How to Write Haiku: In a Nutshell   8 comments

Matsuo Bashō

Matsuo Basho

Haiku is a short form of poetry, traditionally taken from the natural world, that consists of 17 sound units ( in Japanese) or syllables (in English), written in 3 phrases of 5, 7, 5 respectively.

In Japan, the poems are written all in one line. In English, each phrase is given its own line.

The poem should engage the 5 senses: things that are seen, heard, touched, tasted, smelled rather than create an intuitive impression.


Kireji: A cutting word that portrays a contrast of a comparison and is traditionally placed in the third (last) line.

Kigo: Seasonal word, is used more in the Japanese form than in the English.

SaijikiSeasonal word almanac, used to find kigo to use in haiku.

Hokku: The original name for the poetic form.

Matsuo Basho (1644–1694): Famous haiku poet.

Examples of haiku: (Matsuo Basho)

A caterpillar

this deep in fall–

still not a butterfly

Bitter tasting ice

just enough to wet the throat

of a sewer rat.

Spring rain

leaking through the roof

dripping from the wasps’ nest



How to Write a Haiku Poem:


Haiku Society:

Matsuo Basho:

Poem Hunter/Matsuo Basho:


Posted January 6, 2012 by LediaR in Uncategorized

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8 responses to “How to Write Haiku: In a Nutshell

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  1. Thank you, Clownponders for following my blog. I hope you will find all present and future posts to you liking.

    May you have a prosperous and very happy “Year of the Water Dragon” (2012)


  2. Thank you, Ray (mjray926) for the Like. I look forward to hearing from you.

  3. Pingback: Alight (Haiku) « Poet: Whispers

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  5. Nice post and examples. Thanks Ledia.

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