Ridgefield resident known for pandemic-era poems publishes poetry book

RIDGEFIELD — One resident’s pandemic-era practice has taken on a tangible form.

In April 2020, Carin Crook began posting original haikus to her Facebook page on a daily basis. Haikus are a type of short-form poetry originally from Japan; each one contains three phrases of 17 syllables arranged in a 5-7-5 pattern.

For a few months Crook wrote a haiku a day specifically for a person on her social media friends’ list. When that process became “limiting,” she said, she widened her creative lens to include musings on everyday life.

“It became a mindfulness practice,” Crook added. “I found myself thinking in haiku (and putting) so many nonsense thoughts, feelings and emotions into these 17 syllables. …This process has helped me tremendously.”

Dozens of Crook’s original haikus can be found in her new book “#morninghaiku: a simple practice to inspire your every day,” now available on Amazon.


Crook has spent most of her career in professional services, but she majored in communications in college. Although her penchant for words resulted in a lot of writing over the years, this is the first time she’s tried her pen at poetry.

“Haikus are so simple yet profound and they’re accessible to everybody,” she said. “Everyone seems to relate to them and understand them in their own way.”

The daily posts enabled Crook to connect with people on social media and inspired others to adopt the practice, too.

Her friend Heather Roles was so inspired, in fact, that she printed out all the poems Crook wrote in 2020 and assembled them into a handmade book. The introduction Roles wrote for that book is the foreword to “#morninghaiku.”

“While we have never gone out for coffee or taken a yoga class together, we share one of the most powerful connectors: our words,” it reads. During the pandemic, “We all stood alone, isolated and left to navigate the difficult complexities of our own selves. Underneath the dark, encrusted murkiness lies infinite possibilities.”

The haikus in the book are purposely formatted with lowercase letters and sans punctuation. The last few pages allow space for readers to write their own.

“This practice has demonstrated how often we fill in the white space with things that may not be even close to true,” Crook said. “It’s a reminder to be more open and just allow for space — being is all that is needed.”

To purchase Crook’s book, click here.

alyssa.seidman@hearstmediact.com

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