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The ache for home lives in all of us. The safe place where we can go as we are and not be questioned.Maya Angelou, All God’s Children Need Traveling Shoes
Well done for taking the very first step of your Haiku for You writing programme! This is the beginning of an exciting twelve-week journey for your well-being.
For a summary of what Haiku for You is all about, head over to the introductory post, which explains what the next twelve weeks on this blog are going to look like.
Are you sitting comfortably in your safe place? If not, choose a spot where distractions won’t steal you away from this relaxing writing practice. Pause any digital devices, close the door if you need to, and take a slow, deep breath in … and then back out.
Now, to ease us into the process, we will begin with a theme that feels familiar to us all:
Thoughts about Home
Did you know that our sense of belonging greatly impacts our self-esteem? The personal attachments we form throughout childhood and our adult lives largely influence our individual character traits. This is why we find ourselves searching for, or hoping to return to the home that will improve our well-being.
So, what does home mean to you?
It’s true that home is often the family abode where we were once raised, but it’s also a whole host of other things. What about the fireplace where everyone gathered in your grandmother’s living room? Or, the secret nook where you read books or listened to music?
Home could ironically be your escape. It could be a place you visit every year in order to reset, or a pocket of picturesque countryside where you know you can lose yourself. One thing we can be certain about is that home is different to us all.
At the same time, home doesn’t even have to be a place we visit. Sometimes, it surprises us with a knock at the door! Many people feel unwittingly at home in countries they have never been to before. It can happen when we least expect it, in a moment far away from your physical home.
You could be on holiday, many thousands of miles away, and be reminded of the feeling of home. This is sometimes triggered by the smell of certain plants, foods, or the musty aroma of old books and furniture. How many of you remember feeling immediately at home after being handed a bowl of homemade soup?
Home is found as often in people as it is in a place.
This could be within the hugging arms of family, friends, or a partner you have found true safety with. It may modestly materialise during conversations where you don’t have to hide your true feelings. It could be your private corner of the world.
Have you considered your body as your home?
Breathe in and then back out.
Remember that feeling. It matters. We must look after ourselves and create a strong foundation to approach the everyday challenges of life.
Home dwells in the smallest of places.
Home can commonly be found in objects around your house. It could be disguised as a gift, an heirloom, or a desk where you feel most confident at work or taking part in your favourite hobby. Home is where you feel most you. It could even be an outfit you put on to feel grounded, or a new haircut that reminds you of a personal strength you haven’t seen for a while.
Haiku about home: Some examples of my own
With no audience,
she twirls in the living room,
receives an encore.
The neighbours’ window - a double-glazing of dance to mute melody
The kettle breathes out -
keys jangle at the back door;
biscuits are melting
Now it’s your turn… Haiku about home is your prompt. Whether you are indoors or outdoors, there is always a moment to appreciate somewhere. It may leap into your mind, or you may have to look a little harder.
How to write your own haiku about home
Exercise duration: approximately 30 minutes
1. Observe your surroundings. Pick up objects, smell the air, listen for a sound that is either welcomed or longed for. Where is home?
2. Cast your mind back to a single moment that reminds you of home. You don’t have to understand why.
3. Come back to the present moment, holding on to the comforting details that matter most.
4. Consider the relevant senses and capture this moment on paper.
Just remember, it’s three lines of 5-7-5 syllables! Refer back to How to write Haiku guidelines.
Once you have found the words for the above, how do you feel?
You may already wish to write more haiku tomorrow, or you may choose to write one each week. What is most important is that you go with how you feel. By next week, you will hopefully feel a little more at home with haiku, and maybe even more at home with yourself. Think of haiku as a place that will house your feelings before you step back out into the big world.
Congratulations for completing your first Haiku for You exercise and thank you for joining me. I look forward to seeing you next Monday for Week Two, which will bring you a new and exciting theme!
Remember, your well-being belongs in a positive place.
Now, let’s haiku away!
If you are happy to, please leave your beautiful haiku about home in the comments section below this post.
See next week – Week One: Haiku about Sound.