Tag: haiku

Day 999: Buh-Bye, So Long and Hallelujah

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It’s a completely valid question.

For the past 50 or so days I have been fielding one question more often than most: what am I going to do for Day 1000? Will the final kilograph reflect upon the 999 that came before, like some extended clip show of my greatest guffaws and most aww-rending moments? Will I spend my final entry in closing-credits mode, thanking those who have made this all possible and put up with my considerable dearth of free time over the last 2 years and almost 9 months?

In short… no. While my original intent was to meander down that self-serving footpath for my final article, I decided that I would only do so if I could cite the Wikipedia page that had been created about me – as it turns out, that doesn’t exist yet.

In order to figure out my final missive, I felt I should turn to the moulder of my wisdom, the sage oracle who has helped to shape my morality, my perception, and even my understanding of the world: television. I have experienced the highs and lows of series finales – certainly at least one of them could illuminate the road to a poignant, entertaining, and (most of all) worthy coda to this monstrous undertaking.

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My first option is the beloved trope of bringing back a classic character for the finale. In my case I could introduce a surprise cameo by Yoko Ono, Craig David, Mary Nissenson, or if I really want to stretch to my roots, Phineas Gage. I could style the entire piece in a blend of haiku, musical theatre and secret code (did anyone ever figure that one out?). It sounds trite and cliché, but that’s always a place to start, isn’t it? Read more…

Day 892: 8 Obscure Poetry Forms For The Love Of 80’s Movies

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I have a tendency to mistrust my own ambition. One morning I felt the urge to spend that day’s kilograph using however many haikus would be necessary to fill a thousand words (eight-two, apparently). Another day had me wrestling to produce nine Shakespearean sonnets, adhering as closely as possible to the specific rules the Bard created for himself. Once I stuck my e-quill into the murky ink of limericks. Every time I drift from prose into the rhymey, heavily-structured stuff it sucks up most of my daylight hours.

Yet here I go again, this time seeking the lesser-known twists of poetic construct, and aiming to siphon yet another perfectly good weekday into the mire of make-workery. Such is the sacrifice that I shall make for you, the reader of my manifesto of madness.

And because nothing is really drop-kicking my heart of hearts between the uprights of noble inspiration this morning, I’m going to use films from the 1980s as my muse. Suck it, romanticism.

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I’ll start with a seguidilla, a Spanish form of verse with a specific syllable count (7,5,7,5,5,7,5) and rhyme scheme (x,A,x,A,B,x,B).

 

Consider: five lives meeting,

locked in detention;

overcoming plot points, and

child-scar retention;

it might happen there –

in Fiction, Illinois, sure;

fist-pump in the air!

 

I’m not winning any awards with these – best to accept that early on and continue. Read more…

Day 879: When One’s Writing Cup Overfloweth

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Were it not for the six or so hours of procrastination that has siphoned away my productivity today, I might have ascribed a new disorder to myself, in that special way that we net-snooping nutjobs are prone to do. Anyone who has ever tried to diagnose themselves using WebMD or some other resource, only to find that their sore throat and unusually stiff elbow means they’re probably going to die within the next 20 minutes knows that this is not a wise choice.

Today my mysterious ailment is something called hypergraphia. The main symptom of this malady is an intense desire to write. Hey! That’s me! Well, except for today… never underestimate the power of distraction to cure what ails you.

No, hypergraphia is a more powerful compulsion to put pen to paper than this project could ever be blamed for. It’s not necessarily a desire for expression, or for achieving a finished product, but more of an irresistible drive to write. This symptom can appear alongside epilepsy, and it’s a big red flag for a personality disorder known as Geschwind Syndrome. If your non-stop writing only produces an endless string of erotic haikus, it might be a big red flag for something else.

All work and no play didn't work out so well for Frank.

All work and no play didn’t work out so well for Frank.

Some sufferers of hypergraphia (hypergraphics?) compose poetry, or vast creative works with some genuine literary merit. This is not a disorder that presupposes that the end result will be pages of scrawled gibberish; someone with a legitimate creative pitch to their mental whistle can produce some high-end text. It has been suggested that Fyodor Dostoevsky, Vincent van Gogh, Lewis Carroll and even Robert Burns were subject to this inescapable urge. Read more…

Day 366: My State-Of-The-Madness Address, Year 1

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As I pull the final leafy page off my Lozenge-A-Day calendar (cool! It’s a green Zuigtablet from Holland!), I feel I should take a few moments (specifically, a thousand words’ worth of moments) to reflect on the past year, and on the madness that kept me glued to this project for two, three, sometimes thirty hours in a day.

For those keeping track at home, I have published 365,000 words to this site, not counting all-too-infrequent updates to the Internal Monologue and numerous compliments under fake names. The actual count is higher (about 415,000); only once did I hit a thousand words exactly. I decided before Day 1 that it was more important to go out with a good punchline or a completed story than try to hit some silly exact word count. Or, in lieu of a punchline, I could always toss in a picture of this guy:

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I began with a story about a guy with a hole in his head. Good, quirky stories are tough to stumble across on Wikipedia, but I lucked out with this one. The response to my first article was overwhelming – three people commented! One was a good friend from high school, another was my mother, and the third tried desperately to sell me some discount off-brand version of Cialis, but I was nonetheless humbled. Also, I learned a valuable lesson about trusting Internet strangers and a rare medical condition known as Krunk Boner.

Read more…

Day 20: A Thousand Words In Wikipedian Haiku

Yesterday I wrote an article using my iPhone as a research tool, as Wikipedia’s mobile app was the only facet of its English site that I could access. I’ll come right out and say it – it wasn’t easy. In honor of Wiki’s return to form today, I’m going to ride the Random Article button like it’s a stand-up coaster. The following selection of eighty-two haikus are each taken from a different article. Let’s see how many of them are based on soccer players or small towns in Poland.

 

Another player

Ol’ Wiki’s soccer fetish

Mike “Zico” Zeyer

 

Platypus ulcers!

Tasmanian death-fungus

Where’s the telethon?

 

Liam O’Malley

Soccer player for Mayo

Traded to Mustard.

 

Hey! Dois Vizinhos!

Industry town in Brazil:

Chicken processing.

 

A Czech-based think-tank.

How could I get hired for one?

Under-qualified.

 

David Clutterbuck:

Royal Navy; awesome name.

“Don’t fuck with the ‘buck!”

 

June Clark: jazz cornet.

Managed Sugar Ray Leonard.

Quit jazz for boxing.

 

Mayor of London

Boris: The Man With The Hair

Makes Trump look quite good.

How does this man not frighten children?

Read more…