haikU by Nanette Wylde

Nanette Wylde’s poem haikU, is an electronic poem that allows its reader to contribute to the making of the poem.  On the screen appears a haiku. In the upper left hand corner are dots in the sequence of the number of syllables on each of the three lines in a haiku.  Once you have experience the haiku you have the capability to press the dots in the upper hand corner which regenerate a new poem.  In the upper right hand corner there is a link to a page that allows the audience to contribute to one of the lines in the regenerative haiku.

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A haiku is a short poem with five syllables on the first line, seven syllables on the second line, and five syllables on the third and final line.  The author is to use those lines to create a singular poetic piece.  Wylde allow for chance and her audience to contribute to her poem.  Wylde’s use of the regenerative haiku changes how the haiku is perceived by her audience. 

photo 2Although the sequence of words is spontaneous and unpredictable they seem to flow together creating meaning.  Part of the experience of the poem is breathing its first, last, and only meaning into it. Once the upper left hand dots have been clicked the haiku is gone possibly forever because people are constantly adding new lines to the generator.  When I came to Wylde’s page the first haiku that appeared alluded to ones realization of injustice .  The second haiku is paired with the first with a narrator apathetically resolving that these realizations are pointless.  I resolved that the second haiku was the end of the poem.  The next series of haiku’s all happen to talk about seasons of weather.

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 Although they were shown individually I argue that just as Wylde encourages her audience to contribute to the regeneration of the haiku, Wylde also intends for her interactive audience to create their own ties and breaks where it seems organic.

 

  3 comments for “haikU by Nanette Wylde

  1. January 22, 2014 at 3:32 pm

    Part of the experience of the poem is breathing its first, last, and only meaning into it. Once the upper left hand dots have been clicked the haiku is gone possibly forever because people are constantly adding new lines to the generator.

    I love this idea. I don’t know the exact scope of haiku’s database, but it wouldn’t take all that much to make each generated poem statistically impossible to arrive at ever again simply through randomization. That realization might encourage the reader to slow down and consider the fragility of each poem, as well as the imagery created in each lines’ juxtaposition with its neighbors and predecessors. This poem is a great example of using an algorithm to highlight the form of poetry as something distinct from its content, intent, voice, etc., but at the same time, that remaining content is yet provocative in its own right.

  2. Robert
    January 25, 2014 at 7:00 pm

    I like how open-ended haikU feels, and therefore how personal. As you said, it allows you to make your own connections, but you are also free to make no connections between the different haiku. This allows the reader to become partly a creator and make their own meaning for the poems. That’s one thing I find unique to electronic literature in general and this kind of randomly generated poetry in particular; the reader’s interpretation becomes a part of the work itself.

  3. kutoof
    January 26, 2014 at 3:59 pm

    Your blog on Nanette Wylde’s poem haikU, is interesting. I appreciate your description of how the haiku is presented on screen, explaining what the dots mean and how they connect to the haiku. What do you mean by “experience” the haiku? Do you simply mean reading it? Because experiencing the haiku to mean would be playing around with the dots and generating new forms of poems. I like that you explain what a haiku is to your readers in a short manner, although I suggest that you explain the significance of a haiku and even the difficulty behind it. Including the difficulty of generating new haikus to fit the rules of the syllables. I love your interpretations of the first and supposedly last poems and how they connect to one another. I recommend talking more about the haikus about the seasons and how they also first with the first two haikus.

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