Top
Millennium Post

Haiku Harlem on Twittersphere

Haiku Harlem on Twittersphere
X
Twitter is flooded with intertextual one and multi-liners meandering through its massive heart. Some call it ‘micropoetry’. Others prefer Twitter haiku. But 17 syllable or not, it’s spontaneous outpouring of powerful emotion into the belly of this cyber beast.

Writers like Nigerian-American Teju Cole, English Joyce Carol Oates, poets like Jacqueline Saphra, among others have taken to Twitter to not only experiment with this new ‘box’ – for that’s what they call any kind of formulaic structure, celebrating it as much as lamenting its potentials of literary innovation – but also connect with their ardent readers.

Oates tweets, ‘The novel is the novelist’s effort at assuaging a profound loneliness. Again.’ Cole, on the other hand, juxtaposes a game of football (FIFA final match between Germany and Argentina to be precise) and turns it into an opportunity to philosophise with scintillating imagery.

‘Germanyconnecting like centipedes but …nein.’ Twitter behaves like a mammoth, many-headed hydra with billions of eyes, each eye creating its own Oracle of Delphi. In Britain, poets and rappers come together on Twitter and organise competitions lasting a day or more. Benjamin Zepaniah, a new wave poet creating ripples of digital dissension, tweets thus: ‘Intelligence may not mean intelligent/ The news may not be new/ From where we are/ To be awake/ May not mean/ To be conscious.’ Evidently, the culture of salon repartee and coffeehouse duels has shifted to this cyberutopia.      

What about us Indians? When not posting lines of his own, writer and academic Amitava Kumar often quotes authors with the intention of making a polemical point.
  
‘’Because I come from the West Indies / certain people in England seem to think / I is an expert on palm trees’ from poem by John Agard’, he recently tweeted.

Twitter is a readymade field of play, custommade for imagist-style, pithy and startling observations on things here and now, on the eternal and ephemeral, leveling big names with the almost anonymous. Writes @sapiotextual: ‘A plan as spontaneous as procrastination.’ Or: ‘’You be the dream, I the silent shattering.’

Here’s a gem from @parekhit: ‘When the truth sets you free, it usually cages someone else.’ Here’s @shakti_shetty: ‘A doubt called tomorrow.’ Or: ‘The roads less travelled miss us.’  

Twitter poets are here to stay. They pass by like movie credits, often unnoticed, but make your timeline a little more worthy of your attention.

Between The Covers is a weekly column on reading up and rating down
Next Story
Share it