23 comments

    1. Hello Celestine,

      Good of you drop by. Glad to have given you a smile.

      Cheers,
      Eric

      A smile cures plenty
      Man’s foolishness is a laugh
      God’s sense of humour?

      When Lyla announced that she was embarking on a new weight-loss regime, Brielle smiled.

      ‘How about you, Hon?’ asked Lyla.

      ‘You know me, I’ve my exercise routine,’ said Brielle.

      ‘Oh, yeah, I forgot,’ said Lyla with a casual wave. ‘But first, I need to get some real cool outfits, you know. My gym instructor is a hunk.’

      Brielle smiled and gave a small shake of her head.

      Six months later, Lyla came over to Brielle’s for coffee. She gave Brielle a bag of fairly new gym wear.

      ‘These will suit you better, Hon,’ said Lyla who had grown rounder. She put away a few rich cookies.

      ‘More?’ asked Brielle.

      ‘Yeah. How do you do it?’ asked Lyla. ‘Keep yourself so trim.’

      ‘I’ve told you. With three children and housekeeping?’ said Brielle, and she laughed.

      Haiku & Story: Copyright @ Eric Alagan, 2018

  1. Your Haikus have substance, are thought-provoking and so meaningful. For making money, in every field rot is seeping in. No one care of the consequences. What a line’ Graveyard worms spit out.’

    1. Hello Indira,

      Thank you for your visit and nice comment. Happy to have provoked your thoughts.

      And you’re right. The mindless accumulation of money has rendered every field of human endeavour rotten. And the culprits are about 1% of the world’s population.

      All good wishes,
      Eric

      Substance a mirage
      Real beauty more than skin deep
      Coat of paint on smoke

      ‘Greed is the portent propellant of human progress,’ said the speaker. ‘Greed drives one to break the pain barrier. Greed brings out creativity, creates jobs, and provides happiness. Greed is a wealth creating machine. And here is an old one, greed makes the world go round.’

      The seven men seated in the boardroom clapped.

      ‘You create a need, an unattainable need, and sell the service,’ said the speaker. ‘And while the consumer twirls like a dog trying to catch its own tail, we take his money.’

      The men laughed.

      ‘And so, my dear friends, let’s go out there and sell more dreams to the fools.’

      The speaker scanned the room. The 8 men, including him, were worth US$450 billion, wealth equivalent to the 3.6 billion people who fell in the bottom half of humanity.

      Haiku & Story: Copyright @ Eric Alagan, 2018

    1. Hello Shree,

      Good to see you back. I hope you managed to sort out most if not all the stuff that’s been bugging you.

      Yes, the Pied Piper does possess the allure that has many ready to throw themselves over the edge. Group think, herd instinct, or mere feeble minds? Probably a combination of all three and more, I reckon.

      Peace,
      Eric

      Marching to music
      Happily fell over edge
      Fat cats grow fatter

      After their residency training, Jackson, Gavin, and Brody trained and became specialists in their chosen areas of medical practice.

      Jackson specialized in rural medicine. He travelled the world bringing primary health care to people the world had forgotten. He did not make much money but found fulfilment.

      Gavin became an accomplished surgeon in the A&E department. He worked tirelessly under brutal pressure and lost but only a handful of patients. He did not have a life to speak of but found satisfaction in having saved numerous lives.

      Brody specialized in cosmetic surgery and his primary clientele was from the middle class. He was not fabulously wealthy but was the wealthiest of the three.

      On the rare occasions the three former college mates got together for a drink, it was obvious to Brody that the other two did not think much of his work.

      When the day came, God said to Jackson, ‘You took care of the lowliest of the low. You gave hope to people. Truly, you were a light. Welcome to my House.’

      And God said to Gavin, ‘You gave people a second chance in their lives. In so doing, you gave up your life. Truly, you are a generous one. Welcome to my House.’

      Finally, God turned to Brody and said, ‘You endured the judgement of friends who ought to have known better. You gave weak people self-confidence, and happiness, when they needed it. I find no fault in that. Welcome to my House.’

      Brody scratched his head, and so did the other two. All three were relieved.

      Haiku & Story: Copyright @ Eric Alagan, 2018

  2. “Beauty, ever changing fad” Isn’t that the truth? I cringe each time I see another female celebrity after getting plastic surgery where it looks almost comical. It’s not at all, though. So sad…Great haiku, Eric!

    p.s. What a great line from your haiku to Sandra, “God slaps his forehead!”

    1. Hello Lauren,

      What is galling is, a small group of people in the fashion industry and media dictate what “beauty” is and the lemmings lap it up.

      Glad you liked that “God slaps his forehead!” line. LOL.

      Cheers
      Eric

      Beauty procedures
      Smoothen, nip and tuck, and jab
      Graveyard worms spit out

      ‘That makes it twelve exhumations and all twelve show the same signs,’ said the pathologist.

      ‘I hate to be alarmist, doc, but could the tabloids be right. Is this a modern day vampire event?’ said the police officer.

      ‘There could be many reasons why the tissues don’t decompose,’ said the pathologist.

      He drew various scenarios but as he spoke, it was obvious the pathologist did not himself believe what he said.

      ‘There is something else strange here,’ said the oligochaeteologist. ‘There are no earthworms or any type of worm in the entire cemetery. A few years ago, a gravedigger brought this to my attention and I wish I had taken a closer look.’

      ‘Now that you mentioned it, worms don’t eat plastic,’ said the police officer.

      ‘What is it this time, officer?’ asked the pathologist.

      ‘Well, this is Beverly Hills,’ said the police officer, and he shrugged his shoulders. ‘I bet even god does not know what all these people consume or inject themselves with.’

      Haiku & Story: Copyright @ Eric Alagan, 2018

  3. There must be a reason for God to create us in different shapes, sizes and colors. Otherwise we might as well be factory clones. Then we let the media confine and dictate what is the fad so they can fatten their pockets with all the money making ploy.

    1. Hello Windy,

      God has his reasons, I’m sure.

      In a sense, we are factory runs but come with different fillings and toppings, I reckon. Variety is the spice of life, they say—but whose life?

      Cheers,
      Eric

      Flourishing business
      Chose pastry fillings, toppings
      Variety adds spice

      ‘Though we opened 15,000 new outlets, corporate level top and bottom lines continue to go south,’ said John Thimble, the VP Strategy of the world’s foremost fast-food corporation.

      ‘What’s the solution?’ asked Mason Underwood, the CEO.

      ‘Well, Mr Underwood,’ said Thimble, and he clicked through his slide stack as he spoke, ‘the root of our problem is the new surge in weight loss regimes. That means no sugar and no salt in people’s diet. Bland food, clear water, and an insane number of hours spent on workouts. Masochism, the new in-thing and it’s slowly killing us.’

      ‘So, the weight-loss crowd is fighting us.’

      ‘Yes sir, and our answer to them is the new ideal body weight.’

      Thimble brought up a photo image of a happy three-tier family and their pet dog. He said,

      ‘Our ideal about how people should look. We’ve the medical reports lined up, all peer-reviewed. Ours will be a two-pronged attack. Hour glass bad, our ideal body size good. We’ve the scientists and science behind us. We’ve in hand a worldwide marketing campaign, celebrities, and politicians all ready to plug for us. For their usual fees of course. We’ll finance Hollywood movies portraying our kind of people. They’ll also be on cable TV; talk shows on prime time TV; and on every bill board.’

      Mason Underwood studied the image on the screen and pursed his lips. He said, ‘What’s the downside?’

      ‘Well, sir, all these years we’ve co-existed with the weight-loss camp. But they started it and now it’s going to be an all-out war. The weight loss industry is fractured and worth $70 billion. Fast food is cohesive and worth $220 billion. We’ll murder them. And as for the consumer, we’ve turned them before, and will turn them again.’

      On the boardroom’s big screen, a family of obese grandparents, parents, and children smiled at the camera. One kid was hugging a barrel shaped dog.

      The new ideal body size.

      Haiku & Story: Copyright @ Eric Alagan, 2018

    1. Hello Ian,

      You’re right and most people abdicate thought and reckon it’s easier to follow others.

      Sometimes, on that rare occasion, they are right. It’s unrelated to the theme of the haiku but I’ve shared my story below.

      Cheers,
      Eric


      Blind follow the rich
      Living lifestyles beyond reach
      Road ends over cliff

      One weekend in Melbourne—it was my first trip there—I decided to visit the Queen Victoria Market. I got off the tram but was a little lost. But in typical executive style, I strode in a direction which I hoped was right.

      I overheard a couple of middle-aged women behind, who were also looking for the QVM. They too had got off the tram.

      ‘Let’s follow him,’ said one woman. ‘Looks like he knows the way.’

      I turned around and confessed that I too was lost, and we all had a good laugh.

      I slowed my steps and they decided to keep following me.

      Fortunately, the direction I took turned out right.

      The woman was right too.

    1. Hello, Sandra,

      It is, is it not? That which was beauty is now frowned upon as not ideal enough.

      Thank you for your visit and comment.

      All good wishes,
      Eric

      Neck rings and lip plates
      Stretch and pull, distort the good
      God slaps his forehead

      After graduate school in America, Abioye returned to his village. He was to marry and take over the kingship from his father who had passed on a year earlier.

      His uncle, who was the Regent, and the Council of Elders had shortlisted half a dozen young women. They were the most beautiful maidens of the clan and the Council was convinced that Abioye would face a challenge to select one girl. What was more, the Council had exercised foresight.

      During the banquet to celebrate his homecoming, the girls paraded before Abioye. They went about serving the elders and their wives, and it was discreet and tasteful.

      After the dinner Abioye and the Council met late into the night.

      ‘What do you mean none of the girls are to your liking?’ asked Abioye’s uncle.

      ‘Do you prefer a white girl?’ asked an elder. ‘I should have known. Ten years in America and—’

      ‘No,’ said Abioye.

      ‘Tell us what is wrong with the girls we selected?’ said his uncle.

      ‘Nothing,’ said Abioye. ‘They are all beautiful in their unique ways. They also wear heels, wear modern clothes, and had straightened their hair.’

      ‘Is that not what all you modern fellows want?’ asked his uncle.

      ‘I prefer a traditional woman for my wife. With neck rings that accentuate her beauty and fuzzy hair that I adore.’

      Haiku & Story: Copyright @ Eric Alagan, 2018

    1. Hello Willow dear,

      Every year, businesses spend billions of dollars in marketing “their” vision of beauty. The more difficult to attain the ideal, the more money sucked from the consumer. But it gets unethical when people’s happiness and health are affected.

      Peace,
      Eric

      Leaders and traders
      Dictators and providers
      Scales of happiness

      ‘Take a look at her mother, son. Twenty years from now, that’s what she’ll look like. If you can live with that, go for it.’

      Colton took his father’s advice, proposed, and married Donna.

      She proved fastidious with her diet, and adhered to a strict exercise routine. Colton smiled to himself.

      Twenty years into their marriage, and even after two children, Donna maintained her figure. But their marriage was on the rocks.

      Whenever they went out, she spied Colton giving other women second looks. And their sex life suffered. She was devastated.

      ‘And to think that all these years I denied myself a good meal and hit the gym every other day,’ said Donna. And she found ready sympathy with her girlfriends.

      ‘What’re you doing, girl?’ asked one girlfriend.

      Donna had ordered a large Strawberry Smoothie.

      ‘From now on, I’m going to live,’ said Donna. ‘And if he wants to leave me for an overweight floozy, he’s welcome.’

      ‘Yeah, and take him to the cleaners.’

      Within weeks Donna piled on weight and had to get a new wardrobe. And Colton stopped giving other women second looks.

      ‘And our sex life, gosh,’ said Donna, and her girlfriends squealed and leaned forward for details. ‘But I’m not telling,’ she said with a laugh.

      Donna looked as lovely as her mother was, when she was forty five.

      Haiku & Story: Copyright @ Eric Alagan, 2018

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