About the Book
Haiku is a Japanese written art form featuring unrhymed poetic verses containing a total of seventeen syllables arranged in lines of five, seven, and five syllables respectively. Haiku generally include a seasonal or naturalistic reference that captures a brief moment in time. Haiku date back to the seventeenth century in reaction to what was at the time very elaborate poetic traditions. Thus they are short and highly structured, and evoke profound imagery rather than rhyme. The stark simplicity and sparseness of Haiku are absolutely elemental to their beauty and appeal. Ancient Haiku often don't translate well to English, in terms of the rigorous construct and strict form required, as Japanese and English syllables simply do not usually correspond. Examples of traditional Japanese Haiku: Only Mount Fuji The summer grasses
Is left unburied All that remains
By young leaves Of warriors' dreams Haiku written in English obviously much more easily follow our form of the requisite structure. Examples of unrhymed English Haiku: Refreshing and cool Calm as a river
Love is a sweet summer rain Tranquility in my heart
That washes the world Blue summer skies reign The author is Western-born but with Eastern sensibilities. He is forever cursed by a lifelong penchant to reinvent all that he touches, and he proudly writes what no one else could have (perhaps because no one else would have wanted to?). The author absolutely loves highly structured poetry, and rhyming within the already tight and abbreviated framework of Haiku seemed to him to represent the ultimate challenge. The exquisite form, with so few words that they cannot get in the way of the message, with the rigid structure, discipline, and focus required - all were too inviting an opportunity to ignore. Thus, he has produced redefined Haiku, all of which preserve the sacred 5-7-5 structure, all of which display careful internal rhyming (at minimum three rhymes within each seventeen-syllable poem), and most of which present signature teachable moments and life lessons, insights and punchlines, in a uniquely American way. Examples of my new American Rhyming Haiku: Haiku underwent Sacred Fuji climbed
My passion to reinvent New Haiku written and rhymed
Not by accident Completion well-timed Poet laureate Listen to the word
Words and rhymes a careful fit Let the meaning sink unblurred
Plus punchlines and wit Heed what you have heard Haiku explore themes What I wrote you read
Consider what each one means As writer I worked and bled
Fulfill poet's dreams Ponder what I said Some might argue that the sanctity of the already perfect Haiku written art form did not require or invite further experimentation. To those so inclined there is only a half-hearted apology. Please enjoy these short poems in an open-minded and positive way to seek out the value offered. The reader can either 'power read' through all of the Haiku, or use the calendar format to read one Haiku each day as a 'thought nugget' to stimulate hungry brain cells.
About the Author: Barton Johnson is a career businessman in financial services and mortgage banking. He has amassed a fifty-plus year resume in a variety of executive, line, and staff positions for a series of mega, industry-leading companies across a broad range of business turnarounds, startups, and builds. As both an intrepreneur and entrepreneur, he created and led numerous ventures with outstanding business results, achieving significant earnings and market value. Bart is currently in the process of launching a socially significant new business. Bart has always been something of a modern Renaissance Man with a passion for creative activities. Born and raised in Michigan, he has lived in a total of seven states and resides now in Longmont, Colorado. He is an avid traveler having visited forty-three countries on five continents in a variety of civilized and adventure trips. Bart has been a winemaker with his own private labels, first Bart Noir and then Entendre Wines. But his true passion is now and has always been writing, and he has authored and published award-winning business articles and newsletters, travel articles, short stories, a memoir, and an earlier book of poetry, in addition to this book.