How to Write a Haiku
In order to write a haiku, first come up with a subject and then examine that subject in three lines of 5, 7, and 5 syllables. Haikus often make use of references to the season, nature, and sensory details with imagery.
- Find a subject, typically concerning nature.
- Create a poem with 3 lines of 5, 7, and 5 syllables.
For example, let’s consider a haiku about the wind.
The wind flows freely
Throughout the changing seasons
Timeless and thoughtless.
This example properly uses five syllables in the first line, seven in the second, and five in the third. It examines an aspect of nature, the wind.
For a second example, consider a more playful haiku.
Quit croaking, you frog!
I am trying hard to sleep
But your song must stop.
This haiku lacks the seriousness of the previous example, but it playfully addresses a little part of nature: the singing frog at night.
When to Use Haikus
Haikus are fun little poems to create with friends or to write for loved ones, but they are also considered a serious form of poetry which can be found in literary journals and anthologies alike. Haikus can be written for both serious and unserious situations. Because they are a poetic form, they will only be found within literary works and would be considered inappropriate in more literal writing such as scientific journals or mathematical reports. Many pop cultural forms such as Twitter posts and Youtube videos share brevity and playfulness with the haiku form.