Sunday, August 12, 2012

haiku retrospective cdxxi

30 March 2011

Some haiku just won't let you go.

Many years ago, I saw a very ominous blackbird hunkered down on a wrought iron fence. It had just been raining hard, but was now sunny, and the fence was covered with dazzling backlit raindrops.

I tried several times to make a go of this haiku, but it just wouldn't do it. Somehow, the image was too full, too intense to be distilled down into the form of haiku. People suggested to me that there was more there than a haiku could hold, and so I reluctantly let it go.

It held on, however, and this version whispered itself to me last night:

hunchbacked crow --
sunlit raindrops hang
from the wrought iron fence

Here, for comparison, are the earlier attempts:

backlit raindrops
on the black iron fence
blackbird fluffs her feathers

13 April 2000

pearly raindrops
on the wrought iron fence
a blackbird fluffs her feathers

14 April 2000

raindrops on the fence
a blackbird hunches
feathers fluffed

18 April 2000

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