A blog devoted mainly to haiku and senryu and to thoughts about, and inspired by, haiku and senryu.

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Location: New York, New York

Haiku is to poetry as espresso is to coffee.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005


snow after midnight
drifting into a dream
of empty roads

Saturday, November 26, 2005


biting wind
a puppy dances
with the leaves

Monday, November 21, 2005

a thought for thanksgiving

if winter comes
can spring be far behind—
well, far enough
I'll be spending the Thanksgiving weekend with family in eastern Massachusetts. To everyone who celebrates the holiday: Have a good one.

faded photo (tanka)

faded photo
I am the baby
my father holds
. . . on his face
a look I never knew

Saturday, November 19, 2005


cold sunlight
the last leaf brushing branches
in its fall

Monday, November 14, 2005


waiting for you
at the sidewalk cafe
half moon

Thursday, November 10, 2005

try a tanka

Tanka is a 5-line form derived, like haiku and senryu, from the Japanese, but now found in many languages. The Japanese form consists of 31 onji (sound units) divided into segments of 5-7-5-7-7. English-language tanka tends to greater freedom in form, while generally observing a 31-syllable limit over a 5-line format. Many also prefer a short-long-short-long-long arrangement of the lines, but this is not a fixed practice. There is generally a turn (a shift of meaning, tone, etc.), often at the end of the second or third line. In this case, I'd place the turn at the end of the second line. Lines 1-2 give information, lines 3-5 reflect on the information.
Anyway, I wrote this tanka last week. It's the first tanka I ever wrote.

the cherry
stands shedding its leaves
what can it know
of blossoms fallen in spring
and blossoms yet to come

Wednesday, November 09, 2005


I often revise haiku, but this is a rather different case. Here are two alternate versions of the "same" haiku. My subjective preference is for the first one. The second one, however, follows more closely the traditional haiku form, or at least the dominant form within the tradition. I don't intend to throw either one away.
the old man on the bench
following the drift
of autumn leaves
autumn leaves
the old man on a bench
following their drift

Friday, November 04, 2005


gathering my thoughts
dry leaves carry the wind
around the courtyard

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

post coitum

after making love
the draft
from an open window