antihaiku #4

July 28, 2008 at 6:37 pm | Posted in antihaiku, poetry, writing | 20 Comments
Tags: , , ,

who gains most from this transaction
the one who acts from
some wild reaction?

then trapdoors open
of their own accord
and spiders scuttle
thrust their way inside
some skull,

long after worms have left
even of its ghost bereft
the hanged mans corpse
mouth wide open deep

inside some diamond glitters
the pirates prize,
shining like Blake’s tigers eyes,

who gains most from this transaction,
the one who acts from wild reaction.


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  1. Like a steam train.
    woohoo, thankyou, Z.
    This one has been podcasted here, just for my notes,
    Hellooo, Zephyrine,

  2. this reads so well…i love the rhythm of it.
    Thankyou, Meander.

  3. I am fascinated by your antihaiku, Paul. Such a stunning image you have created. Can you tell me a bit about the philosophy and form of your antihaiku?
    Hi, Brad. Thanks. Antihaiku have no rules of course but the general idea is that they move the reader from one place to another, unlike haiku which emphasise stillness. Like haiku they tend to use fairly simple language and have a respect for structure. Unlike haiku they often have an edge, like social commentary or a personal edge, an antihaiku usually expresses discontent which is why they are about movement, energy, action and change. I have been writing them for a while now but noone else has had a go. I look forward to reading the first piece tagged antihaiku by someoneelse, that will be a blast.

  4. chillingly true sardonic wholesome spoonful behind the veil of ordinary cobwebs really venerably scary cut the cord release the demon heat. because of it (perilous risk) ok (only kidding) i’m done for, free to fall into a tornado….ok get the rosemary time for a ritual ablution, love that
    hello, Tipota, thanks,

  5. I like anything anti. And this is simply great!

    Darkness pervades but thats goo too…
    Thanks, Guatami, long time no see,

  6. Ah, poetic passion gazing into the belly of repulsive death to find precious diamonds. No?
    Yes, but also the idea in the recurring couplet, that the prize goes to those who do not think who simply react instinctively and wild or somethingorother, hello, Gloria,

  7. The podcast opens this up into 3d, literally. Your voice is perfect for such intensity. There is a lot of rhyme – more than I think I have ever read from you – but it suits the feeling of expectation. I can’t shake that this is like a voiceover intro to a film – camera pans inside a cave, comes to rest on the skeleton and then circles it, before disappearing inside the crevice to find the jewel.
    Thankyou, Mary P., I should see if I can talk to Peter about including it in his fillum,

  8. This is brilliant Paul. Hearing your voice makes it even better.
    Thanks Tina. Praise from you is extra special, seeing as how you are my favourite interweb poet and an alround champion human,

  9. *aww shucks* 🙂

  10. The flow and imagery is intense, leading up to the exploding couplet. Love it!
    Thankyou, Cocoyea, it is always a joy to hear from you,

  11. i think this is lovely. i love the way the ending circles back to the beginning.
    Thankyou, Lissa. It doesn’t end up quite where it began, the punctuation changes from a question mark to a fullstop so the couplet changes from a question to a statement. There is the movement from one place to another which will come to characterise the antihaiku.
    And you’re back, yayayay hello, Lissa!

  12. Best line ever:

    “even of its ghost bereft”
    Hello, my queen, thankyou. I like that one too, if I may say so myself as well. You’re back too, woohoo,

  13. paul,
    i had never heard of anti-haiku as a poetry form before. it is quite unique and as always you evoke both sinister and magical elements. i especially enjoyed the reading – lovely.

    i may have to give this a try.
    You should definitely give podcasting a try, Sarah. Your poetry would be perfect for it. And anthaiku too,

  14. just before i read this, I was here:
    looking at “one lovely drawing, part 21” art found in a cave of a man, 20000 yrs ago killing a woolly mammoth. anyway, it kind of went with the corpse thing and the transaction. even though you probably werent being literal there. very cool, i hope you see lotss of “antihaiku” tags from here on out, springing up all over google!
    That is a cool site. I doubt antihaiku will be springing up everywhere. People rarely do what I want them too, thank goodness. Imagine what a world it would be if they did. Chaos! woohooo,

  15. I lack of anything intelligent to say- so allow me to simply say- you are the best.
    Woohoo, I got a Randall comment, thankyou,

  16. but those gains are political and spent on the now in deferance to the long term
    That is thought provoking comment and I think you could be right. Storage of the surplus might be come an issue, thanks Ozy,

  17. I like what transpires in your head. It certainly lends one to think and to use their imagination.

    Something sorely missing now days.
    Something sorely missing like ((((((((((Amber!!!))))))))))), hellooooo,

  18. […] to whether I have done justice to the form. For an example of Paul’s antihaiku, have a look here and scroll down through the comments for a description of the […]

  19. Nicely done!

  20. Hi, Paul.

    I’m Jesús Ge, a spanish poet. I was working about the concept of Antihaiku in another way two years ago. My Antihaiku conserve the traditional metric form, and no metaphors condition, but it looks in death, unjustice, or pain situations of our actual world.

    I published an Antihaikus leaflet into a collection of Contemporary Poems. You can download it here ( Sorry, it’s in Spanish.

    Sorry for my english.

    kind regards.

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