When I signed up for this course, I admittedly did it for the ICS credit. Yes, I thought it would be fun, but it was more of a way to complete my degree checklist for my general education courses. But after taking this course, it’s been a whole lot more than that, and I am so genuinely glad I took haiku because despite all of the awful things that have been going on, it has been the one steady art in my life. I lost a lot this semester. I was in a musical that I never got to see fully realized, lost my last months with my partner before he moves away, and lost moments with my senior friends that I won’t be able to get back. Despite it all, I didn’t lose writing haiku. Even when I didn’t feel like doing homework, sitting down and writing a few haiku just to do something creative was very therapeutic for me. I need art to function and being home all day wasn’t super conducive to that, so haiku was a little outlet for me to practice art even alone. Haiku has invited me into the world of writing, which is a world I wasn’t ever aware I wanted to be part of.
My life has definitely been enriched by haiku in the sense that my eyes have been opened to an entirely different form of creative expression and cultural art. I listened all semester in kukai, matching contest, peer reviews, and readings of haiku, to my peers and I connecting with and falling in love with different haiku. The art of haiku has taught me many things, but I think the most important thing that it has taught me is that you don’t need to be near each other to make deep connections with others. Sometimes something you write (or vice versa) resonates so deeply with someone else that you get that human connection even when we can’t be face-to-face. I’m used to reaching out to others through art in a physical, visual way through musicals or plays, but haiku is a quieter, dare I say sometimes more personal, way to have a connection with others that is emotional and intimate. I loved this class and definitely see myself continuing to write haiku even if they’re just for me! ~ Grace Newton, Spring 2020