HAIKU AND HOW WE WRITE IT. (PART TWO)
compiled by: MOSES S. ROTIMI
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USE SENSORY LANGUAGE
(1) Describe the details. Haiku are comprised of details observed by the five senses. The poet witnesses an event and uses words to compress that experience so others may understand it in some way. Once you have chosen a subject for your haiku,
(2) think about what details you want to describe. Call the subject to mind and explore these questions
· What did you notice about the subject? What colors, textures, and contrasts did you observe?
· How did the subject sound? What was the tenor and volume of the event that took place?
· Did it have a smell, or a taste? How can you accurately describe the way it felt?
(3) Show, don't tell. Haiku are about moments of objective experience, not subjective interpretation or analysis of those events. It's important to show the reader something true about the moment's existence, rather than telling the reader what emotions it conjured in you. Let the reader feel his or her own emotions in reaction to the image.
o Use understated subtle imagery. For instance, instead of saying it's summer, focus on the slant of the sun or the heavy air.
o Don't use cliches. Lines that readers recognize, such as "dark, stormy night," tend to lose their power over time. Think through the image you want to describe and use inventive, original language to convey meaning. This doesn't mean you should use a thesaurus to find words that aren't commonly used; rather, simply write about what you saw and want to express in the truest language you know.
Practice a lot
Communicate with other poets.
· Haiku has been called "unfinished" poetry because each one requires the reader to finish it in his or her heart.
· Contemporary haiku poets may write poems that are just a short fragment with three or fewer words.
· A Haiku doesn't always need to rhyme.
· Haiku originated from haikai no renga, a collaborative group poem that is usually one hundred verses in length. The hokku, or starting verse, of renga collaborations indicated the season and also contained a cutting word. The haiku as its own form of poetry continues in this tradition.
Sample Love Haiku
love is a sweet summer rain
that washes the world.
is like winter
Warm breaths thaw cold hearts until
one day the spring comes
bird flies sweetly
on paper wings. Telling all
of my love for you.
day I will
love you more than you could know.
We are here as one.
beckons me closer to you.
I love you, dearest.
as a mountain,
my love for you shines through for
all the world to see.
Sample Funny Haiku
shark said to the
other when eating a clown
fish: this tastes funny.
to the neutron, “For you, sir,
there will be no charge.”
question for you:
Where does Washington keep his
armies? His sleevies.
off to war. It’s a good thing
that he was well-armed.
wise man once asked,
“Why, pray tell, is the sand wet?”
Because the sea weed.
best way to carve
wood is extremely slowly,
whittle by whittle.
Compiled By: MOSES S. OLAROTIMI (Sheyzznote)