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Writing a haiku can either be very simple or very complicated. Making the poem rhyme is optional, but for a good haiku, keeping the 5-7-5 syllable technique is recommended

To start writing a haiku, the best way is to visulize something in your head. For example, if you are wanting to write a seasonal haiku, think of a warm summer night, a winter scene, rainy days, or any other season-related picture your mind can conjure up. Keywords are very important when you are in the developing process. Jot down several words that draw you to the scene in your head and then separate them by their syllables.

Fall Haiku

"Leaves fall down outside (5 syllables)
Slowly touching the Earth's gound (7 syllables)
Crushing underfoot (5 syllables)"
-Amanda Spencer

Once the words are separated, now begins the process of putting the whole thing together so that it makes sense and has the right amount of syllables in each stanza. (Being consistent with the 5-7-5 is NOT required to have a successful haiku, but is following the ancient Japanese format).

Another popular haiku type is an animal haiku. If you have a pet or see an animal outside or in a zoo, it could help bring inspiration for a haiku. Remember to visualize the animal or animals and draw out any distinctive features so that the reader can feel like he/she can actually reach out and touch the animal. Color and texture brings out the visualization and can draw the reader to feel close to the animal and the haiku alike.

Animal Haiku

"Panda's face, eyes sad
Black and white, soft silky fur
Endangered species."
-Amanda Spencer

Now you should be prepared to write a haiku! Keep in mind that most haikus are abstract and some take a lot of practice to make it sound like you want. Although most haikus don't rhyme, it is what you make of it. If you want it to rhyme, have it rhyme, if you want it to be about a person, write it about a person. The ideas and possibilities are endless and imagination helps make a great haiku!!!