December 17th, 2005

Egrets Reading

Southern California Haiku

Today was the monthly meeting of the Southern California Haiku Study Group, which meets on the third Saturday of the month at the Borders Bookstore in Cerritos.

The group was founded in 1997 by Jerry Ball, the former president of the Haiku Society of America. This month's meeting was attended by Jerry Ball, Linda Galloway, Peggy Hehman-Smith, David Priebe, Tom Bilicke, Kraig Keeler, and myself. Each year, the group publishes a member anthology. Our 2005 anthology, Time and Tide will be available at the January 21st meeting.

Each month, we open with an open reading of our recent haiku & we discuss the kigo of the month as it pertains to Southern California, grouping into the six categories as suggested by Higginson. This is what we came up with this time:

The Season

winter, tule fog

Sky and Heavens

early dark, winter moon, snow moon, longer shadows, low sun, winter sky, starry night, clear night, comet dust

Mountains and Fields

first snow, first green, barren fields, snow cap on Mt Baldy

Flowers and Plants

poinsetta, jade plant, few leaves on the liquid amber, ficus trees dropping pods, tangerines ripe, splat persimmons, oranges almost ripe, avocados ripe, pecans dropping

Birds and Animals

migrating birds, hiberation, throngs of birds on telephone wires, heavy coats, burrowing squirrels, opossoms, cats mating

Human Affairs

Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, shopping, carols, stockings, trees, travel, store Santas, family get-togethers

We then went off for twenty minutes to write haiku based on these kigo and then shared them, kukai-style with Linda reading them anonymously the first time through, and then a second time where we voted for our favorites. Linda and Jerry wrote the haiku which were the biggest vote-getters this time around. I particularly loved Jerry's "tule fog" haiku.

The one of mine which was the best received:

longer shadows
she makes an appointment
with the optometrist

I always come away from these meetings, refreshed, with renewed creative energy.

Maybe I'll write another Christmas poem tomorrow...we got our tree today!