Olympic Highlights Haiku

As the great man once sang: “And now, the end is near”. The end of the Olympics that is of course. I have been completely caught up in the Olympic frenzy, and will be watching every second of the London 2012 closing ceremony tonight. Watching with a heavy heart, it’s always sad to say goodbye to something that has been such a happy part of one’s life.

Today in my blog I am going to pay tribute to my home countries Olympics in a time honoured fashion: the haiku. Haiku is a short form of poetry that originated in Japan. It dates from the 17th Century when it was known as Hokku and the undisputed master of the form was Basho. A traditional haiku consists of 17 ‘on’ in three phrases of 5,7 and 5 on each. On are sound units but not necessarily what the English language calls syllables. Nevertheless, for simplicities sake English haiku are usually created in three lines of 5,7 and 5 syllables so I will follow that standard. Haiku often consist of a juxtaposition and an allusion to nature.

So now that you are all clued up on haiku I am going to create three haiku to represent my feelings towards three personal highlights of these great Olympic games. I am more experienced as a children’s novelist of course (my novel ‘Tortoise Soup’ is attracting real interest from agents and publishers so hopefully I will have some more concrete news for you soon), but while I may not reach the heights of Basho I hope that you may find them entertaining!


My first highlight involves my own visit to the Olympic park last Sunday. I was lucky enough to have a ticket to see the women’s basketball and just soaking in the atmosphere around the Olympic Park was incredible. I heard so many languages and saw so many flags but the one unifying factor was the broad smiles on everyone’s face. Here is haiku number one:

Green grass grows slowly

Under the feet of nations

Who walk with joy here.


My second highlight was seeing local hero Jessica Ennis win a gold medal in the Olympic Heptathlon. As a native of South Yorkshire myself, I have seen how her victory has thrilled a whole county, and the wider country as well. When she crossed the line to win the final event her broad grin was unstoppably infectious. It was as if little Jess from Sheffield had won the gold for each and every one of us. Here is haiku number two:

Happy is her face

As beauty radiates through

And is borne in air.


My final highlight came last night. I was in a local drinking hole watching Mo Farah run the 5000 metres. He had already won the 10000 metres, could he win two Olympic golds for Great Britain? He ran the perfect race and nobody was able to pass him. The pub was in raptures shouting ‘Go on Mo!’ and then cheering as he took yet another gold. He is such an unassuming man, so modest for such a great talent. And of course, he came to Britain as a child refugee – he has repaid us as a nation a thousand times over. The greatest legacy is how the country as a whole has embraced him, he has become above all the quintessential British hero. Here is haiku number three:

Legs ache, sinews strain

But the mind is strong unbowed

The gold sun runs home.

I hope that you have enjoyed my haiku’s as much as I have enjoyed the Olympics. Writing is the greatest gift of all, it allows you to express your feelings and share them with the world. Thank you for allowing me to express my Olympic joy. I’m sure that you have personal highlights of your own – please leave a comment and tell me about them; maybe you will write your very own haiku?


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Writing Jobs
    Aug 12, 2012 @ 12:00:24

    Great post today. Thanks so much for sharing. I enjoy reading your blog very much!

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  2. Ariella
    Aug 19, 2012 @ 15:23:10

    Great haiku’s Nick. I enjoy writing them with my four children, as I homeschool. The kids always inspire me with the beautiful poetry they create.
    English is such fun and I’m really quite passionate about passing on my love of our language and literature to the children.

    The Olympics was truly magnificent and I thoroughly enjoyed it all. Great Britain really is great right now!


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