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The Haiku Diary [Kindle Edition]

Neil Schiller
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $0.99
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  • Length: 96 pages (estimated)
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Book Description

Towards the end of 2007, I decided to keep a diary. I’d never done this before, but the inspiration came from a colleague in one of the jobs I’ve had. He was reading a diary his father had left behind when he died, and he was seeing through his father's eyes the 1940s, the second world war, the life of a young private shipped out to North Africa. He felt he was getting to know who this man had been much better than he ever had during his life. Something about this struck me, and recently becoming a father myself I started thinking about how the dynamics of the relationships we have with people dictate how they perceive us, limit what we can and can’t reveal about ourselves. Would my two year old daughter ever get to really know who I am, what my perspective on the world is, what my neuroses are? I wanted to do something that I could leave lying around that she may discover in twenty or thirty years time, and maybe gain an insight into her father that she had never had before.

The big problem was, I'm a lousy diarist. I ramble, I record ridiculously inane things that nobody in their right mind would find remotely interesting. But then I stumbled across a great book where a group of relatively well known friends endeavoured to write a Haiku a day for a year. A Haiku diary – what a fantastic idea. The form helped me focus in on the substance of each day, on the one defining moment of those twenty four hours that encapsulated my life and my thoughts and my emotions at that precise instant.

A Winter wind, an empty street,
dawn is still an hour away.
The ghosts of this house are restless.

Lost in the brambles:
a shoe, a bottle, my soul.
It's starting to rain.

Product Details

  • File Size: 136 KB
  • Print Length: 96 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004FEFA7A
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,072,038 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars few words - much is said April 15, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
How to squeeze a year
Into as few words as this
without losing it

Darkness and sunlight
With laughter and stormy days
All of the seasons

Dramatic pictures
and claustrophobic detail

A carefree child and
a workworn loving father
are interwoven

A breathtaking ride
And I remembering my
year at the same time
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Charming little book July 24, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A charming little book. I was so charmed by it that I started my own Haiku diary, recording each day's events as an Haiku. Because of the structure of Haikus, one is forced to concentrate one's mind in choosing what to write about, and therefore one is forced to examine and focuses one's mind in reflecting on how one has lived oneself every day.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Some great images; a good little book of haiku. March 10, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition
I wasn't sure what this would be like when I read the description - surely diaries are meant to be rambling and personal? And haiku are meant to be compact and precise, impersonal in their imagery and strict rules of construction? I was unsure how the two forms would work together. But I'd read Neil Schiller's book of short stories 'Oblivious' (and so should you) so I knew he was a good writer, so I took a chance on this.

By and large, it works - I read this in one sitting, and there's some great imagery and sense of the world moving through its seasons. But the diary part works too - gradually the haiku work to build up a picture in your mind of the author, and his life. I really enjoyed that aspect of it, as well as admiring the formal side. The author's introduction where he explained the genesis of the book was interesting too.

Also worth noting is that, unlike some books of poetry for the Kindle, this is perfectly formatted.
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More About the Author

Neil Schiller is an IT consultant and part time academic from Liverpool. Previously, he has published critical work on the authors Charles Bukowski and Richard Brautigan. His first work of fiction, Oblivious, a collection of 21 short stories about life in the North West of England, was released in November 2010.

For critical work, check out:

"Social Mechanics and American Morality: the meaning of nothingness in the prose and poetry of Charles Bukowski", Bukowski Unleashed, (Little Lagoon Press, May 2000)

"Time, History and Cultural Lineage in the work of Richard Brautigan", Richard Brautigan - Essays on the Life, editor Dr. John Barber (McFarland Publishing, December 2006)

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