Haiku are short poems that use sensory language to capture a feeling or image. They are often inspired by an element of nature, a moment of beauty or a poignant experience. Haiku poetry was originally developed by Japanese poets, and the form was adapted to English and other languages by poets in other countries.
Know the sound structure of Haiku. Japanese Haiku traditionally consist of 17 on, or sounds, divided into three phrases: 5 sounds, 7 sounds, and 5 sounds. English poets interpreted on as syllables. Haiku poetry has evolved over time, and most poets no longer adhere to this structure, in either Japanese or English; modern Haiku may have more than 17 sounds or as few as one
Use Haiku to juxtapose two ideas. The Japanese word kiru, which means “cutting,” expresses the notion that Haiku should always contain two juxtaposed ideas. The two parts are grammatically independent, and they are usually imagistically distinct as well.
Distill a poignant experience. Haiku is traditionally focused on details of one’s environment that relate to the human condition. Think of a haiku as a meditation of sorts that conveys an objective image or feeling without employing subjective judgment and analysis. When you see or notice something that makes you want to say to others, “Look at that,” the experience may well be suitable for a haiku.
A reference to the season or changing of the seasons, referred to in Japanese as kigo, is an essential element of haiku. The reference may be obvious, as in using a word like “spring” or “autumn” to indicate the season, or it might be subtler.
Haiku are comprised of details observed by the five senses. The poet witnesses an event and uses words to compress that experience so others may understand it in some way.
Haiku are about moments of objective experience, not subjective interpretation or analysis of those events. It’s important to show the reader something true about the moment’s existence, rather than telling the reader what emotions it conjured in you. Lets the reader feel his or her own emotions in reaction to the image.