NaPoWriMo 2021 Day 20

The prompt for the day was to write a sijo. This is a traditional Korean poetic form. Like the haiku, it has three lines, but the lines are much longer. Typically, they are 14-16 syllables, and optimally each line will consist of two parts – like two sentences, or a sentence of two clauses divided by a comma.

In terms of overall structure, a sijo functions like an abbreviated sonnet, in that the first line sets up an inquiry or discussion, the second line continues the discussion, and the third line resolves it with a “twist” or surprise.

For more on the sijo, check out the primer here and a long list of examples in English, here.


The startling blue sky woke me from my slumber; I begged for sleep.
The old dreams returned at dawn, stifling the sun with their darkness.
Eyes open, the daylight blinds me with reality; you are gone.

-a draft poem by Carla Jeanne Picklo Jordan

Let me know what you think in the comments below.

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