Fire + Verse

As Alan Summers, a.k.a. haikutec, so helpfully informed us on my post about haiku, August 15th is the deadline for submissions to the next issue of Cattails, the online journal of the United Haiku and Tanka Society.

The community of haiku enthusiasts had produced a number of societies and journals: Cattails; Troutswirl; The Heron’s Nest, Modern Haiku

Yesterday I was looking through various haiku I’ve written to see which might be suitable and I came to a sad conclusion: I can’t tell the difference between a verse that is good and one I only think is good because I wrote it. 🙂 I write scads of haiku, but which ones to submit is a whole ‘nother decision.

Anyway, here’s one I concocted yesterday on the way home from work. Seeing the sun so sickly, a pale pink-coral overlaid with a hint of grey, calls out the muse in me. Smoke in the atmosphere does something to the sun you just have to see for yourself.

I’m so thankful this is all we see. It would break my heart to see miles of forest ablaze, to see first-hand the suffering and death of the woodland community. Anyway, here’s my haiku, good or bad, and a verse I wrote another time when our skies were overcast with smoke.

sun’s fire smothered
in a smoky haze
weep, rain, weep!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Heavy air smells of burning;
mighty forest fires rage,
send smoke signals wafting
across the province for days.

The animals, the birds, the trees;
my eyes water in sympathy
at their last mute cry for help
as they perish in flames.

Have mercy, Lord, on Your creation;
send them buckets of rain. Torrents.
But, please, no lightening.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

My response to today’s Ragtag prompt:
COMMUNITY

5 thoughts on “Fire + Verse

  1. HI Alan here, aka Haikutec (no K) 🙂

    You said:

    “Yesterday I was looking through various haiku I’ve written to see which might be suitable and I came to a sad conclusion: I can’t tell the difference between a verse that is good and one I only think is good because I wrote it. 🙂 I write scads of haiku, but which ones to submit is a whole ‘nother decision.”

    There are a number of ways to tackle this issue, which can face any of us, myself included, even after over a quarter of a century with haiku. 🙂

    One simple method is to keep all your versions from rough scribbling to any minor adjustment of the verse, all drafts, and then rest them for a few weeks at a time. Each time you revisit you can check if the latest or earlier draft versions might work, and/or add another tweaked version. Rest, revisit, add another version and so on. At the time you feel you have a version (either an earlier one or the latest one) feels it’s getting somewhere, raise its position on the word document you have created, so it slowly rises up in the order of various poems you have there.

    At some point you have to let it go, and submit it to a magazine. If it’s accepted, great, if not, either return it to the pot, or send it out again, or see if the editor has a point, and revise it, a little, and send it out.

    Sometimes I’ve deliberately not looked at a draft for months, even up to six months: It’s a really good test to see if you understand it as a reader.

    Haiku and The Reader as Second Verse by Alan Summers
    http://area17.blogspot.com/2017/12/haiku-and-reader-as-second-verse-by.html

    If you have lots of haiku in progress, then you will always have enough rising through the ranks until you have enough for a submission to a publication.

    warm regards,
    Alan

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for this wise advice. One fault I’ve always had as a writer is making changes and not saving the first draft — then wondering later if the original wasn’t better.

      Things do work out better if they’re left to settle, unless you’re just dashing off verses for fun.

      Sorry about the misspelling. 🙄

      Liked by 1 person

      • First draft is vital as it contains so much important raw material that can be carried forward, It’s our raw material, and our source materials.

        First attempts are always fresh and fun, but as grown ups, we have to mix fun with responsibilities. 😉
        Ah, yes, the child in us has to grow up, or at least work with the adult part of us. 🙂

        warm regards,
        Alan

        Liked by 1 person

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