My Poem: How to write haiku (samples for Haiku Walking Tour project)

A Guide to Writing Haiku

You ask me about syllables…
Well, don’t worry.
Have you seen Nature counting?
The truth lies
authentic and crisp.
See, rain falls,
leaves and lilies shiver…
Do they tell you their syllables?
They just shiver… in rain.
So do you.

rain falls –
lilies shiver…
a pond in my cupped palm

See – the ordinary
can become extraordinary,
and leave the larger things to ponder…

Now here is a sheet,
let your pen ink it
as if you walk on a snowy day,
your footprints stay.
Some tiny paw-prints might be ahead,
make us see them too.
You don’t need a whole landscape
or a full story;
but there must be a moment
that we walk with you
through your unfolding –
a light flashing beyond.



What is haiku?

A haiku is a brief poem that uses concrete sensory images to reflect natural events and human experiences, using a two-part juxtaposition as well as simple and objective language to capture a sense of wonder and wholeness in presenting existence as it is.

Haiku is originally from Japan. It had only 17 syllables, but has changed over time. However, the philosophy of haiku has been preserved: the focus is on a brief moment in time; a use of provocative, colorful images; an ability to be read in one breath; and a sense of sudden enlightenment or illumination.

My Haiku brochure

How to Haiku (from HaikuCanada)

More samples (Visiting Las Vegas) |  a series of haiku: Hello, Canada for Canada Day

haiku about Zenriver Garden  part 1 |  part 2

Haiku for Poets in Schools

Other how to Haiku  and Techniques by Jane Reichhold

The art of metaphor (video)