I just came across this in the files. Glad I did. Kinda cool.
They’re not really traditional 5–7–5 haiku — they’re what Kerouac called Western Haiku — “simple 3-line poems that make a little picture” — written while I was living with and inspired by Carolyn. There certainly was something about that woman that inspired. She had so many arts flowing through her at every given moment — painting, writing, theater — it couldn’t help but transfer to those around her.
This outcropping, sketched over the summer of 2012, is a portrait of her, using a tiny haiku brush.
Everything comes directly from something she said or I saw.
Haiku For Carolyn
Portrait painter, married Adonis
loved a movie star
could still draw their faces from memory
Houseful of books
grow on every surface
Still watches movies
like the set and costume designer
she always was
Still cooks every meal
meat, potatoes and veggie
like her bio-chemist father taught her
looking at giant Mac screen
words flow with ease
In love with history
so much a part of it
and not just this lifetime
Designed her own garden
and put in a waterfall
knowing I was coming
WACed a war
mothered a family
batted away suitors by the battalion
Hung with heavies
but keeps it light
as fans gush their hearts
Still twinkles by day
and beams at night
reading in every morning
Turquoise and purple
color her home
herself and her life
She enjoyed this life
as she enjoyed all her others
At home in her home
Carolyn Cassady — 1923 – 2013 — RIP
For a nice remembrance upon her passing — check out my tribute to her.
Or for another ode to her from several cycles ago you can riff the Carolyn Birthday Poem.
Or here’s a video tribute for her Memorial on the one year anniversary of her passing.
Or for one of our many great adventures together, check out this one in Jack’s Long Island — The Northport Report.
Or for a picture of her and John together check out this short portrait of their duet.
Or here’s another poem from when I was there about her as living history — The Royal Woods of Cassady County.
Or check out Kerouac’s own “Book of Haikus” masterfully put together by Regina Weinreich.
Or America’s foremost haiku authority Cor van den Heuvel’s definitive “Haiku Anthology”
Brian Hassett firstname.lastname@example.org BrianHassett.com