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from Wednesday after class until Monday at noon.


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An Ars Poetica: The Ars Fru-topia Haiku Series


Join us  starting Wednesday, July 28th 5pm through October on zoom for a weekly half hour practice session.

We will write haiku & haiku variations about fruit. There is a long list of fruit types at the end of this post to stimulate your thinking.

Do a little research on your fruit first. Write a very rough draft then tweak & play with the syllables.

Contest: Winners announced Wednesdays will be featured & published on this blog

and in Andre’s newsletter with a weekly fruit prize.

Four weekly winners announced for August (haiku),

four for September( linked haiku) 

and four winners announced in October (Haibun)



Sample American Haiku by Sally Naylor



Lychee sounds more like                                5

a plumber’s problem than a                          7

jellied fruit delight.                                          5




Give voice happily —                                      5

both Brits & Amuricans:                               7

LI-chee or LE-chee!                                       5



Translated Haiku Example:                  syllables not exact


Do not worry

spiders, I keep house




Haiku Defined: Academy of American Poets

A traditional Japanese haiku is a three-line poem with seventeen syllables, written in a 5/7/5 syllable count. Often focusing on images from nature, haiku emphasizes simplicity, intensity, and directness of expression.

History of the Haiku Form

Haiku began in thirteenth-century Japan as the opening phrase of renga, an oral poem, generally a hundred stanzas long, which was also composed syllabically. The much shorter haiku broke away from renga in the sixteenth century and was mastered a century later by Matsuo Basho, who wrote this classic haiku:


An old pond!
A frog jumps in—
the sound of water.


As the form has evolved, many of its regular traits—including its famous syllabic pattern—have been routinely broken. However, the philosophy of haiku has been preserved: the focus on a brief moment in time; a use of provocative, colorful images; an ability to be read in one breath; and a sense of sudden enlightenment.


                      WRITER’S CATAPULT HAIKU RULES

  1. Only three lines but a title is ok, you decide.
  2. Write in a  5/7/5 syllable pattern.
  3. Mention nature (fruit)
  4. Be in the moment. Convey a brief sensation/experience/insight!
  5. Employ imagery ( sights, tastes, smells, feelings, sounds)
  6. Avoid chopped prose: a series of fragments. Attempt one smooth sound.   


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Today I pass the time reading
a favorite haiku,
saying the few words over and over.

It feels like eating
the same small, perfect grape
again and again.

I walk through the house reciting it
and leave its letters falling

through the air of every room.

I stand by the big silence of the piano and say it.
I say it in front of a painting of the sea.
I tap out its rhythm on an empty shelf.

I listen to myself saying it,
then I say it without listening,
then I hear it without saying it.

And when the dog looks up at me,
I kneel down on the floor
and whisper it into each of his long white ears.

It’s the one about the one-ton temple bell
with the moth sleeping on its surface,

and every time I say it, I feel the excruciating
pressure of the moth
on the surface of the iron bell.

When I say it at the window,
the bell is the world
and I am the moth resting there.

When I say it at the mirror,
I am the heavy bell
and the moth is life with its papery wings.

And later, when I say it to you in the dark,
you are the bell,
and I am the tongue of the bell, ringing you,

and the moth has flown
from its line
and moves like a hinge in the air above our bed.

—  Billy Collins (US Poet Laureate)




Prickly Pear Fruit

Kahlo was interested in the symbolism of plants, as seen in Tunas (Still Life with Prickly Pear Fruit), 1938 (Credit: Private collection/ Courtesy Sotheby's Mexico City)




The light of a candle

is transferred to another candle—

spring twilight.



Tonight in this town

where I was born, my only

friends are the crickets.



Could they be hymns?

Frogs are chanting

in the temple well.



One after the other

croak the frogs –

a poetry contest.



A cicada shell

it sang itself

utterly away


 Send submissions to




Two haiku from an American pianist



i stroke piano’s

eighty eight mouths. each one sings

hot colors of joy.



rain, flower, sea, wind

map my dark horizon. i

inhale earth’s songbook


–Tyehimba Jess



Kahlo included the Mexican flag and the dove as motifs in her later work, such as Still Life (Long Live Life), 1953-54 (Credit: Rafael Doniz/ Banco de Mexico/ VG Bild-Kunst)





At Morikami,

hanging with grey, not quite dead

yet, literati.


what we all yearn to know is


Master Basho, do

you still tout bonsai & fruit

fly in 5-7-5?



A local sage sits

beneath pearl baseball cap – all

Cantonese moon smiles,


jangles jade bracelets,

pulses Hong Kong “hellos,” grace

shining from a plaid shirt,


adrift in private lotus clouds.

Yet I, order Red Bear Soup, heavy

with Teddy guilt, trying not to judge


but find Bear a typo for Bean.

Smiles return as orchid petals

curl lightly in canticles of breeze.

–Sally Naylor



Birds Punctuate the Days


the nuthatch inserts itself
between feeder and pole

two mallards drifting
one dunks for a snail

a mourning dove
lifts off

a red-eyed vireo catches
the crane fly midair

a down feather
bobs between waves

exclamation point
wren on the railing
takes notice

mergansers paddle toward
morning trout swirl

question mark
the length of silence
after a loon’s call


–Joyce Clement



Annona has pits,

smells of strawberry-apple.

Bananas do not.                                                love the unexpected, the irony


Watermelon red

dribble between my fingers,                            dribbles

quenching off my thirst.                                 AWK-quenches my great thirst


Eating apples with

no teeth could be challenging.                      can            love the humor

Opt for applesauce.                                      by Tsila


Ugli Fruit for Sure                                        title works: pithy

Yellow lumpiness                                          great phrases but choppy/frags
Rastafarian tango
Potpourri of zest


O’ Lumpy Ugli Fruit                                  still a frag

A sweet yet bitter                                     Relish the zing of
Rastafarian tango,                                    Rastafarian tangos:      who’s = whose
who’s zing I relish.                                   so bitter, so sweet.             By Di



A rose red prickly                                                rose-red

pear, sweet like lovers, must be

handled with great care.                                                                  by Romi



Magic seed to treat                                                     lovely Marni but no fruit name
Each develops quite unique                                       choppy, try for one smooth breath
Whoa! Summer-y sweet.                                            like the word you created  by Marni


Mamey Sapote!                                                        interesting title

Like sweet potato                                                   frags
Soft to open, juicy to eat                                         Choppy. Add punctuation. Great start!!
With each bite, I smile                                              by Bianca


Nothing like mango.                                   fun concept, intrigues me, which half stolen?
But it stole half of its name:
my favourite thief!                                        added punctuation & you check spelling By Meisha


Look! A huge potato!                            too many!!! delete 2 but great fun & mystery
Why is it in the fruit aisle?                   a bit choppy
Tastes like pumpkin pie!                      by Nona

A Coral Springs neighborhood collaborative by Addison & Madelynn, aged nine & ten

I can’t wait to eat them

growing around the city

red, juicy, sweet cherries.                 Surinam???




Winner: Romi

Runner-Up: Nona

Honorable Mentions:

Tsila & Meisha & Bianca & Di & Marni


Young Honorable Mentions:

Addison & Madelynn





1/Submit one haiku per week per person to

2/Use a peer editor to help you revise &/or proofread. (End of class)

3/Pick an exotic fruit from the list below.

4/Do some research.  Come next week with five facts & educate us!









comes down the stairs

on Hannukah and Christmas

grabbing his glad toys.


Sleepy boy stands in

his crib — waiting for me — then

we laugh together.


Sugar monster, he

eats tarts, candy corn, Kit-Kats.

Full on Halloween.


Diving, dipping, Jake

dances a ghost’s double delight.



Sweet as candy skies,

he plays like messy boys.

Pick-up your Lego!


These six haiku say

to my little goofy guy

I love you brother.

–Nathan Naylor




after Gwendolyn Brooks

No matter the pull toward brink. No

matter the florid, deep sleep awaits.

There is a time for everything. Look,

just this morning a vulture

nodded his red, grizzled head at me,

and I looked at him, admiring

the sickle of his beak.

Then the wind kicked up, and,

after arranging that good suit of feathers

he up and took off.

Just like that. And to boot,

there are, on this planet alone, something like two

million naturally occurring sweet things,

some with names so generous as to kick

the steel from my knees: agave, persimmon,

stick ball, the purple okra I bought for two bucks

at the market. Think of that. The long night,

the skeleton in the mirror, the man behind me

on the bus taking notes, yeah, yeah.

But look; my niece is running through a field

calling my name. My neighbor sings like an angel

and at the end of my block is a basketball court.

I remember. My color’s green. I’m spring.


for Walter Aikens

–Ross Gay

List of fruits

From Simple English Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Fruits on this list are defined as the word is used in everyday speech. It does not include vegetables, whatever their origin.

The following items are fruits, according to the scientific definition, but are sometimes considered to be vegetables: