What is haiku and how to write Japanese poems correctly

By Jurassic JennJun 16, 2024 13:12 PMDaily News
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What is haiku
What is haiku. Source: blog.reedsy.com

Haiku is a specific form of Japanese poetry that fascinates with its ability to convey deep beauty in simplicity. Originating in the seventeenth century, this form of poetry has transcended the boundaries of time and space, and today is rightfully considered a world literary treasure.

SSPDaily writes, "A true haiku consists of just 17 syllables and captures the essence of the moment, offering the reader a glimpse through a 'window of words' into the world around us and human emotions."

The roots of haiku

The genesis of haiku lies in the common Japanese poetry consisting of linked verses, which took on an independent form under the skillful pen of Matsuo Bashō, the most famous poet of the Japanese Edo period.

Under the influence of Zen Buddhism, haiku began to follow a laconic structure of 5-7-5 syllables, combining brevity with the transmission of deep emotions and vivid images.

The connection between nature and haiku

At its core, haiku serves as a poetic celebration of nature, like a snapshot that captures the subtle interaction of seasons, landscapes, and wildlife.

Using carefully chosen words, it paints vivid canvases, inviting the reader to connect with the world around them on a deep, introspective level.

Seasonal words

An integral part of haiku is the concept of "kigo," or seasonal words, which are carefully woven into the poems to tie the poem to a specific moment in nature.

This inclusion fosters a deeper connection between the reader and the changing seasons, enhancing the richness and universality of haiku.

Haiku outside of Japan

Haiku originated in Japan but has long transcended its cultural boundaries to become a global literary phenomenon. Today, its universal themes and minimalist beauty resonate with poets around the world.

From traditional themes to modern adaptations, haiku continues to evolve, proving that the eternal and beautiful cannot be limited by geography or language.

Philosophical foundations of haiku

Haiku embodies the principles of simplicity, impermanence, and awareness. It challenges poets to translate complex emotions into a few easy syllables, encouraging readers to appreciate the present and the transience of life.

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