A Word About Chagallian Loku

Some detail about what I believe to be an original form,  rooted in more traditional form.  I call the form Loku, an obvious play on the word haiku, with a little bit of “loco” thrown in.

Loku is intended to be 17 haiku, a total of 289 syllables, with 1 additional syllable thrown in, at any point in the Loku, as a symbolic gesture to mar the otherwise standard form.

The poet should think of the Loku as 3 sections, the first 5 haiku long, the middle section 7 haiku, and the last again 5 haiku long. The haiku to the Loku form is as syllables are to the haiku.

There are 2 volta in the form, separating the sections, similar in purpose to the 1 volta found in a sonnet. These are the turning points, at the start of haiku 6 and 13.

The 3 sections take shape on the page as (8) four-line stanzas, and a final two-line couplet. The four-line stanzas are made of (2) haiku, in 5/12/12/5 syllable-pattern. The final couplet is a concluding play on a haiku in the form 5/12.

(Again, somewhere in the sections is an errant syllable, for the reason mentioned earlier – a gesture of humility and out of reverence for that which is Perfect; it may or may not be a third volta, and may or may not coincide with one of the 2 intended volta).

Visually the volta mentioned above will occur midway in the 3rd and 7th stanza.

When I construct Loku, I write them as 17 haiku and then form them, rather than try to write stanza of 5/12/12/5. This helps to retain the haiku spirit of the verse.

For Morgana Le Fay
The Alpha’s Bet
for poems in the Loku form.

A shout out to wordcoaster (http://wordcoaster.wordpress.com/), who has been a significant voice in the conversation to evolve this form.  Search for Loku at that site for more.

Should any of you attempt the form, I – and I’d think wordcoaster – would very much enjoy reading your work, so please let us know.

P.S. Should you know this form to already exist, please let me know and I will retract any thoughts of originality here.

© Carlos Chagall, 2013