Home
Home

 

 

 

The Genuine Haiku Generator - a bit of background

The title "100 Trillion Haiku" is actually an understatement. Using an ingenious JavaScript application, this page automatically generates about 7.62e+39 different Haiku poems, each readable, each thought-provoking in its own right. Were you to read one poem every 15 seconds, 36,270,916,500,128,400,000,000,000,000 millennia could pass before all the possibilities were exhausted.

The Genuine Haiku Generator creates evocative, meaningful verse using completely random combinations of individual words. Words follow one another according to general grammatical principles, tempered with a touch of poetic license.

Admittedly, these are not good haiku, in the strict sense of the word (or even in a loose sense). The only adherence to traditional haiku forms comes in the line and syllable structure; obviously, there are far too many modifiers and incompatible images floating around for these cybercreations to constitute "genuine haiku" (despite the title of this site).

What this application does produce, I think, is the occasional miracle of happenstance.

Click "New Haiku" and the Haiku Generator will create a new poem. But be careful! When you create a new haiku, the previous one vanishes, possibly not to reappear while this universe is still in existence.

Use the Floating Haiku link to create a small, floating haiku window that will grace your desktop with a new haiku every 30 seconds.

Why "Genuine"?

There are plenty of so-called "Haiku Generators" out there on the big blue web; most, though, either slop together random words with no attention paid to rules of grammar, creating endless waves of gibberish; or simply collect prepackaged groups of finished five- and seven-syllable lines; or worse still, simply fill in a few blanks in a group of predefined structures, simple noun and adjectival substitution. That gets boring pretty fast, in my opinion.

This haiku generator is genuine because anything can happen, within certain carefully defined constraints. There are no predefined sentence structures; no prepackaged lines. The words themselves decide which type of word will follow, as randomly as possible, while still maintaining some semblance of adherence to grammar and readability. This makes each haiku a unique creation. Moreover, the base vocabulary has been selected to allow for the creation of poems which present natural and humanistic themes, thus bringing these odd bits of random verse even closer to genuine haiku (although still a ways away from the real thing, as I would be the first to admit).

Click here to return to the Genuine Haiku Generator.