I’m starting a new online class Monday on Digital Storytelling, which I’m hoping will lead to a series of hands-on classes on Digital Storytelling that I can twist into poetry projects. I loved my last digital lit class, Electronic Literature, which led me to one or two books about digital lit. But I’m half experiment-lover and half Luddite so whenever I do this electronic lit stuff I always want to try to ground myself in something very physical around writing. This usually turns out to be haiku, which can be very quiet and tactile.
So I haven’t forgotten my 52 haiku project (which got shafted in last year's drama) and I hope to start this in the next few weeks: one haiku prompt a week for 52 weeks. I’ve added the component of Sumi ink drawing to it (for something even more tactile: haikus with little drawings. Truth: I utterly suck and drawing but I’ve purchased two things for the project:
- A Sumi ink kit (right)
- The kit Zen By the Brush (above) with an ink board and a book that provides 25 prompts to get us started. The ink board is supposed to help you deal with non attachment because you have to erase every drawing you do.
So once a week I’ll post the prompt, my haiku and drawing and any other experience with it. Anybody can work along with me now or in a few months down the line or in a few years when you come across this post in the backwaters of the Internets.
This will be the instruction each week:
- Read the prompt (some will be haiku, some will not).
- Meditate on the prompt.
- Write a haiku.
- Draw something in the style of a Sumi drawings as a companion to your new ku.
Researching this project, I came across a very cool Aliens Sumi ink drawing by a modern Sumi artist who attributes this work to Qi Baishi (齐白石). Read more about it.