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Francesco Palladino’s Flat Sea

#Haiku Happenings #8: Nicholas Klacsanzky presents and comments on Francesco Palladino ‘s haiku “flat sea — …”!

Haiku Commentary

flat sea
the sail swollen
with light

© Francesco Palladino (Italy)

What I enjoy most about this haiku is the mixture of serenity and awe one feels while reading it.  With the first line, we have a calm sea (emphasized by the dash). Seeing a calm sea, or a flat sea, is one of the most tranquil things to witness. It puts us into an instant state of meditation.

With the second line, we get a contrast with a sail of a ship being swollen. It is a great use of the word “swollen” and provides alliteration, making the haiku more musical (having a sense of karumi or lightness as well). In addition, the “l” sounds coursing through the haiku make this poem cadenced, much like how a ship goes through the sea. In terms of sound and construction, the poem could be said to illustrate the principle of

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