My Poetry

Parental Trials, #Senryu & Reading Winning Poetry

I wanted to share more about the differences between Haiku and Senryu, but first… The other day I read this post: World Haiku Series 2019 (42) Haiku by Ed Bremson. The Haiku/Senryu/Hybrid Haiku-Senryu poetry contained in the post is spectacular. These are poems that have won awards in different contests. Click the links and have a read!

If you never read award winning poetry how will you know how to write it?

Here is the link for the UHTS Cattails Journal

Download the free PDF above and read the poetry. Notice the syllable count and the form. Think about which of these poems are a Haiku and/or a Senryu. Are there any hybrid forms, meaning they are a combination of Haiku and Senryu?

Remember: Senryu poems make the human, not the world around them, the subject of their creative endeavor. Humor and sarcasm are two of the most favorable elements in a Senryu and should deal with the human condition. Think about sexual matters, family relations, religion, politics, and anything that touches on the pain we experience through sorrow, prejudice, oppression, anger, and frustration. Senryu do not deal in sentimentality.

Ken Gierke wrote the perfect political Senryu poem this week:

Here is how to tell the difference between Nature Haiku and Human Senryu:

For the first of the month challenge, here is my Senryu for this week. Do you spot the irony?

Image by coombesy from Pixabay

Grown children
forget their parents
grow older

©2020 Colleen M. Chesebro

29 thoughts on “Parental Trials, #Senryu & Reading Winning Poetry”

  1. Oh, no! I realized I’ve been putting titles with my haiku and it calls for none! Ergh, something else to fix, lol. At least, I got the direction for a senryu and might attempt that in the future.


        1. Traci, read the fine print carefully on these contests. Make sure you follow everything and that you have an idea of what they want. Many of these journals are free downloads so read them before you submit. ❤


    1. Ruth, if you want to write in the tradition 5/7/5 method, please do. Otherwise, if you want to compete in poetry contests understand that the 3/5/3, and/or the 2/3/2 current syllable counts are the forms accepted. 5/7/5 is considered too clunky for most poets. If you’re not going to compete, continue using the form you like best: 5/7/5. ❤


        1. And they won’t. Some are translated from Japanese. This is why Haiku and Senryu in English follow syllables. We can only get close to the syllable structure because most words in Japanese are spoken in a short breath. So, the translations can’t come close. The UHTS pdf is pretty close in syllable structure, I believe. Does that help?


    1. We use them in our challenge but all my research shows no titles. But, it seems that rules change rapidly depending on who says what. For contests and submissions to journals, I consult their rules. That’s the safest advice. 😍❤️


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