ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Illustrated Haiku: Autumn Rain

Updated on November 2, 2011

Haiku is a commonly misunderstood form of poetry. The haiku and villanelle are my two favorite forms. Both present unique challenges. While the villanelle often is regarded as a difficult form, many people believe haiku are easy because they over-simplify the form. A widespread misconception is that any non-rhyming poem that has five syllables in the first and last lines and seven syllables in the middle line is haiku.

Haiku have their own set of guidelines that poets need to follow in order to create traditional haiku. Those who rigidly adhere to the rules of haiku and have a narrow interpretation of them may say that my poem here is not haiku.

black, gnarled branch
green leaves blush
droop in autumn rain


I wrote this haiku while looking out a hospital window. I have been to that hospital too many times. Though this haiku captures my anxiety and depression at that time, I present the scene without trying to explain my feelings in the haiku itself. Haiku can be a difficult form because many poets want to tell the reader what to think or how to feel in the poem. Some forms are more suited for clearly describing feelings.

The challenge with haiku is to describe feelings or other elements of humanity within the limits of a nature scene. Poets who write haiku have to be careful not to interpret the scene for the audience. Of course, the other innate challenge of haiku is limiting the poem to less than seventeen syllables.

Contrary to popular belief, a haiku poem does not have to follow a 5-7-5 syllabic format, but I feel it should use words conservatively and have a maximum syllable count of seventeen syllables. Some haiku poets believe that English haiku should have less than fourteen syllables to imitate the Japanese form. In my opinion, the length requirement of haiku is satisfied as long as the haiku is seventeen syllables or less and uses words in a concise manner.

Other rules of haiku include the presence of a word that indicates season and avoiding anthropomorphism. The name of a season is used in this haiku, but the season word does not have to be so obvious. The word to denote the season can be related to wildlife or weather that are associated with a season such as robins in the spring for people in the United States. These season words vary with geographic location since natural signs of the seasons are different.

The rule against anthropomorphism may be where people have an issue with my haiku presented here. I used the phrase "leaves blush" which some may interpret as anthropomorphism. However, I used this phrase to describe the way the leaves were turning red due to the season and not to imply embarrassment. I thought about changing it, but I feel this phrase fits this haiku very well.

Watercolor seems to enhance the mood of haiku. I have been illustrating some of my haiku with watercolor mixed media. This piece is watercolor and charcoal. For some of my illustrated haiku, I have been experimenting with combining watercolor and digital art. Here are some examples of the digital and watercolor mixed media illustrated haiku.

How to Write Haiku: Moving Beyond 5-7-5 is my Hubpages article about the rules of haiku. Please take a look at that article for more information about writing haiku.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      hether 

      5 years ago

      These haiku's are really good well done who ever wrote them?.

    • Sheila Wilson profile imageAUTHOR

      Sheila Wilson 

      6 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Thank you, Kris. I'll be sure to check out your hub.

    • KrisL profile image

      KrisL 

      6 years ago from S. Florida

      Hi Sheila,

      I just referenced this hub in my new one "What is a haiga." I wanted others to see how you combine your haiku with your own painting.

      :-)

      (and voted up & beautiful, in case I forgot before)

    • Hyphenbird profile image

      Brenda Barnes 

      6 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

      I find it lovely and the word "blush" is used perfectly. Your Hub is great.

    • profile image

      Rooster 

      7 years ago

      Obviously "rex" knows even less about poetry than I, but it looks great to me, so ignore the ignorance....

    • profile image

      rex 

      7 years ago

      this is LAME AND STUPID I HATE IT OK make another one UGH

    • Sheila Wilson profile imageAUTHOR

      Sheila Wilson 

      7 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Thank you both for your comments. I appreciate the feedback.

    • rick combe profile image

      rick combe 

      7 years ago from USA

      I decided not to participate in the poetry part of the contest because I thought the 500 word minimum was ridiculous. You, however, wrote a poem then surrounded it by a good hub. Nice work!

    • chrisam01 profile image

      chrisam01 

      7 years ago from Los Angeles, California, USA

      Great use of mixed media!

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)