Three line poem prompt
Choose a word from the dictionary at random then freewrite for five minutes. Take a break. Stretch or walk around then come back to what you have written. Underline the strongest words or expressions. Delete any unnecessary words – do you need for instance and, but, yet, so.
Extract the strongest words and expressions and create a new piece. How many lines do you have? If it’s three you have your poem, check again delete any unnecessary words. Consider if the words left behind sing together.
If not continue to extract again the strongest words and expressions until you have three lines that express one idea. Check again delete any unnecessary words. Consider if the words left behind sing together.
The three line poem is called a tercet, the term can also refer to poems with three line stanzas.
This site takes submissions of three line poems https://threelinepoetry.com/
The classic three line poem is the haiku. It’s a traditional Japanese form with three lines with seventeen syllables, written in a 5/7/5 syllable count. Though modern examples introduce variations. This is hotly contested but that’s another post.
Often focusing on images from nature, and usually makes reference to a season. It emphasises simplicity, intensity, and directness of expression. In addition the haiku tends to focus on a brief moment in time, juxtaposing two images, and creating a sudden sense of enlightenment.
From Matsuo Bashō, the most famous poet of the Edo period in Japan.
閑けさや 岩にしみいる 蝉の声
Shizukesa ya/ Iwa ni shimiiru/ Semi no koe
Penetrating the very rock,
A cicada’s voice.
Translated by Helen Craig Mccullough
See more examples here https://www.readpoetry.com/10-vivid-haikus-to-leave-you-breathless/
A blog post by Anne Enith Cooper contact me here
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