“About American Haiku & Senryu”

These poems are haiku or senryu in a broad sense. They come close to the definition given by the Haiku Society America,

Haiku: a poem recording the essence of a moment keen perceived, in which nature is linked to human nature. Usually a haiku in English is written in three unrhymed lines of seventeen or fewer syllables.

Here is another explaination by Jack Keroauc:

The American Haiku is not exactly the Japanese Haiku. The Japanese Haiku is strictly disciplined to seventeen syllables but since the language structure is different I don’t think American Haikus (short three-line poems intended to be completely packed with Void of Whole) should worry about syllables because American speech is something again…bursting to pop. Above all, a Haiku must be very simple and free of all poetic trickery and make a little picture and yet be as airy and graceful as a Vivaldi Pastorella.” Jack Kerouac

Free Verse Haiku had its begining at the turn of the century in Japa. A leading haiku reformist Ogiwara Seisensui[6]. Seisensui (1884-1976) could be regarded as the originator of the free-form haiku movement, though fellow writers Masaoka Shiki and Kawahigashi Hekigoto also deserve recognition.[7] Writers following the early-twentieth century movement known as free-form or free-style haiku (shinkeikō) composed haiku lacking both the traditional 5-7-5 syllabic rule and the requisite seasonal word (kigo).

Let the scholars debate. I will let you be the judge”

“Your poems are like lessons in loving.
Perhaps they ought to be required for all would be ‘lovers’”

“in love or loving
if you are not
then what fools your words make of us all
jealous fools we be
of this love

“A haiku must be very simple and free of all poetic trickery and make a little picture and yet be as airy and graceful as a Vivaldi pastorale”, wrote Jack Kerouac and that is exactly what c.a. leibow accomplishes with his refreshingly simple and accessible poems that jog the imagination. His poems are simple, sweet, and accomplish exactly what Kerouac theorized-paint a tiny picture in one’s psyche.”

Hattie MacLeod, City Weekly, Salt Lake City


“Your work leaves me breathless, truly.”

                                                             Nicole Hyde

for more information on haiku and the debate about the different variation follow this link

Is it or ain’t it a haiku?

Interview with Christopher Leibow


6 thoughts on ““About American Haiku & Senryu”

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