Sample Haiku Worksheet
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Haiku
By Brenda B. Covert
  

1     If you can count syllables, you can write a haiku. This is one of the easiest types of poetry to learn to write. It doesn't rhyme, and it isn't supposed to have a title. The hard part is deciding which words to use!
 
2     The modern haiku was fashioned by a Japanese poet named Masaoka Shiki in the late 1800's. He created this new form of poetry to present realistic portrayals of nature and life. Tradition insists that a clue to the season be included. This poem is made up of three lines only. There are only 17 syllables altogether. The pattern of syllables goes like this:
five syllables
seven syllables
five syllables

 
3     The tricky part is to find a way to express yourself using few words. Seventeen syllables don't allow room for lots of details or unnecessary words.

Yesterday I ate  5 - Yes/ter/day/I/ate
breakfast and grabbed my backpack  7 - break/fast/and/grabbed/my/back/pack
to hurry to school  5 - To/hur/ry/to/school

 
4     From the syllable illustration on the right you can see that I used the five-seven-five pattern. I wrote a complete sentence. You can also see that I didn't have anything interesting to share. The "haiku rules" call for a mention of the season too, but I ran out of syllables! I'll have to try a little harder this time.

Pancakes with syrup 5 - Pan/cakes/with/sy/rup
Winter's chill delayed awhile 7 - Win/ter's/chill/de/layed/a/while
The bus driver honks 5 - The/bus/dri/ver/honks

 
5     If the poet has done her work, you can probably imagine yourself enjoying a steaming plate of pancakes, when you are interrupted by a honk that calls you out into the cold weather. By using a few concrete details and leaving out unimportant words, we can create a word-picture and a related feeling!

Paragraphs 6 to 12:
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