In literature / hidden haikus I have found / unexpectedly

February 22, 2011 § 5 Comments

Haiku finder is a simple yet impressive little web app that discovers hidden haiku patterns in any text you paste into its search box. I discovered it on BuzzFeed and I was soon copy-pasting a great part of Project Gutenberg on that clever little page. Here are some of my finds (granted, most of them are translations in english, but still):

Kafka’s Metamorphosis:

“Gregor!” shouted his
sister, glowering at him
and shaking her fist.

Dostoyevsky’s Crime and Punishment:

Something was happening
to him entirely new,
sudden and unknown

Checkov’s Uncle Vanya:

I can still feel his
voice vibrating in the air;
it caresses me.

Shakespeare’s Alls Well That Ends Well:

The web of our life
is of a mingled yarn, good
and ill together.

Austen’s Pride and Prejudice:

If your feelings are
still what they were last April,
tell me so at once

Dickens’ Great Expectations:

“You ridiculous
boy,” said Estella, “will you
never take warning?”

cummings’ The Enormous Room:

It was a fine place,
a large city to be sure.
But always changing.

What’s impressive is how well these little haikus really summarize the whole essence of the works they were inconspicuously hiding in. What else is impressive is how haikus seem inherent in the rhythm of some authors’ writing: Austen and e.e.cummings yield up large numbers of haikus. Other authors have scarce or no haikus at all.

I’ll now go and search for haikus in the new iTunes terms and conditions.

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