Haiku is an ancient form of poetry that originated with Buddhist monks in Japan. They are generally 17 syllables and 2-4 lines in length. The subjects are primarily around nature with images that contradict or juxtapose one another. The traditional format for the poem is this:
Some American poets, including the late Allen Ginsberg, have written haiku in seventeen syllable, single line sentences. Others have written haiku that doesn't follow the traditional 5-7-5 syllabic format. The main concern with haiku is to capture a concrete image, not to ponder abstract thought. Some argue that the brief nature of the poems reflect the brevity of earth, but, that thought seems much too abstract to fit with the essence of haiku.
In fact, one of the most famous Haiku poems, by Basho, does not follow this 5-7-5 format but, rather, the somewhat less common, and harder to master, 3-5-3:
a frog leaps in
Another famous haiku by Basho does follow this format:
the first cold shower
even the monkey seems to want
a little coat of straw
The Haiku that follow are not naturalistic. They are based on urban life, which I find much more interesting to write about. Haiku is also very deceptive. It's a simple form that is complicated to write well. Are the Haiku that follow good? I'll let you decide. I wrote most of them in just a few minutes. I hope you enjoy and, if you decide to experiment with urban Haiku, send me a link and I'll post it below!
Also, most haiku is untitled, but I've chosen to title these ones.
shoe laces untied
then bloody pavement.
out the window birds
sing and intrude my slumber
a pellet gun retrieved.
crunch, crunch go the leaves
under my jaunty sneakers
autumn has arrived,
asked to write haiku
he’s counting the syllables
and completing the task.
terrifying creatures play
children orphaned here.
the debt collector
calling me at dinnertime
fails in his job.
all rights reserved. Justin W. Price, copyright March 7th, 2012.
My Poetry Collection
Thanks for Reading.
A FREELANCE WRITER, HONORS STUDENT AND GOVER PRIZE FINALIST, JUSTIN W. PRICE (AKA, PDXKARAOKEGUY)IS A POET, SHORT STORY, BIOGRAPHY AND HUMOR WRITER. HIS POETRY COLLECTION, DIGGING TO CHINA, WAS RELEASED FEBRUARY 2ND, 2013 BY SWEATSHOPPE PUBLICATIONS AND IS AVAILABLE ON AMAZON.COM, BARNES AND NOBLE AND THROUGH YOUR LOCAL BOOKSELLER.
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