俳句, haiku, is a short poem that uses imagistic language to convey the essence of an experience of nature or the season intuitively linked to the human condition.
Most haiku in English consist of three unrhymed lines of seventeen or fewer syllables, with the middle line longest, though today’s poets use a variety of line lengths and arrangements. In Japanese a typical haiku has seventeen “sounds”, Onji 音字, arranged five, seven, and five. (Some translators of Japanese poetry have noted that about twelve syllables in English approximates the duration of seventeen Japanese, Onji 音字.)
Traditional Japanese haiku include a “season word” (kigo), a word or phrase that helps identify the season of the experience recorded in the poem, and a “cutting word” (kireji), a sort of spoken punctuation that marks a pause or gives emphasis to one part of the poem.
We offer two classes each month; the first is an ‘introduction’ class for those who want to start with a fresh mind. The second class is a newly introduced class offered by Shehan Sensei and is an ongoing Masters Class which includes advanced topics on Haiku and other Japanese Poetry.
About the instructor:
Shehan Sensei is the resident Haiku poet at the Japanese Culture Center – 日本文化会館, has been published world wide including Haiku International, Haiku Society of America, Modern Haiku, and spoken on Japanese Television on Haiku. Sensei runs Kumanoko Arts Foundation and teaches GO for the Japanese Culture center as well. In addition to his Arts, Sensei is also the leader of the Chicago Keikokai of Meifu Shinkage Ryu style of ShurikenJutsu, Religious Scholar from Purdue University, Buddhist Lay Chaplain at the local Veterans Administration Hospital and Lay Priest ordained by Bright Dawn, a Jodo Shinshu organization and involved with Midwest Buddhist Temple of Chicago.