Haiku

Haiku is a poetic form and a type of poetry from the Japanese culture. Haiku combines form, content, and language in a meaningful, yet compact form. Haiku poets write about everyday things. Many themes include nature, feelings, or experiences. Usually they use simple words and grammar.

The most common form for Haiku is three short lines. The first line usually contains five (5) syllables, the second line seven (7) syllables, and the third line contains five (5) syllables. You do not need to adhere to this rule however.  I’ve included one example that follows the rule and one that doesn’t.

Haiku doesn’t rhyme. A Haiku must “paint” a mental image in the reader’s mind. This is the challenge of Haiku – to put the poem’s meaning and imagery in the reader’s mind in ONLY 17 syllables over just three (3) lines of poetry!

Freshly Fallen

By Paul McCann

Snow lay on the street .
It crunched underneath my feet .
Footprints in the snow.

Frog

By Basho, 1686

The old pond;
A frog jumps in –
The sound of the water.

Click here for more examples from the Haiku Society

Click here for some more examples

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