Haiku featuring Juju Cat: Or how I broke free of writer's block

Since my series of hospital stays ended last year, I haven't written much. Distracted by the amount of work it takes just to recover and maintain my health, I developed a severe case of writer's block. I had a lot to say, but the fear of saying it--putting it down in writing--crippled me.

I just couldn't sit down in front of the computer.

So, I went back to basics--pen and paper. And I used one of tools of my craft--Haiku. Nothing breaks the chains of writer's block like a good dose of Haiku. The Japanese poetic form forces the writer to convey in a few words and syllables a complete idea, a description of one moment in time or a visual image.

Haiku is a tool used in the craft of wordsmithing. It has rules and structure. Each of the three lines has a specific number of syllables--5, 7, and 5. It takes wordsmithing to select the precise word that conveys the meaning you want and the right number of syllables for the line.

Wordsmithing is a craft, much like welding or carving. It must be honed regularly through practice. But if you use the craft with thought, imagination ad creativity, you can create somethig profound or intriguing, provocative or evocative, something that clarifies or confuses.

In the coming days and weeks, I hope to an artist with my words. I have a lot to say, and fear no longer grips me, cripples or confines me. But fr now enjoy the following Haiku featuring my amazing cat, Juju, who never fails to inspire and amuse me. ..she is my muse.

Wonder Cat Juju
Targets, pounces and attacks
Another foe foiled

Green-eyed cat Juju
Her stare bores through my blue eyes
Piercing my reserve

Loving Cat Juju
Drapes my chest with her body
Purring in my ear

Sneaky Cat Juju
Climbs up cabinets and drawers
Seeking adventure

Napping Cat Juju
Curled up, face tucked under paws
Dozing and dreaming

Content Cat Juju
Stretches and yawns sleepily
Across laptop keys

Goddess Cat Juju
Peers regally out window
Claiming her domain

Agile Cat Juju
Springs up my shoulder with ease
Perching and posing

Leaping Cat Juju
Falls short of goal, shrugs and says
“I meant to do that”

Silly Cat Juju
Bats at me from hiding places
Keeping me amused

Easter Prayer 2005

National City Christian Church Rev. Arlene Franks O God of life, God of love and laughter…we, your Easter people greet you thi...