Excerpt From this Document
- Both Haiku and Tanka and are Japanese forms of Poetry.
- Both Haiku and Tanka have strict rules on the number of syllables in each line.
- Nature is generally the subject of both forms.
- Both focus on nature, color, season and give an impression of a specific instance in nature.
- Haikus rely on brevity and simplicity to convey their message.
- They are believed to have first been written in the 17th century.
- Haiku is based on a Zen Buddhist philosophy of simplicity.
- When a man wanted to court a woman, he would write her a Haiku poem.
- If the woman liked the Haiku (and the man!) she would write him a Tanka in response!
- Haikus are three-line poems
- Each line has a certain number of syllables: Line 1- five syllables, Line 2- seven syllables, Line 3- five syllables
- Examples of Haiku: Grey clouds slowly float, Brushing the slopes of mountains, Bringing a spring storm
- Among the gravestones, with names worn away, children play hide and seek.
- Shimmering water, What stories you could recount, If the moon were full.
- Tankas have five lines. As with Haiku, each line has a set number of syllables: Line one-5, Line two-7, Line three-5, Line four-7, Line five-7
- Tanka Examples: Moon madness makes me, Dance in delight under stars, I lift up my hands, And feel my arms grow longer, As they wrap around the moon
- Modern Haiku and Tanka do not adhere to the strict syllable count perline. The Haiku still has three lines, and the Tanka still has five, but they do not have limitations on syllable count and subject matter.
- Just as traditional Haiku focuses on nature, urban Haiku focuses on life in the city…Old woman crossing, two thin legs and a walker: good, it's a long light
- Modern Tankas focus on keeping the overall syllable count under 31 syllables total: This credit card, Already at its limit, I employ, This frosty morning, To scrape my windshield
- For your Poetry Portfolio you will write two Haikus (one traditional, one contemporary) and two Tankas (one traditional and one contemporary).
- Traditional means it must be about nature and it must have the required number of syllables.
About this Document
This powerpoint gives the history and examples of both types of poems.