Ku Koo

Rio Grande high*
Brontosaurus in the clouds
Redish mountains sigh

*I don’t write Haiku. I prefer “in the style of Haiku” or 575 or “Spunku” or “Timku” as some people have suggested because, in my personal opinion, since English is not a monosyllabic language, it creates issues for Haiku. The above poem is a good example: most English speakers pronounce “Grande” as “Grand” (one syllable) so the first line only has four syllables when “Grande” is pronounced as “Grand”. Therefore, an “is” would be needed as in “Rio Grande is high” to have five syllables in the first line. However, in Spanish “Grande” is pronounced “Grandae” making it two syllables. The first line has five syllables if “Grande” is pronounced as it is in Spanish (that’s how I pronounce it). Grande would have two syllables pronounced in Old English, also.

If the first line were “Rio Grande is high” (five syllables by the standard English pronunciation, six syllables in Spanish) the line is more descriptive of the water level in the Rio Grande when the photo was taken. However, by leaving out the verb in the first line, more ambiguity is introduced in the first line.

Three-thirty AM
You know where Jupiter is
Shining through the clouds



Moon behind clouds

62 thoughts on “Ku Koo

  1. Tim, absolutely beautiful photos. You capture the best! Haiku was one of my favorite writing styles. However, I could never get them right. Sounds as if you’ve mastered the art. 📚🎶 Christine

    • I can count syllables, but I am no master. If we could read Haiku in Japanese, I think we would have a completely different understanding of the art form. Thanks, Christine. BTW how’s your sequel coming?

      • You are so right about Haiku in Japanese. Even the English translation is better. Thanks for asking about the sequel. I have 2 chapters in draft. And the Snyder’s Beat sheet filled out. It’s a whole new story 7-10 years ahead. Change is inevitable. Elizabeth has to deal with her marriage, a kid, her music, and letting go of things that happen—Murphy’s Law. There’s more about the 60’s times and how they impact her life. 📚🎶 Christine

  2. The skies down there are an explosion of color and form. I like the Spunku/Timku. 🙂

    This morning we had the most unusual and beautiful “rivers” of cloud streaming southwest to northeast. Two beautiful days, but hot weather coming back.

    • Thanks, Lavinia. It’s still in the 90s during the day 60s at night. We’ve had a lot of thin cloud cover at night that’s keeping the temperatures up and making it difficult to photograph the planets. Saturn is in opposition with the sun shining on it. It should be very bright and clear when there are no clouds covering it.

  3. Whatever the style is, I like your writing and the Brontosaurus is awesome Timothy.
    I don’t know why but clouds like at your place we rarely have.
    Enjoy the weekend and many greets.

  4. Beautiful pics and ku’s. I love your explanation of the issue with the 575 traditional haiku. There’s much controversy but we don’t need to stay away from haiku because we speak English and you’ve summed it up.

  5. I do seethe brontosaurus…
    And I agree with you on the pronunciation of the Rio Grande. I pronounce it Grandae…
    And your Timku is fabulous!
    Have a great weekend!

    • Thanks, Nancy. Those who has lived in the southwest for even a little time start to figure out that if there are two words that are originally Spanish, both words use the Spanish pronunciation. Rio Grande, works with either pronunciation of grand. However, when it comes to something like Casa Grande, “Casa Grand” simply does not work. It would have to be “Grand Casa” in English to make sense, but then “Grandae Casa” makes little sense in Spanish.

  6. These skyscapes are stunning. Too hard to pick a favorite. I’ve seen a lot written wrangling about haiku in the past few years. Attempting to enforce the conventions of poetic form used in a language fundamentally different from English doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me. I’ve recently started writing haiku about experiences in nature that seem best-expressed in the 5-7-5 form. If I can’t make the syllabic count work, then haiku wasn’t the right form to give voice to that experience, and I switch to something else.

    • That’s a good way to look at it. When one has a phrasing that works well, but how a word is pronunced can change the count shouldn’t make one not use the form. I love the 575 form and one can express a lot in 17 odd syllables using the form. But since pronunciations vary I prefer not to call the 575 poems I write Haiku. Thanks, Liz.

  7. I also pronounce Grande with two syllables and I agree with you about the whole haiku thing. And we should find a western name for it as the haiku is Japanese.
    Now, that said, Wonderful Timku! And those images are outstanding.
    I particularly love the last moon shot. The effect of the clouds make it look like it’s under water!

    • A watery moon. Nice wy of looking at it. Maybe we could call it “Loku” for English 575 poems. Close to Loki, and as we know Loki is crazy. I saw that in numerology Loku invokes generosity, open-mindedness and impulsivity. Perfect!

      • Glad you agree. I like it! Loku. And I love that it invokes generosity, open-mindedness and impulsivity – all words that I like to think an apply to moi 😉

  8. I have no gift for poetry of any kind. Like reading music — both have too much math for me. Although this certainly is lovely. So are the cloud-scapes, as always. I even saw the brontosaurus! Hugs on the wing.

    • I can’t read music very well. I can’t keep track of the notes. I think you could do free-form poetry. You write lyrics that have meter. Thanks, Teagan.

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