Haiku about Dreams: Week 6 of rewriting your well-being

The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.

Eleanor Roosevelt

Greetings from week 6 of Haiku for You, where you can huddle up to haiku and learn how to use its written form as an act of mindfulness. Every week, I’ll provide a new writing prompt along with an easy guide that I hope will bring some stillness to your hectic lives.

To any newcomers, please join us in this happiness practice. If you would like to read a more in-depth explanation of Haiku for You, wander over to the introductory post, and we will look forward to welcoming you upon your return!

Now, make sure you feel extra comfortable for this session. Consider where you might normally take an afternoon nap or curl up beneath a blanket. Where do you put your feet up after a long day? That will be the perfect place.

Take a slow, deep breath in …

and then back out.

This week, you are going on a journey you could navigate with your eyes closed:

dreams.

Thoughts about sleep

It’s not surprising that falling behind on our recommended 7-8 hours of sleep a night can be a nightmare for our mental health in a variety of ways. We all know that an evening of no shut-eye can make us feel as though our bodies are twice as heavy and our brains have turned into mashed potato.

Problems with our mental health can cause problems with our sleep and problems with our sleep can cause or exacerbate problems with our mental health. This is why it’s so important to monitor both on a regular basis, and do what we can (where we are able) to prevent either from spiralling out of control.

A healthy perspective on sleep

Sleep, for many people – due to its troublesome and unpredictable nature – can become something we dread or procrastinate from, rather than look forward to. I am going to try to help you re-frame sleep under a positive guise through the use of haiku.

Think of your sleeping place as a departure lounge before you jet off to a different destination. We should never see sleep as a luxury for other people. Sleep is a necessity. Our energy allows us to operate at full capacity and be who we are, so don’t underestimate it.

If we don’t sleep properly, we are offering a smaller part of ourselves to the world. In the same way need a trip away from our minds every now and then, we need to sleep in order for our bodies and brains to repair themselves.

So, why do we need to dream?

There are many different theories on dreams, but most of them talk about how our brains sift through information while we are asleep, tidying up and deciding which items we need to throw away. Dreams can be our therapists, our outlets for creativity, or they can remind us of the most important memories. And these are only the dreams we experience during the nighttime.

Daydreaming is just as important

If we don’t allow ourselves space, we have no room to dream. If we are constantly focused on something, whether it’s at work, doing the chores, or just in constant conversation with others, we are inviting constant traffic through our brains and our own thoughts are never given the green light.

How often do you find your mind racing through everything all at once as soon as you’re in bed and your head hits the pillow? If you’re like most people, this probably happens to you quite often.

This is why mindfulness techniques (in this case, writing) can be such a positive aid for our sleep. In the same way that writing your thoughts down in a journal before bedtime can provide your thoughts with a place to visit, allowing yourself thirty minutes of deliberate mindfulness at a certain time throughout each day can achieve the same!

By acknowledging our thoughts and feelings, we are reminding ourselves of who we are and what we need.

We are also whispering to these thoughts, “Thank you for visiting. Now, feel free to spend your energy elsewhere until I choose to visit you again tomorrow – if I need to.” It makes us feel in control of our well-being, and that gives us peace of mind.

We always talk about how important it is to catch up with other people. We are often trying to make arrangements with others to do this. How about making sure you have the time to catch up with yourself?

Haiku about dreams: some examples of my own

Sleepwalking again -
stairs are The Rocky Mountains,
the bath, a canoe
Haiku about dreams
The Lockdown nightmare - 
strangled by bedsheets, future
goes up in feathers
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I dream of tooth loss,
in mourning for her laughter
in the swallowed night
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How to write your own haiku about dreams

Exercise duration: approximately 30 minutes

1. Sit or lie down in a comfortable place

It might even help to write your haiku just before bed while your mind is in its drowsy limbo.

2. Write down three ideal dream destinations

If sleep is a departure lounge, where would you like to go in your dreams? What is your ideal place? Write down three destinations.

3. Take some deep breaths

How is the journey so far? Take a deep breath in through your mouth and then out through your nose. Do this three times.

4. Take everything in

It looks like you have arrived. What is the atmosphere here? Does it involve the calm or comforting sound of family while you rest?

Can you hear the sea while you are lounging on the sand, or can you hear children in the background? What is peaceful for you? Are you walking through the woods where there is birdsong? Let your imagination run away with itself.

5. Consider all your senses

Is it warm or cold here? What/who do you see? Can you smell food cooking? The sea air? Flowers? Are you sipping a cold or hot beverage? Acknowledge what it is about this daydream that you love so much.

6. Open your eyes

Now you have acknowledged all this, open your eyes and note down a few lines that hold the most impact for you. This is about comfort. What is it that makes you feel good about this image?

7. It’s time to write!

Now, using your notes, write your haiku about dreams.

Thank you for joining me this week

If there were some emotional moments during your exercise, don’t worry. It’s completely normal. Haiku isn’t about denial, it is about authenticity and truth. Mindfulness is about being able to calmly acknowledge these feelings and moments, but also accept them in their unchangeable nature.

Doesn’t it make you feel confident to know that you can create a moment like this whenever you choose to? All you must do is allow yourself the time.

I hope you enjoyed this chance to dream with me. Thank you for being such warm company on this haiku journey. I also hope you take some calm vibes from these posts. Next week, I will bring you another theme for your thoughts.

Remember, dreams aren’t just for while you lay sleeping. They are with you every day, just waiting to be woken up and coaxed into the real world. Next time, when they knock on your door, don’t turn them away because you are busy. Instead, invite them in for a while and restfully listen. Maybe they could form a new haiku!

They might tell you the stories that haven’t happened yet,

Now, haiku away!

If you are happy to, please leave your beautiful haiku about dreams in the comments section below each post.

See last week – Week Five: Haiku about Nature

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29 Comments
  1. Carolyn Jones

    Haiku About Dreams
    Can’t go where I want
    Another day of lockdown —
    But good dreams at night

    • Georgia

      Awh, Carolyn. It can be difficult, can’t it? Imagination, stories and art in general are definitely essential in these times. Keep on dreaming about pleasant things. 🙂 Thank you for your haiku.

  2. Wendy Evans

    DREAMS

    Floating on a cloud
    Warm, cozy, fuzzy feeling safe
    My paradise place.

    • Georgia

      This is definitely comforting, Wendy. It’s so calming to read, like being wrapped up in cotton wool. How peaceful. Thank you for this relaxing picture. 🙂 I’ve actually returned to this one to read again and it’s so lovely!

  3. Chris

    Lotte
    If you pop in here this week, I wanted to say how much I enjoyed your runner bean haiku which I read late last week. It reminded me so much of our runner bean growing days!! Spot on!!

  4. Chris

    Dog walking, dreaming,
    Path trodden through fields of wheat.
    Scarlet poppies blaze.

    • Georgia

      This is a delightful haiku, Chris. I really like how it can also be read through your dog’s eyes as much as through yours, which is a lovely thought: mindfulness for animals! 🙂 Thanks for painting this picture.

  5. Vivienne

    Visited in dreams
    Joyously reunited
    Reality dawns

    • Georgia

      This is beautifully powerful and heartbreaking at the same time: a feeling of realisation upon waking that I know lots of people will and do relate to. It just shows what/who a dream can bring. Thanks for sharing it with everyone. 🙂

  6. Chris

    I dream of the day
    Breezy beach walk with my dog.
    Children flying kites.

    • Georgia

      This sounds like a lovely day to dream about, Chris. There’s so much joy in this image, and the kites add such an element of freedom, too. Very relevant at the moment. Thank you. 🙂

  7. Peter Gaskell

    If you’re familiar with other haiku I’ve posted, you’ll know I can’t resist a philosophical or metaphysical angle. I hope you enjoy this little journey ☺️ ..

    not seeing something
    doesn’t mean it exists
    only in your dreams

    red rose reflected
    in a dewdrop shows it is
    more than just a dream

    unenlightened
    all things seem distinct from us
    in our dream of life

    separateness is
    illusion, said the Buddha
    waking in his dream

    we are living in
    a dream, life’s purpose is to
    wake up within it

    Lucid dreaming is a subject that interests me. For more, you can check https://tricycle.org/trikedaily/enlightenment-dream/

    And it was William Blake who said “What is now proved was once imagined”

    • Georgia

      I love the philosophy in your poetry, Peter! I’m also with you on lucid dreaming being interesting. It’s fascinating! Thank you for these haiku. They have left me with so many thoughts I would like to continue with. I especially enjoyed pondering over the first one. The rose on the dewdrop is also beautiful.

      It’s great that everyone has so many different styles and standpoints. Thank you, everyone. 🙂

  8. Peter Gaskell

    I was glad of this dream theme you chose to spike my interest and enquiry, Georgia. I have been enjoying your haiku too, the one about the tooth loss and swallowed night especially, where the words suggests so much of a story told most economically and graphically

  9. Lotte Williams

    Hi everyone, sorry I’ve been a little late with my haikus the last couple of weeks… I fit them in around my children, time and energy (which rather go hand in hand a little more strongly at the moment!) Thank you, Chris, for your message above… I love the garden and all only now in a position to be able to do it again in recent years, and it takes me straight back to my childhood allotment. I am really enjoying all the haikus here again… good job, all, and thank you to Georgia again… My haiku will follow… xx

    • Georgia

      No problem at all, Lotte. Haiku are worth waiting for! Completely understand the juggling of time. No rush. 🙂

  10. Lotte Williams

    My haiku this week is about one of the places where I dream and long to be right now… where I come from and where my family still is…

    Heather, gorse, bracken
    Moors undulate for decades
    And stretch horizons

    xxx

    • Georgia

      What a panoramic view. I love this, and can see it as an oil painting; the great expanse of distance and time between people and the landscape calling “home from afar.” Thank you. 🙂

  11. Lotte Williams

    Chris, I also love how your haiku sounds like it was from your dog! X

  12. Peter Gaskell

    Very good, Heidi I like how you use ‘horizons’ to suggest looking beyond the confines of your childhood even though you were brought up in such a wild and open landscape.

  13. Chris

    Oh Lotte,
    Your haiku really touched me.
    I was immediately back in one of my favourite places- endless moors of Northumberland where there is space you can breathe!
    I can understand your longing to be back in your favourite moorland area.. Hope you manage to get back there soon. X

  14. Peter Gaskell

    Sorry Lotte, I don’t know why I called you Heidi! It’s a great haiku nonetheless

  15. Lotte Williams

    Haha no worries, Peter! Heidi is a great name! And it was close to Northumberland too, Chris… Yorkshire. So close but yet so far… Thank you for the lovely comments. It really does perk me up xx

  16. Vivienne

    Hi everyone. This was me last night

    Footsteps following,
    Running faster and faster,
    I Wake. Exhausted.!

    • Georgia

      Great! This shows how dreams can have such an impact on our awake state! Sounds like a scary dream. I hope the next one is a little calmer and allows you to stop for a moment! It also makes me think of the dreams that involve a day’s work before you actually go to work! ‘Footsteps following’ is so intriguing too. Thanks for the haiku! 🙂

  17. Anna Söderlund

    Hi, I haven’t been here for a while.. I was glad I dropped by to read your lovely Haikus.

    Here are mine. Perhaps a bit strange, as dreams can be 🙂

    I reach the dead end
    When will I wake up again
    to green fields of joy

    When sea is a mouth
    I swim in her warming breath
    even got a kiss

    Bye for now. //Anna

    • Georgia

      Hi Anna! Lovely to hear from you again. Dreams are definitely unpredictable, aren’t they. Thank for these especially poetic haiku. They feel quite surreal, as though being caught inside an abstract painting! I can clearly see the rolling ‘green fields of joy’ too! Brilliant.

  18. Jenny Jayne

    Rolling, falling down,
    Clambering to grasp my fall
    Unseen hands raise me.

    • Georgia

      This sounds exactly like one of those drowsy moments between sleep/waking, or the feeling of falling while you drift off. I like the spiritual element brought into it too. Thank you for this! 🙂

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