History:

Biku is a poetry form, called by Hadas a “poetic mechanism”, similar to a haiku, created by Eran Hadas in 2014 inspired by and in honor of Tanya Reinhart’s (linguist, activist and “one of Noam Chomsky’s favorite PHD students”) explanation that “each media item could (and should) be have a threefold reaction. We should first read it as it is, then read it in order to find whom it serves and how it affects us, and then we should write or react, creating our own text that stems from the discourse we just had.”

Structure:

  • a condensed poem, similar to a haiku
  • comprised of 3 short lines
  • two out of the three lines are either phonetically or visually identical, or both, but must have different meanings
  • “The first line reads at surface value, the second line is identical to the first but its meaning is shifted by contextualization, and the third line grounds the previous lines into a statement of sort.”
  • individual Bikus can be put together to create a Biku chain of sorts
  • Example by Hadas:

Read face
red face
turned white

also

Store chains
store chains
on shelves

  • Got an extension when “Thomas La Farge initially thought the name Biku referenced a bike; a two wheeled vehicle with a passenger. So he thought it could be the first and third lines that are the same. This enabled for a Biku to become also a Haiku…”

Source:

The horse’s mouth, Hadas’ original article on his blog, introducing the Biku: https://eranhadas.com/biku/