Haiku Notebook

Second Edition

W. F. Owen

SmashWords Edition

Copyright 2010 W. F. Owen

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Many of the haiku in this book have been published in the following: Acorn, Agnieszka’s Dowry, black bough, bottle rockets, Frogpond, Haiku Headlines, Mainichi Daily News, Mariposa, Mayfly, Modern Haiku, New Resonance 2 (Red Moon Press), One Hundred Gourds (Two Autumns Press), Snapshots and tinywords.com.

Preface to the Second Edition

Three years ago I published haiku notebook. So, I thought it was about time to update and enrich it. My primary purpose then, as it is now, was to write a book for beginning haiku poets and to encourage them to write haiku and its related forms (e.g., senryu, haibun). This is not a how-to textbook, as such. There are many good texts out there as guidebooks for you (see the Works Cited and Recommended section at the end of the book). Rather, I have written in a haibun style, not an instructional one. Though there are several varieties, forms and rules for good haibun, my haibun fit into an autobiographical style. Most haibun are written in sparse sentences, quite cryptically. They sometimes use vivid, metaphorical or dreamlike narratives. Briefly, a haibun involves a section, or sections, of prose giving a chronicle of life experience followed by a haiku, or several haiku, at the end or interspersed among the prose sections. Haiku do not repeat the prose experience but rather interact with it synergistically. Thus, the reader gets a situated meaning exceeding that given by the prose or haiku alone. It is a contextualized “surplus of meaning.” Therefore, read the book as a stream, with eddies, bends, ebbs and flows.

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