Mountains

Mountain dog parkAlex Terrgi here. When me and my fur-buddy Jackie go to the dog park, we play in the shadow of a big mountain. My human seems to think this is a big deal. She says things like “so beautiful!” But I don’t really care about the mountain. It’s too far away. And way way too big. And especially the mountain has no smell. Maybe if I could climb the mountain I would like its smells, but like I said before it’s too far away and too big. As for beautiful, well . . . I’d rather look at bear poop. (And smell it too.)

But I do like the dog park, so I keep my opinions to myself about the stupid mountain. I don’t want her to stop bringing me here.

Prizes

PhilosophersToday my haiku is from June 24th of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Philosophers, Scientists, and Other Ponderers, one of a 7-book series. The haiku topic for today is “Prizes”:

you are a show-off
because you are a human
hoping for prizes

It’s Haiku Friday again. For the past twenty years or so, it has been my practice to write one haiku every day. Every Friday I share a haiku here, about whatever topic I happen to choose. I invite you to write a haiku on this topic too, and share it with me and the readers of this blog. Just write it in the Comments below. The only rules are: 1) your haiku must be about the named topic; 2) you must follow the 5-7-5 syllable format; 3) no obscenities or hate (I will delete those). That’s it.

If you’re interested in the story of how The Haiku Book of Days series came to be, check out my previous blog post here. You can purchase this book on Amazon here.   

Trigger: I Remember

When Writer's Block words on a barricade or road construction sign stopping you from making progress writing a novel, article essay or other form of communication you're unable to composeI come down with a case of Writer’s Block (not if, unfortunately), I sometimes use the device of the trigger sentence to get me going again. This is a sentence starting with an easy noun-verb phrase, such as “I am” or “I want” or “She saw”, etc. Then I write a bunch of sentences starting with this phrase, trying not to stop or even think, just the phrase and whatever comes into my head next. One of my favorite phrases to use is “I remember” – so here is a short piece I wrote using this phrase:

I remember hiding on top of the garage roof to escape the interested eyes of my mother. I remember doing my homework in the living room. I remember the times I hoped I would forget. I remember the color of the hospital curtains the morning my son died, a sickly turquoise. I remember the crows flying through an orange sky the morning of my daughter’s birth. I remember dancing in a smoky nightclub with a boy I despised, but boy could he dance.

Try this yourself if you get blocked. It really does work.

 

Musts

PhilosophersToday my haiku is from June 17th of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Philosophers, Scientists, and Other Ponderers, one of a 7-book series. The haiku topic for today is “Musts”:

Must is a killer
Should a hooded torturer
tell them to shove it

It’s Haiku Friday again. For the past twenty years or so, it has been my practice to write one haiku every day. Every Friday I share a haiku here, about whatever topic I happen to choose. I invite you to write a haiku on this topic too, and share it with me and the readers of this blog. Just write it in the Comments below. The only rules are: 1) your haiku must be about the named topic; 2) you must follow the 5-7-5 syllable format; 3) no obscenities or hate (I will delete those). That’s it.

If you’re interested in the story of how The Haiku Book of Days series came to be, check out my previous blog post here. You can purchase this book on Amazon here

Bleah

BleahAlex Terrgi here. My human says I am a “picky” dog. That’s because I don’t like to eat just anything. I have good taste. I don’t like fake food like those things called “dog biscuits” which do NOT taste like meat, no matter what they claim. Meat is from something that was once alive. Dog biscuits have never been alive. In fact they aren’t even dead, because to be dead you would first have to be alive. The only thing you can do with dog biscuits is bury them in the dirt and hope the dirt doesn’t turn into poison dust that kills trees.

I guess you can tell I have strong feelings about dog biscuits. I have held these opinions for as long as my human has known me, so WHY does she keep trying to feed them to me?

I think it’s because she likes to draw pictures of me saying “bleah” like the one here. I simply cannot think why otherwise.

Magic Wand

PhilosophersToday my haiku is from June 10th of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Philosophers, Scientists, and Other Ponderers, one of a 7-book series. The haiku topic for today is “Magic Wand”:

when you want it done
you can’t wave a magic wand
you have to do it

It’s Haiku Friday again. For the past twenty years or so, it has been my practice to write one haiku every day. Every Friday I share a haiku here, about whatever topic I happen to choose. I invite you to write a haiku on this topic too, and share it with me and the readers of this blog. Just write it in the Comments below. The only rules are: 1) your haiku must be about the named topic; 2) you must follow the 5-7-5 syllable format; 3) no obscenities or hate (I will delete those). That’s it.

If you’re interested in the story of how The Haiku Book of Days series came to be, check out my previous blog post here. You can purchase this book on Amazon here.

The Movies and You

41+f9VcRScL._AC_UL320_SR256,320_It’s said that art reflects life.  It does, of course, but sometimes life’s experiences are caused by art. This is true of any art, but one of the most fun to write about is the movies. Sometimes watching a movie can affect our lives in profound ways. To illustrate, here’s a story told to me by one of the participants in my “Making History” class.

“My father was a longshoreman in the 1950s and 60s, shared “Sally” (not her real name.) “When I was young I never really knew what a longshoreman did. It was just where Dad went every day, and it didn’t matter to me. I saw my father as an uneducated man and I didn’t want to be like him at all. We had nothing in common.

“My parents scrimped and saved to send me to college, although I didn’t know about the scrimping and saving until later. I thought college was my due. I dated college boys, and I was ashamed of my longshoreman father, who laughed too loud and drank too much beer and only read the sports page of the paper.

“When he went out on strike I felt that he had done it to spite me. All it meant to me was there was less money. I thought strikes were stupid. Nobody is making you be a longshoreman – if you don’t like it, then why don’t you just quit? I didn’t have the nerve to actually say this to him, but it’s what I thought.

“It wasn’t until I was a sophomore in college that I had an epiphany about my dad. One Saturday night I didn’t have a date, so as I sat in the lounge at my college dorm feeling sorry for myself, I turned on the black and white TV and began watching an old movie, On the Waterfront with Marlon Brando, which I had never seen before.

“That movie changed me. I saw how longshoremen were treated. I looked at those rough men and I saw my father, working at that difficult job day after day, for poor pay and little respect, not even from his own daughter, just so I could have something better.

“I cried throughout most of the movie, tears of shame, and tears of anger. But at the end, when a bloody Brando walks up that gangway, I was standing up and cheering, all alone in the deserted dateless dorm.

“By the end of that semester, I had changed my major to economics, and after college I got a job working for a union, starting as a part-time secretary. I worked for the union for 36 years, and whenever I wondered why I stayed with them for so long, all I had to do was close my eyes and see my father working on the docks alongside Brando. I like to think I’m doing my part. I know whose side I’m on. My dad’s side.”

Which movies changed you?

Answers

PhilosophersToday my haiku is from June 3rd of my book A Haiku Book of Days for Philosophers, Scientists, and Other Ponderers, one of a 7-book series. The haiku topic for today is “Answers”:

ask your questions, but
if you want a straight answer
know there’s no such thing

It’s Haiku Friday again. For the past twenty years or so, it has been my practice to write one haiku every day. Every Friday I share a haiku here, about whatever topic I happen to choose. I invite you to write a haiku on this topic too, and share it with me and the readers of this blog. Just write it in the Comments below. The only rules are: 1) your haiku must be about the named topic; 2) you must follow the 5-7-5 syllable format; 3) no obscenities or hate (I will delete those). That’s it.

If you’re interested in the story of how The Haiku Book of Days series came to be, check out my previous blog post here.  You can purchase this book on Amazon here.