Sunday, January 31, 2010

Day 20

A smallish turtle?
Or a scrambling salad plate?
Nope, just a cockroach

Day 19

I'm not stalking you
It's just that I really want
To befriend your dog

Friday, January 29, 2010

Day 18

Are you chivalrous
Or do you think I'm pregnant?
Maybe I'll just stand

Too good to languish in the comments section

I am so taken with Adairdevil's haiku, originally posted in the comments section for yesterday's entry, that I had to re-publish it here:

I am short, and so
Must ride this subway in your
Armpit of sorrow

Brooklyn, NY

Day 17 (slightly late)

I can hide my eyes
But can't ignore the smell of
The vomiting child

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Day 16 (slightly early)

Raving lunatic
Or businessman with Bluetooth?
The jury is out

Reader Submission: Daniela, Macedonia

Rainbow hanging on
The old window, adorned
With the gray raindrops

Written and translated from Macedonian by Daniela from Macedonia

Day 15

Yet again I run
Reaching out for you but you
Pull away from me

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Day 14

If you want to feel
Fatter than you really are
Just walk through Midtown

Monday, January 25, 2010

Exciting news!

I know what you're thinking: "That FiveSevenFive. She is so derivative. I could do a much better job of writing classical Japanese poetry about modern crap."

You're in luck. As of today, A Life in 5-7-5 is accepting reader submissions for publication on the blog! Here's how it works:

1. Encapsulate your musings into a 17-syllable poem following the traditional 5-7-5 haiku format.

2. Email your submission to Be sure to note the name you would like to have attached to your haiku if it is selected for publication on A Life in 5-7-5 (or whether you wish to remain anonymous), and your geographic area. Feel free to include an explanation of your haiku, but only the haiku will be posted.

3. Depending on the amount of interest, I may publish several haiku each week in addition to the daily posting. Be sure to check back daily to see if your submission has been posted.

In closing, here is a special bonus haiku to get you started:

I can't wait to read
Your many witticisms
Let's see what you've got

Day 13

Smoggy raindrops fall
Can't we all just stay in bed
On a day like this?

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Day 12: slightly crude

Your tights are not pants
No one wants to see your crack
Or your camel toe

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Day 11

With her low-carb toast
The Park Slope mom might as well
Eat her yoga mat

Friday, January 22, 2010

Day 10

Are your glasses from
Some Williamsburg boutique or
My nanna's nightstand?

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Day 9

In the park I find
All that remains of Christmas:
A fragrant mulch pile

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Day 8

You improved my skin
You improved my life as well
Thank you Doctor Z!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Day 7

The line at Duane Reade
Quietly reinforces
Shoplifting’s allure

Monday, January 18, 2010

Idea in the Works

Sure, I've only been at this blogging thing for a week, but I've got ambition. And I'm guessing you have it, too. What do you, my loyal readers (both of you), think of the idea of publishing a reader-submitted haiku once a week? Let me know by leaving a comment.

Day 6

I hear that you have
A rent-controlled apartment
Will you adopt me?

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Day 5: for a friend

If my water breaks
Because you won't let me sit
Woe betide your shoes

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Day 4

Tall candles flicker
At the edge of the water
An impromptu shrine

Friday, January 15, 2010

Day 3

Some days genius strikes
Other days it's subtle like
Your blue eye shadow

Thursday, January 14, 2010

A Belated Introduction

I love the simplicity of haiku. In a culture that constantly inundates us with words and images, it's refreshing to find an entire story in 17 syllables.

I hope to spend a year using haiku to capture the goings-on in my city. I plan to use the traditional 5-7-5 model to do so -- I'm thinking of it as "word photography." In the interest of the reader (assuming I have any), I don't plan to write a description of the scene or incident that inspires each haiku. Isn't it more fun to wonder?

If this collection of haiku truly captures the essence of New York City, it will be intermittently funny, poignant, joyful, depressing, and offensive. Apologies in advance.

One last note: please feel free to leave comments or a haiku of your own in response to any post. I would like to hear from you.

Day 2

"By all means" I say
To the cougher next to me
"Don't cover your mouth"

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Day 1

He returns my smile
Says "you're not from around here"
And hands me my lunch

My Life in Haiku

Welcome to A Life in 5-7-5 -- or as I like to think of it, A Year in the Life of New York: A Story Told in Haiku.

The Mission: one haiku a day, one day at a time, 365 illustrations of the people, places, and events that make this town so brilliant, grimy, exciting, and fascinating.