Unforgettable: Haiku Milieu at Uncommon Ground Lakeview

July 15, 2021.  The 8th Haiku Milieu concert at Uncommon Ground Lakeview, and the first one live and in person since the start of the pandemic. 

It was all we were hoping for and more: an incredible spectacle of friendship and music and inspiration and craft cocktails and coffee and old friends and new friends and brick walls that had seen it all, coming back to life.  
It was an unforgettable evening.  The room was packed to the gills.  There were songs inspired by haiku, haiku inspired by songs, laughter and inevitably, tears.  Now that Uncommon Ground Lakeview is back to presenting live music, you’ll want to get in on it and experience the singular magic Michael and Helen Cameron foster there, as soon as you can. 

And while it was a transformative night, the morning had not started particularly well. 
I woke up crabby for absolutely no reason, and even though I know that is often the case on days in which my life is about to change for the better, I forgot.  

Wading through my basic morning routine felt like walking through mud, with the mud already caked inside your boots, each foot making that sucking sound as you lift it to take the next step. 
I am grateful to whatever spirits of mercy and compassion were helping me muddle through Thursday morning, as somehow I had the ability to notice the voice in my head that was saying:  “This is important.” 

I did my best to stay with the voice, only barely fending off the myriad distractions throwing themselves at me on my way to sitting down and writing. 

"It is important // that we matter to ourselves // or nothing happens." 

That flow continued, forming itself into the long-form haiku poem below, which I shared at the start of the concert on Thursday. 

I hope you enjoy the poem.  As I said to the audience that night, the cadence of Haiku, the 5 syllables one line, 7 the next, and 5 in the final line, is one of its sublime pleasures.  If you feel like it, count the syllables out with your fingers as you read the poem.  It's FUN. 
Also, I hope you know the difference you make in the world. 
If that is hard to imagine, being one person and making a difference to the world, just think about the difference you make to ME. 
It makes a difference to me that you read this.  That we are on this journey together.  I feel privileged to share Haiku Milieu, music, and these Sunday emails with you.  

For giving my work a home with you, and for so much more, thank you.  I hope you matter to yourself as much as you matter to me. 

Jenny Bienemann 

it is important  
that we matter to ourselves 
or nothing happens 

     without you there is 
     absolutely no prism 
     for light to shine through 

          without me there is 
          no one to be inspired 
          to be moved by you 

               without us there is 
               only turning outwards for 
               proof that we exist 

                    an eternal search 
                    not meant to illuminate 
                    but to obfuscate 

                         we come together 
                         to honor the life in us 
                         that brings songs to life 

                              enjoying how much 
                              we matter to each other 
                              but first, to ourselves

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