Haiku Wednesday: Mickey’s Mouth

Steamboat Willie ate
Steve Rogers, Up, Leia, Bart.
Merchandised Heroes.

March 2020. The pilot light was barely lit under my Coleman creative furnace. My public life was scattered in all directions, from the federal government’s homicidal indifference to COVID to the Governor’s state-wide lockdown to me being drafted (literally) into a new job. My comfort zone was gone, and I like my comfort zones.

I also like writing, especially as an escape, so I tried to cheat on the writing thing, turning to haikus in hopes of creating one hundred such poems for a possible book. That project died after twenty-something works because I could not focus, and my year of literary floundering would continue. The book thing may still happen, but for now, I’ll post those haikus here for a series called “Haiku Wednesday.”

Haikus are fascinating technical works with all the visuals and versions, and I like the discipline and challenge of sticking to a particular stanza (5-7-5 syllables). The problem is I struggle with those limitations sometimes, and those poems just plain suck as a result. The above is one of those stinkers.

My disillusionment is obvious. Walt’s House is not the congenial, happy place as I thought it was when I was a kid. And “Mickey’s Mouth” suffers from a bad cadence, a bad choice of words, and a bad mood at the time of creation (world falling apart, poor little me, blah blah blah). I’m sticking it out here because the cacophony reminds me of March 2020.

One technical note: I hope you picked up on the use of “Steamboat Willie” as Mickey was known when he was featured in the eponymous 1928 cartoon. A more innocent creature all those decades ago. Since then, “Steve Rogers” is the Marvel acquisition, “Up” refers to Pixar Studios, “Leia” is the Star Wars franchise, and “Bart” is a headliner on the Disney Plus channel.

A hundred years later, I think we can all agree the Mouse who Roared is quite the ravenous commercial carnivore.

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