Over the last few days I’ve been looking at ways we can rewild ourselves. The first was wild swimming, the second was taking a walk in the woods, and here is my third……
Now, you’d be forgiven for thinking I meant to write Hike Up A Hill. (which is of course, a perfectly acceptable thing to do in the quest for rewilding yourself!). But Haiku, for those who haven’t come across it, is a type of short poem originally from Japan. What is wonderful about this little gem is that you don’t have to be a poet to know it! Composed as three non rhymed lines of five, seven and five syllables, this simple format invites you to focus on a moment in time, and to capture it’s essence in words.
“Fir cones rest lightly,
On a bed of soft needles,
Fallen from their tree”Rachael Boughton
A Haiku poem is traditionally associated with nature. Evoking images of the natural world, it invites you to focus on the moment and mindfully experience it. In writing a Haiku you have an objective and an outlet that requires you to engage with your senses; to notice what you hear, see, smell or feel in the present moment. To pay attention to the smallest of details; The sun glistening on a cobweb or the sound of a blackbird at dusk. Not only do you stop to take notice, you ask yourself “What is it that has specifically caught my attention, and how can I describe this?”.
One of my favourite places to compose a Haiku is on top of a hill. Knowing that the intention is there before you climb, you can make your way up to the top taking notice of all that surrounds you. When you reach the top you have already practiced paying attention, and combined with the sense that you’ve reached the top and can sit back and relax, it can bring great clarity and effortless inspiration.
But you don’t have to hike up a hill for a Haiku! You can take this simple exercise anywhere you go. You don’t even need paper and pen, just compose one in your head as you go; walking to work, sitting in the garden, even waiting in a queue for a coffee, simply take notice of nature around you; a butterfly, the sound of rain, the shape of a cloud… and see if you can really hone in on it, capture it. Have fun with it…..It’s easier than you think!
I’d love to read your Haiku if you’d like to share. Leave a comment below or post on Instagram and tag @girlgonewild_dorset