haiga, haiku, photography

Sunny Day at Niagara Falls

Wet thunder booms as
water sweeps itself away.
A rainbow lingers.

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Photo of Iguazu Falls © Marcio Chagas | Unsplash
(Image has been cropped.)

My haiku was inspired by the contrast between loud rushing water and a silent steady rainbow, as pondered by Boris Glikman in a prose poem about a visit to Niagara Falls.  The contrast cried out to be displayed in the kind of deliberate swerve common in haiku poetry, often between the middle and final lines.

I wrote the haiku, searched for an appropriate image to make a haiga, and was happy to see a hover caption (on one of the Unsplash pages linking to the photo used here) that placed the photo at Niagara Falls.  I am grateful to Andrew Porteus for noticing that it’s really at Iguazu Falls and providing a much needed adjustment to the photo credit when posting the haiga to the Niagara Falls Poetry Project.

My blunder reminds me of my one point of agreement with Ronald Reagan and a great meme:

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Meme as posted by Troll Quotes on Pinterest

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haiga, haiku, photography

Rainbow Zen

The rainbow images that illustrate haiku here are in an elite group.  (Wish the images were mine.)  The rainbow does not just coexist with whatever else is in the scene; it works with the other elements and lifts a good image to greatness.  A bonus awaits those willing to read the notes and credits at the end of this post.
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Dramatic-Skies-31

Arizona Sky
|Wings gliding past arc,
|high above Mogollon Rim:
|raven and rainbow.

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Out of Reach
|Hard fingers rise up,
|trying to grasp soft colors
|as the rainbow fades.

No Pots of Gold
|Seek ends of rainbows.
|You will not find them? Okay.
|The quest is enough.

§: Notes and Credits

While there are zillions of fine photos of rainbows, the images used here are in an elite group.  (Wish they were mine.)  The rainbow does not just coexist with whatever else is in the scene; it works with the other elements and lifts a good image to greatness.

Subsection headings below are also links to pages with more detail.

§§: Harvey Stearn’s Photo of Raven and Rainbow

Click on the link above if U have any interest at all in how dramatic skies can contribute to landscape photos.  No interest?  Click anyway and U will soon have one.  The photo I used comes near the end in a long series of splendid examples.

I first saw this photo as a standout among standouts in a collection curated by Mitch Teemley, whose blog has many great collections alongside funny and/or insightful original content.  The idea of a haiku with what became the last line of Arizona Sky came to mind quickly, but writing other lines I liked took longer.  Much longer.

§§: Randy Olson’s Photo of Termite Mound and Rainbow

I wrote No Pots of Gold and later found this splendid photo to illustrate it (and inspire some haibun prose).  The photo proved to be a gift that keeps on giving; it inspired Out of Reach.

§§: Naturalism in Haiku

Rainbows are one kind of spectrum.  There are many other series rather like the somewhat quantitative R-O-Y-G-B-I-V of rainbows, and sometimes it helps to think of those spectra as rainbows.  Two examples follow.

This post’s series of haiku exemplifies the spectrum of naturalism in haiku.  Like Arizona Sky, many haiku are specific descriptions of a momentary observation.  Like No Pots of Gold, some are toward the other extreme: general expressions of attitudes toward life, with at most a metaphorical reference to nature.  Out of Reach is in between.

There is also a spectrum of compliance with the 5-7-5 rule, which is revered by some and reviled by others.  Like most of my own haiku, the ones in this post comply.  Tho I do respect the 5-7-5 rule, I also wrote a haiku that goes 3-2-5 and a haiku with just 2 lines.  No apologies.

Don’t submit blindly to restrictions on
subject matter and nuances of form,
for haiku or any other kind of art.
Let the rainbows glow.
haibun, haiku, photography

Rainbow Revisited

I found a splendid photo to illustrate a haiku about a rainbow in 2016.  Can I use the same photo for the same purpose w/o repeating myself?  Yes.  The photo is a gift that keeps on giving.
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Carpe Diem #1410 Rainbow (short-haibun)

In response to an earlier CDHK rainbow prompt, I wrote a haiku and later found a splendid photo to illustrate it (and inspire some haibun prose).  Can I use the same photo here w/o repeating myself?  Yes.  The photo is a gift that keeps on giving; it has inspired a new haiku.

Out of Reach
|Hard fingers rise up,
|trying to grasp soft colors
|as the rainbow fades.

australian-rainbow_350x466

The image used here has been resized from a photo by Randy Olson with a termite mound in the foreground.
Prints can be bought.

Including the post title and credits, the response above has 98 words.

haibun, haiku, humor, photography

Australian Rainbow

Randy Olson’s superb photo of a rainbow is both a visual complement to the yearning expressed in the famous Judy Garland song and a great illustration for one of my haiku.  A rainbow is forever out of reach.  And yet …
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To illustrate my response to Carpe Diem # 1020 rainbow, I did a quick search that found more fine images of rainbows than I could view in a lifetime.  The image used here jumped out because it has a vertical format, does not need the rainbow to grab me, and hints at a futile yearning.  The termite mound in the foreground looks like a hand trying to grasp the rainbow.

Termites are much too busy building mounds and digesting cellulose to indulge in such yearnings.  Humans are busy too, and many of us have some awareness of the geometric reasons that a rainbow is forever out of reach.  We sometimes yearn anyway.

australian-rainbow_350x466

No Pots of Gold
|Seek ends of rainbows.
|You will not find them? Okay.
|The quest is enough.

The image used here is a photo by Randy Olson that was available at the time of posting as computer desktop wallpaper from National Geographic.

Prints can still be bought.