muz·zle·flash·ing  \ˈmə-zəlfla-shiŋ\  verb – activity comprised of taking a photograph with one’s cell phone and composing a seventeen syllable haiku-like poetry response

I go everywhere with my phone and, like most everyone else’s phones these days, it has a fairly decent camera.  I like to take quick photographs of the random things of life – from the usual and everyday to the ridiculous and inane.  I don’t consider myself to be a photographer in any sense of the professional connotation that is attached to that term, but I do like to catalog the images that jump out at me throughout the day.  I like to collect stuff, and cell phone photographs don’t have all the unpleasantries of physical clutter.

I am particularly fond of the concept that some in the literary world refer to as the “economy of language.”  One of my favorite poets, Ezra Pound, epitomized this idea in “In a Station of the Metro” when he scaled a 30 line poem down to 2 compelling lines to capture what he considered to be the most important image/idea; Pound was emulating the same concepts that define the Japanese haiku.  I also find Hemmingway’s “Iceberg Theory” to be a particularly powerful concept in writing; he believed the writer should only show a few specific details (the tip of the iceberg) while omitting the other big details, strengthening the story and forcing the readers to connect the dots themselves.  I often struggle with wanting to “overwrite”, and the simple idea of economically choosing my words has definitely made me a better writer.

The idea behind “muzzleflashing” was to marry these two simple concepts.  A muzzle flash is the explosion of light emitted from the barrel of a gun when a shot is fired.  The term “flash” has been used to describe extremely short writing (i.e. “flash fiction).  I “shoot” quick photos with my phone and then compose a 17 syllable haiku-like response later (also, usually on my phone).  It is important to note  that while  I’m using the 5/7/5 syllable format often attributed to haiku (although haiku’s actually use 17 “on” or “morae” which are not actually syllables at all), I am not sticking to the traditional haiku format which typically focuses on the juxtaposition of two distinct images or ideas.

So…my wife told me that I should also have to write this “about” section in 17 syllables as well.  Here goes:

[muzzleflashing]  cell phone photograph / and seventeen syllables: / a moment captured

Clark Wilson lives in Rancho Cucamonga, California.  He fiercely loves Jesus Christ, Nicki (his wife of 14 years), and Eliot (his dog).  His official career is a high school guidance counselor/speech & debate team coach, but he is also an active musician, frustrated writer, and hack graphic artist.


17 Responses to “About”

  1. Francesca Quantemateo July 17, 2011 at 12:53 am #

    I love muzzles. Especially the one on my dog. I don’t love flashing. You can get arrested for that.

  2. Mihir Vatsa August 27, 2011 at 1:35 pm #

    Hi Clark,

    This is pure awesomeness!
    Finally, there would be some good photography to see.

    Best wishes


  3. R. Hernandez: Poetry September 6, 2011 at 5:32 pm #

    Great idea! Your “Jilted” haiku is really great. Maybe justice really only exists in comic books…

  4. Jared St. Martin Brown September 10, 2011 at 6:36 pm #

    This is a great idea for a blog. It has everything I like. I’ll be checking it regularly.

    • muzzleflashing September 10, 2011 at 9:08 pm #

      Thanks, Jared! I appreciate you stopping by! =)

  5. Leonargo September 13, 2011 at 1:35 pm #

    Truely cool compositions you have here with the haikus!

  6. wordcoaster October 9, 2011 at 2:43 pm #

    I nominated you for the versatile blogger award–your posts are always delightfully insightfully superb. 🙂

    • muzzleflashing October 10, 2011 at 8:00 pm #

      Geesh. That’s awfully nice of you! Thanks! I’m honored…

  7. snakypoet November 16, 2011 at 1:59 pm #

    If you are on facebook (can’t find you amongst so many Clark Wilsons) you might like to join Haiku on Friday. We’d love your talents there!

    • muzzleflashing November 16, 2011 at 3:45 pm #

      Thanks for the head’s up. I just asked to join…

  8. PhotoPoetics™ December 21, 2011 at 5:53 pm #

    You’ve created such a creative and interesting concept I have nominated you for a Versatile Blogger Award: http://wp.me/pxjrA-lZ

  9. Emma April 10, 2012 at 7:03 pm #

    Glad you visited my blog, I think I’ll enjoy following your escapades. I’m a big fan of Hemingway’s Iceberg Theory as well when writing, though I’ve never considered cutting my stories down to 17 syllables.

    • muzzleflashing April 11, 2012 at 3:51 pm #

      Thanks for returning the compliment! I really enjoyed your poetry and I’m looking foward to seeing more. I hope you do enjoy my MuzzleFlashing escapades. =)

  10. Jennifaye June 4, 2012 at 8:53 am #

    Hi Clark! I nominated your blog for a “Beautiful Blogger Award.” It’s for “creativity, originality, and contribution to the blogging community.” Yey for obscure, feel-good awards!!! Read about it here: http://jennifaye.wordpress.com/2012/06/04/beautiful-blogger-award/

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: