Thought I'd take my own stab at the 'word game' topic format.

You may have already guessed; this topic is all about haiku. Answer the post before yours using only haiku, you may use more than one haiku per post but you may only use this format.

For those who don't absolutely understand haiku, here's how it goes: you write a poem of five, then seven, then five syllables.


This poem is about
Haikus and how you write them
Fun Fun Fun Fun Fun

I'll start:

When walking down streets,
I notice people aren't so nice now,
Do you not agree?

11 Years
Discussion Span
Last Post by mattyd

senryu is a little
different to haiku but
sometimes the same thing


Storms are blowing now,
Death, destruction, mother nature's wrath,
gives way to snow. Please?


This is so funny
haiku phrases are one line
stop wrapping them please

Senryu and haiku differ by content. Haiku have natural themes to them and are serious in nature (see mattyd's for an example), whereas senryu often do not have the natural themes and are not always as serious (see pretty much everything else in this thread). Most people seem to think that the 5-7-5 syllabic layout is simply the definition of a haiku when it's really not.


and remember this
it's five then seven then five
count your syllables

[are we changing the thread to senryu? - i like it!]


Nine syllables? ouch.
How the hell did that happen?
Stupid rat creatures.


I'm a published haiku, senryu, cinquain, renga, tanka, and haibun poet (Frogpond, Tanka Splendor, Lynx, Modern Haiku, plus school textbooks and poster series). Let me correct the notion that haiku are 5-7-5. While it's true that Japanese haiku follow a pattern of "sound parts", those do not correspond to English syllables. Japanese is not a syllabic language. Also, English syllables vary greatly in duration. The 5-7-5 notion was never universal, and has been discarded by contemporary English haiku poets.

The three-line convention is often followed to convey to the reader how to read the poem / where to pause.

Focus instead on the conciseness of the imagery and wording. A good haiku should shift focus in the poem, through juxtaposition of color, season, space, sense, or other natural elements. Here's an example senryu from one of my haibun. Note how "space" changes from the abstract, to the concrete:

space between
storyteller's hands --
children's wide eyes

May I suggest that the poetic form "renga" is very well-suited to an online forum. Instead of trading haiku, why not try a renga? Each poster links to the previous poem. The links are subtle. Here's an example, placed in code tags to help preserve the formatting. Good luck and have fun.

[B]lost and found[/B]
a renga
by Layne Russell and Thomas D. Greer

 *polo!   *polo*
    f   i r*  f   e
       *marco!*     l*    s

stars of Sagitarius
sink behind the mountain

at this distance
long after the wave
the voice

white fog curls around redwoods
the phone ringing inside

cigarette ash. . .
bartender punctuates
with the match

firelight on the walll
his shadow toward me

clouds over canyon
blue cast on red rock— 
black swifts dive and dart

raindrops on the window

open curtains
sun on glass
two little faces

autumn moon
in the birdbath

water droplets
web between willows
yellow spider motionless

deep breathing
the stars move

nap time. . .
my ears attuned
to whispers

soft flute
through an open window

first snow. . .
low flying geese
circle my garden pond

gust of wind
catches my long black skirt

shaking leaves
from her hair. . .
fall and fall again

morning walk home. . .
petals in his pocket

river trail
swirls of green— 
in the pines a doe

new watercolor set. . .
he paints a seascape

breeze from the west— 
tall gold grass
brushes bare legs

afternoon snooze...
dandelions between my toes

all my fingers
move down the buttons. . .
mine then yours

in the background
guitar arpeggios

rising and falling. . .
by the end of the story
breathing in sync

dawn meditation
silver light hits the bell

snooze button
half-a-second ahead
of the alarm

breaks through the ribbon
her first first

promise-not-to-tell. . .
finger to lips

words so soft
their heads touch

box of notebooks
in the basement— 
poems in faded ink 
garage sale surprise:
tie-dyes for top-dollar

fifth shelf up
jar of pennies
oder than her mother

all she left behind. . . 
hat boxes of spare buttons

a hundred acres with cabin
virgin stand of red fir
last on the mountain

lost and found...
Christopher Robin

© 1997 Leslye Layne Russell & [B]Thomas D. Greer[/B]
This renga was written over the course of a year.

There is a formal progression in renga, research it to learn the rules.

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