Write a Haiku Poem

Haiku is a form of Japanese poetry. The idea behind these poems is to use a small number of words to capture the essence of something, like a quick glimpse of a larger theme or idea. This means that they require a great deal of precision in their word selection. Traditionally, Haiku poems are written in just three lines with five syllables in the top and bottom lines and seven syllables in the middle line.

Characteristics of Haiku

 Here are a few points to consider when writing a haiku poem:

 Below is an example of a haiku poem:


Here is a step-by-step guide on how to write your haiku:

Take time to appreciate your surroundings. Notice small details, such as the leaves on the ground or the color of the sky or a colony of ants. Let your observations become the content upon which you can build your poem. The Japanese go on “ginko walks” to search for new inspiration.

Choose a subject.
Dwell on a particularly poignant experience, or on something you’ve observed in nature. Let your reaction fuel the feeling in your poem.

Choose a season, and make sure to reference it.
Give the reader a sense of time by either mentioning the season or giving clues from keywords.

Select a subject shift.
Haiku poems are meant to contain two juxtaposed ideas and talk about their relationship using only a few words. Figure out what these two themes will be and where you want the shift from one to the other to occur.

Mix in some sensory language.
Draw from your observations and use the five senses to depict your scene. A haiku is meant to be a snapshot.

Show rather than tell.
Haiku poems are objective scenes rather than subjective interpretations of events.

Keep your syllable boundaries in mind.
A Haiku isn’t a Haiku unless you get the syllables right.

Unveil your finished haiku to friends and family!