Monday, May 22, 2006


Well, since we're inventing new haiku variants lately, let's invent another one.

Heyoka are the Trickster spirits, sometimes manifested as clowns, in several Native American tribal mythologies and enactments. Heyoka sometimes do things backwards, to make points about those who are too rigid about doing things the Right Way. They make us laugh at our own pretentions, and give us healthy reminders to not take ourselves too seriously. They rebalance social imbalances, through clowning, mockery, and deep play.

In the Chuck Jones cartoons, Wile E. Coyote was a heyoka, always doing things that failed in gloriously absurd ways, while the Roadrunner was a Trickster, always surprising us with clever tricks that show us how to laugh.

So, let's heyoka the haiku, and make a heyokaku: 7/5/7 syllables, or more—rather than 5/7/5, or less. Feel free to add your own in the comments.

desert spirits writhe at midnight,
cloven-footed dogs:
saguaro dance with open arms

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