Inspired by Wordle, I wondered if it's possible to have a Wordle game that forms a haiku? The question is in two parts:

  • Is it possible to form a Haiku using only five letter English words (e.g. using words in the SOWPODS list)?
  • If so, what is the minimum number of five letter words required to do so?

As reflected in another question identifying the number of syllables in a given word depends on accent. I'd be inclined to say "where the number of syllables in a word is determined according to either a Standard American Accent or Standard British Accent".


2 Answers 2


A previous puzzling question strongly suggests that five letter words have at most three syllables.

So given the Haiku requirement of 5+7+5=17 syllables, it doesn't appear possible, as at least two words are required for each of five-syllable lines, leaving only two words (maximum six syllables) to form the seven-syllable line.

If you take liberties with Haiku form then you could split a word across two lines and get something that sorta works.

mafia opi-       (3+2=5)
-um usual edema    (1+3+3=7)
alarm media       (2+3=5)

Translation: Crime-family's drugs commonly produce swelling of the ankles. This concerned journalists.


So, after a bit of research. The lowest number of 5-letter words required to make a haiku is


How come?

Well, the maximum number of syllables in a 5-letter word is 4 (iouea) Given haikus follow a 5 - 7 - 5 pattern, using 2 words for the first 5 syllables, 2 others (4 syllables and 3) for the next 7, and 2 others for the final 5 syllables.
Which makes it just small enough to fit in a Wordle game!


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