I was reading this Haiku behind a tea bag:




I actually have to questions:

  1. Why is it considered a haiku although the second verse has actually 8 syllables? In my understanding, except in some cases.
  2. What is a good way to explain in English 春うらら? It is not in my dictionary and it seems to be a word expressing some sort of special feeling related to spring. I asked a couple of Japanese people and I get the overall idea but none of them seemed to be able to give a clear explanation.

Edit: answer to 1.

I think this pretty much answers question 1. Is this one of such cases? From wikipedia:



  • 1
    春うらら → ここにちょっと説明が weblio.jp/content/春うらら ... It is not in my dictionary 「春」と「うらら(か)」を切って調べてみたら・・・
    – Chocolate
    Jan 29 '18 at 5:07
  • 2
    @Chocolate 春うらら (AV女優) ? 笑
    – Tommy
    Jan 29 '18 at 5:10

実用日本語表現辞典 explains 春うらら as:

春うらら 春のうららかな様子。明るく朗らかで、の‌​‌​どかなさま。

明鏡国語辞典 explains うらら as:


and うららか as:


I think 春うらら is a word that describes... a sunny, clear, bright, mild, lovely, happy, and peaceful spring day.

I see that you've already found the answer to your first question. Yes, it's [字]{じ}[余]{あま}り.


To answer to 1, yes, you're right. It's an exception, "字余り." There're many haiku with extreme exceptions called "free-style haiku." Here's a famous one.

せきをしてもひとり ---尾崎 秀雄(Housai Ozaki)

I think it's no longer haiku, but it's haiku. According to Japanese wiki, when an author makes free-style haiku, the author has intention to make it free from fixed-style. The problem the short poem is either haiku or not depends on what auther intended to make. https://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/自由律俳句

And "うらら" has its original form, "うらうら." https://kotobank.jp/word/%E3%81%86%E3%82%89%E3%81%86%E3%82%89-441734

So, it could be translated into English like: "daintiness of spring"

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