Haikus for a Writing Prompt

Pine Needles After Rain 2 by timage, on Flickr
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 2.0 Generic License  by  timage 

Wednesday’s prompt on WriteTribe is to write a proper haiku. Many thanks to Ruchira Shukla for the succinct lesson. In brief, an English-language haiku should have 17 syllables in three lines with the pattern 5 / 7 / 5, it should mention or make reference to a season (kigo), and should have a juxtaposition. A juxtaposition is where one of the lines is grammatically separate from the other two. This last one is harder than it sounds.

Further, we were asked to make ‘rain’ the kigo, as it is currently the rainy season in India, where WriteTribe is based. Not to mention here in Atlanta, where it has rained almost every day for several weeks, it seems.

But rain means so many things to me. Rain has different personalities. There’s the light rain that falls straight down, leaving dry patches under everything. There’s the driving sheets of rain that stop traffic. There’s horizontal rain that hits windows with the force of pebbles and make you check your roof for leaks. There’s spitting rain that’s not really worth getting out an umbrella for, but it will leave you just as wet. So I did not constrain myself to just one haiku. So there.

Here are my six ‘rain’ haiku. Note that I chose to actually avoid the word ‘rain’ and instead obliquely refer to it, as it was one of the techniques mentioned by the page at WriteTribe. I’m also sure I didn’t accomplish a juxtaposition in at least three of them. Maybe.

Cicadas droning.
Thundershower’s pitter-pat.
Soothing susurrus.
Low, grey, dreary skies.
Children laugh with abandon.
Puddles for splashing.
Musty petrichor.
Pine needles, diamond laden.
Above, a rainbow.
Sunny and stormy:
The devil’s beating his wife.
No mowing today!
Some big, some little:
Muddy footprints on the floor.
Mud’s not just for kids.
Torrential downpour.
Weather loved only by ducks.
And I, with my book.

I should also note that ‘diamond’ in my particular dialect (i.e., Southern English) is two syllables, not three. So there are not eight syllables in the second haiku down in the first column. :)

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10 Responses to “Haikus for a Writing Prompt”
  1. Roshni says:

    Wow!! You are a haiku master!! All of the were just awesome!! If you forced me to pick one, I would say the torrential downpour one because curling up with a book and blanket is my favorite thing to do when it pours!!

    • Thank you! What I’ve always wanted is a plexiglass dome over my bed so I could just lie in it and watch the show when there’s a thunderstorm. People think I’m crazy, but it sounds great to me. :)

  2. Suzy says:

    Some fun haiku. Loved the muddy footprints and the ducks.

  3. Kathy says:

    I love the idea of slopping along in the mud. Did a lot of that running in the rain in high school when I was on the cross country team. Loved it even if you looked like a drowned mud caked rat when you were done. Awesome haikus!!


  4. Joyce says:

    I hadn’t heard anyone mention different types of rain since Forrest Gump.


  5. Thank you Gary for liking the write up ! The biggest advantage of that article is that i am getting to read such fabulous Haiku !I so enjoyed reading all of yours. You avoided using rain explicitly and yet create such perfect imagery !
    My favorites are the one with Devil’s beating his wife and the one about curling up with a book !

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