Rain – Haiku Writing Techniques – March 9, 2016

rain rooftops

last rains of winter
raindrops tip-tap on the roof
and on window panes

grey winter days
looking at the rain fall
cold wet memories

students and workers
riding through the town on bikes
under cold rainfall

§§§

watching the rain fall
counting the days until spring
discarding winter
and yet the mountains are white
with late snowfall

endless rainfall
smell of mould and cabbages
waft through the air
greeting the weary visitors
in the ancient farm-house

© G.s.k. ‘16

Carpe Diem #933 Rain

First a look at Shiki:

You’ll often read that haiku shouldn’t  be describing a scene – one is to look for that “a-ha!” quality that will have our reader touch upon a sort of surprised moment creating a sensation of some inner meaning.  However, in modern haiku, Masoaoka Shiki  felt that haiku had become trite, dusty and “contrived” with all its artificial rules and puns accumulated  from the old renga schools.   Shiki, like other Meiji Period writers truly enjoyed the realism of Western literature, and this is evident in his approach and recommended composition form based on Shasei (“realistic observation of nature”) or sketch from life which he interjected into his prose writing, haiku and tanka  as his principal style.

A lightning flash:
between the forest trees
I have seen water.

But this month we walk with Basho … so here is a quote from today’s episode at CDHK:

“In the way of Basho:

a rainy day
the autumn world
of a border town

© Basho (Tr. Jane Reichhold

In this haiku Basho uses the so-called “sketch” or “shasei” technique. Though this technique is often given Shiki’s term “shasei” or “shajitsu” it’s not really a technique which is invented by Shiki. This technique has been in use since the beginning of poetry in Asia. The poetic principle is “to depict the thing just as it is”. There are some inspirations for haiku that are best said as simply as possible. Shiki wrote his haiku almost all with this “shasei”, but Shiki realized himself in 1893 that the overuse of this technique could produce many lackluster haiku, so it should never be the only method employed in a haiku.

early autumn
the sea and rice fields
one green

© Basho (Tr. Jane Reichhold

(There are many more examples of Basho’s poetry on today’s post so click the link)

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11 thoughts on “Rain – Haiku Writing Techniques – March 9, 2016

    • Thanks Oli … I’m so sorry I came across this so late! don’t know how i didn’t see it! Plus I just found a post-it reminding that the 9th of March is your birthday! Hope you passed it nicely … I’m so involved with fixing up my house that I’ve missing out on writing and socializing! Almost finished though (I hope).

      Like

  1. Beautiful writing, Bastet! I really liked this part:”discarding winter
    and yet the mountains are white
    with late snowfall” , because it shows an image of nature that is also transmuted emotionally withing us, the humans.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hello Oloriel .. strangely enough I remember your comment and writing a reply, which I don’t see! So sorry! I agree … those first signs of spring enter into us as we live through the last throes of winter is quite a moving human experience.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Life in Italy (Humidity) – Haibun – March 10, 2016 | Walking With Bastet in Prose

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