From a form with a rich and spiritual tradition come haiku as you have never seen them before – irreverent, wry, often laugh-out-loud funny. But just because these poems are steeped in humour doesn’t mean they don’t also convey profound truths – from a bride throwing coins ‘flying like sparrows’, to the homeless ‘no food or water, / dying huddled together – / these floral tributes’, and antiques that ‘have mastered the art of / mourning in silence’, these haiku may be far from the Zen mysticism that Bashō aspired to, but they are deeply humane. If you like your truths peeled back to the quick, these nuggets of crunchy wisdom are for you.
What the greats might have written:
“I wouldn’t have wandered lonely as a cloud if I had read this” - William Wordsworth
“Who’s Brad Pitt?” - Emily Dickinson
“I have so many favourites but if I had to choose one it would be ‘When Your Parents Are Away And The New Boyfriend Says, Hey Let’s Watch This Movie’. I laughed my f****** head off at that one.” - Percy Bysshe Shelley
“What wild ecstasy!” - John Keats
“Cool as a tall glass of Irn Bru” - Sylvia Plath
“A wee Glasgow chancer”- T. S. Eliot