27 March, 2013

Every Eyelash


every eyelash
and every tiny hair
my sleeping son

1 comment:

Hobbes said...

The haiku is very personal, and pleases me a great deal. Dig past the sentiment, and I like its structure: tiny details, suggesting that the author is closely engaged with the subject. Probably observing, probably the act of an adoring father.

Haiku deliberately omit the author, preferring to let the moment speak for itself. A pleasing haiku "a-hah" moment can be achieved by tying the author into the fabric of the poem, without explicitly mentioning him. While I am just a humble amateur, and invite no comparison, it is a technique that the old masters employed - many of Basho's poems, and perhaps the majority of Issa's, follow similar patterns.

Of course, there is a pun suggested here, too: the English phrasing suggests that the subject is "every hair my son", corresponding to the English idiom with which you may be familiar. Again, appealing to idiom is very usual technique for classical-format haiku.

The image that makes this haiga corresponds to one from much earlier, when we had the results of the first ultrasound scan! This was the announcement that we made to our friends at the time - perhaps you can guess the sex of the child from the imagery.

I liked the use of this image because, while the haiku was written from the point-of-view of a father watching his sleeping son, an analogous version occurred when we watched the live (3D!) ultrasound scan of our dear youngest son that first time. We couldn't make out "every eyelash and every tiny hair", but we could see his cute Chinese/English eyes, and his happy smile.