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Can you say what you feel about work in 3 lines and 17 syllables?

Dark and rainy day

perfect for couch and blanket

wish I'm not at work

by greaterinescape

If you think you can sum up your feelings about work in three lines and seventeen syllables then you're ready for the hiaku challenge.

"Haiku" is a traditional form of Japanese poetry. Each poem consist of 3 lines. The first line has 5 syllables, the middle line has 7 syllables and the last line has 5 syllables. The lines rarely rhyme. Whilst writers of traditional haiku verse avoided using metaphors modern writers bend the strict rules of the form and use symbolic language.

Because haikus are so short, they are usually written about things that are recognisable to the reader. The working poet Seryianis has written this haiku poem about a significant matter in Higher Education close to their heart.

Freshman Blues

Imagine the duress,

new student searching for room,

finding means success.

by Seryianis 2018

You'll notice Seryianis has given it a title, which is fine by me. Strictly though they do not have titles. The philosophy of haiku is simplicity and brevity. If one added a title, it would take away from what the haiku wants to say and is already saying. The haiku is incomplete, and the reader needs to complete it. Once again, however, modern writers have bent this rule too.

When people first come across haiku they tend to focus first of all on only the restriction of the number of lines and syllables. Punctuation and capitalisation are up to the poet, and need not follow rigid rules used in structuring sentences.

What no one ever tries to bend ins the rule of: 3 lines: 5 syllables, 7 syllables and 5 syllables.

Can you meet the haiku challenge and say what you feel about your work in that format?

Shall we run for it?

Escape all this drudgery

and find adventure?

by Tyler Knott Gregson

Send your three lines to:


Image: Nakajima Hiroyuki SHO Japanese Modern Art Calligraphy Sun Acrylic on Canvas

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