Travel Writing: Rainy Season 8 ̊N 79 ̊W


soaring guitars & screaming cicadas, I edit

songs of randomness, solos of electrifying memories

I’m not a memory-catcher, a/c engages

blowing cool air inside, silhouetted tanagers chirp

sorry, bud, the watermelon’s dried up, fluorescent

lights as I clean dishes, electric gloss of everything

illuminated by buildings, shadow outside is long

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and lean, shadow toppling over the ground level

eventually this tower will crumble, reverberating

haiku, one after the other, recorded and transposed

ditties in the key of G, I still worry about my ears

but I will rock and not lose my hearing


honestly, I didn’t get wet or even get close

close to feeling the warm rain, reclined on the balcony

reclining by potted plants, the overcast evening

light mixing with sunset, bewitched buildings

I recorded a song, it’s not good on my computer

it’s excellent in my head, soaring and symphonic

& deep & eternal, like the sands of the middle east


where Jacob wrestled angles, and the ocean was far

ocean is far, but still I see it between buildings

still glimpse of ocean is really murmuring

the sea is really churning under the weight of the moon

moon & earth & sun, in a steady lullaby

rocking back & forth, for my entire life

subject to the great weight of the stars

Guidelines for productive haiku writing:

- Find some rain

- Get cold wind whipping against your feet

- Make sure the rain pours down, hard

- Make sure the rain is so, so loud, that you hear it like music

- There’s this beautiful moment, writing in the rain, where you feel like you have a room, and you’re outside

- And in this outside room, sitting on the cement floor, barefoot, the wind picks up and you need to keep your notebook to your lap

- Write in ink, even though it’s rainy

- And hold down your notebook, writing in ink, and look up every now and then

- Let the rain drops be dynamic static, the screen you stare at when you’re dumbfounded and working

- Give yourself 30 minutes, and then another 30 minutes, on your cellphone timer

- Grab a cappuccino

- Don’t answer texts

- Resist the urge to call your friends, artists, who can also be found searching for a breeze at 2:30

- And write, and take care of your wrist, don’t push down too hard

- Also, if you haven’t already, keep a haiku book next to you

- Ideally one that has made your heart stop

- Find poetry that makes your heart stop

- Maybe hear it first as a song, and then find out that your favorite musician is also an author

- But do this research beforehand, so you don’t miss the storm

- Be ready for that storm

- Don’t forget- barefoot is better

- Write for that hour

- Sigh

- Write

- 1 page, and you’re done for now

- Hydrate


Elio Icaza is a poet, designer, and interactive language artist represented by Ars Poetica. Book him for an event and follow him on Instagram.

Rainy Season 8 ̊N 79 ̊W, Elio Icaza Milson, ©2019

Images created with Google Maps