Conflict – Līgo Haībun Challenge

AnElephantCant stop having fun
He thinks the Haibun Challenge is great
He is filled with elation
He gets inspiration
From discussion with his friend The Pirate

AnElephant has created this small piece for the weekly Līgo Haībun Challenge, courtesy of the lovely Nightlake, with Penny and The Pirate.
Which sounds like a pop group!
Based on this image supplied by Penny.

Copyright Penny L Howe

Copyright Penny L Howe

The Conflict

He sits outside his favourite café in La Place de la Gare, watching the elderly Frenchmen playing chess at the next table.
He has orange juice, fresh and chilled, and croissants, warm and delicious.
He is at peace with his world.
But not with his writing.
He looks again at what he has written.
One word.
And he is not happy with it.
He is not comfortable writing in the first person.
In his more whimsical moments he hides behind the persona of an Elephant who sometimes, and contradictorily, can and does.
Otherwise he is simply always ‘he’.
Better and more significant writers have, across millennia, cultures and genres, used this device.
Julius Caesar and Franz Kafka come readily to mind.
Conan Doyle, a fellow Scot, wrote in the first person but in the guise of the doughty Dr Watson.
He changes the word to ‘He’.
At which point  the words flow quickly, eagerly, if perhaps not too elegantly from his cheap ball-point pen, scavenged from a Portland, Oregon hotel some months ago.
His inner peace is restored.
He smiles and wonders “Will no one rid me of this troublesome pirate?”

the writer’s conflict
is the search for
and subjugation of identity

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13 Responses to Conflict – Līgo Haībun Challenge

  1. Sarah Ann says:

    Oh this is wonderful. It’s very brave for AnElephant to take on Pirate. Can’t wait to see what he parries with. I’m afraid I capitulated to his demands this week. I agree wholeheartedly with your I/he dilemma. For me, ‘I’ isn’t important, whether my writing works is.


  2. I have to agree wholeheartedly with Haiku!


  3. A clever write, by all standards 🙂


  4. Penny L Howe says:

    Well first thing, I like the idea of a pop group. You’re right, our names put together do sound like one. Your haibun, very well written. It comes across as exceedingly personal. You cut through the the borders of a first,second, or third person perspective into simply being. The unique thing about this piece is that you carried your readers in with you to share the experience. Excellent, the haiku perfect!


  5. Steph says:

    I love it. It is a dilemma, isn’t it? I very rarely use 1st person. Only here, in fact, in this challenge, a bit of fiction and nonfiction mixed.This was a lot of fun to read, and I love the image of you sitting at a cafe in Paris watching the old man play chess.


  6. Peripatetic Eric says:

    A great piece is one that causes one to reflect and this is one of those.


  7. Gabriella says:

    Great and funny rendering of the persona dilema!


  8. julespaige says:

    It is quite interestin my Elephant friend, that when we do write fiction in the first person we are believed. Humanly drawn in. And yet sometimes when we write in the first person and the event relaid is real – we are not believed. You, however you write – it is always a fun read. 🙂

    As for hotel pens…they do come in handy don’t they?


  9. Alastair says:

    That’s great


  10. nightlake says:

    Yes, it is indeed not so easy to write in the first person and you can’t possibly have experience on every topic:) but the first-person adds a personal touch and draws the reader. Had read a piece on this. Would you like to take a look:
    This was a good one interlaced with humour and thank you for contributing this week


    • Thank you, dear Nightlake, for always making AnElephant so welcome.
      And for your continual support, much appreciated.
      The link is great, thank you, and does not at all push the first person view – quite the reverse in fact.
      Always learning here!


  11. Anja says:

    awwww I loved it and can relate to the 1st person dilema. 🙂 Wonderful work and I doubt you truly want to be rid of any pirate. lol


  12. emmylgant says:

    Ecrire c’est danser nu derriere un eventail, tu l’as bien saisi dans ton histoire.
    The unfolding and wrap up is pure AnElephantCan.


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