Poetry: I can write haiku, can you?

It’s snowing outside, tiny flakes coming down from the sky in all directions, swirling chaotically around cars and the pavement outside my window.

View from my office window.

View from my office window.

Naturally this makes me want to write, of course. I don’t know what it is…maybe because it’s warm in our apartment, I woke up refreshed (finally) after a good nights sleep and I have the day off from work.

Maybe there’s something in the way that snowy sleepy days naturally put me in a thoughtful mood, and thoughtful moods generally lead to writing…if I were a painter, I’d paint the heck out of a glorious snowy day, but alas, the best brush I have, is the brush of words on blank, blank paper.

And of course, the last sentence I just wrote had me thinking about haiku poems. It’s been ages since I’ve written one…not since college three years ago. I found a refresher at this website, here.

(From the website:) The haiku is a Japanese verse in three lines.  Line one has 5 syllables, line 2 has 7 syllables and line three has 5 syllables. Haiku is a mood poem and it doesn’t use any metaphors or similes.

wpid-img_20141127_165052481.jpg

View of the moon and snowy trees at my Grandma’s house, the evening of Thanksgiving.

I don’t usually think of myself as a poet. My advance poetry teacher in college said to me once, “You are definitely a fiction writer.” And that seemed to cement the idea in my brain. He didn’t mean to say that I was inept at poetry, just that eventually all writers make a choice, and I am a lover of stories and so naturally fiction was my style of choice.

But lately, I am constantly reminded by poetry why writing descriptive, lyrical words are so important. Why some fiction is just poetry in an extended form. In a single poem, an image is created in just a few words. I think poetry is a great way to remind fiction writers how important it is to show, not tell what is happening in the story, but to focus on the concise, and descriptive words.

Here’s some haiku of my own. Some silly, some serious, some not really haiku poems at all, but all poetry:

The bright yellow sun shines

through icicles hanging

on the windowsill

 

 

icicles remind

us to mind the cold weather

bundle up you beasts

 

 

dogs don’t like the snow

wagging their tails between gusts

shivering snow and wind

 

 

the snow swirls around the pavement

children walk by with parents

hands howling in their gloves

 

 

So much depends upon a red wheelbarrow…

(Just kidding! haha…can’t get this poem out of my head for some reason! For those that don’t know this is the start of a poem, “The Red Wheelbarrow,” by William Carlos Williams. I remember there were those that either loved it or hated it in my poetry class. There was a great debate that followed about it.)

And lastly, another haiku of my own:

 

The dead of winter

snow falls down on black pavement

eat lunch, eat sunlight

This has been a lot of fun for me this afternoon. Feel free to comment with your own, if you like!

Happy Writing!

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