The Joy Project

The Weave

I felt a lot of joy when my book came out in July.

Last January 1, I started what I called the “#joyproject” – a daily post on Facebook, Twitter, and other social media about something I’d noticed that made me happy. Even though I’m not a poet, I fell into writing haiku most days.

Occasionally, I skipped the haiku because, as I wrote on April 7, “Sometimes I can’t say what I want to say in seventeen syllables.” You might notice that that sentence is seventeen syllables. Making sly jokes is one of the things that makes me happy.

The topics have ranged from things I see while out for a walk to thoughts about writing and reading to ideas about enlightenment. The project will continue until the end of the year, but I thought I’d share a few of my favorites for this week’s post.

Of all the haiku I’ve written this year, this one from April 14 is my personal favorite:

A yellow balloon

Escapes, rebounds off high wires,

Soars east in blue sky.

Watching that happen put me in a state of pure joy for a few minutes and I felt like I captured it well enough that others could see that balloon floating away.

And this one summed up my feelings after several days of backpacking:

California has

Too many hills; I’m too tired

To finish this …

I’ve done several haiku about reading and writing:

Up too late reading.

Had to know what happened next.

The joy of fiction.


While lying in bed

I work out a new story.

My muse likes comfort.


A perfect sentence.

The right twist in a story.

Reading satisfies.

And then there are some about finding enlightenment – or at least gaining a little more understanding:

While meditating

I compose joyful haiku.

Enlightenment? Hmm.


When the cat goes out

She looks at each little thing.

True beginner’s mind.


I wake, elated:

I understand the questions.

Now for the answers.


If “give up desire”

Is good Zen, why do I want

A gold-leaf Buddha?

A few reflect things I’ve seen while walking in my neighborhood:

A green hummingbird

Sucks from the purple flowers

On a city street.


A stranger shows me

Cactus blooming on a porch.

She is so happy.

Some are about my sweetheart:

In bed, I listen

To my sweetheart’s breath. In, out.

Loud, rough, then soft, smooth.


My sweetheart often

Looks at things differently

From other people.


Dream vacation spot?

My sweetheart’s answer is Mars.

That’s why I love him.

And some are very personal:

At a time in life

When many are winding down

I’m starting new things.


Is it wrong that I

Am pleased when others find me



I’ve become grateful

For the way experiences

Build and shape my life.


Slept late. Very late.

I do my best sleeping by

Going back to bed.

I’ll end with the one that best reflects my current life philosophy:

I lack nostalgia

For what has passed. Give me that

New-fangled future.


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