Submit Your Poems
Get Your Premium Membership

See and share Beautiful Nature Photos and amazing photos of interesting places

Charles Henderson's Blog

About Charles Henderson
(Show Details...)
Bloggers Photo

Never would I have thought I would start
writing at 73 years of age. I have thoroughly enjoyed my voyage into the written spirituality of poetry and am thankful for the opportunity.  In my four years here I have met many new and wonderful persons. Having them accept me as a friend has been a moving experience.


Understanding the Enigma of Haiku

Blog Posted:7/7/2012 11:06:00 PM
Haiku… plural is Haiku

A haiku deals in sensory perception, or realization.  Although fast becoming embroiled in more complicated abstract subject matter, it must be learned as the abc’s are learned.  We have to start on a basic level.   If we consider only the order, or way it is written as “structure” and the content as form, we can make the following assumptions.  Just as a story has an introduction, a plot, and an ending, so does a haiku have a set structure.   Structure of a haiku will not change.    You have a first part, THEN a second part, always.  The first part will be a sensory perception such as an image.  The second part will be that same perception carried to a new level of thought, which should be derived from the original.   This change or association is often a surprise, in that we may have never thought about this association before, giving us the - - -“AHA---moment.  The haiku differs from a story in that the description and the plot are contained in the first part and the conclusion is contained in the second part. 

Getting back to structure, there are TWO ALTERNATE FORMS the haiku may be written.  The end result usually is not affected by which way we use, but it gives us more flexibility in our range of thought. 

The first is to have one line in the first part (line 1)   Then two COMBINED lines for the second part (lines 2 and 3)  They are combined by a connecting word.

The second is two COMBINED lines for the first part (lines 1 and 2)   They are combined by a connecting word.  Then one line for the second part (line 3)

It is strictly personal preference as to which of these two ways you use to write your haiku.  But beware one pitfall.  Do not ever write a haiku where line 1 and line 3 both make sense when combined with line 2.  If you do then all three lines will read as one long phrase and the haiku ceases to be haiku.  The exact opposite is true if you write NEITHER line 1 or 3 to make sense when combined with line 2, for then you will have three disjointed, separate comments and again it ceases to be haiku. 

So no matter which of the forms you use you will still have only a first part and a second part.   The first part will give an original thought of some object.  The second part will give an expanded thought of the same object, that were the two thoughts placed side by side, you will realize a difference.   That difference is the juxtaposition which causes us to be pleased.   

Once you master the skill of writing this OBJECTIVE haiku then you may move on to contemporary, or rather, modern haiku.   The form and structure will not change.  Only the subject matter will change into more subjective or abstract thoughts. 

Please Login
  1. Date: 7/11/2012 2:07:00 PM
    Good simple easy to understand info Chas..hope all is well, hugs to Carolyn Light & Love

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 7/8/2012 6:22:00 PM
    I agree Charles....a twist is what I believe you are describing? Can turn a boring flowery haiku (never by me!?) Into a brain shaking time shiver...jimbo

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 7/8/2012 6:13:00 PM
    I think we have seen this explained a lot now, Charles. I am one of those who understands it but I just don't always follow it. Personally I do love the perfectly constructed haiku and prefer them to just writing three lines of one long sentence. That way should not even be called a haiku. I think I am more liberal thinking in what I accept, however. I really enjoy metaphorical haiku , which I know in some circles are "off limit"

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 7/8/2012 2:41:00 PM
    Thank you so much for posting this blog, Charles. It's very interesting and perfectly explained. Although I know these "rules," it always nice to re-read them. Ruben.

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 7/8/2012 1:30:00 PM
    Good thought Jimbo, If the images seem to slide, then it means the description is adequate. Just make sure that two consecutive lines somewhere in it only contain one image, and read as one long line. If you slide one into all three lines, and they all seem separated, that is one too many, and no longer haiku.

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 7/8/2012 12:09:00 PM
    Hi Charles,,,,read this very helpful article last night and couldn't post...wonderful nuggets of haiku wisdom! gwendolen

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 7/8/2012 11:11:00 AM
    A good study on a difficult subject.

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 7/8/2012 9:20:00 AM
    For me....I enjoy a "clean" this I mean images that easily appear and slide...line to line.....(why I don't write many!) Good one Charles! Jimbo

    Login to Reply
  1. Date: 7/8/2012 9:10:00 AM
    very interesting stuff, Charles. Thank you so much for explaining this a little better to me. hugs, Catie :)

    Login to Reply

My Past Blog Posts

Expanding Deb's Blog
Date Posted: 5/19/2014 11:44:00 PM
Possum Branch Road
Date Posted: 3/31/2014 11:22:00 PM
Calling All, Want To Be, Haiku Writers
Date Posted: 2/20/2014 3:46:00 PM
My Bear Story Retold
Date Posted: 2/5/2014 2:35:00 PM
Poetry Soup Imbeded Ads
Date Posted: 11/4/2013 7:31:00 PM
The Elusive Monoku
Date Posted: 7/27/2013 11:20:00 PM
Computer Games
Date Posted: 7/12/2013 9:08:00 AM
Contest Winners and Bear String
Date Posted: 5/3/2013 11:47:00 PM
My Contest
Date Posted: 5/2/2013 2:01:00 PM
The Bear III
Date Posted: 4/1/2013 5:23:00 PM
Another Bear Story
Date Posted: 3/31/2013 10:23:00 PM
The no contest Contest
Date Posted: 3/30/2013 2:51:00 AM
Hanging Ten
Date Posted: 3/22/2013 10:59:00 AM
Feedback Wanted
Date Posted: 1/27/2013 1:06:00 PM
Wise Guys
Date Posted: 1/22/2013 9:28:00 AM
Mathematics of Success
Date Posted: 1/21/2013 7:36:00 PM
New Soup Rule
Date Posted: 1/20/2013 7:34:00 PM
Soup Problem Update
Date Posted: 1/20/2013 5:20:00 PM
More on the Gullah People (wikipedia)
Date Posted: 1/13/2013 3:21:00 PM
The Gullah People of South Carolina
Date Posted: 1/12/2013 7:23:00 PM
emergency email
Date Posted: 12/26/2012 2:25:00 PM
new law in Michigan
Date Posted: 12/11/2012 1:23:00 PM
A Nice Verse
Date Posted: 11/27/2012 7:30:00 PM
Mauve cotton Fields
Date Posted: 11/26/2012 10:15:00 PM
Results of the 101 haiku Contest
Date Posted: 11/23/2012 12:58:00 PM

My Poems

Date PostedPoem TitleFormCategories
9/16/2014Cold WindsEpigramage,
9/16/2014A Mind ThingProsedeath,
8/31/2014The TrystRhymememory,
8/29/2014night breezeHaikuculture,nature,
8/24/2014The CureRhymecancer,
8/24/2014among crocusHaikuanalogy,
8/3/2014the treeHaikunature,
8/3/2014the pondHaikugrowing up,
8/3/2014her letterHaikuwife,
7/18/2014the ternHaikunature,
7/18/2014the bare branchHaikuphilosophy,
7/17/2014how many worldsHaikuphilosophy,
7/17/2014a single water dropHaikucreation,
7/14/2014a childHaikulove,
7/14/2014the ringHaikufamily,
6/26/2014she giggledHaikugrowing up,
6/23/2014Metaphysical TransitionFree versemystery,
6/21/2014Yeah, RightFree verseaddiction,
6/19/2014A light in the HeavensTrioletenvironment,
6/18/2014graduation dayHaikugrowing up,
6/18/2014HeatSenryubreak up,feelings,

My Photos

Dalai Lama.jpg

Fav Poems

Poem TitleFormCategories
Hard TimesCowboycowboy-western,family,fun
The Sowing Free versedevotion,
Disposable WisdomRhymeage,cat,life,wisdom,
FootprintsFree verseintrospection,life,
Alabaster NightFree versenature,sea,
Forgotten Heroes of the SommeRhymebrother,death,history,lif
A List: I'm the Poet -To CarrieList dedication,
Don't Come Free versedeath,lost love,me,
Mona LisaFree verseartme,
Love Beyond the PaleQuatraindevotion,lost love,
Frosted Panes - re-postQuatraingirl,life,me,sea,time,win
When Madness Rides on Moonlight Sestinagod,life,
Missing MotherVersedepression,devotion,me,mi
Why He BeamsDiminished Hexaverseimagination,love,
A Gentle DeathSonnetabsence,death,faith,love,
Wet but WiserQuatrainadventure,funny,pets,
CloserFree versehope,life,love,peace,blue
Love Passing ByRhymelove,love,pride,

Fav Poets

Debbie Guzzi United States Flag United States Read
Ruben O. Argentina Flag Argentina Read
dakarai cobb United States Flag United States Read
Cyndi MacMillan Canada Flag Canada Read
Tracie Edwards Australia Flag Australia Read
craig cornish United States Flag United States Read
Chris D. Aechtner Canada Flag Canada Read