the gossip spreads
– Srinivas S. Chennai (India)
(Haiku Presence, Issue 64)
We daily come across a lot of information that’s based on the individual perceptions and understandings of various realities and experiences spread all around us. This is the era of information and news where a small expression or thought may take less than a minute to spread like a fire.
In this haiku, the gossip silently spreads all over because of the sensitivity of its nature. I may take the gossip as part of certain taboos that need to be broken. This gossip might not be accepted by the masses but still finds its place among people. This gossip may be less important before it’s being spread but becomes significant once it gets highlighted.
Evening rain is barely noticed by many as everyone is quite busy or tired due to their daily life routines. But, evening rain can subtly bother our mind or feelings. So, there is a deep connection between the sound of evening rain that is almost invisible due to the darkness and gossip that still finds it worth among people before they go to sleep.
– Hifsa Ashraf (Pakistan)
I like that this haiku can be read in two ways:
“silently the gossip spreads/evening rain”
“silently the gossip spreads evening rain”
In the first way, the evening rain is being juxtaposed with gossip spreading silently. In the second version, the gossip is spreading evening rain. This is one of the joys of haiku, that a reader can pass through a haiku in various ways and arrive at myriad interpretations.
“evening rain” is not quite a kigo (seasonal reference) because every season can have evening rain in many areas of the world. However, with the poet residing in India, it might reflect the monsoon season. That’s why it’s important to know the context in which the poem is written to understand kigo.
Evening rain can be sometimes silent or loud to us. With all the events that have gone on during the day, our minds might be cluttered. With this buzzing mind, we might not be able to appreciate this sound of evening rain. However, there are times in the evening when we’re lonely and introspective when rain is a welcome sound to soothe our spirit. In this sense, “evening rain” might be either a comparison or contrast with the first part of the poem. It might also be associating each droplet as a piece of gossip.
The most prominent letter used in this haiku is “s,” and I believe there’s a reason for this. The poet might have wanted the “sss” clamor of rain reflected in the haiku. In the last line, the strong presence of “n” brings a serious tone and a sense of finality.
The structure of the haiku is standard with the rhythm of traditional Japanese haiku. The lack of punctuation gives rise to varied readings of this poem, which adds to its strength. A fine haiku written with an introspective mind.
– Nicholas Klacsanzky (USA)
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