Poetry Friday – Found Haikus

It’s Friday! And you know what that means: Poetry! Want to know more about Poetry Friday? Click this link right here. And be sure to check out Reading to the Core to see this week’s round up of wonderful poetry related posts, blogs and goodness. 


Hello and Happy Poetry Friday! I head off to the Florida Regional SCBWI Conference in Miami today. Are there any other Poetry Friday members attending? It is always so much fun and helps recharge my creativity. It is also nice to have a weekend away to just myself and I am grateful for it.

Thank you to all those who have sent me postcards thus far! I will include photos in a future post, but I wanted to let you know I received them and I am loving them!

Last week I said that I would be revisiting some of Michelle Barnes’ DMC Challenges. This week I tackled Linda Mitchell’s challenge to create a “found haiku”. This exercise was seriously the most fun that I have had writing in awhile. It was so awesome both creatively and as a method to fuel my love of learning new things.

I started by googling bizarre science articles and that venture sure didn’t disappoint. My first “found haiku” is about Clathrus archeri, or Devil’s Fingers Fungus. Not only is this fungus epically creepy looking, but it also smells like death to attract flies to spread its spores.

frightening fungus
black slime on its tentacles
fingers beckoning

© Rebecca Herzog 2020

I found an equally bizarre article about how cockroaches karate kick parasitic wasps. This one was magnificently macabre. The wasp first stings the roach to paralyze it. Then it stings it in the brain, climbs on its back and uses the roach’s antennae to drive to its nest. And scientists have slow-mo footage of how the cockroaches use a special kicking technique to stop from becoming zombified.

This was so cool to read and it was actually really hard to just stick with the “found haiku” on this one. I will definitely be revisiting this article for a future poem or two.


  1. emerald jewel wasp
    talk about a gruesome fate
    zombification


  2. parasitic wasps
    a cockroach’s only hope
    a kick in the head

    © Rebecca Herzog 2020

18 thoughts on “Poetry Friday – Found Haikus

  1. I love these! I once encountered pink slime mold on the mulch in my yard that looked like bright pink candies. I’d never seen this before, nor have I ever seen anything like your frightening fungus. Great picture and poem.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have never seen pink slime mold. I will have to go and look up some photos. there are some really fascinating things out there.

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  2. I just read an article someone posted about slime mold, which I have found in our forests. I hope I never see your ‘frightening fungus/tentacles beckoning’, Becky. At least it’s bright red, easy to notice! Love the research you did. It seems that slo-mo photography really aids science.

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    1. Yes! It is incredible how much technology is helping science along. I can’t wait to see all the amazing discoveries that will come along.

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  3. Whoa! These are fantastic. Who knew such creepy things existed to learn about? If you’re looking for more bizarre, slightly creepy things to learn about, check out phage–they are tiny viruses that kill specific bacteria by eating/exploding them from the inside out.

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  4. You have the beginning of a pretty disGUSTing collection here! Look out, middle schoolers love that stuff. How fun to see you having fun with this. I played with found haiku this week too. I take it to students in a lesson soon. Stay tuned!

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  5. Parasitic wasps seriously creep me out. I used to keep Madagascar Hissing Cockroaches as classroom pets, so I’m pretty okay with roaches (contained in an aquarium, mind you). I just HAD to go watch that karate footage. Even the part where the roach gets zombified is amazing. It puts up such a fight. But those kicks. Amazing! Thanks for the science-kus!!

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    1. Yes. It is incredible. I keep roaches right now-partly as pets, partly as food for my reptiles. They don’t give me the creeps nearly as much as earth worms or centipedes.

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  6. Rebecca: Thanks for showcasing this haiku form again (after Linda M)… I needed another boot in this direction, and now I think I will try it. But… ooofff! the images you paint! The kids will love them, I think I will look for something a little more… what should I say… beautiful? Placid? Boring? Hahaha. Thanks again.

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