I didn’t write a haiku

I confess… I didn’t manage to write for the writing group this month… what excuse could I offer? None! You see our challenge for this, the last get-together before Christmas, was to write haiku, one, a couple, as many as you like… and somehow, I just didn’t manage to do it.

I guess I could have done something this morning while I was arranging mugs on a tray, or putting out mince-pies, stollen and lebkuchen, finding extra chairs – but whereas dashing off a quick story is relatively easy, it’s not really possible to dash off a coupe of haiku. I was further shamed when my friends all produced several; one person had two cycles of three each, another had looked up haikus and had tried to write within the traditional rules and not just count syllables, one person wrote a story about great crested newts which finished with an excellent haiku… No-one made any comments by my lack of haiku, maybe enjoying the mince-pies etc distracted them, but I was miffed with my self, yes, miffed.

I knew haiku have three lines and contain seventeen syllables but I had forgotten, if I ever properly knew, that the lines should actually be separate phrases, and there should be a cutting – one of the group explained this to us, it’s the juxtaposition of two things, ideas or images, with a specific word which separates them, and yet somehow links them (I think I have that right!) I did know but had forgotten that traditionally there are 5, 7, 5 syllables and that there should be some mention of something from nature, usually to do with the weather.

I have been playing with poetry recently – not a lot has actually arrived in written form, but I have been exploring that aspect of language… so I am going to challenge myself to focus on the haiku form… and see what happens!

Back to the writing group, our next challenge is to do with limericks… I wonder if there could be a serious form of limerick? Something else to explore and pay with!


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