Welcome to February. I hope to inspire and lift up your spirits with this month’s haiku to help you learn more about what haiku is.
How does February make you feel?
Since February is such a short month and we’re smack in the middle of winter, it can sometimes be a month of blahness. Following January and settling into the new year, February hasn’t always excited me a whole lot. But, I found an uplifting and inspiring article on how to brighten up the month and do some fun things that will make you feel good.
The days are getting a wee bit longer and I see small glimpses of spring popping up here and there. February can offer quiet times for inner reflection and time to connect with yourself and with others. It’s really a month of love and self care. With Valentines being in the middle of the month, I like to celebrate it as a day for universal love and not so much about romantic love. I personally find it to be overly commercialized but nevertheless it’s another part of February that can celebrated in many creative ways.
Another way to celebrate this month is by writing one haiku a day!
Have you ever heard of NaHaiWriMo?
NaHaiWriMo is a hashtag that stands for National Haiku Writing Month. It started in 2011 by Michael Dylan Welch and has become a yearly tradition for haiku poets around the world to write one haiku a day in the month of February. Why February? Since haiku is known as the shortest form of poetry and the month of February is the shortest month of the year, Michael picked as the best month for this challenge.
Writing one haiku a day is definitely a challenge. I decided to do this a couple of years ago and on top of it I created a daily design of my haiku to post on social media. There were days where I was totally stumped, but I pushed through it and wrote 28 haiku by the end of the month. I decided to take some pressure off and to not worry if my haiku was good or right. Some of them were good and others became a work in progress that eventually turned into better ones with revisions and edits. Writing a daily haiku gave me the gift of experiencing life with more presence by being more aware of my day and what was going on within and around me.
How does this all work? Daily prompts are provided and the haiku is based on the word or words of the day. I had the pleasure of meeting Michael Dylan Welch over 10 years ago when I was first learning to write haiku. If you have question about haiku, he’s the man to ask! His knowledge, expertise and passion for haiku is clearly obvious when you go to his site.
I learned about haiku as a kid by following the 5/7/5 format. When I connected with the haiku community, I soon discovered that it’s not about counting syllables and found out that there’s so much more about haiku than I ever thought.
I’m taking the challenge again this year and if you’re interested in joining here is a link to the page where you can learn more about haiku and how it all works.
Here are three of Michael’s favourite haiku to enjoy.
the pull of her hand
as we near the pet store
a seashell held
to my baby’s ear
the potter’s wheel
If you want to learn more about haiku and take the NaHaiWriMo challenge, the “Haiku Just for You”online Course shows you the joy in writing and creating haiku poetry. This course introduces you to haiku, some of the most famous early poets, and provides an easy to follow series of five lessons, companion workbooks, stunning graphic templates, a collection of evocative one-liners you can mix and match and a nicely illustrated journal in PDF.