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How To Write a Haiku - For Dummies

Updated on April 30, 2014

What is a haiku?


A haiku is typically descriptive in nature and follows a concrete form of 17 syllables in 3 lines. The first line has 5 syllables, the second line has 7 syllables, and the third line has 5 syllables again.

Creative Freedom

The good thing about poetry is that you make the rules! When it comes to a haiku, the only "rule" per se is that of the format. Otherwise, it's all up to you!

So if you don't want to use any punctuation, you don't have to. The same goes for rhyming: if you don't want it to rhyme, it doesn't have to! In fact, most haiku's don't rhyme.

Topic Picking

Now that you've got the format down, it's time to pick a topic. You can draw inspiration from almost anything. Personally, I think about my favorite hobbies, personal struggles, or favorite things to do. You can even take a walk outside to see what might tickle your fancy.

Once you pick your topic, jot down a few keywords that make you think about the topic. Play with the words and see how they relate to each other. How can you piece the words together to follow the 5-7-5 format?

Summary

Writing a haiku is easy! Just remember these key things:

  • 5-7-5 format
  • find inspiration for topic
  • brainstorm descriptive words
  • put it all together


Viola! You're a poet and didn't know it!

My Haiku

Here's what I came up with:


Depressed - pain, regret.

I sleep like I'm dead and wake

Afraid I might live.

Do you haiku?

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