Haiku and You Grade 7 - Ages 12-15 Autumn 2003 English Language Arts Goals: To understand the formal structure of haiku. To use the compression of language and expansion of meaning to create an original haiku.
Grade 7 - Ages 12-15
English Language Arts Goals:
Through images, rhythm, written examples, and their own writing, students will learn the structure of the poetry form, haiku.
Students will also learn that in Japan, haiku is used to express seasonal awareness, feelings toward nature, compassion to animals, loneliness, happiness, and sadness.
Kobayashi Issa, one of Japan’s great poets, is introduced as someone who created haiku by integrating his own emotions and observations of nature.
The compression of language
Haiku uses symbolismto describe nature or emotions.
What does a tree symbolize to you?
… the images are concrete:
… the reader finds personal meaning in the symbolism.
Powdered crags look up
Clear blue canopy protects
Green blanket below
Oshogatsu - the Japanese New Year!
Modern haiku is a 3-line verse, using 17 Japanese characters or English syllables.
In this first line of haiku, the word, blossom, has 2 syllables.
1 2 3 4 5
(5 syllables in this line.)
In true Japanese form, haiku uses a season’s hint word, or kigo.
“Lotus blossom peeks”
Guess the season using this line of haiku.
(During what season does the Lotus begin to bloom?)
Autumn Winter New Year
The delicate lotus blossom slowly
emerges from a
bundle of leaves
when spring arrives…
Those 14 words, or 23 syllables, were compressed to create this 5-syllable line:
Lotus blossom peeks
‘Lotus’ is a simple, concrete, idea.
When the words, ‘blossom peeks,’
are added, the
meaning is expanded.
Green bed hugging fresh petals
Bees seek sweet nectar
Kobayashi Issa (1763-1827).
He wrote tender haiku about his children and wife who died, his poverty, and his little insect and animal friends.
A Self-Portrait by Issa: "Gimme that moon!/ cries the crying/ child."
line 1: 5 syllables
line 2: 7 syllables
line 3: 5 syllables
Include a kigo.
Compress the language.
E x p a n d the meaning.
A good Haiku is about
…and you think about that in a different way!
Compression of Language
Expansion of Meaning
Taiko Drumming: http://members.accessbee.com/jkwasnik/midi/warsong.mid
Tree: No. 4. Japan, John Fitzgerald; http://www.botanique.com
Oshagatsu Drummer: http://www.familyculture.com/images/taiko.gif
Issa’s Self Portrait: http://xavier.xula.edu/dlanoue/issa/images/sketch.jpg