To my shagrin, I wrote my first haiku in the spirit of the moment. I had just read a haiku about 9-11 by Sue Gibson, one of my new fans. I had seen several of my fans write haiku’s and wanted to try it. Now to write my very first correctly written haiku I decided to take Sue’s teachings to heart, but go one further.
I decided to do what every good writer should do before diving in, and that is research. I looked it up on Wikipedia, and found out that to English speaking people, the best way to explain how to write a haiku, is to say, it is 17 syllables. 5 syllables in the first and last line, and 7 in the middle line. This is how Sue explained it to me, also. Aha! Now I know how to write a haiku. Do I? This took some thinking. I see what the allure is, now, to the haiku. This is a thinking man or womans poetry of a mathematical sort, I guess.
I learned that It is a Japanese style of poetry, so, as I suspected, there are some oddities to a southern girl like me. They do not say it has 17 syllables, but 17 moras. Moras are not syllables. If you would like to read the entire definition, you can link there by clicking Wikipedia above, it’s quite interesting.
A typical haiku contains a kigo(seasonal reference) and a kireji(cutting word).
The original name of the haiku was hokku. It was changed to haiku by the Japanese writer Masaoka Shiki at the end of the 19th century.
In Japanese, haiku’s are different than the English version. The Japanese version is usually printed in a single vertical line. The English version usually appears in three lines.
Although you can write a haiku on any subject, an authentic Japanese style is written about nature. The English have stretched that to cover any subject.
This is a fascinating style of poetry. I wish I had learned the rules of how to write these years ago.
I could not find any reference to explain if it is ok to make a haiku rhyme. Most do not, so we know it is not required to rhyme.
Okay, now that I know how to write a haiku. I am going to attempt to write a correctly written one in my next article. Everyone should give it a try. It’s fun!
My fan Sue Gibson, Michele Starkey seconded that, Michelle Caton gave a third, & Melinda J 4th the motion that Sue was right.