The Haiku Challenge Explained 2: Types of Haiku and How.

Today I continue to my series on explaining the weekly Haiku challenge that’s been here on Ronovan Writes for just over a year now. The challenge is more than just poetry, it’s community as well. Friends have been made, very good friends.

To make it easy for people to join in and make these great friends I wanted to make writing Haiku easy. I’ve written “How To” articles before but let’s see if it can be even simpler.

There are three styles of Haiku I have mentioned here on Ronovan Writes, all three include the Haiku in English form of three lines. The first line is 5 syllables long, the second is 7, and the third is again 5.

Traditionally one would have the second line of 7 syllables be such as to complete a sentence with the first line, and begin a sentence with the second.

Waves lap at my feet

As my thoughts drift towards you,

Peace comes with your love.

The first sentence formed with the second line of 7 syllables as the end would be, “Waves lat at my feet as my thoughts drift towards you.”

The second line of 7 syllables then continues on to begin the second completed sentence, “As my thoughts drift towards you, peace come with your love.”

Now you know how to write a Haiku. Often times, and in traditional ways the Haiku is about nature and the two sentences would contrast each other or oppose each other. For poetic sake this these rules are often broken. The purpose of the Haiku is to relay a thought, a feeling, an emotion that one might otherwise write in a full letter perhaps.

The Haibun is an a relatively newer form of, or use of, Haiku that many of our members of the Haiku Challenge like to use. And no, you don’t even have to change how you write the Haiku. All you do is write a story of perhaps a memory and then at the end you reduce that down to the very bare, basic emotions, and meaning in the form of a Haiku. These are often my favorites.

The Tanka is an old Haiku form consisting of 5 lines of poetry. The syllable structure is 5 syllables, then 7, 5, and then 7, and 7. The Tanka is something I think I want to participate in more. The subject and manner of a Tanka involves first an object in the first three lines. Think of it as if you are describing the object. Then by using the third line as the link you create the emotional response the object gives you.

Waves lap at my feet

Driving forever onward

With intensity

I long for them to carry me

Finally into your arms.

By doing the basic Haiku, which is what most of our poets do, and by reading the previous article, The Haiku Challenge Explained: Ping Backs, Sharing, Comments. you are now ready to participate. There are more articles to come, but these two are the only ones you really need to get started. Don’t let the title of the previous article concern anyone. There is a link to an article that explains what a ping back is in detail, and they are not even necessary to participate.

Links you may need in writing a Haiku: for synonyms of my challenge prompt words. I enjoy seeing how people use the words for their own purposes. for making certain you have the right number of syllables for a word. I’ve been wrong a few times, thus whenever I am not 100% positive, I check and if the word I have is too many or too few syllables, I then go to to find an alternative.

Much Love, Success, and Respect


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