A long time ago I wrote an article titled, "Frost and Found." It was about "finding" haiku in the poems of Robert Frost. It never did see its way into print, but, I still think it is a valid approach to writing haiku, especially for kids who cry, "I don't know what to write about." Frost's work is chocky-block full of strong visual images. If you can't find a million images in a book of Frost's, there's something wrong with you.
Frost provides the images, and it's up to me, as the poet, and you, as the reader, to find the relationship to humans. I'm going to use Frost's phrases, but not necessarily in the order he presented them.
Since it's still apple picking time here in NH, and, since apples are particularly abundant this year, I thought I'd see what haiku lie hidden in "After Apple-Picking."
My long two-pointed ladder's sticking through a tree
Toward heaven still,
And there's a barrel that I didn't fill
Beside it, and there may be two or three
Apples I didn't pick upon some bough.
But I am done with apple-picking now.
Essence of winter sleep is on the night,
The scent of apples: I am drowsing off.
I cannot rub the strangeness from my sight
I got from looking through a pane of glass
I skimmed this morning from the drinking trough
And held against the world of hoary grass.
It melted, and I let it fall and break.
But I was well
Upon my way to sleep before it fell,
And I could tell
What form my dreaming was about to take.
Magnified apples appear and disappear,
Stem end and blossom end,
And every fleck of russet showing clear.
My instep arch not only keeps the ache,
It keeps the pressure of a ladder-round.
I feel the ladder sway as the boughs bend.
And I keep hearing from the cellar bin
The rumbling sound
Of load on load of apples coming in.
For I have had too much
Of apple-picking: I am overtired
Of the great harvest I myself desired.
There were ten thousand thousand fruit to touch,
Cherish in hand, lift down, and not let fall.
That struck the earth,
No matter if not bruised or spiked with stubble,
Went surely to the cider-apple heap
As of no worth.
One can see what will trouble
This sleep of mine, whatever sleep it is.
Were he not gone,
The woodchuck could say whether it's like his
Long sleep, as I describe its coming on,
Or just some human sleep.
Here are five haiku I found:
fleck of russet...
through a tree magnified
of no worth
a barrel that I didn't
ten thousand thousand fruit
struck the earth
scent of apples
on the night
I keep hearing...
this sleep of mine
How many haiku can you find?
Amy at The Poem Farm is this week's Round-Up host. Please stop by!