Friday, June 27, 2014
to count or not to count
A recently published essay by Toshio Kimura called "A New Era for Haiku" handily summarizes the essence of haiku, which lies in these characteristics: shortness, a fixed form of some kind, humor (which surprised me), "haikuness," and "kire" or cutting, which results in the juxtaposition of two or three images. It also explores the deep cultural traditions of haiku in Japan and the changing ways of reading and writing it around the world.
It looks like most writers (in Japanese and English) continue to use a three-line form with lines of unmeasured length, but the overall shape tends to remain short-long-short. Many writers also continue to include "kigo" or season words and nature themes, but not all. Here is one from the essayist himself:
just bending the head
as a flower
And here's one of my attempts from this past week, watching Duncan and his friend in the ocean at Rehoboth.
again and again deliciously
they break me
I think I'll need to go back this week and look at that one with my new reading in mind--does it have haikuness? does it break my rules or follow them? What are my haiku rules anyway? And is it true that publishers for children are going to want only haiku that follow the 5-7-5 pattern?
In the meantime, please surf on over to Buffy's Blog for the Poetry Friday roundup, and I look forward to hosting you all next week for the Independence Day edition of Poetry Friday!