Feb 29, 2004

5| 7| 5|      Thinking about the drunkards of Mexico
When I heard Jack Kerouac reading his American Haiku I thought, "The haiku in English is over." Which is probably backwards since Kerouac was significant in popularizing the from in English but I thought, listening to them (and they’re really good to hear read), that everything that could be done in this style had been done here.

I've had mixed feelings about the form in general and have had those mixed feelings since I first learned what a haiku was. I question whether it can really be carried accross language - something Kerouac managed by
freely translating and some would say ruining the form - and since English haikus almost entirely dreck, tending more towards cliches than say, Pound's imagist haiku. For me, haikus were illustrated pretty well in Fight Club where they, along with the Americanized zen-speak that has all the same problems, were used as quiet office terrorism.

Then Metzger mentioned he was going to be shooting a "haiku movie" by which he meant a tight triangular formed movie. Misunderstanding, I had this fantastic vision of a haiku movie as three sets of shots - five, seven, five - forming a short film. Maybe looking like Le Jette - a heavy use of stills and a very short story with something complex about it, ending with a longer moving shot.

I’m intrigued.

I like the idea of cannibalising the form and changing the medium so radically. I like the fact a haiku film would have a three act form and that it’s designed, I think, to contain a fairly complicated subject in a very samll space. I’m imagining something that runs 10 minutes or so and looking more like a short or a preview - two areas I've found very interesting and overlooked - than a film proper. I think it has promise.

If you have an idea for something, pass it on to Metzger. I’ll be thinking about ideas for one in the next few days.


From Jack K.:
Early morning yellow flowers,
thinking about
the drunkards of Mexico.

Evening coming—
the office girl
Unloosing her scarf.

Missing a kick
at the icebox door
It closed anyway.