The haiku is a poem style with a very brief form - 17 syllables arranged in lines of five, seven, and five syllables. A characteristic of the haiku was rapid and impromptu composition.

The haiku was perfected to its highest quality by Matsuo Basho. His haiku often suggests, by means of the few essential elements he presents, the whole world from which they have been extracted. It almost feels as if the reader must participate in the creation of the poem.

Haiku's by Basho :

Breakfast enjoyed
in the fine company of
morning glories

At the ancient pond
a frog plunges into
the sound of water

Behind the Ise Shrine
unseen, hidden by the fence,
Buddha enters nirwana

not to think of yourself
as someone who did not count
Festival of the Souls

don't imitate me
we are not two halves
of a muskmelon

drinking morning tea
the monk is peaceful
the chrysanthemum blooms

in the cow shed
mosquito's voice darkens
lingering heat

"I'm tired of kids."
for the person who says this
there are no flowers

Clouds appear
and bring to men a chance to rest
from looking at the moon


Sick on my journey,
only my dreams will wander
these desolate fields