Unless stated otherwise, all poetry on Swimming in Lines of Haiku is Copyright Kirsten Cliff and may not be reprinted in any form without written permission from the author. kirsten(DOT)cliff(AT)gmail(DOT)com

Saturday, March 10, 2012

She's Going To Do It!

About 18 months ago, my little sister asked me if I knew of a haiku about family to go with the tattoo she was planning to get done. The tattoo (her first) is a representation of our family in the form of seven birds. See my first post about it here, and then come back. I'll wait :)

Well, we never got far with this at the time. I suggested one of my haiku, which I'd originally written for Cameron when we were dating, and thought it could encompass what she was after:

          thinking of you...
          the light
          on a paua shell

This under seven birds would be like thinking of our family, and the paua shell set the scene firmly in New Zealand and at the beach, one of my sister's favourite places.

After getting her tattoo (sorry I don't have a picture) she continued to carry around this haiku in her wallet, pulling it out every now and then to read and ponder. She liked it a lot. Meanwhile, as time went on, I forgot about the whole thing.

Until a couple of weekends ago, when she texted me asking if I'd write a haiku about our family for her tattoo: she is getting some little birdie additions done (to symbolise our two nephews and niece) and, as she's about to go and live overseas, thought it a great time to finally get a haiku inked.

So, I came up with this:

          family gathering
          the many sounds
          of laughter

It came to me quite quickly once I got the first line. It took a few slight changes to get here, and after sitting with it for two days (I couldn't rush something that someone was going to get tattooed on them!) I texted it to her...

She really liked it! She had something in her head about being together and laughter, though she hadn't given me any clues at the time about where she'd wanted it to go. However, she wasn't sure about having the word 'family' in the haiku, and suggested a change to 'gathered together'. And funnily enough, the word 'together' keep popping in my head over the weekend but I couldn't see how to use it. It was great to hear we were on the same page, so to speak.

So, she is booked in to get this haiku tattooed soon:

          gathered together
          the many sounds
          of laughter

I just can't get over how cool this is! I'll definitely get a photo to share when it's done. Stay tuned :)

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