(non-breaking space) | in theory

I was reading a couple books about crafting and appreciating haiku — the sort of reading that tends to remind me of two things:

1. why I love reading and writing poetry and haiku

2. why I hate reading books that attempt to define good poetry or haiku

I’ve never bought the idea that you can foster creativity by forcing people into the same old patterns, which is why I’ve always bristled at the conventional wisdom conveyed in such books — as well as teachers who rely too much on these conventions.

Some of the poetry and haiku I’ve enjoyed most would fall “short” of such experts’ proscriptions. Maybe that’s because I evaluate poetry, haiku or any other artful expression on one criterion. It must speak to me in a way that enhances the scope of my understanding.

Simplistic as it may be, that definition works for me. What are your criteria — for haiku, poetry or art in general?

too many guidelines
crowding the mind and spoiling
the moment’s beauty

(C) Howard - (non-breaking space blog)

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