"Haiku did NOT start as tanka! hokku was the opening verse of a renga which later Masaoka Shiki (1867-1902 …Issa’s pupil and the last of the 4 great masters) decided should be a ‘stand alone’ verse which he named haiku.Now known as modern haiku or gendai haiku.
Tanka originated from waka!
Without getting too involved in the 5,7,5 argument i must say that it is
generally accepted that 12-14 English syllables is about the equivalent
of Japanese onji/morae.
Haiku in English has only been around for about 100 years,it was
Blythe who decided that to write haiku in English it should be 5,7,5
The Japanese couldn’t understand why there were so many words!
This is not to say 5,7,5 (17 syllables) in English is incorrect,just
that it is wrong to think it must only be that…no-ones fault,it’s the
way everyone was taught when English haiku became westernised…
Blythe tried to work a way around simulating Japanese haiku to fit into
English and 5,7,5 English syllables is what he came up with.
Most of the 5,7,5 ‘supposed’ English haiku you see online now is not
haiku just because it conforms to the syllable count… and so this myth
More importantly haiku should have kigo(seasonal word or
reference),kireji(cutting word or symbol) and should show not tell…i.e.
don’t explain the haiku like a painting or statement,use senses etc. to
involve the reader in his/her interpretation of the haiku…a haiku is not
complete until another reader has read and connected with it".
This is a hokku/haiku;
our eggshell minds…
moon on water
Brendon Kent - member of the British Haiku Society
Haiku Reality Vol.12 No.20 Summer 2015