I’m fast becoming hooked on haiku – and I’m really surprised at myself! Being succinct with words does not come easy to me. I’ve nearly always got plenty to say, and I’m not in any way, shape or form a woman of few words – if anything I’m a bit of a waffler. And I think that’s maybe why I’ve always loved poetry so much – because poetry focuses on using only the optimal words that are most effective in creating the desired imagery intended.
I’ve always loved reading poetry, and have even experimented with writing it on and off from time to time, too. But haiku always seemed to be a step too far for me – beautiful to read, but way out of my comfort zone when it came to writing my own. Until now, that is. I recently found a haiku blogging challenge; I felt intrigued, was sorely tempted to give it a try, and to my absolute surprise and delight I found the exercise immensely satisfying. And so I joined in again the following week… and then the week after that… and now I’m completely hooked.
To me, haiku is poetry stripped beautifully bare. The form requires the rigour of a total syllable count, within a fixed format. A haiku in English is made up of 3 lines in total, of 5, 7, and then 5 syllables each. That gives a finished poem of only 17 syllables. I just love the way each syllable has to be so carefully considered and counted, scrutinised and sounded out. A well-written haiku is truly breath-taking in its minimalism – a perfect example of the old maxim ‘less is more’.
Sadly my haiku are not yet breath-taking, but I’ll continue to practice, and (hopefully!) can potentially become better in the future, as long as I keep on trying… 🙂