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Post your haiku here.

In school I was taught that haiku should be thought of as a riddle.

A vague description is given and you must figure out what it's about

 

Haiku for those who don't know are super easy, beautiful and fun. Here's the setup

 

Line 1. 5 syllables

Line 2. 7 syllables

Line 3. 5 syllables

 

For example

 

A silver dancer

Sings her warning, spins, destroys

In her wake, lies naught

 

Can anyone tell me what this is about?

(answered by foxbunny) Tornado

 

UPDATE: upon further research, haiku don't have to be riddles but must be written about one simple subject which leads many to treat them as riddles.

There are apparently lots of haiku about animals which after the poem state "what am I?"

 

Feel free to share any haiku you've written though or make a new one!

It's all fur fun anyway [emoji1]

Edited by Tigris Umbrae

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I've always found Haiku to be some of the hardest poems because of how short they are. Every word has to do a lot of lifting.

Like most formal poetry it's easy in principle, but hard to really do well.

Last time I worked with Haiku was for a translation of a winter poem by Matsuo Basho:

 

Year ends like the last—

Straw sandals cover my soles;
straw hat shades my head.
 

 

I could understand the poem to apply to a few different things, though I haven't really ever thought of poetry as a riddle to be figured out (except when it is).

The Lone Ranger's bullet (silver bullet)

A lawn mower blade.

A tornado or waterspout.

Beyblade.

and others.

 

More interesting to me are the word choices.

The subject of the poem is described with the word "her." This carries a lot of baggage, particularly for something that "destroys."

The ambiguous words "wake" and "lies" really bring a lot to the poem. With "In her wake" following "destroys" there is the sense of death. It's not only a wake the way a boat leaves a wake, but the gathering of family before a funeral.

"Lies naught" also conveys several meanings. Lie as the opposite of truth makes the phrase understood as "does not tell lies" rather than "nothing is lying there." Alternately, when combined with the "wake" image you have the "silver dancer" absent from her own funeral reading the last line as "she does not lie there in her wake."

"Dancer / Sings" is an interesting choice. It has a performance quality that is reinforced by "silver" and undermined by "warning."

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Tornado was the correct answer. Naught Is defined as nothing. "lies not" would indicate truth. Hurricanes and other non living things such as boats or cars are often named after women. Also the spinning of a Tornado can be drawn in an interesting ballet manner in my mind. And to some storms bear a certain beauty. It's part of nature. Many talk of the sound before a Tornado hits. A howling noise from the rapid wind perhaps. I was able to see the aftermath of the severe tornadoes that traveled along sand mountain in the Appalachian first hand and truly, where they went, Nothing remained.

 

Good analysis. For me they seem easy when I'm on the mood. Doesn't mean I'm great at them but they are fun

Edited by Tigris Umbrae

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There are two ways of doing haiku in English.

 

The first is to keep the same numbers as Japanese haiku--the 5-7-5 structure.

 

Cattle herded down
ramps to packed cars—a mad rush
hour on Seoul's subway

(one of two I posted here: http://direlda.deviantart.com/art/Two-Haiku-361841914)

 

The second is to keep the same brevity as Japanese haiku by using something like a 3-5-3 structure (this is because Japanese on or morae are not the same as English syllables).

 

barren trees—

unmoving soldiers

stare across

(written after visiting the Korean DMZ)

 

Haiku generally have a kireji or 'cutting word' that serves to cut the stream of thought and juxtapose the two halves. Because there isn't really a direct equivalent in English, punctuation such as the dash or ellipsis is often used as the kireji.

 

Hope this helps!

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OK I was hoping to turn this into sort of a game to guess what each haiku is about. But this is educational. Direlda* when you find time could you elaborate on your knowledge of haiku? After all you're the one well read in all things well read 😉

Edited by Tigris Umbrae

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