Zen Poetry What it is… Who invented it… How it works…. A poem of my own creation… Competition.. End.
What is “zen poetry”???? • Zen Poetry is a Japanese form of poetry. Individual poems are known as “Haiku’s” 俳句 • The poems were previously called “Hokku’s”, until Masaoka Shiki changed the name at the end of the 19th Century. • Haiku’s are unique because of their metric make-up. They consist of three metric phrases of 5,7 and 5 syllables respectively. • In Japanese, Haiku’s are printed on one line, whereas in English they usually appear on three separate lines.
Origination of the haiku • The Haiku was originally only seen as the opening stanza of a longer orthodox poem. • By the time of Matsuo Basho (1644-1694) the Haiku had begun to appear as a poem in its own right appearing alongside prose and paintings. • In the 1600’s, two Japanese masters had emerged who elevated the Haiku (in it’s prose form) and increased it’s popularity. The Haiku became the most important part of the longer poem, setting the tone for the entire piece.
Introduction of haiku in the west • One of the first advocates of the English language Haiku was the Japanese poet Yone Noguchi. In Reader magazine in 1904, the poet first published explanations of the Haiku to a Western audience. • Other’s who significantly aided the introduction of Haiku’s to the West include R.H.Blythe, Kenneth Yasuda, and Harold G.Henderson.
Contemporary haiku’s • Traditionally, the Japanese Haiku was usually about nature, and the place of humans within it. However, contemporary Haiku’s speak about anything from urban landscapes to violence and sex. • Today Haiku’s are written in many languages, but, outside of Japan, they are usually concentrated in English-speaking countries. • However, Haiku poetry societies can today be found anywhere from the Netherlands to Russia.
What is a haiku like? • “Good and evil have no self nature; Holy and unholy are empty names; In front of the door is the land of stillness and quiet; Spring comes, grass grows by itself. “Master Seung Sahn • The above is an example of a Haiku. This particular poem is a well known creation by Master Seung Sahn, (1927-2004). • Another slightly less thought provoking example; • “Old pond, frog jumps in- splash “Basho
How can I make a haiku? • Basic Haiku’s follow a three line pattern. The first line has five syllables, the second has seven syllables, and the third has five syllables. • For example; I don’t list-en in Class and there-fore my grades have Be-come ra-ther poor.
COMPETITION!!!!!! • Everyone write your own Haiku! • I’ll judge the winner! • The prize? Two tickets to see Lauren Fishwick’s talk on “The rise of Christianity in 333 B.C.E China” at the Royal Albert Hall. • (Sense of humour essential, Pre-drinks recommended.)
The end!! • This is the end of • My work on Hai-ku’s so thank • You for not list-ning. • (And yes I know that • Last word was spelt wrong. What are • You go-ing to do?)