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

Monday, March 5, 2012

These are a few of my favourite things...

Haiku and dreams. Dreams of the night variety, that is. Both are equally important to me, although I'm not very diligent about writing my dreams down each day, whereas I will almost always write down my haiku. I hope to get much better at this, as I value highly what my dreams are telling me. Below is my favourite quote about dreams that sums up my feelings exactly:

Suppose someone told you
that there was something that spoke to you every night,
that always presented you with a truth about your own life and soul,
that was tailor-made to your individual needs and particular life-story,
and that offered to guide you throughout your lifetime,
and connect you with a source of wisdom far beyond yourself.
And, furthermore, suppose that all of this was absolutely free.
Naturally you would be astonished that something like this existed.
Yet this is exactly the way it is with our dreams.  ~ John A. Sanford (1975), Dreams and Healing, Paulist Press, NY

My blog title actually comes from a dream: In it I was literally swimming in lines of haiku and only awoke, with a sudden start, when I heard hubby's whispered exclamations as he'd hit his leg on the way into the bedroom (or something similar). I love water and swimming, so swimming in lines of haiku was a wonderful experience for me. I'm currently searching out dream haiku for my month as one of The Haiku Foundation's Per Diem: Daily Haiku editor's with my chosen theme of 'Dream Speak', the title of which I took from one of my own haiku: 

          dream speak...
          sunlight on the opening
          tulip's tips

DailyHaiku Cycle 12 (November 4, 2011) 

So, I thought it was about time I wrote a haiku about my above dream, and came up with this on Friday:

          even in my dreams
          swimming in lines
          of haiku

I'd wanted to change my blog's welcome picture ever since I moved last November, as the iconic Mount Manganui and beach scene was now in a different region to my new home. As of Friday, I have a very cool photo of rippling water, which I took some years ago in this region (Waikato) with the well-known Kiwi icon of a silver fern floating under the surface. And I've added my new haiku into the mix to convey my two favourite things as well as to give readers, old and new, some insight into me and my blog's title. I've always liked the image and am happy to be able to give it a fitting home at last.

During my dream haiku search, I came across the book Inside Out: Haiku and Dreams by Joseph Kirschner (Deep North Press, 2003). I was overjoyed when, on contacting Joseph and telling him what I was up to, he kindly sent me a copy of his book as a gift! Gosh, how I LOVE our haiku community :) I am thoroughly enjoying reading Inside Out and am grateful to read the haiku, dreams and explanations within it. (You can read a review by Modern Haiku here.) I will certainly look at writing more haiku from my dreams: It could definitely be a good way to get me to write at least some of my dream/s down each morning! After all:

Jung observed that dreams perform restorative, corrective, compensatory, prophetic, and developmental roles in our psyche; that to attend to our dreams is to attend to the cry of the soul.        ~ From The Art of Dreaming by Jill Mellick (Conari Press, 2001)


  1. Lately, I've been having dreams - images and lines of haiku interlocked. I should read this book. :-)

    Thanks for sharing.


  2. Yes, the book could be very interesting to you with your dream images and lines of haiku interlocked. I hope you've been writing this phenomena down! KC x