You are a Poet! Writing Haiku

Have you ever thought of yourself as a poet? Perhaps you’ve tried to write a poem, but it just seemed too hard to find the right rhyming words. Did you know that you don’t always have to rhyme? One of my favorite kinds of non-rhyming poems is called haiku. Haiku is a Japanese form of poetry that usually focuses on something in nature. And it’s only three lines long!

You are a Poet!  Writing Haiku

Instead of thinking about rhyming words, the poet concentrates on the number of syllables in each word. With haiku, the first line must have five syllables, the second line must have seven, and the third line has five again. Here’s an example:

The water rushes

Waves over the sandy shore

Bringing shells and stones.

If the poem was broken into syllables, it would be:

The  wa-ter  rush-es  (5 syllables)

Waves  o-ver  the  sand-y  shore  (7 syllables)

Bring-ing  shells  and  stones.  (5 syllables)

Can you picture the ocean water coming up on the beach? If so, then it’s a good poem! And it didn’t even rhyme!

Here’s another example:

The birds in the spring

Build nests on my windowsill

Favorite décor.

Ready? Now you try one!

Afterschool activities and free resources from SmartTutor.

Article By Samantha Bell

Photo By Lennart Tange

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