura Sakura. Amelia is a professional translator of Japanese literature, as well as an enthusiastic writer of tanka in English. Tanka is a traditional Japanese form of poetry and dates back to the 7th century. Nik Stimpson, a university student, accompanied Angela’s reading on the clarinet.  For the second part of the program, Angela read a series of haiku, a tribute to her trip to the British Isles, accompanied by James Mullin on a Javanese gamelan.  Angela and James emceed and coordinated the reading.

Still on the cherry blossom theme, Jessica Tremblay, read her Best BC Poem from the 2008 Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival Haiku Invitational (VCBF HI):

late for work—
cherry petals
in my hair

She followed this up with a delightful presentation of selected frames from her Old Pond comics about a frog trying to learn haiku–a take-off on Basho’s classic haiku. Basho is one of the four great masters of Japanese haiku.

cherry blossoms, Sakura Park, Claremont St., New York City (photo by Eleanor Angeles)

Alegria Imperial also read her winning and first-published haiku from the 2007 VCBF HI, her other winning and published haiku, some of  her published tanka along with a haibun, a literary composition that combines prose and haiku.

VCBF Haiku Invitational winning haiku by Canadian poets through the years and other works

Vicki McCullough, who has won several VCBF HI awards, and coordinator of the BC region for Haiku Canada, also known as pacifi-kana, first read a selection of her own haiku. She then followed it up with other cherry blossom haiku from across the HI years such as those of Haiku Canada members Alice Frampton, elehna de sousa, Naomi Beth Wakan and Susan Constable—and a few more favourites showing the international diversity of VCBF HI submissions. She concluded with a six blossom-themed tanka by Haiku Canada Review editor LeRoy Gorman, from his new collection,  fast enough to leave this world.

Brenda began her reading with the background story of her haiku inspired by the cherry tree in the backyard of the Historic Joy Kogawa House in Vancouver’s Marpole area, the former home of Canadian author Joy Kogawa. To conclude her reading, Brenda read more haiku followed by a touching free verse.

Other highlights

Another highlight of the evening was Rachel Enomoto’s reading in Japanese and English the works of Japanese women haiku poets from the 18th to the 20th century. Following Rachel was James Mullin, who said he learned humility through writing haiku, a genre of writing that appears to be so simple, yet offers such complexity within its structure and form. He read from his collection of free verse and recited his most memorable haiku, inspired by a VHG gingko walk through the heritage memorial park in Burnaby, east of Vancouver.

Guest poet Ruona Asplund read poems from her three published books of Nature poetry, and for a musical break, Nik performed a Quebecois piece, Isabeau s’y promene and Mozart’s Sonatina No. 1. To end the program, songwriter Jared Korb sang and played on his acoustic guitar.

From the audience, Hadley Meikle took advantage of the open mike to read poetry from bits and pieces of her journal.

Chapters employee Cameron Russell helped facilitate the event, displayed a selection of haiku books, graciously supplied water and glasses, and took pictures of the event. His photos can be viewed  at the Chapters Robson facebook page.

Up soon, a second poetry reading

VHG meets every third Sunday of the month at the Britannia Community Services Centre on Commercial Drive, Vancouver. Discussed in the meetings are basics in writing haiku and members’ haiku written with a prompt, which they workshop. Facilitator Angela J. Naccarato has also introduced intuitive exercises that aim at tapping the subconscious. The group has had three gingko walks, at Strathcona Gardens in Vancouver, the Chinese Buddhist Temple in Richmond and the Heritage Cemetery in Burnaby.

Already, VHG’s second poetry reading has been scheduled in partnership with Britannia at its annual summer event, Artful Sundays, held at the centre’s premises for four consecutive Sundays from Aug. 12 to Sept. 12. VHG members will present their poems at the performer’s tent on Aug. 26. They will also conduct haiku writing and crane origami making workshops.



June 11, 2012 Posted by | event, free verse, haibun, haiku, poetry, tanka | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments