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THE HOKKU


 

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Title:

The Hokku – A New Verse Form

   

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Article

 

Type of Media: Periodical.  
Name: Vanity Fair (US).  
Issue:    
Date: August 1915.  
Publisher: Condé Nast.   
Published At: New York.  
Pages:

Page 46.

 
Price:

25 cents. 

 
Remarks:

Published under the pseudonym of Kwaw Li Ya.

 

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Comments by
Aleister
Crowley:

     I was nearly down and out, when I got an introduction to the editor of Vanity Fair, a perfectly charming man, who reminded me not a little of Austin Harrison. He was, however, extremely intelligent and understood his business thoroughly. In a couple of years he had pulled the paper up from nothing to one quarter of a million. He treated me, through some inexplicable misunderstanding, as a human being and asked me to write for him.

     I began with an account of a baseball game as seen by a professor from the University of Peking. This was followed up by a series of Hokku. This is a Japanese verse form. It contains three lines totalling seventeen syllables. I modified this by introducing regular meter, the first line dactyl-spondee, the second line spondee-dactyl-spondee, and the third dactyl-spondee. A Hokku must contain a very definite finely chiselled idea or rather, chain of ideas. Such is the strict rule, but one is allowed a certain degree of latitude.

      The Confessions of Aleister Crowley.  New York, NY.  Hill and Wang, 1969.  Page 766.

 
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