We Carve Hearts on Stone
Though I love writing in many different forms and styles, lately I’ve found poetry running through my veins, the poetic framework fitting so seamlessly with my experiences as they weave through my deepest recesses and into expressive emergence.
This year, I felt compelled to write a poem per day during National Poetry Month in April. As I’m currently living in Japan, I decided to write haikus – not the traditional Japanese haiku, but the more standardized version that follows the 5-7-5 syllable count. True in some sense to the Japanese style of haiku, however, I quickly found myself instinctively focusing on the theme of nature.
At the very beginning, I wrote a poem and then found a photo to accompany it, but after a few days, I found myself drawn to the idea of seeking out a photo to draw inspiration from. Imagery and language complement each other so strikingly, intellect and formulation on the one side, and a landscape beyond words and into the realm sensory consciousness on the other; I chose photos that spoke directly to me on a sensual and emotional level, ones that evoked strong memories associated with the moment I captured the image during a long and beautiful journey through Southeast Asia and India, leading to Japan. The haikus that followed were not a “direct result” of the photograph, but very often mirrored its aesthetic and preoccupation, while also remaining very much tethered to my heart on that given day.
One example of this was the day the devastating earthquake hit Nepal. My heart was spilling over in sadness and grief, and the photo I selected – taken in the Himalayan foothills – and the haiku I wrote seemed to find each other before the words were even written.
This video below, entitled “We Carve Hearts on Stone”, is a compilation of the 30 days of poems and photographs, and owes its existence to the unending inspirations of Catherine Ghosh, whose idea it was to make this video, who encouraged me to re-read a month’s worth of work in search of its story – what a cathartic moment, to find it in the search for peace and stillness, and the lessons Earth’s splendors offer! – and who singlehandedly produced and edited the video, and found the brilliant music by the gifted Larry Kutcher to accompany the piece to such evocative effect. Catherine, thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Please see the original posting of this video on Women’s Spiritual Poetry: Journey of the Heart.