Annual Selection 2012: Our planet will survive with haiku ecology

Selections and comments by Isamu Hashimoto

In the year of 2012, I dared not select honorable prizes as usual. My selections of over 300 daily haiku are based on transient whims. With some brief comments (which sometimes are rather self-centered), and others that are somewhat more extensive, I decided to leave the final judgment to the sensible Mainichi haiku readers.

Annual Selection: 2012

Jan. 2, 2012
gold-red sun
in the mist
New Year

— Heike Gewi (Aden-Crater, Yemen)

Comment: The author thankfully saw the golden New Year through the mist.

Jan. 3, 2012
glorious dawn
cutting a passage
through the black forest

— Keith A. Simmonds (Tunapuna, Trinidad & Tobago)

Comment: God's glorious hand invites through the black forest in the New Year morning.

Jan. 4, 2012
mountain chapel—
bells ring jumping
downstream

— Maria Santomauro (Commack, NY, USA)

Comment: It is like having synesthesia … where things unseen can be seen. The mountain chapel is so steadily placed in this haiku that we can see love and mercy jumping down to the people at the foot of the mountain.

Jan. 5, 2012
the face
follows the knife
in the pumpkin

— jerry ball (Walnut Creek, CA, USA)

Comment: I can see Jerry's joyful face on the blade of the knife.

Jan. 6, 2012
full moon—
the ebb and flow
in me

— Valeria Simonova-Cecon (Cividale del Friuli, Italy)

Comment: The full moon is so huge and perfectly round, the lunar gravity can make the tides flow in the author's heart, too.

Jan. 7, 2012
a dolphin glides
effortless
grace

— Joe Davis (Honolulu, HI, USA)

Comment: I admire the author's effortless, graceful depiction of a gliding dolphin.

Jan. 9, 2012
Train without a tail...
snail without boots—inventing
stories for the grandchildren

— Romano Zeraschi (Parma, Italy)

Comment: Children are growing healthy listening to the fantasies of the author.

Jan. 10, 2012
Kyorai's house
even if could too bitter
ripe persimmons

— Bruce Ross (Bangor, ME, USA)

Comment: Kyorai was one of Basho's 10 great disciples living in Kyoto after retirement. His cottage was named "rakushisha." "Raku" means "fallen," "shi" means "persimmons," and "sha" means cottage. The second line can be interpreted as either: "even if persimmons could be too bitter," or "even if Kyorai could be too bitter for haiku."

Jan. 11, 2012
rowboat
an old man waiting
for a chat

— Mario Massimo Zontini (Parma, Italy)

Comment: "Chat" must be referring to internet chat. I've never tried it, but have a mind to do it for keeping up with the times, while living alone in the silence of haiku.

Jan. 12, 2012
moon in the window
a moth walks
from crater to crater

— Jacek Margolak (Kielce, Poland)

Comment: Actually a moth can't walk on the surface of the moon. But a miraculous sensation makes it possible to walk from crater to crater. This could be a model for a mere description of surroundings.

Jan. 13, 2012
cold sun morning
suddenly a flapping
of wings

— o g aksnes (Toensberg, Norway)

Comment: He says nothing about the situation, just makes a noise, but we can sense something special in this haiku. "Cold sun" has a strange power.

Jan. 14, 2012
garbage bag
on the dad's shoulder,
my mom in a black veil

— fereshteh panahi (Mashad, Iran)

Comment: Dad leading the family, Mom walking hand in hand with her boy … going along the Islamic street, they all look happy.

Jan. 16, 2012
no tumble weeds
only plastic bags
in our ghost town

— Lothar M. Kirsch (Meerbusch, Germany)

Comment: Still, there might be a few people besides the author in the empty ghost town.

Jan. 17, 2012
to breakfast
the moon
and a cup of tea

— Elke Bonacker (Duisburg, Germany)

Comment: How about a "lunch cafe" instead?

Jan. 18, 2012
Thanksgiving day—
the first letter from
the wandering son

— Vasile Moldovan (Bucharest, Romania)

Comment: Thank God, there will be a happy reunion sooner or later.

Jan. 19, 2012
the bedroom
several shades brighter
snow dawn

— Helen Buckingham (Bristol, UK)

Comment: Though without freshness in it, the haiku precisely represents the daily, calm living of a senior woman.

Jan. 20, 2012
winter solstice
snowy egrets knee deep
in the moon of his shadow

— Michael Henry Lee (St. Augusine, FL, USA)

Comment: Eight content words and three seasonal items: this haiku could be downsized to, for example, snowy egrets / knee deep / in the moon shadow

Jan. 21, 2012
fleeting autumn
long distant call
kyoto dialect

— Motoko Amatsuji (Takarazuka, Japan)

Comment: "Kyoto dialect" must have been translated from Japanese, "Kyokotoba." I want this elegant word to get an entry in the English language dictionaries.

Jan. 23, 2012
misty moon
the sculptor's breath merges
with his ice carving

— Dorota Pyra (Gdansk, Poland)

Comment: If the author could find a substitution for "misty" in the first line, it would be much better, because "misty" and "breath" are a bit "tsukisugi" (almost the same thing) in this case.

Jan. 24, 2012
an abandoned street—
the midnight moon
on the icicles

— Verica Zivkovic (Letnja, Serbia)

Comment: The last line's punch is superb. The indefinite article at the top seems unnecessary.

Jan. 25, 2012
all the things
you don't see
ghost orchid

— Raquel D. Bailey (Kingston, Jamaica)

Comment: The orchid gardens will become ambiguously beautiful.

Jan. 26, 2012
thanksgiving
the bags of leaves are still
on the curb

— Carlos Gesmundo (Minneapolis, MN, USA)

Comment: For Thanksgiving, garbage collectors are on holiday and the leaves are getting yellower in transparent bags.

Jan. 27, 2012
paper recycled
in the artist's hand
rhino breathes

— Francis Attard (Marsa, Malta)

Comment: Excellent. If it was my haiku, I would say "T-rex" instead of "rhino." The reason: I just like dinosaurs.

Jan. 28, 2012
clear night
Earth bared
to every star

— Y E Wong (Briar Hill, Australia)

Comment: And every star bared to the earth.

Jan. 30, 2012
moonless...
a cat left
to lick itself

— Tyrone McDonald (Brooklyn, NY, USA)

Comment: On the moonless night a cat left to lick itself … under a lamppost.

Jan. 31, 2012
the source of Bosnia river—
in the roar of water
feeling my ancient Bosnians

— Smajil Durmisevic (Zenica, Bosnia and Herzegovina)

Comment: I feel the author would like to add "glorious" just before Bosnians.

Feb. 1, 2012
night train
endlessly
windowed

— Helen Buckingham (Bristol, UK)

Comment: The night train sped away, dragging a bright light belt. The second and third lines are superb in this minimalist haiku.

Feb. 2, 2012
candles on the beach.
the lapping of waves mixed
with prayers

— Tomislav Maretic (Zagreb, Croatia)

Comment: Two years have passed since the monster tsunami attacked eastern Japan. Thanks very much for a nice, consoling haiku.

Feb. 3, 2012
fluffy snow cover
near the new currant bushes
a buck and three does

— Horst Ludwig (St. Peter, MN, USA)

Comment: The third line doesn't apply to the world of human beings. (I mean a human mother and her three daughters)

Feb. 4, 2012
blizzard—
what's holding
you back

— Tyrone McDonald (Brooklyn, NY, USA)

Comment: Blizzards—gigantic natural walls never to be passed through.

Feb. 6, 2012
Falling snowflakes...
somewhere
I have a twin

— Julia Sanders (Misawa Airbase, Japan)

Comment: In childhood memories, around the fireplace, you and your sister, parents, a kitty cat, and falling snow …

Feb. 7, 2012
winter moon
movie star's face
over Seattle

— Don Hansbrough (Seattle, WA, USA)

Comment: It's cold outside; however, the round face of his favorite movie star shines and smiles in the center of the night sky.

Feb. 8, 2012
first dream
bouncing on the Buddha's
belly

— Patrick Sweeney (Misawa, Japan)

Comment: You will have a very good fortune this year and you won't need to lose your weight, because Buddha's plump belly is a symbol of happiness.

Feb. 9, 2012
I felt the cold wind
and the light fluffy snowflakes
melt in my warm smile.

— Del Tan (Singapore)

Comment: A heartwarming third-line device.

Feb. 10, 2012
sound of waves ...
sparks drift over the beach
from corn vendor's stove

— K. Ramesh (Chennai, India)

Comment: We have the same kind of vendors selling baked corn or sweet potatoes, with the nice flavors drifting along the narrow alleyways of the megalopolis.

Feb. 11, 2012
an empty classroom
the warm fingers of the sun
touch a dusty globe

— Gregory Hopkins (Weaver, AL, USA)

Comment: Boys and girls have graduated from the rural wooden schoolhouse a long time before, and it has now been deserted. However, just the same as ever the sun rays come in through the broken window panes.

Feb. 13, 2012
Pulling up the collar
and puffing the last smoke
the icy night air

— Rahadian Tanjung (Jakarta, Indonesia)

Comment: It may be quitting time in the city of Jakarta. It's a cool breeze.

Feb. 14, 2012
off season
a ghost kite
chases a seagull

— Virginie Colline (Paris, France)

Comment: This kite must have been suddenly pulled up from nowhere, and it then started chasing after a seagull. The kite became a ghost with a gust of wind. "Kites" are included for winter in the New Year categories of the season-word dictionaries in Japan.

Feb. 15, 2012
on the river
paddling a dragon boat
to drum rhythms

— Barbara A. Taylor (Nimbin, Australia)

Comment: The season in the haiku must be the New Year. Chinese descendants have been carrying on the valuable traditions.

Feb. 16, 2012
garden frost: four magpies
and my husband surprised over
my failed risotto

— Djurdja Vukelic Rozic (Ivanic Grad, Croatia)

Comment: Through to the last word we, including the magpies, do not know the reason why they are so surprised. And an excellent finale.

Feb. 17, 2012
border security
somebody forgot
to tell the clouds

— Stephen A. Peters (Bellingham, WA, USA)

Comment: Mr. Peters, you are of such character, and I am glad to know that.

Feb. 18, 2012
a gem
in the snow—
winter rose

— Maria Santomauro (Commack, NY, USA)

Comment: Only one white rose in the withered gardens, and what is more, in the snow … a gem, indeed. There is no color, but that's the point.

Feb. 20, 2012
figuring out
wintry patterns
fretwork sky

— Alegria Imperial (Vancouver, Canada)

Comment: There is a bit of redundancy in the second and third lines.

Feb. 21, 2012
winter branch
the legs of sparrows
inch closer

— martin gottlieb cohen (Egg Harbor, NJ, USA)

Comment: An inch is equal to 2.54 cm. No need to say the concrete space between the legs. Just "close" would be enough, I think.

Feb. 22, 2012
shapely limbs
Monroe County
maples

— John Hamley (Marmora, ON, Canada)

Comment: I like the last line's punch. John, drive carefully along the maple road.

Feb. 23, 2012
purple sky
being signed
by a plane

— Zelyko Funda (Varazdin, Croatia)

Comment: I more often than not put down my own favorite haiku on a square piece of hard paper used by haiku lovers.

Feb. 24, 2012
dhyaan* (*meditation in Sanskrit)
a cuckoo's song
fills the void

— Kala Ramesh (Pune, India)

Comment: Silence says much. Please add an annotation for a widely unknown word like in the above haiku.

Feb. 25, 2012
winter sun...
unfinished business
piling up

— Origa (Okemos, MI, USA)

Comment: Weak winter sun rays, not so vigorous and helpful.

Feb. 27, 2012
on the way to
ikebana class
plum blossom

— Roberta Beary (Bethesda, Maryland, USA)

Comment: Two words in the second and the third lines are a bit too close in meaning, but from another point of view, they are proper and pleasant.

Feb. 28, 2012
Footprints
Snow covering
Step by step

— Lothar M. Kirsch (Meerbusch, Germany)

Comment: The author's haiku ability can be surmised from the last line of this haiku.

Feb. 29, 2012
shucking oysters—
the moon reflected
in a pearl

— hortensia anderson (New York, NY, USA)

Comment: She hit the jackpot. A big round pearl was taken out of an oyster.

March 1, 2012
bird's nest
in a winter tree
chest X-ray

— William Hart (Montrose, CA, USA)

Comment: We wouldn't like to get a bird's nest in our chest X-ray films. Let's quit smoking and too much drinking, as the surgeon general says.

March 2, 2012
noon ice
a branch encased
in light

— martin gottlieb cohen (Egg Harbor, NJ, USA)

Comment: "Encased" is a sparkling choice of word in this haiku, as if a branch were wrapped up with film of light, and "noon" is a good choice of words. If it was morning ice, a branch would be encased in the icicle, and if it was night ice, then no one could see it.

March 3, 2012
old hermit
frosty morning walk
layful puppy

— charlie smith (Raleigh, NC, USA)

Comment: I am an old hermit, too. However, instead of a puppy pet, I am collecting unmoving little figures like "Hello Kitty" and "Doraemon," and hundreds of them.

March 5, 2012
My thoughts fall
Like a leaf onto a pond
And sail away

— Brian Campbell (Hampton, Australia)

Comment: And Brian cheers up.

March 6, 2012
in the minster
we listen to the chorus
of the stones

— Ramona Linke (Beesenstedt, Germany)

Comment: The author has experienced a miracle. The last word's punch is superb, and "minster" is irreplaceable in this haiku.

March 7, 2012
Therapy meeting.
'Cause of the heavy snow storm
no way to get home

— Horst Ludwig (St. Peter, MN, USA)

Comment: Christmas Day storm / two kings from the creche / face down in the snow (Patricia Neubauer) In this haiku, "cause of" is an unnecessary haiku expression.

March 8, 2012
Boomerang-like crescent
snatch winter Venus
and return to me

— Toshio Matsumoto (Osaka, Japan)

Comment: The merit comes from the use of a seasonal word: winter. The winter Venus shines brighter than in the other seasons, indeed.

March 9, 2012
rocky beach
crab and i meet
and move sideways

— Raj K. Bose (Honolulu, HI, USA)

Comment: Funny close encounters: the crab is afraid, the human is being human. And "rocky" implies the ups and downs of two lives.

March 10, 2012
one year older
the joy
of skipping a stone

— Christopher Patchel (Mettawa, IL, USA)

Comment: Every Japanese is a year older on New Year's Day, for age is reckoned by the number of years one has seen. Hence, a child born in December becomes 2 years old on Jan. 1 of the next year. (from Daniel C. Buchanan's recorded tape) This haiku is full of paternal love toward a son.

March 12, 2012
koi pond
golden scales vanish
without a sound

— hortensia anderson (New York, NY, USA)

Comment: A koi in the pond of a nearby park slowly sinks herself into the water, without any movements.

March 13, 2012
old theater...
still teetering
the plastic moon

— Romano Zeraschi (Parma, Italy)

Comment: I can't fully illustrate this haiku scene, but I can fully sympathize with the nostalgia the old movie shack emanates, teetering under a plastic moon.

March 14, 2012
A book is fun to read
I can go many places
with visions in my head.

— Cameron Fadale (Buffalo, New York, USA)

Comment: You have a variety of books on the shelf. You must be a happy man.

March 15, 2012
new moon
feeling pain in our feet
me and scarecrow

— Reza Aerabi (Semnan, Iran)

Comment: Scarecrows look shabby and seem to have pain in the feet from the beginning.

March 16, 2012
unexpected frost
warm breathing on the grass
drawing marguerites

— Goda V. Bendoraitiene (Klaipeda, Lithuania)

Comment: The author must be a good painter, indeed.

March 17, 2012
dawn, i'm lifted
by the dirge
of a garbage truck

— Tyrone McDonald (Brooklyn, NY, USA)

Comment: Talented Tyrone, your haiku territories range wide. There are no flaws.

March 19, 2012
old pond—
the borrowed beauty of
a full moon

— Heike Gewi (Aden-Crater, Yemen)

Comment: "Borrowed" is an idea, simply put and expressed here.

March 20, 2012
almost sunset
wandering home from the beach
golden river

— philip d noble (Inverness, Scotland)

Comment: Acquiring more and more refined beauty, the author enjoys haiku in the north land. He lives in Inverness. … Oh, by the way, I have never tried that kind of coat. Viva, Sherlock Holmes!

March 21, 2012
winter chill
up half the night
with a leaking pen

— Helen Buckingham (Bristol, UK)

Comment: I asked a shop girl in Ginza how much it would cost to repair my old Mont Blanc fountain pen. The answer came a few weeks later. They didn't have the parts for the repairs here in Japan, so they would send my pen to Germany, estimating more than 60,000 yen. Endure the leaking, Helen.

March 22, 2012
midwinter moon
that glittery contrail arrows
your flight path

— Doris Lynch (Bloomington, IN, USA)

Comment: Oh, she is an Air Force pilot, because the second line birdie told me so.

March 23, 2012
deep dark space
many cosmic townships
with their own light

— P K Padhy (Andhra Pradesh, India)

Comment: To put it simply, this piece deals with twinkling stars. However, no one could feel sentiments more hearty than those the above depictions conjure up. This is the secret of haiku.

March 24, 2012
windstorm
olive branches from a neighbor
I've never met

— Deborah P. Kolodji (Temple City, CA, USA)

Comment: I've never experienced that.

March 26, 2012
puddle walk
the sky moves
with every step

— Jacek Margolak (Kielce, Poland)

Comment: Jacek the naughty must be enjoying his early childhood again with the eyes of a haiku author.

March 27, 2012
a torn page
in a library book
winter rain

— Sandip Chauhan (Great Falls, VA, USA)

Comment: This is a good model of juxtaposition: no direct relationships between the two—library and winter rain.

March 28, 2012
crowded streets
moving among the years
wretched faces

— Ram Krishna Singh (Dhanbad, India)

Comment: The raison d'etre lies in the second line.

March 29, 2012
in Garland Park
leaking whey-colored shadows
my winter walk

— Neal Whitman (Pacific Grove, CA, USA)

Comment: In the last line, "my" is a psychological possessive.

March 30, 2012
covering every inch
of the path to the station
beige-on-scarlet leaves

— Kirby Record (Amagasaki, Japan)

Comment: He enjoys living in Amagasaki, western Japan. We learn that from the words "every inch."

March 31, 2012
from the beginning
I thought about its ending—
winter reading time

— J. D. Heskin (Duluth, MN, USA)

Comment: I think he was trying to find a season word: I hope he was successful.

April 2, 2012
tohoku tsunami anniversary
the tremour in
the one minute silence

— John Tiong Chung Hoo (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)

Comment: Thank you very much for your everlasting attention.

April 3, 2012
empty city
a red hull leans
heavy on its side

— Barbara A. Taylor (Nimbin, Australia)

Comment: It would be better to leave unsaid the third line's "heavy."

April 4, 2012
one year later
around snow-covered graves
umbrellas bloom

— Mark Miller (Shoalhaven Heads, Australia)

Comment: The second anniversary of the funeral…the haiku needs something special, though I recognize the contrastive combination of colors: white and the black (unsaid) of umbrellas.

April 5, 2012
cherry blossoms
her eyes
chasing the wind

— Heike Gewi (Aden-Crater, Yemen)

Comment: The last word is interesting. In haiku, the word "interesting" is equivalent to "superb."

April 6, 2012
cold winter morning
jumps to the sun
sparrow

— amir hasanvandi (Shoush, Iran)

Comment: The sparrow is so beautiful, flying through the alternate strips of sun rays.

April 7, 2012
Golgotha trip—
air-conditioned buses
with closed doors

— Krzysztof Kokot (Nowy Targ, Poland)

Comment: Like Jesus, the author was being carried to the hill of Golgotha, with all the bus windows closed.

April 9, 2012
Grey skies above
the temple skeleton;
yet Buddha remains

— Marcus Henry (Nagoya, Japan)

Comment: A valuable sketch of the Great Buddha and the temple now under repairs. Buddha never moves, he just sits in meditation.

April 10, 2012
Under the cherry tree
the same red earrings
as fifty years ago

— druart patrick (Urou et Crennes, France)

Comment: Cherry blossoms bring happiness every year.

April 11, 2012
backview mirror...
my childhood sky
distancing itself

— Kashinath Karmakar (Durgapur, India)

Comment: The three factors, backview, childhood, distancing, are too close. They were made in the process of the same old harmony. Basho once said: "New things should be the flower of haiku."

April 12, 2012
pale sun
floating in the sky
the first swallow

— Andrea Cecon (Cividale del Friuli, Italy)

Comment: "Pale sun" in the early spring is effective.

April 13, 2012
break in the clouds—
a rusty bicycle
wobbles in the stream

— john mcdonald (Edinburgh, Scotland)

Comment: God knows everything and He rarely opens his mouth.

April 14, 2012
spring rain
down the rocky ground
I'm riding a white horse

— Tatjana Debeljacki (Serbia)

Comment: This is a combination of colors: light blue, brown and white. They match well in this haiku.

April 16, 2012
Melting snow—
in each puddle
the full moon

— Vasile Moldovan (Bucharest, Romania)

Comment: I have seen a lot of puddle haikus, and this full moon is shining anew.

April 17, 2012
V shaped
ancestral route
geese

— Romano Zeraschi (Parma, Italy)

Comment: Nobody will find the answer to why geese take a V shape while they are returning home. Nature is a great wonder.

April 18, 2012
movie tickets
wrinkled in my pocket
I miss you!

— Raj K. Bose (Honolulu, HI, USA)

Comment: She will come back if your love is true and sincere.

April 19, 2012
a winking fish
wriggles on the line, knowing
it's too small to keep

— Noel King (Tralee, Co. Kerry, Ireland)

Comment: Catch-and-release fishing is done to preserve valuable resources. We are so sorry, however, that fish feel pain each time they are hooked. "Winking"…The fish understands humans' practical jokes.

April 20, 2012
moon above the mosque
the door is closing
stars and whispers...

— Paul Dicu (Constanta, Romania)

Comment: The first line excites the traveler's sentiments.

April 21, 2012
kite string
caught on the plum branch
March breeze

— Angela Terry (Lake Forest Park, WA, USA)

Comment: In the Japanese standard of season words, this haiku has three seasonal references: kite (New Year), plum (early Spring) and March. If a haiku has more than one season word, it can have its objective blurred by other factors.

April 23, 2012
a vernal sketch—
dotting of freckles
over her face

— natalia kuznetsova (Moscow, Russia)

Comment: Natalia, you make lots of good haiku and have a good sense of haiku humor.

April 24, 2012
digitized old records
Janis Joplin still
screaming

— Rudi Pfaller (Remshalden, Germany)

Comment: I know not the singer, but I can hear her screaming voice.

April 25, 2012
spring thaw—
my right glove lost
in the subway

— Cristina-Monica Moldoveanu (Bucharest, Romania)

Comment: For right or left, up or down, north or south, etc., the final decision of choosing the most appropriate words or phrases is very, very important. It's OK to exchange actual situations with other real ones for haiku perfection.

April 26, 2012
garden strawberries
I really like
my white teeth

— Ernesto P. Santiago (Athens, Greece)

Comment: The contrast of colors is effective. I envy your healthy white teeth. I just came back from the nearby dental office.

April 27, 2012
no sense reading about it
it is here
march wind

— Stephen A. Peters (Bellingham, WA, USA)

Comment: Indeed! This is a kind of maxim in making good haiku, too.

April 28, 2012
on the silver moon
by courtesy of a cloudlet
a crater more

— Valeria Barouch (Cologny, Switzerland)

Comment: My poor example: on the silver moon / a new crater / a cloudlet…

April 30, 2012
a pair of galoshes—
clover leaves
kneaded into the mud

— tzetzka ilieva (Marietta, GA, USA)

Comment: This uses an archaic word: galoshes (meaning overshoes).

May 1, 2012
lightest snow...
the little leap up
of the sparrow

— Bruce Ross (Bangor, ME, USA)

Comment: "The little leap-up of the sparrow" could be his recent self-portrait. "Lightest snow" represents his whitish hair.

May 2, 2012
almond blossoms—
whirling around
the dream catcher

— Walter O. Mathois (Vienna, Austria)

Comment: My friendly "Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary" teaches me—dream-catcher: "a ring containing a decorated net, originally made by Native Americans, and thought to give its owner good dreams." I wonder whether the dash in the first line is necessary or not.

May 3, 2012
sudden pop up—
bubble gum breeze
in the bleachers

— Lilia Racheva (Russe, Bulgaria)

Comment: Excellent and an entirely new piece: I have never seen a haiku like this that deals with a bubble gum breeze in the bleachers. The game suddenly becomes exciting with a big bubble.

May 4, 2012
Thunder startled a bird off the nest,
Hatching her eggs
Before her return

— Toshio Matsumoto (Osaka, Japan)

Comment: A kind of fantasy, chimerical.

May 5, 2012
the mist of the mountains
drops from my
hair

— Shawn Singleton (Misawa, Japan)

Comment: The punch word in the last line tells me of the author's haiku talent.

May 7, 2012
coastal bypass...
a tractor carries
the morning traffic

— Ramesh Anand (Tamil Nadu, India)

Comment: The bypass has only one lane, the tractor moves slowly, and the traffic must follow the bulky cart.

May 8, 2012
traffic lights
a cyclist says sorry
to a cyclist

— David Jacobs (London, UK)

Comment: A cyclist on flash lights runs past another cyclist, saying "Sorry." Uniquely, this uses two cyclists.

May 9, 2012
new sprouts
as if one trunk
isn't enough

— jerry ball (Walnut Creek, CA, USA)

Comment: A vigorous resurrection.

May 10, 2012
To jump or not to jump
That is the question
Frog at the pond

— Lothar M. Kirsch (Meerbusch, Germany)

Comment: Shakespeare's best known phrase, "To be or not to be," has been variously translated into Japanese as a translation on doom, existence and future. My experimental one simply goes like this: "What shall I do next?"

May 11, 2012
stop road sign
two peaks
into the spring

— Andrea Luna (Vilnius, Lithuania)

Comment: You stepped on the brake at the intersection, facing the distant misty peaks.

May 12, 2012
a reed warbler
feeding a cuckoo chick...
Mother's Day

— Rita Odeh (Nazareth, Israel)

Comment: It's a fantastic illusion.

May 14, 2012
beaming children
up and down on a swing...
spring sunshine

— Keith A. Simmonds (Tunapuna, Trinidad & Tobago)

Comment: Beam has two meanings: one is a big smile and the other a bunch of sun rays. A boy on the swing goes up and down, shining in the double meanings.

May 15, 2012
book of fairy tales
yellowed pages
of my childhood

— Zoran Doderovic (Novi Sad, Serbia)

Comment: Sepia color will remind us of the memories of mom and dad.

May 16, 2012
shopping mall
the old man in my way
is me

— Gregory Hopkins (Weaver, AL, USA)

Comment: Old people like shopping, so "shopping mall" is essential in this situation. I heartily sympathize with your illusion.

May 17, 2012
stargazing...
the space between
our emails

— Helen Buckingham (Bristol, UK)

Comment: Helen can also see the traces of air mail.

May 18, 2012
family reunion
bigger than ever
the old maple

— Judith Gorgone (Newton, MA, USA)

Comment: The old maple knows best, growing taller and taller like a sequoia.

May 19, 2012
whale safari
breathtaking the giant
tail

— o g aksnes (Toensberg, Norway)

Comment: The author put a unique haiku gaze on the tail, which should be smaller than the body, but wondered at it. The one word in the third line, "tail," indicates to us a perceiving process from head to tail.

May 21, 2012
spring dawn
faint shine of fish backs
in the pond

— John Zheng (Itta Bena, MS, USA)

Comment: In the spring dawn, "faint shine" is a bit redundant. Better to find a substitute (objective collateral).

May 22, 2012
electricity breaks down
with the old lamp and the flash of lightning
shadows on the wall

— Vera Primorac (Kovo, Croatia)

Comment: The good old days are being projected on the wall.

May 23, 2012
Riding the subway
I see raindrops on a shoe—
simply that

— Marcus Henry (Nagoya, Japan)

Comment: In haiku, you may not express your subjective views directly. "Simply that" is two words too many.

May 24, 2012
spring drizzle
the circle grows larger
above the koi

— martin gottlieb cohen (Egg Harbor, NJ, USA)

Comment: Juxtaposing two objects (often one is seasonal) requires putting some distance between them. In the third line, a new finding must be essential.

May 25, 2012
lost...
a still cloud
or so it seems

— Tyrone McDonald (Brooklyn, NY, USA)

Comment: Next time, for a challenge, how about shifting your haiku style to "objective haiku," namely, not expressing your feelings directly ("subjective haiku"), but through objects. I'm sure a new Tyrone haiku will be born successfully, soon.

May 26, 2012
equinox—
trimming my moustache
spring-mode now

— Abraham Freddy Ben-Arroyo (Haifa, Israel)

Comment: What's the color of your hair?

May 28, 2012
Midnight...
the scarecrow's shift
is over

— Hayden Simpson (Misawa Air Base, Japan)

Comment: And your shift, too.

May 29, 2012
dozing in the sun
the cat's ears follow
sounds of birds

— Sonam Chhoki (Samtse, Kingdom of Bhutan)

Comment: The cat's ears are very sensitive to hear the movements of birds.

May 30, 2012
raven night
pulling up stars
from the wishing well

— Pamela A. Babusci (Rochester, NY, USA)

Comment: I don't think it's all right to pull up sunken coins under cover of darkness.

May 31, 2012
half moon
more than half of my life
I looked at the moon

— Rudi Pfaller (Remshalden, Germany)

Comment: And then the author gazed at half moons in his nails. A long way ahead.

June 1, 2012
his blade broken
the Oxford oarsman
rows regardless

— David Jacobs (London, UK)

Comment: Therefore they always win.

June 2, 2012
butterflies rest
on the railway
apple blossoms

— Walter O. Mathois (Vienna, Austria)

Comment: The author must know the antecedent below, and you have to contrive to find a fresh third line for composition.
Perched on the temple bell / the butterfly sleeps — Buson (1716-83); translated by Lafcadio Hearn (1850-1904)

June 4, 2012
dark night
stars nibble
at the periphery

— Helen Buckingham (Bristol, UK)

Comment: Chimerical. This is a means for enjoying haiku.

June 5, 2012
all this quiet
birch branches have captured
the twilight

— jerry ball (Walnut Creek, CA, USA)

Comment: A veteran haiku author's masterpiece. By the way, I don't know if interchanging the first and the last lines would make it more effective or not.

June 6, 2012
power break—
how clear the sound
of my baby's colic

— Cezar F. Ciobica (Botosani, Romania)

Comment: After the huge tsunami disasters, I had a few power cuts in Chiba near Tokyo. In the dim light of a candle, I was forced to pass a few hours remembering the dark nights after World War II and felt rather relieved in using no electric power from the nuclear reactors. In the above haiku, "clear" implies the restoration of human nature.

June 7, 2012
golf course
a hole in one
of my shoes

— Gregory Hopkins (Weaver, AL, USA)

Comment: I like this unexpected and funny ending.

June 8, 2012
swatting
at flies
St. Francis

— Jose del Valle (Rockville, RI, USA)

Comment: I like this piece better than Issa's:
Don't swat it! / The fly is rubbing his hands and / His legs (translated by IH) By the way, who is Saint Francis? In my dictionary, there is no entry about St. Francis except the River.

June 9, 2012
Tramway rambles
From afar
First dandelions

— Lothar M. Kirsch (Meerbusch, Germany)

Comment: A good composition of two things (toriawase in Japanese). "First dandelions" is defined as an objective collateral of "tramway."

June 11, 2012
walking the riverbed
fugitives
for the afternoon

— Peter Newton (Winchendon, MA, USA)

Comment: It's word magic for the lunch hours.

June 12, 2012
a seagull
against the dark clouds
sunlit

— o g aksnes (Toensberg, Norway)

Comment: Rather a long piece for a minimum haikuist. Another way of writing: against / the dark clouds / a sunlit seagull

June 13, 2012
ancient atlas
our motherland called
Pangea

— Pravat Kumar Padhy (Rajahmundry (AP), India)

Comment: The very small dinosaur was firstly born on the super huge continent, Pangaea, 225,000,000 years ago. As human beings, we have to replace "our motherland" with "Africa" in the third line.

June 14, 2012
an aimless
dandelion seed
finds me

— Tyrone McDonald (Brooklyn, NY, USA)

Comment: The dandelions have serendipity to find a good haiku author.

June 15, 2012
kyoto bamboo shoot
i bite into every inch
of spring

— John Tiong Chung Hoo (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)

The use of a small letter "i" has special reasons. One of them is from the writing style of haiku like the above, another comes when the author "i" happens to feel rather small as a human being. Mr. Michael McClintock's masterpiece: i eat alone / & pass the salt / for myself

June 16, 2012
spring moon
in the cloister the echo
of their steps

— Ramona Linke (Beesenstedt, Germany)

Comment: The spring moon over the convent leads us to recall the various bygone things and days.

June 18, 2012
single table
everybody speaks
but not to me

— philip noble (Inverness, Scotland)

Comment: In a sense, for elderly people, it is a relief sitting at a separate table in some open cafe.

June 19, 2012
petal light holding mother high plucking blossoms

— Robert Henry Poulin (Micco, FL, USA)

Comment: An excellent one-liner depicting Bob's beloved mother stretching her hand toward the cherry blossoms.

June 20, 2012
midge haze
a dragonfly skip jives
with its reflection

— Marion Clarke (Co Down, Northern, Ireland)

Comment: Another good "reflection" haiku with a new phrase: "midge haze."

June 21, 2012
a sunny day
on the sundial hand
a butterfly

— Zelyko Funda (Varazdin, Croatia)

Comment: A peaceful country park with all the innocent words.

June 22, 2012
leafing green...
I put me in line
for a flu-shot

— Heike Gewi (Aden-Crater, Yemen)

Comment: "Leafing green" tempts the author to get in line for a flu-shot.

June 23, 2012
grandson's Christening
we all renounce Satan—
lilies scent

— Romano Zeraschi (Parma, Italy)

Comment: Satan will never be near the scent of lilies. In the Buddhist temple lilies are often dedicated on the altar with apples.

June 25, 2012
home-ripened mangoes
I hear my grandmother's voice
in my mother's

— Kala Ramesh (Pune, India)

The key word to recall the memories must be "mangoes" in the kitchen gardens that grandma opened. When I am drunk, my brother is always saying my voice is taking more and more after our father.

June 26, 2012
Slowly opening
the book of old tales
spring breeze.

— Beate Conrad (Waterford, MI, USA)

Comment: "Slowly" is effective.

June 27, 2012
Southern Cross
how far I've come
this twinkle in my father's eye

— Mary Hind (Melbourne, Australia)

Comment: So haikuic: "father's eye."

June 28, 2012
empty frames
on the wall of fog
new paintings

— Vania Stefanova (Silven, Bulgaria)

Comment: Rather artificial, but it has a fantastic atmosphere.

June 29, 2012
waiting for someone
on a business trip
in the spring rain

— Bernhard Kopf (Vienna, Austria)

Comment: "Someone" is vague and replaceable. My idle thought: my ex-wife.

June 30, 2012
swimmer's
towel
shivers

— John Hamley (Marmora, ON, Canada)

Comment: The author is shivering, too.

July 2, 2012
the sand garden
even yet unraked...
first rhodora

— Bruce Ross (Bangor, ME, USA)

Comment: Rhododendron may originally come from a wild species, so it may not need to be raked to be nurtured … I don't know.

July 3, 2012
a hot air balloon
transits the morning sun
on the heels of venus

— Helen Buckingham (Bristol, UK)

Comment: The balloon is just flying over a slender margin between the reality and unreality of haiku.

July 4, 2012
wildflowers
my child and her friends
playing in the summer breeze

— Stephen A. Peters (Bellingham, WA, USA)

Comment: Red, yellow, white, pink, green and blue … many unspoken colors in this haiku.

July 5, 2012
morning glory opens...
if i could take back
what i said

— Tyrone McDonald (Brooklyn, NY, USA)

Comment: The "morning glory" represents the purity of one's heart and the use of the small letter "i" implies the weakness of one's heart.

July 6, 2012
Memorial Day—
I just sit and listen to
the sound of silence

— Beate Conrad (Waterford, MI, USA)

Comment: There is the one, strong last punch.

July 7, 2012
country road...
tips of tall grass
in the light of fireflies

— K. Ramesh (Chennai, India)

Comment: Clean water and air are essential for fireflies. "Tips" is not essential for this haiku.

July 9, 2012
tulip festival
rows of blooming flowers...
storm clouds gather

— Nu Quang (Seattle, WA, USA)

Comment: A nightmarish contrast between yellow and black.

July 10, 2012
Tranquil
the bull jumps
in broad daylight

— Kayla Wilkinson (PSC 76)

Comment: Excellent. Kayla draws a great haiku scene.

July 11, 2012
St Pancras Station
John Betjeman's waistcoat
catches the breeze

— Alan Summers (Bradford-on-Avon, England)

Comment: If we know not either St Pancras Station or John Betjeman, we can fully appreciate this haiku. Larry Gates: "My purpose in writing haiku is not so much to express my own poetic feelings as it is to evoke poetic feelings in others."

July 12, 2012
in spring rain
all drops are scented—
wisteria

— Mario Massimo Zontini (Parma, Italy)

Comment: Wisteria has a welcoming fragrance, especially in the spring rain.

July 13, 2012
behind
closed eyes
sun and doubt

— o g aksnes (Toensberg, Norway)

Comment: The author might have been thinking about juxtaposing two things: sun and doubt.

July 14, 2012
lit fish stall
open mouths darken
the spring night

— martin gottlieb cohen (Egg Harbor, NJ, USA)

Comment: Excellent. A unique fish market scene.

July 16, 2012
Morning glory vine
spirals up through a spoke of
my dislocated bicycle

— Toshio Matsumoto (Osaka, Japan)

Comment: The author let the bike lie as it was for the morning glories.

July 17, 2012
my illegitimate son
opens the door
trembling a spider's web

— Urszula Wielanowska (Kielce, Poland)

Comment: Excellent. "Illegitimate" and "trembling" both are effective choices of words.

July 18, 2012
near forest's edge
perched on a fence post
a fallen nest

— Doris Lynch (Bloomington, IN, USA)

Comment: This is one of the rewards in haiku hunting journeys.

July 19, 2012
the scent
of orange blossoms
down the river

— Maria Santomauro (Commack, NY, USA)

Comment: "Down the river" is haikuic.

July 20, 2012
spring rush
a blossoming tree sprinkled
butterflies

— Irena Szewczyk (Warsaw, Poland)

Comment: "Sprinkled" is a good choice of word.

July 21, 2012
morning meadows—
from flower to flower
her spring scent

— Marek Kozubek (Zywiec, Poland)

Comment: Just "her scent" would be much better. If you want a season word, then put it in the first line.

July 23, 2012
old fisherman shows
how to peel langoustines—
on his web page

— philip noble (Inverness, Scotland)

Comment: Good, practical news, indeed.

July 24, 2012
swan
quietly parting
the Universe

— Don Hansbrough (Seattle, WA, USA)

Comment: Excellent. I can clearly see the small waves of the water.

July 25, 2012
old woman buys
smoke, cheese, onions
a single rose

— Lothar M. Kirsch (Meerbusch, Germany)

Comment: The words "old" and "single" are a little too close in meaning.

July 26, 2012
virtual lily of the valley
absence of smell
just a presence...

— Marie Jeanne Sakhinis-de Meis (Avignon, France)

Comment: This kind of rhyme, like with "absence" and "presence," is not so often found in haiku, which does not need to have the raison d'etre as a blank verse.

July 27, 2012
beneath the oak
light trembling—
the spots of a fawn

— J Hudson (Cuyahoga Falls, OH, USA)

Comment: Ah, an unexpected last line.

July 28, 2012
all day rain—
the see-through petals
of a rose of sharon

— Tzetzka Ilieva (Marietta, GA, USA)

Comment: Drifting in a sublime atmosphere…

July 30, 2012
midnight pond
water lilies
on the moon

— Tanja Trcek (Golrik, Slovenia)

Comment: The first line can be replaced.

July 31, 2012
Lifted by a large wave
suddenly
the boy could swim

— Roberta Davis (Belsize Grove, London, England)

Comment: The first line is very dramatic, but the third line not so good.

Aug. 1, 2012
painting the blue sky
the cloud of my hand
crosses the canvas

— Gregory Hopkins (Weaver, AL, USA)

Comment: A very delicate touch of haiku.

Aug. 2, 2012
just not made
to fit into this world—
firefly

— S. M. Abeles (Alexandria, VA, USA)

Comment: So ephemeral and so beautiful.

Aug. 3, 2012
fireflies in jars
a universe of stars
in child's hands

— Delia White (Concord, CA. USA)

Comment: Put some green leaves into the jars and the night skies will be born.

Aug. 4, 2012
silence in the ashram...
a squirrel eats each grain of rice
without hurry

— K. Ramesh (Chennai, India)

Comment: Hindu priests cherish all creatures, so they would not disturb a squirrel to eat in the ashram.

Aug. 6, 2012
white-trimmed houses
straight suburban streets
in summer rain

— Ed Higgins (Yamhill, OR, USA)

Comment: A downsized, new haiku town.

Aug. 7, 2012
Petrol station
magic, illusions and gasoline...
Baghdad café

— Romano Zeraschi (Parma, Italy)

Comment: We would have to be in the chaos of Baghdad to taste this atmosphere.

Aug. 8, 2012
humid breeze
finger testing wind
finds dragonfly

— Charlie Smith (Raleigh, NC, USA)

Comment: Soon a dragonfly will pause at the fingertip. In the last line, the verb "finds" is haikuic.

Aug. 9, 2012
the taste of heaven
in the ripe strawberry
—summer rain

— Jacek Margolak (Kielce, Poland)

Comment: The first line is the author's awareness.

Aug. 10, 2012
full moon—
my mother's palm prints
on the clay oven

— Sandip Sital Chauhan (Great Falls, VA, USA)

Comment: Mom made the clay oven by herself a long time ago, and the bright full moon knew it.

Aug. 11, 2012
St. Swithin's Day...
we join in prayer for the people
of southern Japan

— Helen Buckingham (Bristol, UK)

Comment: Thanks for your merciful haiku, and please give my best wishes to the people gathering on St. Swithin's Day.

Aug. 13, 2012
a housefly
bumps a windowpane
the heat

— William Hart (Montrose, CA, USA)

Comment: "The heat" is equivalent to a Japanese cliché: "atsusakana" (so hot). I am wondering if I bumped into the first two lines somewhere in the season-word dictionary.

Aug. 14, 2012
departing at last
with all its paraphernalia
toddler buggy

— David Jacobs (London, UK)

Comment: I'm sorry I really can't draw the picture of this haiku. "At last" has some grave meaning, hasn't it?

Aug. 15, 2012
Absent
the shaman
I watch his river

— John Hamley (Marmora, ON, Canada)

Comment: They say the river was named by the shaman a long time ago. Where has the medicine man gone?

Aug. 16, 2012
gold-colored carp
between his two splashes
illusion vanished into reality

— Toshio Matsumoto (Osaka, Japan)

Comment: I don't know which is first in the last line, illusion or reality.

Aug. 17, 2012
bunch of radishes
family ties
tighter

— Urszula Wielanowska (Kielce, Poland)

Comment: If I could, I would like to send a bunch of radishes to all the families in the world.

Aug. 18, 2012
end of the manuscript
putting two full stops
a ladybug

— Rudi Pfaller (Remshalden, Germany)

Comment: It might be a very small ladybug.

Aug. 20, 2012
block by block
a hearse carries
the flawless sky

— Tyrone McDonald (Brooklyn, NY, USA)

Comment: After a funeral.

Aug. 21, 2012
callous moon—
your inscrutable
highness

— Michael Henry Lee (St. Augusine, FL, USA)

Comment: A new, cool approach to the moon.

Aug. 22, 2012
the sky full of
the billowing clouds
and a stork

— Zlata Bogovic (Varazdin, Croatia)

Comment: A stork carrying a baby through the hardships of life.

Aug. 23, 2012
mute swan
quietly shakes his reflection
on the mirror pond

— philip noble (Inverness, Scotland)

Comment: All the quiet in Inverness, Scotland.

Aug. 24, 2012
Gladiolus stands
Vertically to the sky
Sword of infantry

— Ryosuke Suzuki (Odawara, Japan)

Comment: Is the third line the final decision?

Aug. 25, 2012
jewels of sweat
the pianist changes
the key

— Beate Conrad (Waterford, MI, USA)

Comment: "Sweat" is unexpected.

Aug. 27, 2012
wind stops
for some seconds...
girls' odor

— Reza Aerabi (Semnan, Iran)

Comment: You could surely find a better expression for the second line.

Aug. 28, 2012
damp day
her perfume
tear gas

— Brian Robertson (Toronto, ON, Canada)

Comment: A shame!

Aug. 29, 2012
Among blossom branches
a girl
twitters

— Elke Bonacker (Duisburg, Germany)

Comment: Very pretty.

Aug. 30, 2012
family photo
my grandfather
wears my face

— Mark Miller (Shoalhaven Heads, Australia)

Comment: Naturally.

Aug. 31, 2012
divorced...
they decide to date
again

— John Zheng (Itta Bena, MS, USA)

Comment: It will be a good reunion.

Sept. 1, 2012
2012 London Olympics
the queen and her nurses
enthrall the audience

— John Tiong Chung Hoo (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)

Comment: "Enthrall" is a perfect fit here, although it has many meanings, of which I was shocked to find the definition "enslave."

Sept. 3, 2012
Hiroshima Day...
early morning haze creeps
along the river

— Ramona Linke (Beesenstedt, Germany)

Comment: By way of implication, the author wants to depict that horrible burnt-out scenery.

Sept. 4, 2012
at the airport
an empty chair between us
waiting

— Lisa Rigge (Corte Sonora Pleasanton, CA, USA)

Comment: It's just like the situation of my wife and I at Narita Airport, waiting for our granddaughter coming back from St. Timothy's in Maryland, USA.

Sept. 5, 2012
Summer at grandma's—
music box in the attic plays
"Edelweiss"

— Priscilla H Lignori (Montgomery, NY, USA)

Comment: "Edelweiss" is a bit ordinary. How about the Beatles? This is a trick in haiku.

Sept. 6, 2012
Rhododendrons along
Yellow, violet, pink
And no parking lot

— Lothar M. Kirsch (Meerbusch, Germany)

Comment: Baxter (an autistic boy) couldn't pronounce the word "rhododendron" in the movie "Baxter," a long time ago.

Sept. 7, 2012
Ladder to the Moon...
my childhood memories
and sketches of them (for Georgia O'keeffe)

— Chen-ou Liu (Ajax, ON, Canada)

Comment: Georgia O'keeffe (1887-1986): American painter. Mostly lived in New Mexico in her later years, drawing fantastic landscapes of forlorn country.

Sept. 8, 2012
sign language
at the bus stop
cosmos flowers sway

— Motoko Amatsuji (Takarazuka, Hyogo, Japan)

Comment: The bus will soon come, cosmos swaying outside the waiting cabin.

Sept. 10, 2012
changing
views of Mt. Fuji
the Bullet Train

— Gary Hotham (Scaggsville, MD, USA)

Comment: Many newly built skyscrapers in the foreground of the mountain. He is a stranger to the bullet train.

Sept. 11, 2012
walking through the park
dad's weak hand in mine—
the taste of rain

— Gesine Becker (Stralsund, Germany)

Comment: A kigo (season word) is not found here. By putting some seasonal word like "autumn" instead of "the taste of," the haiku sentiment would grow.

Sept. 12, 2012
wondering
on this starry night
if fleas dream

— Don Hansbrough (Seattle, WA, USA)

Comment: He is answering for my presentation of Basho's "octopus dream" haiku: "takotsuboya hakanakiyumeo natsunotsuki." Trapped inside a pot / at the bottom of the sea / the octopus dreams' (translated by David Burleigh). Our wonderful haiku communications.

Sept. 13, 2012
country road
in the heat of summer
winding

— Mario Massimo Zontini (Parma, Italy)

Comment: In winter, "straight," maybe.

Sept. 14, 2012
Customs house—
the sun is setting
in another country

— Vasile Moldovan (Bucharest, Romania)

Comment: A taste of real haiku.

Sept. 15, 2012
hurrying across
the full moon
hospital smoke

— David Jacobs (London, UK)

Comment: Excellent dispositions: hospital smoke (rising against) the full moon.

Sept. 17, 2012
the sparrow's high notes:
the difference
dawn makes

— Tyrone McDonald (Brooklyn, NY, USA)

Comment: The choir on the electric wires.

Sept. 18, 2012
koto music
in the Asian gallery
pinpoints of light

— Neal Whitman (Pacific Grove, CA, USA)

Comment: Japonism returns.

Sept. 19, 2012
Dostoevsky and I
strolling in St. Petersburg then
white nights

— Abraham Freddy Ben-Arroyo (Haifa, Israel)

Comment: Fascinating proper names under the white nights.

Sept. 20, 2012
sunset
helping father
to sit on a chair

— Rudi Pfaller (Remshalden, Germany)

Comment: We have a proverb: "When you come to feel filial piety, there are no parents." You are lucky. "Sunset" is effective.

Sept. 21, 2012
siesta time
the fly in the spider web
stands still

— Maria Kowal-Tomczak (Opole, Poland)

Comment: These days I take a siesta all day long, ha-hah-ha.

Sept. 22, 2012
after the earthquake
wisteria flourishes
along the cracked wall

— Charlotte Digregorio (Winnetka, IL, USA)

Comment: Thanks for your sincere attention.

Sept. 24, 2012
slow afternoon
dozing in the dapples
a tortoiseshell cat

— Jan Dobb (Mawson, ACT, Australia)

Comment: One of the typical Australian scenes.

Sept. 25, 2012
driving my husband
home from the airport...
a perfect full moon

— Tzetzka Ilieva (Marietta, GA, USA)

Comment: I am sure the husband was all right at that time, and the wife just happened to sit behind the steering wheel. Right?

Sept. 26, 2012
intersection
a butterfly crosses
on a green light

— William Hart (Montrose, CA, USA)

Comment: Not accidental.

Sept. 27, 2012
in the silence
after the rain, water gurgles
down the drain

— Ronny Noor (Brownsville, TX, USA)

Comment: In the silence, the author's delicacy can hear the water gurgle down the drain.

Sept. 28, 2012
Linden shadow,
roan horse
over a puddle of rain

— Lilia Racheva (Russe, Bulgaria)

Comment: In the first line, the comma (,) is defined as a cutting word (= a caesura), meaning a short pause. Other symbols include (.), (:), (—), and (…). Nowadays dashes, ellipses, and colons are favorably used in writing haiku. In Japanese we use "ya," "kana" and the like.

Sept. 29, 2012
starry night
scouts are discussing
God's existence

— Zelyko Funda (Varazdin, Croatia)

Comment: It's fun to freely substitute the beginning of the second line with whatever you like.

Oct. 1, 2012
a renewal form for
National Geographic
end of summer

— jerry ball (Walnut Creek, CA, USA)

Comment: "National Geographic" was often seen in the waiting rooms of hospitals. Patients would think their recovery was near when they saw the renewed magazine.

Oct. 2, 2012
along the factory wall
an alley between the trees
and their shadows

— Hana Nestieva (Jerusalem, Israel)

Comment: Good haikus often bear shadows.

Oct. 3, 2012
a butterfly brushes by...
together we deadhead
the cosmos

— Helen Buckingham (Bristol, UK)

Comment: Helen at once noticed why a butterfly did not sit on the cosmos.

Oct. 4, 2012
with huge debt
pendulum swings
extreme motion

— Isao Komatsu (Akita, Japan)

Comment: It is not so huge as life.

Oct. 5, 2012
Windstorm—
the purring cat
on my lap

— Ramona Linke (Beesenstedt, Germany)

Comment: Instinctively cats can sense coming misfortunes.

Oct. 6, 2012
end of the flood
sunflowers in the garden
raise their head

— Jacek Margolak (Kielce, Poland)

Comment: Resurrection!

Oct. 8, 2012
forget-me-nots
even the mower blade
remembers

— Jose del Valle (Rockville, RI, USA)

Comment: Marvelous remembrance.

Oct. 9, 2012
lone white cloud
in the blue sky
drying

— A. Sethuramiah (Bangalore, India)

Comment: "White" refers to there being no rain up there.

Oct. 10, 2012
autumn twilight
my parents in silence
on the swing

— Ramesh Anand (Tamil Nadu, India)

Comment: Flawless. Haikus can be told well through objects, not directly.

Oct. 11, 2012
a falling star
crumpled return ticket
in my hand

— Urszula Wielanowska (Kielce, Poland)

Comment: The first line suggests a serious situation like a breakup.

Oct. 12, 2012
an empty sandpit
rain water flows
over the pail

— Mariusz Ogryzko (Bialystok, Poland)

Comment: Ah, water soaks into sand.

Oct. 13, 2012
looking at me
all surprised—
full moon

— Maria Santomauro (Commack, NY, USA)

Comment: The bright full moon can expose the crow feet under the eyes.

Oct. 15, 2012
a white cloud passing slowly
father's eyes following
for a long time

— Rudi Pfaller (Remshalden, Germany)

Comment: "A white cloud" is metaphorical.

Oct. 16, 2012
seaside village
ambulance siren turns on light
in each house

— Djurdja Vukelic Rozic (Ivanic Grad, Croatia)

Comment: Excellent. The fishing village was being enshrouded by thick fog.

Oct. 17, 2012
Wild or fled?
A lonely cormorant dives and surfaces
41-second intervals

— Toshio Matsumoto (Osaka, Japan)

Comment: "41 second intervals" — absurd and accurate.

Oct. 18, 2012
night rain—
all the quiet absorbed
the downpour

— Gillena Cox (St James, Trinidad and Tobago)

Comment: Good, though I've seen the same theme already this year.

Oct. 19, 2012
highland national park
a little waterfall slices
its own echo

— John Tiong Chung Hoo (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)

Comment: A haikuic punch in the last line, but a little bit artificial.

Oct. 20, 2012
night fishery—
a lone swan pecking
the stars

— Cezar F. Ciobica (Botosani, Romania)

Comment: Pecking one by one.

Oct. 22, 2012
The sinister plop
of my golf ball—
blossoming water lilies

— druart patrick (Urou et Crennes, France)

Comment: I once got a hole in one, but your technique must be better than mine.

Oct. 23, 2012
blogging...
my random thoughts
yellow as lemon

— Ernesto P. Santiago (Athens, Greece)

Comment: Humility.

Oct. 24, 2012
from the edge of a half chewed leaf rising moon

— martin gottlieb cohen (Egg Harbor, NJ, USA)

Comment: A bright one-liner, not worm-eaten.

Oct. 25, 2012
just one clap—
the tree becomes a cloud
of starlings

— Beate Conrad (Waterford, MI, USA)

Comment: Soon they will reassemble. "A cloud of" is effective.

Oct. 26, 2012
Along the bank
pinned to burdocks
swaying fog.

— Zlata Bogovic (Varazdin, Croatia)

Comment: Flawless … interesting.

Oct. 27, 2012
drifting rain
my hundred autumn rooms
to be alone

— Alan Summers (Bradford-on-Avon, England)

Comment: Ah, what a huge country house. Kings used to live there alternately.

Oct. 29, 2012
Dry inkpot—
Words caked
On the brush.

— Michelle Ang (Water Place, Singapore)

Comment: "Words caked": effective.

Oct. 30 2012
Storm passed
Rain passed
No sunshine yet

— Lothar M. Kirsch (Meerbusch, Germany)

Comment: A strange blank moment after the storm.

Oct. 31, 2012
October storm
snow whirling down
like torn paper

— Robert B. Bernhards (Sterling, VA, USA)

Comment: I cannot imagine how large the snowflakes "like torn paper" are.

Nov. 1, 2012
cold steady rain...
deeper into the dusk
stone Buddha

— Bruce Ross (Bangor, ME, USA)

Comment: One deep, masterly achievement.

Nov. 2, 2012
plop
carp jumps up
acorn falls

— Mamoru Ikeda (Ube, Japan)

Comment: Simply put, haiku doesn't take this kind of an explanation punch in the last line.

Nov. 3, 2012
a spider
hidden camera
on my wall

— Brian Robertson (Toronto, ON, Canada)

Comment: A natural free camera is under surveillance.

Nov. 5, 2012
rotting persimmons
and littered beer cans
beside election billboards

— Sara Backer (Hollis, NH, USA)

Comment: We want a clean election candidate.

Nov. 6, 2012
golden autumn—
the beginning of a new
fairy tale

— Origa (Okemos, MI, USA)

Comment: The third line device.

Nov. 7, 2012
dense morning fog
two psychologists whisper
down the corridor

— Robert M. Erickson (Alsip, IL, USA)

Comment: Excellent. The seasonal reference in the first line is effectively working.

Nov. 8, 2012
new particle found
in a long tunnel
I'm driving alone

— Rudi Pfaller (Remshalden, Germany)

Comment: "Alone" in the last line may not be necessary.

Nov. 9, 2012
seeing the visitor off
with the autumn breeze
from behind

— Kohjin Sakamoto (Kyoto, Japan)

Comment: I imagine he already has an excellent Japanese version of this.

Nov. 10, 2012
falling stars
seem to stop just above the lawn ...
children shouts

— Romano Zeraschi (Parma, Italy)

Comment: "Seem to stop" can be deleted.

Nov. 12, 2012
warmth of the sun
part of my amniotic past
lingers

— Stephen A. Peters (Bellingham, WA, USA)

Comment: Those must be prenatal memories.

Nov. 13, 2012
autumn dusk—
all shadows merging
with the past

— natalia kuznetsova (Moscow, Russia)

Comment: Impressive, but not such a fresh theme.

Nov. 14, 2012
autumn reflection
slowly she evens out
the red on her lips

— John Tiong Chung Hoo (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)

Comment: I understand how he has thought it over again and again, a thousand times, then … "reflection."

Nov. 15, 2012
big windows
at the bookstore
leaf shadows

— Gregory Hopkins (Weaver, AL, USA)

Comment: I have seen the same leaf shadows at a bookstore in San Francisco, looking with the traveler's sentiments.

Nov. 16, 2012
so many stars…
and all of them
chirping

— Djurdja Vukelic Rozic (Ivanic Grad, Croatia)

Comment: An interesting and unexpected punch.

Nov. 17, 2012
harvest moon
the scent of pumpkin soup
next door

— Ramona Linke (Beesenstedt, Germany)

Comment: These two haikuic things are nicely disposed.

Nov. 19, 2012
thank you thank you
sing the crickets
round my home

— Don Hansbrough (Seattle, WA, USA)

Comment: This is a return message for a postcard I sent to the author.

Nov. 20, 2012
back to sleep
after waking everyone
aging rooster

— Raj K. Bose (Honolulu, HI, USA)

Comment: Excellent. "Aging" is very effective.

Nov. 21, 2012
frosty jasmine bush—
a lonely leaf
as a little candle

— Wieslaw Karlinski (Namyslow, Poland)

Comment: I think "a leaf" is enough.

Nov. 22, 2012
The leaves' veins and mine ...
"aoi" in Japanese
both the same color

— Race Capet (Colorado Springs, CO, USA)

Comment: I am now looking at the veinous back of my hand.

Nov. 23, 2012
leaves fall
we return to the sense of
simplicity

— Heike Gewi (Aden-Crater, Yemen)

Comment: Simple is best in haiku.

Nov. 24, 2012
waterfall...
the swallows sudden
change of flight

— Tomislav Maretic (Zagreb, Croatia)

Comment: Some kinds of rock swallows can dive into waterfalls.

Nov. 26, 2012
tiptoeing past the fishermen
catching only moonbeams

— Doris Lynch (Bloomington, IN, USA)

Comment: A very puzzling two-liner.

Nov. 27, 2012
coffee percolator dripping
autumn sunset
down the coffee glass bowl

— Toshio Matsumoto (Osaka, Japan)

Comment: He uses a coffee percolator and makes a good haiku. I use paper filters.

Nov. 28, 2012
at the river
feeling the rain
before it falls

— Ben Moeller-Gaa (St. Louis, MO, USA)

Comment: The sixth sense, the extrasensory perception.

Nov. 29, 2012
deep fall
looking at the leaf veins
against the sun

— John Zheng (Itta Bena, MS, USA)

Comment: We can also see the clear blue skies through the leaf veins.

Nov. 30, 2012
UK National Poetry Day
the pull
of the loadstar

— Helen Buckingham (Bristol, UK)

Comment: A psychological combination of the two objects.

Dec. 1, 2012
high noon
the tabby cat sleeps tight
upon its shadow

— philip d noble (Inverness, Scotland)

Comment: The tabby cat must be on the fat side.

Dec. 3, 2012
winter lightning
glinting off
the snow

— Daniel Bohl (Misawa Airbase, Japan)

Comment: A beautiful and rare angle from an Air Force pilot.

Dec. 4, 2012
autumn drizzle—
huddling together
the dog and his man

— Valeria Simonova-Cecon (Cividale del Friuli, Italy)

Comment: Excellent and funny, especially in the last line.

Dec. 5, 2012
snagged
in our chokecherry
winter comet

— Jose del Valle (Rockville, RI, USA)

Comment: Excellent and flawless.

Dec. 6, 2012
echoes of light
piercing the dawn colors
tremors of silence

— Keith A. Simmonds (Tunapuna, Trinidad & Tobago)

Comment: Two strange phenomena.

Dec. 7, 2012
zen pond
solemn fish deeper
than the moon

— Reza Aerabi (Semnan, Iran)

Comment: The solemn fish is sinking deeper and deeper behind the moon reflection.

Dec. 8, 2012
potholes
spots of sunshine
wobble

— Ram Krishna Singh (Dhanbad, India)

Comment: Singular forms would be better: pothole / spot of sunshine / wobbles

Dec. 10, 2012
stars scattered
as seeds sown
in an empty field

— Patricia Neubauer (Philadelphia, PA, USA)

Comment: The following would make a minimal haiku: stars / scattered / seeds

Dec. 11, 2012
63
still combing my hair
forwards and across

— David Jacobs (London, UK)

Comment: Regrettably, I must confess my hair is not so thick.

Dec. 12, 2012
Flaming
in the breath of shadows
my Zippo

— Romano Zeraschi (Parma, Italy)

Comment: He is bending a little over a Zippo to light a cigarette at the edge of his mouth. An excellent Zippo.

Dec. 13, 2012
the young gull
stains the lamppost's
colour higher

— Jonathan Denham (Birmingham, England)

Comment: Oh, poo!

Dec. 14, 2012
sickle moon
cutting through the dark
to the other side

— Billy Howell-Sinnard (Ft. Wayne, IN, USA)

Comment: Fantastic and unreal.

Dec. 15, 2012
country road
with shining puddles
the autumn moon

— Jacek Margolak (Kielce, Poland)

Comment: Many harvest moons, here and there.

Dec. 17, 2012
weathered notice—
long missing child
smiles young

— Anusha Tennakoon (Izumisano-shi, Japan)

Comment: The last line makes us all weep over the tragedy.

Dec. 18, 2012
castle grounds
wedding photos taken and
mailed to her village

— Brian Robertson (Toronto, ON, Canada)

Comment: The remarkable contrast between old and new.

Dec. 19, 2012
hole-punch cloud...
I wear my voter sticker
the whole day

— Tzetzka Ilieva (Marietta, GA, USA)

Comment: Homophones, hole and whole, which are not deliberately used so often in haiku.

Dec. 20, 2012
poet monument—
the wastebasket
overflowing

— Claudia Brefeld (Bochum, Germany)

Comment: Japanese contemporary haiku author, Ryuta Iida (1920-2007) wrote: "Haiku is just the literature of self-satisfaction." His well-known haiku: January river— / deep in / the January valley (ichigatsunokawa ichigatsuno taninonaka) —translated by IH

Dec. 21, 2012
adagio
in the mist
a single leaf

— Helga Stania (Greppen, Switzerland)

Comment: A dancing leaf on the branch in the mist.

Dec. 22, 2012
deep in snow
my nose loves
chimney smoke

— Robert Henry Poulin (Micco, FL, USA)

Comment: That stimulative odor of winter.

Dec. 24, 2012
Stars footprints
in the blue bed of the night—
romantic Christmas

— druart patrick (Urou et Crennes, France)

Comment: I used to be in that mood.

Dec. 25, 2012
cloud catcher peaks
over the misty forest
reaching to the Heavens

— Delia White (Concord, CA. USA)

Comment: So sacred.

Dec. 26, 2012
lost
in a hotel corridor—
the North Star

— Abraham Freddy Ben-Arroyo (Haifa, Israel)

Comment: Excellent. By the use of an indefinite article ("a") we understand that the author has turned the corner of the corridor.

Dec. 27, 2012
on the other side
only one step
separates me from dusk

— Urszula Wielanowska (Kielce, Poland)

Comment: This piece of haiku refers to various hardships of the floating world.

Dec. 28, 2012
childhood memory...
holding mother's finger
to teach touchpad

— Ramesh Anand (Tamil Nadu, India)

Comment: It would be better to exchange the first line for another.

Dec. 29, 2012
sunset...
still giving

— Tyrone McDonald (Brooklyn, NY, USA)

Comment: This could be followed up by "the faint afterglow" or something in the third line.

Dec. 31, 2012
Midnight—
clock's hands
joined in prayer

— Ronald Baatz (St Troy, NY, USA)

Comment: A good and suitable haiku for the end of the year.

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