Sunday, October 27, 2013

A Handful of Haiku

(Image from Wikimedia Commons)

You might notice this blog is titled "The Creative Output of StratPlayer."  For most of the time, my posts about my 'creative output' is related to my genre writing (speculative fiction and noire-ish mysteries, mainly) or my musical dabbling.

However -- I warned people in my very post here that I rebooted my blogging presence from my old writing blog with the clear intent to open things up a little.  The music is a big part of that.  But there are other forms of artistic creativity that I like to experiment with.

So how about some poetry?  Perhaps a post focused on Haiku?

Why not? The Haiku is a long-lived Japanese form that tries to present as much emotional content as possible in a short, tightly-defined structure.  The traditional English format uses 17 syllables in three lines of 5, 7, and 5 syllables each.

I love the challenge of being as expressive as possible in a well-defined, 'limited' format.  I think the innate tension and conflict of freedom versus constraint is a wonderful backdrop for creative output, and I find it particularly stimulating.

So today, I offer you a smattering of Haiku I've written, over a variety of subjects, but united by a common StratPlayer-ish theme.

I hope you enjoy them!


White dove flies skyward,
lands on a windy tower,
and sings a high, "coo..."


On the Enterprise,
Picard greets a frequent foe 
with a glib, "Hi, Q."


Hugh Mour loves the wilds.
He's left on a nature walk;
"Have a good hike, Hugh!"


Before the concert,
stoned teens stumble into line.
They form a high queue.


Minnesota Fats
scowls -- he didn't sink the shot.
'Twas his too-high cue.


The center stumbles;
The quarterback needs the ball!
He yells out, "Hike, you!"


So now I hope you have an appreciation of the beauty that can come from the form, and the next time you hear someone say "Haiku", you won't just offer them a Kleenex and a "Gesundheit!"

Thanks for reading! 


  1. Well done! And mixed with music and football. Nice touch.
    If I attempted poetry it would scare people.

  2. 'I love the challenge of being as expressive as possible in a well-defined, 'limited' format. I think the innate tension and conflict of freedom versus constraint is a wonderful backdrop for creative output, and I find it particularly stimulating.'

    Wonderful! I could not have said this better and it so captures what I feel as well. My absolute favorite of your playful verses is 'high queue.' This was great, Chris!

  3. You are so clever, Chris! Not only can you write haiku, you can end each one with a different version of the word. What is it they say? Puns are the highest form of humor? I like the Enterprise one.

  4. Very nicely done. I've never attempted one, but I love challenges.

  5. Loved these. :) Haiku isn't my favorite poetry form, mostly because...I dunno...I feel like it's created out of an intimidation with other forms--because it's easy to string a certain number of syllables together and call it a poem. But yours, with the additional challenge of a humorous twist, made the words work a little harder. I don't think I'll be able to watch Next Gen without thinking of the Picard one. :)

  6. @Alex: Thanks! And while I really admire the ability of a good poet to paint a vivid image with words, I don't think I'd go so far as to consider my tongue-in-cheek haiku puns real "poetry". ;^)

    @Suze: Thank you very much! And I like that one, too. :)

    @Joanne: Thanks! Yeah -- when you can find a way to combine poetry, Star Trek, and a bad pun together, you know it's a good writing day. ;)

    @Miranda: Thank you! And give it a try. Haiku can range from 'serious' to completely silly, and it's one of the easiest forms of poetry to put together. There can be quite a bit of debate about what is a 'real' Haiku, but one of my favorites was written by Rolf Nelson:
    Haikus are easy.
    But sometimes they don't make sense.

    @L. Diane: Thanks! But I actually think I took a bit of artistic license -- I don't know if Picard would ever greet someone with a "Hi." ;)

  7. @Faith: Thank you! Yeah, Haiku is not what I would call 'deep' poetry, even when it's not written as a vehicle for bad puns. ;^) That's partly because it's so 'easy' -- almost anyone can put one together. But I also think that gives it a certain charm. What other form of poetry is so accessible? Well -- perhaps the limerick... ;)

  8. The mademoiselle
    Received a verse from her beau
    Squealed, "Merci! Haiku!"

    Since you nailed "cue, queue, coo, Q (my least favorite Star Trek character... eternally annoying) and even Hugh and you (with "hike"s fore and aft ...) I had to revert back to the original word.

    Fun, fun, FUN post, Chris!

  9. Very clever haiku. Creativity in all its forms is so inspiring. I love the art you posted with this.

  10. I love Haiku, although it tangles my brain. Very clever use of 'Q' in various forms here. Hats off to you!

  11. Oh, you're so punny! Hahaha! I enjoyed all of them, especially the PIcard one. Thanks for the laughs. :-)

  12. @R.T.: Thanks! And I love your Haiku. Merci, Haiku, indeed! :)

    @M. Pax: Thank you very much, Mary! I can't take too much credit for the art, but I liked it enough to add it to my post, so that counts as something, right?

    @FAE: Thank you. I'm at least trying to turn my curse of punnery into something positive...

    @Lexa: Thanks! I'm very glad you enjoyed them!

  13. Nicely done! I find poetic forms in English very challenging. I might not be as bad a poet in spa nigh, but in English I'm the WORST! So I clearly appreciate how difficult a task this is. And you did great, Chris!

  14. @Gina: Thanks! And I'm only monolinqual (and barely that sometimes, lol), so this is as good as I get. I don't know if I'll try any 'serious' poetry... ;)

  15. Very well done. I do appreciate poetry even though I'm not a poet myself.

  16. BIG fan of haiku (and "Hi, Q"), Chris -- enjoyed yours very much.

  17. I'm a huge fan of Hi Q too . . . loved these!

  18. @Milo: Thanks! Glad you enjoyed them. :)

    @Tyrean: Thank you very much!


Don't be shy -- feel free to comment. I really appreciate your thoughts.