Haiku are Japanese poems that don’t rhyme.
They have three lines. The first line has 5 syllables, the second has 7 , and the last one has 5 syllables again. They are about things you see around you, and about observing the seasons.

This story is especially for Lizzie.

Haiku in the garden are valuable. They help us to slow down, to be still for a moment, and feel the season. They are the beginning of a conversation with the place where we grow – for some folks a vehicle for meditation; for others, a bit of seasonal fun. 

[above: early Autumn haiku]My niece is a busy bee. She is a thinker, a reader, a writer and a doer – a real little dynamo. She likes the garden, so a while ago I thought she might like to use haiku to find slower calmer moments too.  A haiku journal and a few quick example poems and pointers, and she is away. Already, we have some real gems of writing and quiet spells amongst busy fulfilling days.
spring haiku
[above: spring haiku in our garden]

Here are some haiku tips for young poets in the garden:

Count the syllables (word sounds) on your fingers
Take opportunities to sit in nature and notice things amongst the quiet that remind you of the season.
Write not type so as to give the moment tactile expression. It can be in a journal or just a note.
Write in pencil so you can change words if you’d like. Pencil also lasts forever and won’t hurt your book.
Just three lines can help you imagine a whole scene. A good haiku helps you guess the season and the feeling of the moment.
Read the lines out loud to hear the syllables.
Express how you feel, within yourself, or in the world.
Share your thoughts, by reading them to family, tying them on tags to a tree in the garden, or sending in the mail, oldeschool.

Haiku is a beautiful skill for life.

 

Summer haiku
[above: late summer haiku]