A Conversation for Haiku

The 5-7-5 Rule

Post 21

The Researcher has Retired

There is an interesting discussion of, amongst other things, the 5-7-5 rule in William J Higginson's "The Haiku Handbook" (published by Kodansha) especially Chapter 8 on "The Form of Haiku" which notes, amny things on the 5-7-5 structure. Amongst other things he notes that Japanese do NOT count syllables, they count 'onji' (sound symbols). He wants us to note is that, for example, it generally takes the same time to say 'a' in Japanese, as it does to say 'tsu', and so the cadence of haiku is different.

He also suggests, at one point that an English haiku might better be structured with seven accented syllables plus unaccented ones to make a total of twelve. He cites others with similar ideas.

I would recommend the work to anybody who is really interested.

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