Saturday, December 12, 2009
Haiku is an interesting form of poetry. Short, fairly simple, and yet... complex. It's hard to communicate something meaningful or beautiful in 17 short syllables. But what I really like about them is that traditionally, a haiku is a seasonal poem, capturing the essence of one moment in nature. Of course, those rules are commonly broken -- modern Americans quite enjoy breaking convention and I'm all for that in most cases* -- but I do like the idea of a traditional haiku. 17 syllables, broken into three lines which often indicate a verbal pause, that capture some phenological observation. It's like the original "tweet" but way better thought-out. And less banal (read: stupid).
So here's some more serious/traditional haiku poems for the day:
Sparkle in the winter sun,
Puffed up to stay warm
He chirp-chirps as I pass by.
Sparrow on the sill.
Robin in the branch
Facing into the cold wind --
Why don't you migrate?
*When I teach haiku in my poetry unit, I focus on having the students read and write nature-oriented haiku poems... but I always end with this one, which the kids find really hilarious... actually, they find it way more hilarious than it probably is... here goes:
Haikus are easy
But sometimes they don't make sense.
ps. Happy first day of Hanukkah.