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Some Great Haiku Blogs

Updated on June 28, 2014
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Finding Worthwhile Haiku Blogs

There are hundreds of haiku blogs worth reading, and thousands which are less worthwhile, but few of us have the time to research them. Here are descriptions of four excellent haiku blogs and links to more that you will definitely enjoy.

Why in "How to Write Poetry"?

I categorized this as a "How to Write Poetry" hub because I think that reading good poetry of any kind is the best way to become a better poet.

It may help haiku poets particularly, but I think that enjoying the condensed and vivid language of good haiku will help any poet write better (click on the link for a fine hub by savanahl )

Most haiku bloggers, including these, also experiment with other Japanese-derived forms, including tanka, which have five lines; haiga, haiku with graphics (see my hub What is a Haiga?); haibun, haiku with narrative or poetic prose; or monostich, which just means a haiku written all on one line, which is what the Japanese do anyhow.

The wonderful thing about today's world is that we no longer need to buy books, go to big-city poetry readings, or use interlibrary loan to discover great new poets. I hope this will help readers take advantage of the richness out there on the web.

And the haiku world is rich in generosity, as well as poetry. I know all four of these bloggers, some more, some less, through twitter. When I asked them if they would mind being featured in this little article, all of them replied, promptly and graciously, saying it was fine, or even an honor. All of them also take time to promote other writers or spread the word on useful sites.

I hope that readers will take the opportunity to add their own favorite blogs to the comments section . . . . These are only four of the many poets who are worth reading.


Claire Everett, used with permission
Claire Everett, used with permission | Source

Claire just published!

Claire Everett

I was privileged to witness Claire Everett as she began to write haiku and tanka on twitter, and soon grew into an accomplished and now widely published poet. She regularly posts her work on her site, At The Edge of Dreams, which has almost 2,000 people following it by email. The site also includes a blogroll of other poets to explore.

A few months after I published this hub, in late October 2012, Claire Everett published her first book, which I am excited to read.

She lives in England, in or near the country, and a strong connection to nature resounds in all her work.


as if
the song thrush knows…
new year dawn


As Claire grew into a poet on twitter, her life changed in other ways. A grown woman with beloved children, teenagers or older, she met and married a man who clearly made her heart shine. She appears as both mother and maiden in her work: compassion and sadness, wonder and romance intermingling in a single, singing, voice.

The following haiku is part of a haibun called "Darling Buds," about love and loss.
I believe the title comes from Shakespeare's sonnet "rough winds do shake the darling buds of May/ and summer's lease hath all to short a date."


windfalls…
at the core of sweetness
the wasp’s song


What draws me back to her work, again and again, however, is the sense of joy that comes through her words. She reminds me that the world is a miracle.


from the throat
of a blackbird…
morning star


"Broken Wing," a tanka

From Claire's blog: "Image by Tony Everett, tanka by Claire. (Husband and wife’s first haiga!)"
From Claire's blog: "Image by Tony Everett, tanka by Claire. (Husband and wife’s first haiga!)" | Source
Mark Holloway, with permission
Mark Holloway, with permission

Mark Holloway: Beachcombing for the Landlocked

Mark is a English gardener by profession, or perhaps a gardener by trade and a haiku poet by profession. I suspect, however, that he would strenuously object to anything but amateur status, given things he has said @forgottenworks on twitter.

His blog is simple and well-designed, with a useful blogroll of other poets. It lets the reader look over his shoulder and enjoy his view of the world: generous and wry, and deeply sensitive to beauty.

~~~~~~~

Cooling breeze ...
Applying a dapple of fernlight to yesterday's scratches.

~~~~~~~

nightfall takes the river leaves the river's sound

~~~~~~~

another cloudy night instead of stars white jasmine


Everything he writes is something he has seen, or felt, or heard.
While some haiku poets can write great "desk haiku," Mark gives us the poignancy, humor, and magic of the apparently ordinary moment.


this'll do fine just . . . thistledown


Source

Chen-ou Liu: Poetry in the Moment

Chen-ou Liu is a wonderful example of just how interconnected the world is today.

He is a fairly recent immigrant from Chinese-speaking Taiwan to Canada, where he is now a much-published author of Japanese short form poetry. He writes haiku as well as tanka and haibun. Some of his poetry speaks of the hardship of pulling up roots and moving to another continent; of living between two cultures; and of facing occasional racism and frequent misunderstanding. Some of Chen-ou's work directly describes his adjustment to writing in a new language. I am awed by his skill at poetry in English, which is so different from his native Chinese.

His blog, Poetry in the Moment, is visually Google-Blogger basic---and completely worth the visit. Instead of a blogroll, he provides useful links to haiku sites and journals, as well as to resources on self-publishing. Most importently the blog showcases his fine work, all of it previously published in print and on-line journals.


autumn dawn
I leave the butterfly dream
behind

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

A short narrative haibun:

Shadows

Pallbearers carry her small casket through the back door and into the garden,
through a field of tall grass and into the cemetery.

dust to dust…
an eagle’s shadow
circles us

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Urban Haiku

He also has a collection of urban haiku and senryu (funny or ironic haiku on a human theme) on the World Kigo Database which collects seasonal and thematic words and expressions appropriate for haiku (there's another hub about kigo for me to write here!).

Here's one of his "urban haiku." You'll find more on the kigo site as well as on his blog. I appreciate how he has taught me that the haiku need not be about nature as we generally think of it . . . no postcard views or sugar coating necessary.


foreclosed home
a half-smashed jack-o'-lantern
by the curbside


You can vist his blog for more information about his books,
and follow him on Twitter, too @ericcoliu,
where he retweets fine work by other writers.


Thunderclap

First published Presence vol. 45
First published Presence vol. 45 | Source

Across the Haikuverse

One of the best features of Melissa's blog is "Across the Haikuverse," a recurring feature in which she collects haiku another other poems she appreciates, as well as essays and telling remarks about haiku and other Japanese short-form poetry.

Whenever a new "issue" comes out, I read it more than once, happily following the links to learn more about my art, and to discover new poets, new blogs, and new publications. See her blog archives for the whole set.

To learn even more, click on "Links" under the picture of the red dragonfly for enough to keep you reading for a year: "Classic Haiku," "Journals and curated Websites," "Resources," and many "Blogs and personal poetry websites."

Melissa Allen: Red Dragonfly

This blog comes with an epigraph:

have you come
to save us haiku poets?
red dragonfly

-Issa, translated by David G. Lanoue


To me, this quote illustrates how strongly Melissa is aware of the literary haiku tradition of which she is a modern representative. Issa---200 years ago!----speaks to how the "haiku poets" were already in danger of falling into set ways of seeing, reading and writing, and needed to be shaken up.

A Michigan graduate student in library science, Melissa is expert in the history and tradition of haiku, and also deeply interested in haiku poetry's cutting edge. This past year, for example, she has been one of the poets experiementing with one-word "haiku" . . . many of which are better than you would think!
Red Dragonfly stretches me. I don't like everything that she writes, but I'm always interested in what she has to say.

While the haiku quoted below are three little gems, for me Melissa shines in her haibun, some vivid snapshots of life, funny or troubling, and some intricately constructed puzzle boxes.

Now, the three haiku. The first two were published separatedly but posted together, and they resonate wonderfully with one another:

icicle —
one clear word
out of all the murmuring


new moon . . .
the map folded
with home at the center


Last, but not least, a sort of haiku/senryu fusion.

rain on wet leaves
the way the lawyer
pronounces “divorce”


That one makes me wonder:
does "divorce" rhyme with "money" in the lawyer's mouth?



Jack Kerouac reading his "American Haiku"

"Pops": Kerouac's Haiku

I'll finish with something that is not a blog -- but is an illustration of how many great haiku you can find on the web.

As Verlyn Klinkenborg writes in the New York Times, Jack Kerouac took an Eastern form and made it completely American. Yet I think she underestimates how faithful he was to a key part of Japanese haiku, both classical and modern . . . the art of writing (or at least seeming to write) in the spirit of a single, unique, moment:


"Black bird

"no, bluebird!

"branch still jumping"


Four More Blogs

  • Jessica Tremblay's Old Pond Comics: cartoons, with cute frogs . . . wisdom about the haiku path, humorously presented.
  • Matt Morden's Morden Haiku: which I've already recommended in Learning to Write Haiku, both for his own poetry, his appropriately small "Why Haiku Matters" essays, and his many great links.
  • Kathy Nguyen's Origami Lotus Poetry where she posts her own poems and those of others, runs contests, and does all sorts of fun stuff. If you are on Facebook, you'll want to follow the link to her Facebook page too.
  • Annette Makino (@ant99 on twitter) has a beautiful blog, Makino Studios, consisting mostly of her haiga and, as she says "musings mostly about the creative process, both writing haiku and sumi ink painting."

Apologies to all the good friends and great poets I have left out . . . some of you will feature in my upcoming Hub on the best haiku on twitter.


Anyhow, now it's your turn, dear readers.
Please use the comments to tell us all about more blogs to follow and enjoy.

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    • profile image

      Sondra 4 years ago

      Your essays are so thoughtful and insightful...a generous contribution to those of us just learning. I am a grateful reader.

      PS all that in addition to your own wonderful original work...thanks for that, too.

    • KrisL profile image
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      KrisL 4 years ago from S. Florida

      You are so welcome, Sonda. I'd love some input on your favorite blogs too.

    • profile image

      danielabram 4 years ago

      What is the difference between haiku and tanka? That could be a hub within itself!

    • KrisL profile image
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      KrisL 4 years ago from S. Florida

      Thanks for the question -- I would write that hub, but another hubber has already laid it out nicely: The first link in this hub takes you to savanahl 's hub on writing 3-line haiku and the 5-line tanka. She defines the difference well, and has some great links for tanka.

      I'm planning some hubs on the less known forms I mention here: haiga and haibun . . . so stay tuned.

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I love reading poetry and this is a great hub you put together!

    • KrisL profile image
      Author

      KrisL 4 years ago from S. Florida

      Thanks, Christy! I hope that you'll follow the links, and the links on the links . . . an endless supply of great poetry: excellent for those of us who don't have much spare cash for books these days.

    • profile image

      Annette MAKINO 4 years ago

      Thanks Kris, this gives me lots of new blogs to explore! Here is my own blog, including my haiga, with musings mostly about the creative process, both writing haiku and sumi ink painting.

      http://makinostudios.com/blog/

    • KrisL profile image
      Author

      KrisL 4 years ago from S. Florida

      What a beautiful blog, Annette!

      I love your haiga.

      I think I follow you on twitter, but I'm not positive. What is your handle.

      I haven't read that issue of Prune Juice yet, but I just found your senryu haiga ". . . oh that reminds me"! Priceless.

    • profile image

      Damon 4 years ago

      This post is exactly what I hoped for when I hit 'enter' on the search engine ^_^

    • KrisL profile image
      Author

      KrisL 4 years ago from S. Florida

      Thanks, Damon. I appreciate your taking a moment to tell me so.

      Happy haiku reading and writing.

    • profile image

      Jessica 2 years ago

      Thank you so much for that blog post. So many haiku blogs out there are either inactive or not "real haiku", it's really great to have some recommended titles. Your reviews are really helpful.

      I was so pleased to see that you have mentioned my blog at the end. The new Old Pond Comics blog is now located at http://oldpondcomics.wordpress.com

      Thank you for updating the link! I hope you come visit soon.

    • KrisL profile image
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      KrisL 2 years ago from S. Florida

      Done :-)

    • profile image

      upnorthpw 2 years ago from Minocqua, Wisconsin

      I've recently starting my own haiku focused site. I'm going to visit some of these and add some to my blog roll.

      Here is the site - www.thesmilinghaiku.com

      Maybe someday it will be worthy of being included in a list like this.

      Jeremy

    • KrisL profile image
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      KrisL 2 years ago from S. Florida

      Enjoy!

      I just followed you back on Twitter, BTW (I spend much more time there than on HubPages these days). If you want to connect with even more people who write & RT good haiku & other short poems, check out by @cirrusdream , @forgottenworks , and those they RT.

    • profile image

      martin1223 15 months ago

      in the lengrh of a breath shooting star

      youtu.be/NwjThmoAsEI

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