Haiku of solitude

I hope everyone’s keeping their 2m distance from anyone you’re not self-isolating with … See the NZ Government’s Covid-19 information here.

through binoculars
a woman looking at me
through binoculars

Mykel Board
from The Haiku Anthology (1999)

life alone
licking
the ladle

Owen Bullock
from The Heron’s Nest (2010)

a vacant playground
the drinking fountain
runs and runs

Rich Heller
from Modern Haiku (2019)

Despite all the stresses and anxieties – and for many this virus will be the worst thing that could happen, even if they don’t catch it – I hope there will be the odd moment when we all find a simple pleasure. 

a handstand
just to see if I can
honeysuckle

Susan Antolin
from The Wonder Code (2017)

sleeping late
wild lavender pressed
against the window

Ron C Moss
from Broken Starfish (2019)

For the first few days, at least, there has been quite a lot of home improvement work going on in my neighbourhood during the day.

fog-filled harbour
someone somewhere drives
a nail through it

Cyril Childs
from the taste of nashi (2008)

empty nail holes
on the wall that needs painting
autumn sunlight

Craig Kittner
from Cattails (2019)

But really it’s so quiet! If I wake in the night now I can hear nothing from the nearby normally busy-ish road. It’s like being deep in the countryside.

hushed night …
all the universe
in a frog’s croak

Kasturi Jhadav
from naad anunaad, anthology of contemporary world haiku (2016)

the sound
of a blooming rose …
I uncurl my fist

David He
from Presence 63 (2019)

J, K, L of haiku

If you feel inspired to make your own alphabet, please share the link in the Comments section.

J

joint custody
a child on each end
of the see-saw

Susan Constable, Haiku Canada Review 7.2, 2013

 

horse

thunder-filled clouds –   
over the bridge come
jingling-jangling horses

Cyril Childs, Beyond the Paper Lanterns, 2000

 

K

dry summer –                                                                  
the kale field shimmering
with white butterflies

Catherine Bullock, scattered feathers (New Zealand Poetry Society, 2015)

 

broken whelk
the silky touch
of inside

Jenny Fraser, The Heron’s Nest 19.1, 2017

 

L

the long night
festive lights blinking
at the gun shop

Roland Packer, Haiku Canada Review 10.1, 2016

 

a last year’s lambskin where mushrooms gather dusk

Lorin Ford, Katikati Haiku Contest winner, 2014

 

G, H, I of Haiku

If you’re inspired to make your own alphabet, please share the link in the Comments section.

G

the bouncing ball
       beats the giggling boy
             down the zig-zag

Cyril Childs, Kokako 14, 2011

 

filling the grave
     more earth
than will go back in

David Cobb, Jumping from Kiyomizu: A Haiku Sequence (Iron Press, 1996)

 

H

honeysuckle
I haven’t been touched
in a long time

Robert Epstein, Mariposa 29, 2013

 

her hazel eyes
somewhere between winter
and spring

Gregory Piko, Presence 58, 2017

 

Mosquito

Image: Dunpharlain, via Wikimedia

I

mosquito she too
insisting insisting she
is is is is is

Peter Yovu, Modern Haiku 35.1, 2004

 

call of the wild
I unzip
her sleeping bag

Dave Read, Failed Haiku 22.2, 2017

National Poetry Day

August 26 is National Poetry Day in New Zealand – I’m not attending anything today or tonight so was excited to have a Poems in your Pocket booklet given to me by Linda at Books A Plenty when I popped in at lunchtime. It’s a photocopied page of 4 poems folded into a booklet (instructions in the middle) but I’ve had it in my pocket until a moment ago. This is the second stanza of the first poem I read when I opened it:

Jun

one of the most linguistically difficult things i did in japan
was to memorise how to say in japanese i am so sorry
to hear about your son jun dying and here is 3000 yen
for flowers for his grave

– Johanna Aitchison, from her book Miss Dust (Seraph Press, 2015)

Here are some haiku by New Zealanders you may not have met before, some poems for your pocket.

winter morning
the lame goose lagging a little
behind its gaggle

– Cyril Childs (1941-2012)

morning chill –
the dog curls
into a perfect circle

– Aalix Roake

summer heat
overripe plums
spill into a bowl

– Anne Curran

magnolia shade
cicadas
in both ears

– Tony Beyer