TBD on Ning

I figured after I've been bastardizing the form for so long, I should put up a discussion for classic haiku. :>)


We all know the requirement that the poems be three lines with 5, 7, and 5 syllables (the anglicized version of the Japanese "on," or sound units). Here are a couple more requirements of classic haiku (taken from the links that are posted on the group main page):


  • Haiku typically contain a kigo, a defined word or phrase that symbolizes or implies the season of the poem. Kigo are often in the form of metonyms, or words that imply a season (for instance, to the Japanese, the frog would imply Spring when frogs emerge in rice paddies). There are regional equivalents in America...for instance, the cherry blossoms emerging in Washington, DC, are recognized as a Springtime phenomenon, or snow in the north indicating winter...but Western poets often simply use the season names.  
  • Haiku also typically contain a kireji, or "cutting word," often placed at the end of a line, which is intended to briefly cut the train of thought to prompt the reader to reflect on the relationships within the poem.  In classical Japanese haiku there are 18 kireji...actual sound units for which there are no equivalents in English. So Western poets often use ellipses or hyphens to indicate such a break. Here's an example of one kireji, "ya" being used mid-verse, and how it plays out in English: 

          yuku|haru|ya| tori|naki|uo|no| me|wa|namida

go|spring|—| bird|crying|fish|'s| eye|as-for|tear


          spring going—
          birds crying and tears
          in the eyes of fish


Okay, it looks daunting, but it's not really.  


Tags: that's what I'm talking about, the real thing, traditional haiku

Views: 205

Replies to This Discussion

burnt wooden branches

pressed against immobile fence

wind twisting cloud knots 


moist cicada drone

matches mercury rising

quick eyed oriole


grey waves swell and crash

grey sand dunes, grey sky, grey heart...

I drop the curtain

cold grey rocks crumble 

placating sea glistening 

standing ovation

the grass is burnt up

the air so hot and humid

all nature slows down

sky mirror reflects

grey and white variations...

one streak of carmine


seasons come and go...
our love is a fragrant rose
that never withers

Leaves crunch underfoot

Sharp air in, soft mists emerge

Thoughts of crackling fire.

warm exhalation...

eager lips inhale your breath

soft kiss lingering 

thoughts of crackling fire
bodies lit from inside out
love fanning the flames

sudden summer storm
dark grey clouds obscuring blue
warm rain tears falling 

Farmer's market stroll

Their call is irresistible

Lucious tomatoes




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