I’m nearing the end of the Haiku Mixtape project, so I thought that it would be a good idea if I put down the notes on each haiku. This idea came up partly as a way to see how an explanation would look like in writing, and as a way to show people how the sausage is made to those whose who are working on poetry of their own. I just wanna cover ten from the first eleven haiku ( I already deconstructed one in a previous post).
Ziggy Stardust – It took me a few weeks of figuring out what song would start the project. Any mixtape has to start strong, and I decided the late great David Bowie was the best choice.The inspiration primarily came from the image of Ziggy, of course, and part of the lyrics (“when the kids killed the man…”)
Austere – The Joy Formidable is a Welsh indie rock band. I heard about them years ago through an incredibly-ancient Idolator blog post, and I like that, despite their overall pop sound, they still had a kick to them. Hence why I ended it with the word roar.
Pearls Girl – I had some words to a longer free-verse poem inspired by this Underworld song – I never finished it, and I didn’t like it. I played around with it this time for the mixtape, and made this instead. I think I might go back to the original, who knows.
I Don’t Care (I Love It) – There’s a personal story to why I chose this song that I won’t get into unless we’re friends. The narrative in the haiku give a general idea of what happened, and added a bit of flair ( the smashing/crashed internal rhyme).
She’s Lost Control – Fun fact: Ian Curtis had epilepsy, which affected his dancing on-stage. This haiku goes straight to the point, to the lyrics, because, hey, I gotta deal with it too. And it would feel really cheap if I’d do it any other way.
Flight Of The Feathered Serpent – The imagery of Quetzalcoatl, the Aztec god of wind and learning, is very cool. That was the sole inspiration of the haiku sprinkled with the sonic sprawl of the song.
Beetlebum – I saw Blur live with friends at Madison Square Garden that week. This is my favorite song by the band, and the lyrics just hit me. Used the word Britannia to do a syllabic extension to Britpop, so to speak.
Bela Lugosi’s Dead – The Halloween haiku, obviously. There is no way I won’t say no to a good goth song as my choice for this, my favorite of holidays. Imagery of people wearing black and vampires stuck in my head when I started the writing process.
Teenage Crime – I found this Adrian Lux song on Spotify, and I quite liked it. Nice simple house beat, a coy voice with sparse lyrics that fit. Brought out memories to a lot of old clubbing days that lasted ’til morning.
Her Fantasy – This one is slightly inspired by the music video and combined it with inspiration born from the lyrics in Dear’s baritone delivery. I also used the album cover for the mixtape background. After I finished it I spent a night of watching Kenneth Anger movies.
Instagram Chart Hits
So, while I have had small success with my Haiku Mixtape project on actual Tumblr, I found a curious change of events somewhere else. A few weeks ago I decided “why not post things about it on my Instagram account?” So I gave it a shot, starting with a post to the first mixtape:
Since then, I’ve gotten more likes on the latest haiku I’ve put up on my Instagram. The latest, which is inspired by The Knife’s “Silent Shout,” got more likes – the numbers are getting better.
Granted, some are music related given that the haiku are based on music, A lot of the attention comes from finding from good poets on Instagram. That is something that I found genuinely intriguing, this medium of visual poetry right at my hand whenever I wanted. Good examples are people like J.R. Williams, K.Towne Jr., and others.
Hooked me up to HaikuJAM
The best Instagram like I’ve received – the most important one, honestly – was from HaikuJAM. Now, HaikuJAM is an app that completely disrupts the idea of poetry writing with a simple idea. Each user is allowed one line of text for the stanza. That means three poets work on one haiku.
I’ve been big fan of user-generated content since I worked for a company that’s entire idea worked on it. Using that in conjunction with something I love is amazing to say the least. As of this writing I have been involved with 164 haiku, meaning I’ve written the equivalent of 54 haiku since I started last week.
And crowd-sourced poems
A lot of once-a-day haiku bloggers may have serious writer’s block, or quality output that veers towards the subpar. HaikuJAM gives any writer an addictive and creative sensation that easily breaks those obstacles in your poetic writing. If you have an idea for longer-form poem, perhaps the work you are developing with others on these jams can serve as an engine in their creation?
I’m considering this idea with previous long-form poem from long ago – not take the stanzas people and call them my own, mind you, but as new points of view that I hadn’t considered. I’m curious in the depths of knowledge I’ll gain from these people from around the world.