Haiku makes everything awesome

Mola mola

When I was in grad school at Humboldt State, one of the assignments I gave my ichthyology students was to write a haiku poem in which the only requirements were that it had to follow the 5-7-5 phrasing standard, and had to include the scientific name of the ocean sunfish, Mola mola, once (and only once). The responses BLEW. MY. MIND.

This is was an assignment for undergraduates. I hate to even say this, but if you’re an educator, you’ll probably know that that is basically code for, “Don’t expect a whole lot.”

And the submissions were, frankly, publishable, which is code for really fricking good!! I’ll show the top three.

Ready to nerd out with some fish biology poetry?

Number three:

“Oh, Mola mola,

bobbing around with no tail.

What a funny fish.”

Heather Ambrose

Number two:

“Mola mola looks

like it survived a run-in

with a propeller.”

Joshua Bunker

And my top pick! SO awesome because not only does it do the whole haiku thing in a way I found especially delicious, but it throws back to an old fisherman’s lore about the unluckiness of ocean sunfish:

“Bad Mola mola.

Brought one aboard my trawler.

And now it’s sinking.”

Michael Mettee

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