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Re: Tree Haiku

Posted: Wed May 29, 2013 7:15 am
by Jenny
Haikus are easy
Tools make me so uneasy
What do pliers do?


Re: Tree Haiku

Posted: Thu May 30, 2013 12:01 pm
by Bosque
Hemlock life and death

Hemlocks die standing
Gasping fish die now below
in once cool water

Re: Tree Haiku

Posted: Thu May 30, 2013 12:22 pm
by Bosque
Grateful Respiration

Breathe the forest air
Exchange molecules gladly
Give thanks in your way

Re: Tree Haiku

Posted: Thu May 30, 2013 1:26 pm
by Bosque

Let your children climb
and fall in love with a tree
making their own world

Re: Tree Haiku

Posted: Sun Dec 11, 2016 3:40 pm
by Joe
time for more haiku
old growth haiku
haiku, haiku!

Re: Tree Haiku

Posted: Tue Jan 31, 2017 8:53 am
by sradivoy
Not exactly Haiku but within the same vein nonetheless. Not about trees either but something we all depend on regardless, including trees. Besides, I'm all snowed in today!

Winter cube
Spring rivulets of
Summer pool,
Fall on rising mist ...

Re: Tree Haiku

Posted: Sat Feb 04, 2017 7:41 am
by Matt Markworth
sradivoy wrote:Not exactly Haiku but within the same vein nonetheless. Not about trees either but something we all depend on regardless, including trees. Besides, I'm all snowed in today!

Winter cube
Spring rivulets of
Summer pool,
Fall on rising mist ...
Very nice, I like that very much.

Here are two of my favorite Haiku, by Masaoka Shiki:

Re: Tree Haiku

Posted: Sun Oct 07, 2018 5:59 pm
by Matt Markworth

In the spirit of the overall NTS mission that includes poetry and many other disciplines, I just wanted to share a recent published tree-related haiku. I've had other haiku published in the past, but this is the first one that is tree-related. It's not a stretch to say that I learned trees from NTS. Books, sure, have helped, but the underpinning of my knowledge traces straight back to NTS and its members, and that knowledge goes a long way in being able to write intelligently about them.

First, I'd like to say a word about haiku structure in general. I've spent a significant amount of time studying the Japanese language, and it's true that Japanese haiku typically follow a structure of 5-7-5 onji (Japanese sound-symbols). English-language haiku, however, is a different animal altogether. In the early 1960's many English-language haiku poets were writing in the form of 5-7-5 English syllables, however by the end of that decade and ever since English-language haiku have been closer to an average of approximately twelve English syllables. What they realized is that a Japanese sound-symbol does not equate to an English syllable and that debate was settled. Japanese sound-symbols have one short verbalization such as "ku," whereas an English syllable can involve many more individual sounds such as the one syllable word "scratched." There are some very well-known English-language haiku that naturally fall within seventeen syllables, but in general they are much shorter (unfortunately pop culture still promotes English-language haiku as 5-7-5 English syllables). I certainly don't want to disparage anyone that writes in the format of 5-7-5 English syllables and it can definitely be a fun exercise, but in the end, content is key, not the number of syllables. In addition, modern English-language haiku are typically written in three lines, or in one line.

There are many journals across the globe that publish English-language haiku, and there are three journals that are generally considered to be the standard-bearers of the genre. The Heron's Nest (an online journal with an annual printed anthology) is typically the most traditional out of the three and generally has nature/seasonal-based poems. Modern Haiku (in print since 1969) and Frogpond (the journal of the Haiku Society of America and in print since 1978) are the other two.

The following tree-related haiku was published in the Fall 2018 edition of Frogpond, and I just found out I'll have another tree-related haiku published in the December 2018 issue of The Heron's Nest. After it's published in The Heron's Nest, I'll be able to post it here as well.

Re: Tree Haiku

Posted: Thu Oct 11, 2018 6:54 am
by dbhguru

Thanks for the contribution and information about structure. I actually sat down and gave Haiku a whorl. Haven't worked up the nerve to post it yet. Working on it now.


Re: Tree Haiku

Posted: Thu Oct 11, 2018 9:26 am
by Matt Markworth

My pleasure. It's definitely been a rewarding exercise for me. In my next poem that will be published in The Heron's Nest, the Blue Ash makes an appearance. It was inspired when I was down in the Bluegrass measuring some trees and there were two particular blue ashes that caught my eye with some horses roaming around. I'll have to wait until December to post it here, since it can't be posted anywhere online before it appears on The Heron's Nest.

If you think that you might want to submit to Haiku journals in the future, then you may want to refrain from posting them here, since the majority of journals won't consider poems already placed onto public forums, blogs, social media, etc. If you want to bounce them off of someone first then feel free to email me.

The primary way that I learned how to haiku was reading lots and lots of them. At the beginning reading them was almost as challenging as writing them. The Heron's Nest is generally seen as the best online resource (Modern Haiku and Frogpond are print only), and they have thousands of poems going back 20 years. Here's a link to the current issue where I've got a haiku on page 1. The editor arranges the poems so that the poems speak to each other, and play off of each other.