Take a Deep Breath: The Haiku Way to Inner Peace

Overview

What happens when one of America's best-known haiku poets joins forces with her psychologist husband to write a book? The answer: Take a Deep Breath: The Haiku Way to Inner Peace -- a unique collection of guided meditations, drawn from and experienced through the appreciation of haiku. Sylvia Forges-Ryan, an award-winning poet, and Edward Ryan, a Yale psychologist, have teamed up to introduce an original and heartfelt technique for relaxing: a combination of restful haiku with clear and simple instructions on how...
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Overview

What happens when one of America's best-known haiku poets joins forces with her psychologist husband to write a book? The answer: Take a Deep Breath: The Haiku Way to Inner Peace -- a unique collection of guided meditations, drawn from and experienced through the appreciation of haiku. Sylvia Forges-Ryan, an award-winning poet, and Edward Ryan, a Yale psychologist, have teamed up to introduce an original and heartfelt technique for relaxing: a combination of restful haiku with clear and simple instructions on how to draw out the insights each one contains, and use them for one's own well-being. Haiku are the perfect form for their exercises because they are the shortest of poems, with the longest of echoes. A good haiku distills a great deal of experience into a few phrases, and sets off a chain of thoughts that expand like the ripples in a pond. Each haiku here makes that little splash which creates a ripple of thought explored in the short commentary that follows. In today's fast-paced, high-pressure world, Take a Deep Breath can help anyone learn to slow down and take stock, relax and focus on the present moment, and find poetry and depth in their own lives.
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Editorial Reviews

FrogPond
I recommend this nicely produced book...for anyone looking to develop more mindfulness and compassion in everyday life.
Summer 2003
Publishers Weekly
A husband and wife (he's a psychologist, she's a poet) align meditation with haiku in this accessible if sometimes facile volume of poems and commentary. Spiritual knowledge, the Ryans maintain, comes from within: enlightenment is simply "paying attention to just this, whatever it may be," and both haiku and meditation are designed to help a person "see a particular moment with compassion." Sylvia's 44 haiku are arranged by season and accompanied by suggestions for how to fully appreciate their meaning. "Snapshots scattered/ in a drawer-/ the autumn wind" should remind readers that "[n]ature won't let us stop life, capture it, hide it away" and that "we have to let go of the 'me' we've made an elaborate mental catalog of." The authors' expertise and the power of their convictions are apparent throughout this volume, but the reflections that follow the haiku often meander and sometimes stumble. (Jan.) Copyright 2003 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9784770028853
  • Publisher: Kodansha International
  • Publication date: 2/20/2003
  • Pages: 120
  • Product dimensions: 7.46 (w) x 6.64 (h) x 0.59 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface 11
Introduction 12
Haiku Meditation 17
Summer
Summer solstice 20
Billowing clouds 22
June morning 24
Summer sun 26
Low tide 28
Summer afternoon 30
Moon 32
Summer heat 34
Among these lilies 36
Night game 38
Summer into Autumn
After the abortion 42
Autumn
Monarch flyway 46
Harvest moon 48
Indian summer 50
Leaves 52
Autumn rain 54
Autumn moon 56
Twilight 58
Low clouds 60
Snapshots scattered 62
Anemone petals 64
Autumn into Winter
Rain 68
Winter
Morning frost 72
First snow 74
Winter wind 76
Urban sunrise 78
First snowfall 80
Winter morning 82
Snowdrifts getting deeper 84
Winter sunset 86
Starless night 88
Sparrow chirping 90
Winter into Spring
Snow 94
Spring
First day of spring 98
Filling the leafless 100
April sunrise 102
Early spring 104
Plum trees 106
April breeze 108
Light rain 110
Just before dark 112
Daytime moon 114
First morning glory 116
Spring into Summer
Long ago 120
Afterword 123
Acknowledgments 129
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