ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel


Updated on June 28, 2018


I enjoy reading and writing poetry of all kinds and have written a few haiku that I'd like to share with you. My poems are written in the 5-7-5 Japanese pattern. I have discovered there are many varied styles and patterns of haiku in English.


Chrysanthemum - Osaka Japan
Chrysanthemum - Osaka Japan | Source

Writing Haiku

Since I have posted some of my poems online, some have enjoyed them and have asked me to comment on their efforts. I am humbled by these requests and am always willing to share what I know and encourage the writing efforts of anyone who is inspired by my writing. The exciting thing about Internet writing is that people can exchange ideas on any topic in a freeing way, without judgment. This exchange helps us all improve and grow as persons and in our writing. I present this basic guide to haiku.

One person shared his haiku with me and this was my response.

“You shared some haiku with me which I liked and commented on. I sent information about the 5-7-5 syllabic structure based on the Japanese style. I have discovered since then there are different styles of haiku. There is English haiku which is written 10–14 syllables. These practitioners believe this is closer to the Japanese language syllabic system than 5-7-5 in English. Some write English haiku 2-3-2 or 2-2-2 pattern."

"Others write in a freer form. If you are happy with your poems, they would probably be acceptable as haiku. Personally, I would try to stick to a format of some kind to write haiku. In any event, the poems you have written are just that--poems. Be proud of what you write, try to improve each time, and keep on writing!”

Matsuo Bashō

Matsuo Bashō
Matsuo Bashō | Source

Definition of Japanese Haiku

Haiku (Japan)

  • Haiku is an un-rhymed Japanese poetic form.
  • It gained distinction in the 17th century, when Basho (1644 –1694), the most famous poet of the Edo period in Japan (1603 and 1868) elevated it to a highly refined art.
  • Consists of three lines (tercet) of five, seven and five syllables per line, for a total of seventeen syllables.
  • The poem should be derived from nature, about nature or the natural world.
  • The poem often contains a seasonal reference.
  • The poem should embody a unique observation or insight.
  • Two simple subjects are often placed in juxtaposition and are usually separated by punctuation.
  • The poem should be short, simple, objective, clear, and often, symbolic.
  • The poem contains words that are often monosyllabic.
  • The form expresses much and suggests more in the fewest possible words.
  • Haiku remains Japan's most popular poetic form and is widely imitated in English and other languages.

Morning Tea

Morning Tea
Morning Tea | Source

A Poem By Basho

This is an example of haiku written by Basho. The translation from Japanese to English changes the 5-7-5 format.

A monk sips morning tea,
it's quiet,
the chrysanthemum's flowering.

By Matsuo Basho

Translated by Robert Hass

Red Rose

Red Rose With Subtle Dew Drops
Red Rose With Subtle Dew Drops | Source

My Haiku - Petals

Petals red, soft touch.
Pleasant, sweet, scent, gift of love.
Thorn to prick, pained heart.

© 2013 ajwrites57
A Long

Words, Like Birds

Words Take Flight
Words Take Flight | Source

My Haiku - Poets


Poets phrasing lines,
Rhymes, rhythms, words flow skyward.
Poems, for the birds.

© 2013 ajwrites57
A Long


My Haiku - Frozen


Frozen face staring,
blinking answering machine.
Death called for her first.

© 2013 ajwrites57
A Long

Have You Ever Written Haiku?

Have You Ever Written Haiku?

See results

English Haiku

English haiku do not adhere to the strict syllable count found in Japanese haiku, and the typical length of haiku appearing in the main English-language journals is 10–14 syllables.

2-3-2 or 2-2-2 pattern

This website gives a clear explanation of haiku in English

Richard Wright's Haiku

The African-American novelist Richard Wright, composed some 4,000 haiku.

817 are collected in the volume Haiku: This Other World (Arcade Publishing, 1998).

Wright kept to a 5-7-5 syllabic structure for most of these verses.

One example:

Whitecaps on the bay:

A broken signboard banging

In the April wind.

© 2013 AJ


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • ajwrites57 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Thanks so much Gypsy Rose Lee for commenting and the kind words.

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 

      6 years ago from Daytona Beach, Florida

      Enjoyed this. Lovely haikus. Like the chrysanthemum.

    • ajwrites57 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Pennsylvania

      KrisL thanks for reading and commenting! I try to keep it all simple! I'll have to read your poetry! I appreciate the correction--thanks for pointing it out!

    • ajwrites57 profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from Pennsylvania

      loveofnight thanks so much for reading and commenting! I appreciate your kind comments. If you are writing poetry, keep it up!

    • KrisL profile image


      6 years ago from S. Florida

      Nice hub that covers a lot of information clearly and simply.

      I think you'll also like and a few hubs of mine on haiku . . . pleased to meet a fellow haiku fan.

      PS - you'll want to correct a typo in the title of your third text capsule: "Definition of Japanese Hiaku" (I misspell it like that _all_ the time!)

    • loveofnight profile image


      6 years ago from Baltimore, Maryland

      I find this very interesting, if I have ever written in this format it was purely by mistake. A good read indeed, thanks


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, 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:

    Show Details
    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 or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    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)
    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.
    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)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)