A Haiku is an ancient form of Japanese poetry, which consists of 3 lines with the syllable structure 5-7-5. National Haiku Poetry day celebrates the art-form every April 17th—although we think it should be celebrated on May 7th (5-7)! Haikus typically revolve around nature, the passing of seasons, or ephemeral beauty. They are imagistic rather than metaphorical, and depend on concision for their impact.
National Haiku Poetry Day Activities
1. Bask in nature
Many Haikus focus on natural beauty. Take a walk in whatever nature you have available to you, even if it's a small city park. Focus on the ephemerality of beauty, and have a Zen moment yourself.
2. Read the classics
Matsuo Bashō (1644-1694) is perhaps the greatest Haiku poet of all time. Read his work to understand what's possible, and set your standards high.
3. Write your own!
Anybody can write a Haiku—although writing a good one is tricky. Look through good examples online for inspiration, and try reciting out loud for a sense of flow. When your done post with the hashtag #NationalHaikuPoetryDay and make sure to tag us @NatlToday
Why We Love National Haiku Poetry Day
A. Rules encourage creativity
Although the rules of Haiku may seem restrictive, they actually foster creativity, by triggering the brain's problem solving center.
B. Haikus are over 400 years old
The Haiku form became popular in 17th century Japan, and was tied into the practice of Zen meditation.
C. Brevity is the essence of wit
Because Haikus are so short, poets need to make every word count. Fewer syllables equals more punch.