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Kokuu
04-03-2019, 12:17 PM
Dear Treeleafers

As some of you may know, I write and publish haiku poetry. As a result, it has long been on my mind to offer a brief introduction to the art and hopefully dispel some common misconceptions on what a haiku is and how to write one.

This is, however, written from a perspective of English Language Haiku (ELH). There is much in common with the traditional Japanese form but traditional haiku contain a great deal of cultural history that cannot always transfer to English and other western languages. For example, Japanese season words are quite fixed and there are reference books explaining which season words (kigo) fit with each season. In the west season words are rather more free, given the differences in the natural environment and climate where the poem is being written. Spring in Scotland is very different to spring in California! Capturing the essence of the time and place is seen as more important.

In addition, Japanese work often draws on earlier poems and literature from China and Japan. Few of us in the west are sufficiently versed in classical eastern literature to do this.

That all said, much of the ideas of haiku can still be produced in western languages, so it is not a wasted effort to do so. We can draw on the traditional approaches and use them to inspire our work as we reflect our own life and relationship with the natural world.

As with most forms of art, do not expert to write perfect haiku from the word go. It took me ten years of writing before I began to publish anything of note and I am still merely competent rather than expert. However, I feel qualified to offer an introduction to haiku writing here.

There will be space to leave your own poems for feedback. I cannot respond to dozens of pieces of work, though, so write and write than post your best two or three.

Gassho
Kokuu

Shinshi
04-03-2019, 11:31 PM
Thank you Kokuu! I will follow along as best I can.

Thank you these teachings.

gassho1

Gassho, Shinshi

SaT-LaH

Jakuden
04-03-2019, 11:37 PM
Oooh I'm so excited you are finally going to share this talent of yours with us!!! Can't wait to learn from such a talented writer!!

Gassho,
Jakuden
SatToday/LAH

Washin
04-04-2019, 05:43 AM
Thank you, Kokuu. Learning to haiku is what's been on my mind for a time
even if I realize I may face difficulties in writing something sound in English.
Anyhow I'm following this!

Gassho
Washin
sattoday

Kokuu
04-04-2019, 08:51 AM
Washin

I am trying to think if I know any Ukranian haiku writers! You can always write in Ukranian then translate.

Gassho
Kokuu

Heiso
04-04-2019, 09:54 AM
Thank you, Kokuu, I've also been wanting to learn to start righting Haiku so this might be the perfect opportunity.

Gassho,

Neil

ST

Washin
04-04-2019, 09:54 AM
Washin

I am trying to think if I know any Ukranian haiku writers! You can always write in Ukranian then translate.

Gassho
Kokuu

Not sure about the Ukrainian, but I know there're plenty of haiku poems in Russian.
Good idea, thank you.

Gassho
Washin
st

Kotei
04-04-2019, 11:05 AM
Thank you, Kokuu.
I am fascinated by Haiku, but don't have much talent for writing.
Thank you for the opportunity to learn more.
Gassho,
Kotei sat/lah today.

Kokuu
04-04-2019, 11:11 AM
I am fascinated by Haiku, but don't have much talent for writing

I didn't either, Kotei, but it can really be developed through practice.

Having a mind to notice small details, like we do in zazen, can find form in this kind of poem.

Gassho
Kokuu
-sattoday/lah-

Jishin
04-04-2019, 12:02 PM
Hi,

I think that art is subjective and anything and everything is art if the reasoning can be explained by the author. One can not take a picture of feces and say it is art unless he/she can explain why. Rules for haiku are guidelines with lots of room for interpretation and even one word can be a haiku if it does not need the set up to deliver the punch line.

My 2 cents.

Gasho, Jishin, _/st\_

Kokuu
04-04-2019, 03:37 PM
Rules for haiku are guidelines with lots of room for interpretation and even one word can be a haiku if it does not need the set up to deliver the punch line.

This true in relation to modern haiku. In the traditional form, it is not the case.

Just as sonnets have a set line and metre so do Limericks and haiku. Step outside and you are no longer in the form.

Just as in Zen ritual, the freedom comes from staying within the form.

Some folk don't like rules and, well, this is good practice for them.

Gassho
Kokuu
-sattoday/lah-

Tai Shi
04-20-2019, 02:35 AM
Today no winter,
Gone from April flakes of fear,
No lives lost, no deadly white despair.

Tai Shi
sat
Gassho