3/1/12 - 4/1/12

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How to Write a Haiku Poem

The Huntress

Deep growl, a warning...
Twitching, crouched like a lion
Pounce! Squeak!  Ahhh...dinner!  

by Donna C. Rodgers 

Long time no see! Hope this post finds you all well and busy. With spring approaching, I thought you might enjoy this little exercise in poetry writing that I'm doing with my middle school girls co-op class.

I've never written a Haiku poem until today. What an appropriate way to celebrate spring!

The instructions I sent the girls are below.


Hi Girls,

This week's assignment is both simple and challenging.  Writing a three line poem called a Haiku.

1. Read a little bit about the elements of poetry, at this link. Elements of Poetry.  (Each week I will give you new topic about poetry to read on your own.)
1. I would like you to finish the Haiku poems you started in class.  Please email it to me if you can, and I can go over it and suggest changes if you would like.
2. Draw or print a picture to go with it.
3. Then I'd like you to write one on a different subject.
4. I believe, what you need most to do, is FOCUS on some SMALL part of the topic.  

TOPICS           Possible focus  (pick only one or two)
Spring   weather change, tree getting leaves, bees in the redbud tree, mother bird feeding chick, turtle sunning
Birthdays the taste and lighting of a cake, the gift and it's opening, the party guests, breakfast in bed, getting older
Beach     a hermit crab changing homes, the action of waves on the sand, footprints, kite flying, ships on the horizon
flowers   bud, opening, visitors, picking and giving to mom, gracing a vase
New Jewelry    sparkles, dangling, gift from a friend, handed down from Grandma, light shimmering
Vacation    no more books! packing and on the road, anticipation, grand views, music on the radio, maps

5. See how picking one or two smaller parts of a BIG topic gives you something more to write about?You are really describing the event like a riddle. 
 Don't mention the main topic except perhaps as the title. That way you leave the reader guessing. :) This adds that element of surprise.

Here's how to do it.

a. Pick your favorite hobby, favorite color, animal, place, memory. i.e. cat
b. Then list several things you like about the topic.  (appearance, sounds, feelings and sensations, disappointments, triumphs)
    i.e. affectionate nature, piercing eyes, rumbling purr, soft supple fur, elegant and aloof, great hunters, nursing kittens
c. Now pick ONE of those things you would like to FOCUS on. i.e great hunter  (my least favorite part)
d. list words about that topic.  twitching tail, warning rumble, piercing gaze, the crouch, springing into action, the pounce, the offering of the mouse on my doorstep, delicate cleaning of paws after dinner
e. Perhaps find a logical order for the three sentences  i.e. what you hear, then see, then the result  

fNow try to say those things within the proper Haiku pattern.

1st sentence  5 syllables
2nd sentence 7 syllables
3rd sentence 5 syllables

Here's my 'rough draft' on Cats  (I've never written this type of poem...but I'll give it a go. :)

Growling, rumbling, warning
Tail twitches, crouches, pauses  hidden
Pounce! dinner! Happy purring.

As you can see, there's too many syllables here. So I'll try to get rid of some words.

Deep growl, a warning
Twitching, Crouched, Hidden
Sudden pounce! Squeak!,  Ahhh...Dinner!     (Oops got my 5-7-5 mixed up.)  This is 557.
Now for a title... How about 'the huntress'?

The Huntress

Deep growl, a warning
Tall grass twitching, Crouched, Hidden
Pounce! Squeak!,  Ahhh...Dinner!   

Optional: Add a Simile

I can't wait to see what you come up with. :)

Happy writing!
Mrs. Rodgers


Brighter Days on the Horizon!

Today, I found myself actually WALKING QUICKLY through a room to go do something. I felt like my old self almost!

 I was able to turn the key in the ignition, drive with BOTH HANDS, carry a bag with applesauce in it, hold a pan while scrubbing, and open the deck door. (It's a spring loaded lever type.) I don't have to keep it elevated at all. These are HUGE accomplishments. :)

Ladies, I think I'm about to move back into type A mode! Yippee! Hope that means you'll hear from me more often.  When I can get things done, I can do things to post about! :)

The cold is almost gone, and I've spent the day grading papers.   Suddenly, I'm seeing messes everywhere. Is it spring fever? I hope so!

Hope you are having a wonderful week too.

PS. And Yes..I CAN Hula Hoop!
“There's nothing half so pleasant as coming home again.” ~ Margaret Sangster

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