Haiku help :-)

Hi all, I recently developed a crush for one of my friends, and today I decided to transfer my feelings into a poem and, since I am learning Japanese, I thought, why not haiku. It would be short, emotional, and easy to compose. Well, it wasn’t easy at all. Here it is:

秋の熱 (aki no netsu)
千尋地底湖 (senjin chiteiko)
火溺れて (hi oborete)

What I tried to say was something as close to:

Autumn ambers
Bottomless blue
Drowning in fire

The problem I had was the word “blue” which I wanted to be as close with meaning to “water”. 水色 (mizuiro) would be perfect but it had too many syllables and I wanted to keep 5-7-5 order so I went with an “underground lake” which is poetic as well.

I would be grateful if anyone could check if that haiku makes sense and says what it should. Also if you have any suggestions on how to improve it I would love to hear them. :slight_smile:

Let your dreams take flight in the new year!

PS. Second verse update: 深い水色 (fukai mizuiro) thanks to @seanblue


If I’m not mistaken (based on your romanization in parentheses) the second line has 8 mora, not 7. Can’t really help beyond that though!


Oh, this haiku minimalism is killing me, thanks. :slightly_smiling_face:

Yeah, it seems even harder using mora in Japanese than using syllables in English.

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this is probably a hot take so dont quote me here but
Every line of your haiku seems to talk about something slightly different in respect to your feelings for your crush. i read some of the more famous haikus and every one of their lines seem to be in reference to the same idea. Your haiku seems to me like its talking about 3 different aspects of your emotions, whereas something ‘more traditional’ would probably refer to just one aspect or just describe the person as a whole.


琥珀の秋(こはくのあき/kohaku no aki)- amber-like autumn
底無しの青藍(そこなしのせいらん/sokonashi no seiran)- bottomless blue (or indigo)
火に沈める(ひにしずめる/hi ni shizumeru)- submerge in fire

Personally, I think these kanji description fits what you’re trying to say a little better.
I chose 沈める instead of 溺れる to stay “alive”, but that’s personal choice.
Fun. ^_*

Yes, I agree that it might seem that way. I think haiku is such a small format that it might miss the context sometimes. I can explain myself thou. My crush has fiery red hair and deep blue eyes. So the first verse speaks about the ember of her hair and the second one about her eyes. The third one combines the two. I am sure you get the drift. :slight_smile:

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I don’t think it comprises to 5-7-5 traditional haiku format, however I love the first verse. Is 沈める appropriate for living beings (I thought it is like “sinking” in terms of ships for example)?

Sinking… by any bodily forms… I suppose…
溺れる dealing with “death”, this I’m positive.
Emotionally speaking, if you’re drowning in someone’s bottomless blue eyes, you’re most likely wanted to be embraced by such blue not choked by it. That’s just my interpretation, though.

What I want and what actually happens…

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No idea on that, but 沈める is transitive, so probably doesn’t make sense here. Its definition is literally:


So to make something sink. (It can apparently also mean to put someone into an undesirable situation, so the word doesn’t necessarily have a positive connotation anyway.)

Even if you switch it to 沈む (which is the intransitive version), I’m not sure that it can be used in the way you want based on your original version. It sounds like literal sinking as in going down below something else. None of the more abstract meanings seem like what you want either.

I also just looked up 溺れる, and besides the basic definition (drowning in water) it means:


So having to do with losing oneself in something. Is that what you were going for?

I agree, 溺れる seems to reflect my feelings much better :+1: :blush:

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