Etiquette on Poetry Sites: It’s Important

Unless a site is specifically created for workshopping poems, it’s not proper to criticize another person’s work. Poetry sites are not a free-for-all. Writers want to feel safe to post their work. Not to have their words picked at like vultures going in for the prey.

Often times, a poem is personal and raw. Poets are looking to connect, to be read. Not to have their punctuation or grammar corrected especially by someone who is new to the genre. Too often neophyte writers want to be noticed but usually they wind up embarrassing themselves. Or in many cases, they are unfriended or blocked.

Some individuals simply can’t seem to help themselves–they want to fix other people and their work. Totally inappropriate! If their need is so great, then I offer a solution: start a workshop site of their own.

Boundaries are imporant, on all levels. Unless invited, control yourselves or you will get your virtual fingers slapped, not to mention your ego.

Haiku and Imagination

Try explaining haiku to someone who never heard of haiku. Yesterday I tried. The dental assistant gave me a blank stare when I quoted Basho’s old pond. A double blank stare when I shared an old one of mine: Garden snake / slipping out of / its knot

Oh, she said, you have to have a great imagination to write haiku!

Just the opposite, I explained. Imagination has nothing to do with it. It’s all about focus and paying attention to what’s there.

Needless to say, I didn’t get very far. Not all seeds take sprout and that’s okay.

Simplicity is one of the hardest things to grasp. Mother Nature is the master of simplicity. She’s the greatest teacher, creating from herself. When imagination enters into the picture, we often skew the moments that are before us, adding something that isn’t really there. Not there’s anything wrong with that! Of course not! Just know that when we embellish what’s there, we move into the realm of poetry. When we start relying on adjectives and verbs (and God forbid the dreaded adverb), we lose the essence of haiku. Haiku rely on imagery, on nouns. They look simple but they are hard to write.

A Large Publisher Wants to Use Your Work in an Anthology or Text Book —

Should you just say yes? No, you should not. The curator or editor of the book including the publisher are making money based on the work of contributors.

If you were paid for the first edition of an anthology, and it goes into future printings, you ought to ask for the same payment as was given initially. It’s a different story if a small publisher does not intend to earn money (but in fact lose money), then it’s up to you if you want to have your work in the book.

In a few words, too many writers get sidetracked by flattery and the desire to have their work in print. Large publishing houses know this and they’re hoping you go along for the ride.

Yes, I’ll Get the Vaccine, Nope, I Won’t

It’s experimental. Do I want to be experimented on?

I’ve had Lyme disease and heavy metal poisoning. I’m one of those sensitive people with poor methylation (can’t detox like so many of you lucky peeps). I know what it’s like to wake up with neurological symptoms for years with doctors telling me what I was going through was all in my head. NO KIDDING, GUYS!

Do I really want to be told again, “Well, most people do well……..” Well, I don’t wanna be one of those who don’t. I’m not a rabbit.

Sorry, ya’ll can shame me till the cows come home. You ain’t in these here mocs, but I wish you all the best. Judge not lest yea be judged and a hearty namaste to all (I only had one glass of wine).


Focus on Nature and the Moments it Brings

We’ve been buying trees for our new property/house. Among them is a four-foot avocado-Mexican which can sustain temps to 20 degrees. To celebrate, I also bought an avocado (rare these days since I’m Nooming it and they are high caloric).

As we all know, haiku/senryu are about the now moment. This one popped up/out yesterday as I was gathering items to make a sandwich:

By cesarean

I remove

the avocado pit

It got quite a few laughs on Facebook. Heaven knows how we all need a good laugh during this challenging (understatement) pandemic. How I’ll get through it is to focus on Nature, garden inside and out and remain a receptacle for the aha moments for in the end, what else matters?