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John Barrett Writes Haiku About Jesus
Feb
20

John Barrett Writes Haiku About Jesus

John Barrett, from Gig Harbor, Washington, was at the first Seattle One project gathering back in 2012, when writer Becky De Oliveira said, "Jesus is the guy who understands that I don't write haiku about Jesus." Why did she say this? Who can remember. It was in response to an interview question. One can only assume that the question itself was completely inappropriate, poorly considered, and posed by a deranged imbecile.

Never one to back away from a challenge—or a chance to compose haiku—John approached Becky in the foyer and presented her with an elegant haiku written in pencil on a Post-it (pictured above). If it weren't for the fact that John looks almost exactly like the actor Edward Norton, Becky might have found this creepy. As it turns out, this was the start of a friendship and creative partnership. Becky framed the haiku and it hangs above her desk. It reminds her of Jesus, of John, of possibilities, of miracles, of leaps of faith, of pencils.

As for John, his gig as a haiku master has done nothing but gain momentum over the last four years. He was back in full force throughout the two-day One project gathering, composing a haiku for every single one of the sermons. John is a bit of an overachiever. And clearly a show-off. Those of you losers who just sat there and listened? Read these and weep.

PAUL DYBDAHL
A voice preparing
Slices of God touching man
Passion week matters

RAEWYN HANKINS
A bittersweet ride
Jesus on prophesied colt
Hosanna! Our King (?)

IKI TAIMI
Building sandcastles
House of prayer for all nations?
Refuge we should be

BRANDY KIRSTEIN
Arrogant leaders
"Woe!" Blind hypocrites called out
Reorient now!

EMILY POOLE
Sheep and goats gathered
Some asked, "When did I serve You?"
Follow His example.

KARL HAFFNER
Silence is awful
Awkward painful suffering
Still may I trust You

OFA LANGI
Dirty feet they had
Egos challenged, love displayed
Master, Servant, Friend

MATTHEW GAMBLE
Pride and avarice
Tried putting God in a box
Betrayed the One

TARA VINCROSS
Distressed and troubled
Sleepy eyes, the flesh is weak
Move through it, submit

ALEX BRYAN
Meal as ministry
Be subversive and "Do this . . ."
Remember Him now

ZANE YI
Pilate questioned Him
Saw reality, glimpsed truth
Folded, did not act

TIM GILLESPIE
Failure is a fact
But God foresaw and forgave
Don't deny Him, act

MACY MCVAY
The Skull's three crosses
The Gift between criminals
One chose His friendship

JENNIFER SCOTT
To be forsaken
Is to feel hurt, lost, erased
He risked such, for us

WILLIAM JOHNSSON
My sins Jesus took
Paradigms were ripped top down
Keep Him the Main Thing

DILYS BROOKS
Morning of mourning
Linens there, but Jesus not
Risen! One for us!

John and Becky think a One project devotional book focused on the haiku form would be meaningful and fun. For those of you in need of a refresher, a haiku is defined as "a Japanese poem of seventeen syllables, in three lines of five, seven, and five, traditionally evoking images of the natural world." The word haiku is the same in the plural as it is in the singular. Contact us if you'd like to write one or more haiku for this project.

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