Monday, October 15, 2007

Monday Poetry Stretch - Haiku

One of the blogs I love to read is a wrung sponge. I love the photographs and the haiku (among other things). Since this is a form we haven't officially tried here yet, I think it's about time.

Traditional Japanese haiku consist of a pattern of 5, 7, 5 "sound symbols." These are not exactly like syllables, but adapting haiku to the English language, this is the pattern that many follow. Haiku generally contain a "kigo" or season word, but this word is not always obvious. Most haiku are written about nature. Senryu use the same form but are often humorous or satirical and written about human nature.

There are many good resources online about this poetic form. Here are a few you may want to explore.
This is one of my favorite Haiku. It was written by Hashin.
No sky
no earth - but still
snowflakes fall
I am also very fond of this poem by Myra Cohn Livingston. You can find it in Flights of Fancy: And Other Poems.
Highway Haiku

Wild branches, spilling
over the concrete wall, reach
out to touch the bus . . .
Leaning against each
other comfortably, birch
watch down the highway . . .
Hemlocks build themselves
their own dark houses, their own
tall secret castles . . .
Pines, tamed by fences,
pop their heads over to look
out at the traffic . . .
One willow escapes
to sun herself on the soft
green grasses of summer . . .
So, will you haiku with me this week? What kind of haiku will you write? Post your effort(s) on your blog and then leave a link in the comments. Once we have some poems, I'll link them all here.


  1. I usually write a haiku every week for 3 Word Wednesday My most recent one is Gusty

    You can find a haiku-writing prompt at One Deep Breath

  2. I love writing haiku, although mine are rarely the traditional nature-related haiku. Instead, they are usually political, such as my SCHIP Haiku. On a more whimsical note, I recently wrote a batch of Spam Haiku

  3. I was sure I had posted these before, but I guess they were just waiting for this occasion:

  4. Oh my dear! I have been waiting for you to get to haiku. But I am truly tickled to be mentioned in your post.
    Here is a haiku I wrote this week after visiting my dad's garden.