New Year’s Challenge: Daily Haiku

My husband gave me a very nice journal for Christmas. Since I use my homesteading blog as a record-keeping journal, I want to do something special with this gift. I would like to try something more creative thought I’d like to learn how to write haiku.

The following notes are from writing websites: Masterclass, The Writing Cooperative, Shadow Poetry, and The Write Practice. These will serve as my guidelines. I’m sure there are finer points, but this is my start. It’s enough for now and I hope to take in more as I practice the art.

What is it? A traditional Japanese form of poetry. It contains three lines of 17 syllables: 5 in the first line, 7 in the second, 5 in the third, describing a single moment in the present tense.

Traditional themes. Seasonal nature themes.

Traditional structure. Two parts:

  1. the first line describes the setting (often as a sentence fragment)
  2. the second part describes the subject and action (often as a phrase).

Contains a kigo, which is a word that places the haiku in a particular season.

Frequently uses a kireji or “cutting word,” i.e. a word that creates a pause or break in the rhythm. A common feature in traditional haiku, it is often used to juxtapose two images.

Typically, does not contain similes and metaphors.

How to write

  1. Choose a subject. Observe with your senses. Note small details. Describe in simple terms.
  2. Use short phrases that evoke strong images. Consider a kigo.
  3. Use a kireji to break the rhythm. Punctuate as needed to clarify.

So that’s my challenge to myself for 2020. It’s not a resolution, just something I’d like to do. I don’t know if I’ll post them all here, but probably at least a few of them from time to time.

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2 Responses to New Year’s Challenge: Daily Haiku

  1. Rain Frances says:

    I think that’s a fantastic idea Leigh. I’m glad you included the link to this blog! I thought about trying some haiku as well. I like to write poetry so that would be a challenge for me! I hope you include some of your haiku into my themed Thursdays too! 🙂

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