Movie Colors Haibun


Used by permission of Managua Gunn, via the Ligo Haibun Challenge.

I watch a movie, leaving my own issues behind. I give myself up to the color, the drama, the swirling action. In it, two women fly through the air, fighting bad guys with samurai swords, disdaining the laws of physics, aerodynamics and time itself, as a year’s events seem to take place in one day. I am exhilarated, lifted along on fantasy, imagining all my problems dealt with by a few swings of a sword and a graceful leap or two. I won’t even need to brush my hair, it will stay perfectly tidy through all of my life’s conflicts. The movie ends with a resolution of sorts. I return to my life with a crash.

She is an actress on a zip line, lifted through the air by elaborate structures, designed by engineers. I have no such assistance through my life’s adventures. I rely on tissues, Wet Ones, spare clothing for the kids and fast talking to solve most of my issues. I can’t slay people who hurt my kids, hit my van or leave dog poop on my lawn. Usually life doesn’t even present me with a “good guy” or a “bad guy,” just fallible people who may or may not have achieved their potential for good that day.

on good days
my boys finger-shoot the bad guys
through the van windows

I Β admire the beauty in the movies, but feel sad that it is transient, and yet, somehow we expect our lives to freeze at those years when we achieve our best appearances. If only we could look as though we were 30 forever. Here I am, nearly 20 years later, left contemplating actresses at their height of beauty, and feeling glad to have my eyes treated to such pleasure. I am surprised, again, when I look at myself in the mirror. Oh, that’s right, I’m not 30 anymore.

fantasy lifts
imagination carries us high
reality sets us down

I adore the fantasy, the color, the movement, the story that has a beginning, an exciting middle and an end. All the boring days of aching feet, cleaning up messes or healing broken arms is edited out. What if I told my life’s story like that, took out all the boring days, the broken bones, the accidents and the wrinkles? Would I lose myself in those tossed away bits?

broken branch falls
spring buds will never open
seeds disburse on the wind

Copyright 2014 Brenda Davis Harsham

Inspired by the Ligo Haibun Challenge in its new location, and on its new day, Monday, with the above picture prompt. Thanks to Ese and Pirate for continuing.

28 thoughts on “Movie Colors Haibun

  1. Thank you for your thought on this Brenda, very interesting! I saw a quote the other day that said “Sometimes we need fantasy to survive reality” I think there’s quite a lot of truth in that. I wonder what our lives would be like if we didn’t have these movies and fiction in books, I suppose we’d be like people many years ago making up tales to satisfy our fantasy head! It’s strange how we need it so much, and yet like you’ve pointed out we can return to our life with a crash!! 😦 The answer I think is to recognise how certain aspects energise us, and perhaps not allow the deflation when we next look in a mirror and feel not so amazing! We are amazing, we just need to believe it – not always easy, but worth the effort! πŸ™‚


  2. Movie analogies are very playful and offer up all sorts of narrative possibilities. I like where you went with this one. Thoughtful and realistic in equal measure. I think as a writer I can draw from both positive and negative experience in equal amounts. I would hope that were I to pen my life story it would include the whole emotional rollercoaster that it has been…selective editing would turn it into something it wasn’t. Whilst I love my movies, I prefer real life.


  3. I am a big movie buff, as you know! I liked the way you made the branch’s falling a sense of loss. Yes, there will not be blossoms from that fallen branch. You ‘see’ things I don’ t even think about, Brenda! Smiles, Robin


      • I do like the way you treated us to your visual and emotional reactions to first, movies and their excitement. Then, second, how you view yourself as ‘normal,'(along with a dose of reality in your aging) and not feeling like a superhero, possibly. But to your readers, who treasure not only your shorter haibuns and haikus, the fantasies in your fairy tales keep us riveted. That makes you a heroine to me! Smiles, Robin


    • Beth, Notifications never showed me your comment, but I’m happy to find it when updating my comments pages. I thought you would prove a kindred spirit. πŸ™‚ Hope you enjoy your Sunday. Blessings, Brenda


  4. It’s a sad reflection that, as the boring bits occupy most of our lives, they must make up most of ‘us’
    Perhaps that’s where focus, persistence and positivity come from. Without the requirement to grind our way through the slow days there would be no need for those traits.

    Sorry – I’m not usually this ‘deep’ – serves you right for writing such a though-provoking piece.


    • David, Another of your comments was adrift in my blog with no anchor through notifications, which I have depended on. How unsettling. At last, I have found it, and so thoughtful it is, too. I agree with you, the more boring life can be, the more time and energy for reflection and focus. That is when character shines. Do you sit around whining? Or do you relish those moments as ripe for imagination? πŸ™‚ You can guess my leanings, I would bet. And I can guess yours. Cheers, Brenda


      • Hi Brenda – my notifications are quite erratic too – so it’s not just you.
        I sometimes think that WordPress is just too busy and means to come back later and do all those – then life intervenes and he moves on to the next thing.
        I can empathise with this, so I don’t let it get to me, but I do agree, it is very irritating that you can’t rely on him.


        • I think there must be a bug in the code, but perhaps you are right and WP is just overworked. Still, at least I happened to be doing my blog maintenance in a fairly timely way. It’s a thankless job, so it could have been done a lot longer in the future. πŸ˜‰


  5. I like the reflective quality of this haibun. The haiku add another texture to the writing. Personally I think our more difficult times propel us forward – they make us question life, grow in understanding of ourselves and others and can lead us to explore the deeper philosophical and spiritual aspects of life. Besides – life would get incredibly boring if it was always sunny, pleasant and easy. πŸ™‚


  6. All I wanted to do, for a long time, was go to Hogwarts and take classes. LOL Then I waned to drive my car Fast and Furious. I went to Paris but didn’t find a wormhole that would take me to see Gertrude Stein or Picasso, the way it happened in Midnight in Paris. I long to board the Enterprise and warp into space. I’d like to dance with the kids in the Step Up movies and go on a case with Holmes and Watson, as long as they were Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law. I’d like to go to Tuscany and live under the Sun, while lovely carpenters remodeled an ancient and beautiful house in the country, just for all the friends that would simply come into my life for no reason at all. I’d like to meet Wall-E and help Bruce Willis on his next case in Reds. I’d like to sing with the women in Pitch Perfect and just have a blast. There are so many, many films I would like to play in, even if just for a little while. πŸ™‚ Meanwhile, even though I haven’t tried the Tokyo Drift, I can drive a car at break neck speed and all of our cars have been HOT and fast, well up until now:) And while I can’t go into space and visit weird and strange worlds, I can make them up and visit anytime I like. I can dance with the dancers and I can sing with the singers on both CD’s and DVD’s, so all in all, life is good.


  7. Wow, I just love this! I often feel this way after watching a movie. A fantasy movie. With a good ending. And all the good guys always win. It’s true life sometimes has boring days. But each of them is a part of us. And makes us who we are. Wouldn’t trade any of ’em! I’m guessing your writing at age 30 couldn’t possibly be as profound as it is now even if the mirror seemed kinder.


    • Thanks, what a lovely comment. I wouldn’t trade my boring days either, that is where character really reveals itself. A quiet day renews the soul. πŸ™‚ My writing at age 30 made me a lot of money. I was working as a clerk to a judge and then later as a contract lawyer. πŸ™‚ Was it profound? Doubtful, not to knock contracts or court opinions, but clearly written was more important at the time. As for the mirror, at least I have aged well, I think. LOL


  8. I’ve noticed that with that new Facebook feature that will take your photos and posts and create a movie out of it. Cute and all, but do those summary vids really represent who we are? Or just who we want to be? Or who we might have been?


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