Haiku discussion

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message 1: by Barbara (new)

Barbara (lv2scpbk) | 40 comments Mod
Other topics go here, along with requests about other topics you'd like me to add, other things you want to discuss if not listed above.

message 2: by Marian (new)

Marian (gramma) | 3 comments On another site, I was introducedd to what they called "English Haiku." The order is 6 - 8 - 6 instead of the Japanese 5 - 7 - 5.

the reasoning behind this is that Ebglish words contain more syllables than the Japanese. Also sometimes the Japanese will use "filler" words to make the sylable count will come out even.

There has been other discussion about this, resulting in poems like the "Lune" which has a count of 5 - 3 - 5.

Actually, I prefer the English . Here are a couple of examples from this style.


Gray shadows hide the sun
Strong winds blow rain across the fields
Refreshing thirsty corn.

Foxtail grass waves green plumes
Teasing me into the garden
It’s time to weed again.

The frogs see my approach
Splash! Splash! They jump into the pond
Empty circles remain.

Time for the Maple trees
To send small helicopters flying-
Their new generation.

message 3: by Heather (new)

Heather Thanks for the info, Marian! I like the freedom the expanded structure seems to give.
I have heard English haiku can lengthen or shorten the traditional Japanese syllable structure. And that makes sense, given the change in language.

I love the last haiku you posted - "new generation". :)

message 4: by [deleted user] (new)

Yes! thank you Marian, I think I will go & have a good look at the English style Haiku.

message 5: by Marian (new)

Marian (gramma) | 3 comments Yes, Matthew," the maples"is better than "The Maple trees.

There is this problem that I have with removing the article "the" or "a" or "an" from the front of a word. In the late 60's, when all forms of formalism were tossed overboads, the "the's" were the first to go. You could always tell when a poet was trying to be "new-age-ist" when you are handed a poem (not necessarily haiku) where no a, an or the is in sight. It reminds me a bit of the way Tarzan speaks.
I don't know Japanese, whether they use articles in front of nouns or not. I do know that in poetics it is really iompossible to get the exact form, words & meaning into a different language. That's why I try to keep the "the's" when writing Haiku & why I was so enthusiastic about the 6 -8-6 form.
For a while we had a woman from Japan in our writing group & her opinion was that the words counted more than the syllable count. But, she explained, that was just her opinion as she was an artist & poetry came 2nd. In Japan, she thought, most people just enjoyed the haiku without counting the syllables. But that was just her opinion. Which I agree with.
Which is why many of my Haiku contain "The's".

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