It’s been a while, but here I am again, asking for your heart-themed haiku for issue 7 of the collaborative zine. The theme of this issue is “Medical Spaces and Places,” and I’m looking for your thoughts on any medical location. That might be a hospital ward or waiting room, your GP surgery, your local pharmacy, an operating theatre, the cath lab, the hospital car park, the inside of an MRI scanner, or the back of an ambulance… Maybe you receive medical treatment at home and consider that a medical space at times? If so, we’d love to hear your thoughts about that too!
You might find it helpful to think about your senses. How does the medical space look, sound, feel or smell? How do you feel as soon as you enter it? Is the space familiar to you by now or is it new? Do you feel comforted, lonely, relaxed or intimidated? Do you dwell on the past or think of the future? Do you feel like you belong there? Wherever that medical space is and however it makes you feel, we want to hear about it.
[If this is a topic that interests you, you might like to read more about the Sensing Spaces of Healthcare project. You can find them as @hospital_senses on Twitter.]
What is a haiku?
A quick reminder… A haiku is a very short poem of 17 syllables arranged in three lines – 5 syllables in line one, 7 in line two, 5 in line 3. For our purposes, that is all you need to know. The haiku police will not be checking and I firmly believe that anyone can write a haiku.
What is a syllable?
In the past, I’ve had people get in touch to say they find identifying the number of syllables in a word tricky. I have two things to say on this:
1: I do not mind if your “haiku” has the “wrong” number of syllables entirely, or even if you make no attempt to adhere to syllable count or three lines or whatever. You’ll notice previous editions of the zine feature contributions that are not haiku. If you respond creatively to the monthly prompt, I will be delighted to read it and consider it for inclusion in the zine, haiku or not.
2: If, however, you do want to have the “right” number of syllables, there are some handy techniques to help. This video is aimed at children, but has four very useful and easy ways to make breaking words down into syllables super simple. My favourite is to talk like a robot – you will naturally break words down into syllable sections by doing so 🙂
How to take part
Simply leave your haiku (or other creative contribution) in the comments on this post. Unless you state otherwise, I’ll presume you are happy for it to be included in the free zine. Previous issues are available to view/download here. I’ll credit you in the zine with the name you use to leave your comment – a pseudonym (or first name only) is absolutely fine if that’s what you’d prefer. I’ll aim to put the zine together towards the end of this month and will share here and on social media when it becomes available.
One last (but important) point: please don’t name or otherwise identify specific medical locations/staff in your writing. I want to know how you feel about your GP surgery, not which GP surgery you attend!
I’m so looking forward to seeing your contributions on this topic and am really excited to be back in the haiku realm with you all. I’ll share a contribution (or two) of my own in the comments at a later date. Happy haikuing!
* Somebody (me) may have enjoyed too much Mike Wozniak on Taskmaster recently…