Monday, April 9, 2012

H is for Haiku

I first learned of haiku in early elementary school when our teacher presented a lesson plan on the form and assigned us to write our own. Since then, I've been enthralled with these poems, which require the poet to say so much using so few words. The extra challenge of using the correct number of syllables in each of the poem's three lines (usually 5, 7, 5) is what intrigues me most, I think. As anyone who's written haiku knows, the concept is more difficult than it appears.

Some poets, particularly in North America, write single-line haiku containing much fewer than seventeen syllables; others write haiku of four or more very short lines, which is known as vertical haiku. Circular haiku, in which the poem doesn't have a fixed beginning or ending, is also popular. Others adopt their own forms, some counting words rather than syllables.

I enjoy writing haiku. As poet Santoka Taneda once wrote, "Haiku is not a shriek, a howl, a sigh, or a yawn; rather, it is the deep breath of life"--and I think that's beautiful.

Do you read or write haiku?

24 comments:

  1. i have always written poetry but have never tried haiku

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    1. You should try it sometime! The challenge makes it fun. :)

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  2. Thanks for stopping by my blog and commenting. I love to read haikus (can be read in one sitting LOL) but I'm not a writer of haikus.

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    1. You're welcome. I enjoyed your blog. :)

      Yes, haiku is definitely short and sweet--perfect reading for when you don't have a lot of time.

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  3. I've written a few in my time, but I've also taught my students to write haikus for years.

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  4. I haven't tried to write one since school...might have to give it try now that a grade doesn't depend on it!

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    1. I hope you do! No school means no pressure. :)

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  5. I homeschool and my daughter is very interested in reading poetry-perhaps we should tackle writing some of our own soon!
    Taylor
    www.thelumberjackswife.com

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    1. I think it's great that she's interested in poetry. So many kids I know seemed to be bored by it.

      Thanks for stopping by! Really enjoy your blog. :)

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  6. This makes me want to write some haikus. I think I'll do it tomorrow :)

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  7. I've written poetry from the time I could write anything but I've never been able to write haiku. I always admire people who can, like Myron Lysenko.

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    1. Thanks for telling me about Lysenko. I just Googled him and found a lot of amazing haiku. Off to read more. :)

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  8. and i thought haiku was only simple 5-7-5! you taught me new stuff to try!

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    1. There are so many variations, which makes the form even more fun. :)

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  9. That's it Dana, I'm going to attempt a haiku before this challenge is over. Thanks for the inspiration ;)

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  10. I love the challenge of restraint. It is something that isn't required in most forms of poetry, but in Haiku, it is necessary and cathartic.

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    1. That's how I feel--I love that haiku has very specific restrictions. I enjoy the challenge!

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  11. Hello, Dana! I used to love writing haiku when I was younger. I haven't done so in a while, though. Maybe I'll give it go today just for fun!

    I hope you're having a great week and happy A to Z!!

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    1. I hope you do. Quite a few people have told me they'd like to write haiku today!

      Thanks for stopping by, and happy A to Z to you as well!

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  12. Beautiful article!

    i enjoy writing haiku, reading haiku and haibun. It's such a beautiful way of expressing one's feelings in very little words.

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    1. Thanks. It's my favorite poetic form.

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