WHERE : Originating in Japan, haiku (俳 句) are now a global phenomenon.

WHEN : This present moment.

WHO : Haiku are democratic: everyone can play. A person who is a very very haiku person is called a hai jin ( haiku person ). Five great haijin :

  • Basho (1644–1694)
  • Buson ((1716–1783)
  • Issa (1763–1827)
  • Shiki (1867–1902)
  • You

WHAT : A light, impressionist sketch, in words. Natural as a cloud or a river. One-breath long, often with a pause (kiré) marking a gap between two images. Traditionally, with a reference to a season, directly or indirectly, through a key word or phrase (kigo) often indexed in a season word almanac (saijiki). Without commentary on itself, yet more than just a statement of fact, haiku form conveys haiku spirit (hai i).

HOW : As an art of participation, haiku engage a reader's contemplation. Reading haiku, thus, is essential for writing haiku, & for becoming more deeply attuned to experiencing haiku in daily life.

WHY : Because.

Just so.


  1. The Irish Haiku Society posts a compilation of sets of guidelines well worth considering.
  2. Jane Reichold offers a parallel set of guidelines and examples.
  3. Where Jane Reichold prefers numbered lists, Michael Dylan Welch favors a more personal, narrative style to his  how-to guide.
  4. Two Dragonflies'instructional page instructional page is geared for children (of all ages).

Pages in category "Guidelines"

This category contains only the following page.