EU’s president in praise of haiku


Beneath the impassive breast of the new president of the European council, Herman van Rompuy, must beat a previously undetected sense of humour. Last week he published a whole book of poetry, in itself a surprise. Most remarkably, his passion is for a form of Japanese verse that is the bureaucratic equivalent of the limerick. The haiku is arguably the shortest of poetic forms, but it is claimed to be the one with the most rules:

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