Hello. This post is part of a series where I evaluate haikus I wrote a few weeks ago. You can find those posts here.
For this post, I’ll be looking at my 4th haiku:
A wandering light, fluttering, frail; in deepness of creeping midnights.
5, 7, 5 syllables: check
Punctuation: check. Even a semicolon this time:)
seasonal reference: nope!
No figurative language: Ha! (see below)
Focus on nature/no human elements: well…there’s definitely personification happening here. Lights don’t typically wander. Or flutter. And midnights don’t creep, as far as I’m aware.
So not a lot of “traditional” haiku-ness going on here.
I had…many thoughts while writing this haiku, and the article of 7 haikus I posted a couple weeks ago (for reference, here’s the link to 7 Haikus on Hope). Here, I’ve written out some of those thoughts.
This particular haiku is placed 4th out of 7, because it’s the tipping point. (Specifically, the very central syllable of all these poems is “frail.” These haikus hinge on frailty.) The first haiku is the incident, if you will: why you need hope at all. The next two address a simplified version of hope—hope in its brand-new, pristine, plastic packaging. Like, hope is an anchor and if you hold to it the storm will pass you by. If you have hope then the rain will come to make your deserts beautiful.
Easy. Hope=good things happen.
But…hope is rarely pristine. Hope is not easy. Hope is not a wish, “oh, please make everything better” boom, wish granted.
Hope flutters, it is frail, it is the light shining in the darkest midnights of despair. Hope glows when it would be easier to surrender to the dark. The essence of hope is holding on only because you believe that dawn will come.
A memory of light, hope is. And if not a memory, than a dream of what light could be. To no longer stumble about blindly, to wander and not be lost (thanks J.R.R. Tolkien:), to be free.
Hope insists, softly, “No, darkness, you cannot have space inside my soul. I will never believe all there is is this unending midnight.”