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HAIKU DIALOGUE – Going for a Walk – rivers and clouds – long list

Going for a Walk with Guest Editor Deborah Karl-Brandt

The late Buddhist monk and peace activist Thich Nhat Hanh could see water in all its transformations. Water in the form of a cloud would soon become rain, a river, the sea, and it would help grow plants and trees. The trees would flourish and become paper on which the haijin would write their poetry, so that the cloud (water) would eventually be contained within the poetry itself. Nothing can exist by itself. Let’s take a walk together to follow the different paths of water and see where they will lead us.

Below is Deborah’s selection of poems on the topic of rivers and clouds:

overcast day
stratus clouds massing
on his lungs

Adele Evershed
Wilton, Connecticut

 

river sun
the last of the fog
floats away

Allyson Whipple
St. Louis, Missouri

 

shapeshifting cloud
all the paper it takes
to save trees

Amoolya Kamalnath
India

 

giving up the moon too
to the ocean the river

Anju Kishore
India

 

cobalt cloud bank
snatching the sunset
his surprise goodbye

Ann Sullivan
United States

 

immigration
a dust cloud of my village
chasing the car

Arvinder Kaur
Chandigarh India

 

paddleboat cruise
my thoughts churning
through rivers

Barrie Levine
United States

 

a stream of clouds
at river’s bend … google maps
leads me astray

Bonnie J Scherer
Alaska USA

 

deeper into the past
the cut
of the river

Bryan Rickert
Belleville, Illinois

 

Babbling river
tells me stories
meant for the sea

Caroline Ridley-Duff
United Kingdom

 

laid off
she watches a cloud
become an angel

Cindy Putnam Guentherman
IL, USA

 

old kayak
paddle traces
kanji clouds

Charles Smith
United States

 

wings ascend skyward
the Rhein below a ribbon
of memories

Christa Pandey
Austin, TX, USA

 

being air
being water
nagare

Cristina Povero
Italy

 

salmon
returning home, the cedars
shrouded in fog

Curt Linderman
Seattle

 

eminent domain
a rain-swollen river
takes back the highway

Cynthia Anderson
Yucca Valley, California

 

spring scene –
clouds dissolve
into the sky

Daniela Misso
Umbria, Italy

 

shifting clouds
letting her be the river
she wants to be

Daya Bhat
India

 

wooded path at dawn –
eating the blackberries
no one owns

Deborah A. Bennett
Illinois USA

 

a grizzly’s paw
reaches through the spray
salmon run

Dinah Power
Israel

 

never the same
stones from the river
now dry in my pocket

Dorothy Avery Matthews
WA

 

freshly hung sheets
billowing as the sky dims
storm clouds

Eavonka Ettinger
Long Beach, CA

 

lazy river
keeping pace
with a water strider

Evan Spivack
Teaneck, NJ

 

memory / a red leaf / floating down the river

Grace K.
Greece

 

monsoon morning
clouds entering
our mountain home

Govind Joshi
Dehradun, India

 

shifting clouds
shape ancestral lands
water lilies

Gwen Bitti
Australia

 

still gushing
in the gutters
yesterday’s clouds

Helen Ogden
Pacific Grove, CA

 

warm wind over the mountains sky dolphins

Helga Stania
Switzerland

 

river’s edge
passing clouds disappear
one by one

Jagajit Salam
Imphal, India

 

boatman’s song
clouds dancing in
the river’s depths

Jahnavi Gogoi
Ontario, Canada

 

yield sign
the high-rises disappear
into clouds

Jerome Berglund
Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States

 

commingled breath
kissing through a cloud
of shared reefer

John Hawkhead
United Kingdom

 

bus stop
a cloud moseys by
like a slow stream

John S Green
Amman, Jordan

 

white wrists the river braiding light

John Pappas
United States

 

yearend reflection clouds plop into the wishing fountain

John Zheng
Mississippi

 

archaic matter
all the carbon forms beaming
up to the cloud

Jonathan English
Washington, DC

 

cloud burst
sploshing home
through puddles

Karen Harvey
Pwllheli

 

cumulus glory
I hop from river stone
to river stone

Katherine E Winnick
Brighton, UK

 

gliding
across the sky
incense

Kavita Ratna
India

 

balancing act . . .
all the rain
a hibiscus could hold

Kavitha Sreeraj
India

 

cloud gazing with my kids
how they
raise me up

Kelly Sargent
Williston, VT

 

lazy water–
ice are melting
on both sides

Krzysztof Kokot
Poland

 

getting dressed—
the river wearing
dark clouds

Lafcadio
USA

 

cloud dragon
the jet plane leaves
a tail behind

Lakshmi Iyer
India

 

clouds –
the glow of diyas
in the Holy Ganga

Lakshman Bulusu
Princeton, NJ USA

 

river crossing
the upper and lower case
of a cloud of geese

Laurie Greer
Washington, DC

 

reflected
from
the
rice
terraces
autumn
loneliness

Lev Hart
Calgary, Canada

 

cirrus cloud
the small breath
of a song sparrow

Lori Kiefer
UK

 

dark bush …
swirling plastics in its journey
the creek snakes through

Madhuri Pilla
Australia

 

flooded river . . .
the emptiness
Inside

Manoj Sharma
Kathmandu

 

harvesting clouds
out of the lake
summer sun

marilyn ashbaugh
edwardsburg, michigan

 

winding river
one bend
hides another one

Marjolein Rotsteeg
The Netherlands

 

lenticular cloud —
forever hoping for
flying saucers

Mark Meyer
Mercer Island WA USA

 

ink-dark night
following the creek
alongside the babble

Maxianne Berger
Outremont, Quebec

 

after the rainstorm
the weight of stars
in this bucket

Maya Daneva
The Netherlands

 

patio door
a snail climbs
higher than the clouds

Melissa Dennison
UK

 

distant cloud bank
under a blue sky
I count my blessings

Mike Stinson
Nebraska

 

river at dusk …
a dragonfly leaves behind
its fading shadow

Milan Rajkumar
Imphal, Manipur, India

 

submission
from a sheet with haiku
a paper boat

Mirela Brailean
Iasi, Romania

 

clear blue sky
a lone cumulus
takes me home

Mona Bedi
India

 

inside the cloud
i read…the diary
of a wimpy kid

Nairithi Konduru, 9 years old
India

 

canoeing
on the river
–her trailing fingers

Nancy Brady
Huron, Ohio

 

wartime blues …
angel-shaped clouds floating
across the frontline

Natalia Kuznetsova
Russia

 

cirrus clouds…
never enough time
to say goodbye

Neena Singh
Chandigarh, India

 

summer clouds
learning new mantras
from mother in law

Neha Talreja
India

 

cloudy sky
the moon and I
feeling lost…

Nisha Raviprasad
India

 

breakup cruise
the river fills
our silence

Padmini Krishnan
United Arab Emirates

 

curtain call –
receding clouds reveal
the clustered stars

Paul Callus
Malta

 

all night rain
on the camper roof—
I find your hand

Penny Harter
May’s Landing, NJ

 

each river stone carefully polished unpaid labor

petro c. k.
Seattle, Washington

 

late spring
a river finds its way
and its voice

Ravi Kiran
India

 

children’s question
mom, how can he swim
the sky in the river?

Refika Dedić
Bosnia and Herzegovina

 

the ladder
pointing towards a cloud
doctor’s prescription

Richa Sharma
India

 

leaping over
leaping salmon
elk

Roberta Beach Jacobson
Indianola, Iowa, USA

 

outdoor tub —
eyeing dragon clouds
and each other

Roberta Beary
County Mayo, Ireland

 

seashore clouds sailing home with the tide

Royal Basinger
Montreal, Quebec, Canada

 

shadow falls
across the meadow-
length of a cloud

Ruth Happel
United States

 

sunset
skimming the river
last cormorant

Ruth Holzer
Herndon, VA

 

s h a p e s
in the riverbank pyre—
stark naked egret

Sankara Jayanth Sudanagunta
Hyderabad, India

 

a child’s new yellow galoshes squirming earthworms

Seretta Martin
San Diego, California

 

calm river
a turtle cloud
crawls into it

Sharon Ferrante
Florida, USA

 

gushing river
all our truths
untold

Shruti Patel
Switzerland/Kenya

 

happy clouds
the imperfect world
not quite as bad

Stephen A. Peters
Bellingham, WA

 

letting go
my paper boat
drift away…

Surya Nes
Indonesia

 

river fog
vapors and morphs into
a whale of cloud

Teiichi Suzuki
Japan

 

old home town
still stands near the river
the rusty pole

Tuyet Van Do
Australia

 

yours and my river
this summer it’s just me and
an aging goldfish

Urszula Marciniak
Poland

 

shifting clouds
a black dog shuffles
into the shade

wanda amos
Australia

 

body-shamed
the puffy cloud rearranges
its shape

Vandana Parashar
India

 

summer
a river dries into
alphabets

Vijay Prasad
Patna, India

 

rent mirror
crossing each other
river and cloud

Vishal Prabhu
India

 

silent night
fish’s shuttling among
moonlit cloud

Chen Xiaoou
Kunming, China

 

clouds in the river
after a boat passes on
still complete

zelyko f
Varazdin, Croatia

 

Join us next week for Deborah’s commentary on additional poems…

 

Guest Editor Deborah Karl-Brandt lives in Bonn, Germany, with her husband, two rabbits and numerous books. After her PhD studies in Scandinavian languages and literatures, she now works as a freelance author and poet. One of her poems won 2nd place in the 2021 Pula Film Festival Haiku Contest. Her poems have most recently appeared in Prune Juice, Kingfisher, First Frost, Frogpond, Failed Haiku and Tsuridoro. If she is not outside for a long stroll or to do some birdwatching, she is an avid reader who is currently exploring Chinese Xianxia Webnovels.

Lori Zajkowski is the Post Manager for Haiku Dialogue. A novice haiku poet, she lives in New York City.

Managing Editor Katherine Munro lives in Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, and publishes under the name kjmunro. She is Membership Secretary for Haiku Canada, and her debut poetry collection is contractions (Red Moon Press, 2019). Find her at: kjmunro1560.wordpress.com.

The Haiku Foundation reminds you that participation in our offerings assumes respectful and appropriate behavior from all parties. Please see our Code of Conduct policy.

Please note that all poems & images appearing in Haiku Dialogue may not be used elsewhere without express permission – copyright is retained by the creators. Please see our Copyright Policies.

Photo Credits:

Banner photo credit: Andreas Brandt

Haiku Dialogue offers a triweekly prompt for practicing your haiku. Posts appear each Wednesday with a prompt or a selection of poems from a previous week.

This Post Has 77 Comments

  1. Dear Deborah,

    Thank you so much for including mine. This is a lovely collection. Transporting one to a world of serenity.
    Best
    Nisha Raviprasad

  2. I am very grateful to have one of my poems in this sparkling longlist. Each one is a gem. Nothing like a selection to inspire a poet trying to rise from a writing slump. Many thanks Deborah, and to Lori and Kj for all their efforts.

  3. Dear Deborah,
    Thank you for giving us a lovely theme for us to ponder on and write as we went for a walk with you.

    I’ve always enjoyed your selections and this time is no different. Lovely selections! Look forward to reading the short list with your comments.

    Thank you for selecting one of my ku.

    1. Thank your for your kind words. It was a pleasure to select the long-list and the short-list. And I’m always happy to hear, that all the hard work the poets put into their poems is appreciated.

  4. Here are ten of my favorite poems this week.
    Thanks to Deborah, Lori,and kj for their dedication in hosting one of the most globally successful haiku prompt writing communities—it’s a pleasure to be a part.
    John
    .
    laid off
    she watches a cloud
    become an angel

    Cindy Putnam Guentherman
    IL, USA
    .
    memory / a red leaf / floating down the river

    Grace K.
    Greece
    (Note: I, personally, would love this one even more if L3 was, ‘floats down the river’
    .
    gliding
    across the sky
    incense

    Kavita Ratna
    India
    .
    river crossing
    the upper and lower case
    of a cloud of geese

    Laurie Greer
    Washington, DC
    .
    reflected
    from
    the
    rice
    terraces
    autumn
    loneliness

    Lev Hart
    Calgary, Canada
    .
    cirrus cloud
    the small breath
    of a song sparrow

    Lori Kiefer
    UK
    .
    patio door
    a snail climbs
    higher than the clouds

    Melissa Dennison
    UK
    .
    cirrus clouds…
    never enough time
    to say goodbye

    Neena Singh
    Chandigarh, India
    .
    each river stone carefully polished unpaid labor

    petro c. k.
    Seattle, Washington
    .
    body-shamed
    the puffy cloud rearranges
    its shape

    Vandana Parashar
    India

    1. Glad to hear that and thank you for supporting Haiku-Dialogue. I think each one of this poems contains deep emotion and some will definitely stay with me.

  5. Thank you for including my haiku in your long-list, Deborah. Congratulations to all poets. I enjoyed reading each one. ??

  6. Thanks for including my haiku. Always enjoy the many different perspectives on the theme.
    Brightens a rainy day

  7. Wonderful curation of haiku, Deborah Karl-Brandt! I loved your prompt and selections for the long list. They are a joy to read. Thank you for the time and consideration you have given as guest editor, and many thanks to Lori and KJ for consistently providing such a meaningful space for haijin to share their work and for readers to enjoy them.

    1. Yes, a place where you can reach out to each other, where you can get to know each other better through your poems. I like that very much, about haiku and haiku dialogue.

    1. Glad to hear LInda, that you enjoyed the long-list. I’m also looking forward to the short list. Definitely worth the read!

  8. The long list of poems this week is worth multiple readings. Well done, Deborah Karl-Brandt, Lori Zajkowski, and Katherine Munro!

    I like all of the poems listed, especially the whimsicality of those by Evan Spivack, Helen Ogden, Lakshmi Iyer, Mark Meyer, Melissa Dennison, Nairithi Konduru, Roberta Beach Jacobson, and Sharon Ferrante.

    Karen Harvey’s playful poem not only evokes childhood memories, but also encourages fresh re-creations of that time period. I know I could benefit again from getting my feet wet now and then.

    cloud burst
    sploshing home
    through puddles

    I also appreciate the lightsome, yet poignant points of view expressed in the following three poems. These poems also evoke and encourage the child inside the willing reader.

    cloud gazing with my kids
    how they
    raise me up

    Kelly Sargent
    Williston, VT

    cirrus cloud
    the small breath
    of a song sparrow

    Lori Kiefer
    UK

    after the rainstorm
    the weight of stars
    in this bucket

    Maya Daneva
    The Netherlands

    1. Yes, I agree. Taking yourself less seriously can be a good experience. If you can see the humorous aspect in all the bizarreness of life, it can be very liberating. These playful haiku provide a skillful change of perspective.

  9. Thank you dear Guest Editor for selecting my poem and many others, and to kj and Lori for tirelessly and effectively supporting this THF feature. I found it when I first started to write in 2020 and it has inspired me to write regularly and learn si much from the editors and poets.

    I enjoyed this finely crafted magical poem:

    cloud dragon
    the jet plane leaves
    a tail behind

    Lakshmi Iyer
    India

    1. I loved the sky dragon too! And this one that had wonderful action and was so visual:

      a grizzly’s paw
      reaches through the spray
      salmon run

      Dinah Power
      Israel

      1. Yes, the pictures are very impressive. The big bear and the small (not so small) fish. It’s like the zoom technique used in the movies. In the end, you are very close to the fish and its fight for survival. It’s also interesting that they are hunter and prey, but in the end they (have to) share their habitat.

  10. I think Deborah’s choice of both overarching theme and specific, for this and next week, are inspiring, and generated a wonderful selection of very varied poems. I still haven’t found a favourite, on my 3rd read-through!

    1. Hi Jenny,
      I’m glad to hear that the selection makes you want to read and re-read. I think there are lots of different themes to explore.

  11. I sent two Haikus for the June 5th volume. But did not find them published. Should I assume that they have fallen short of standards?

    1. Please consider repeating the two haikus in this section. I look forward to reading them. Best Wishes.

    2. As requested I write below the two haikus I sent for June 5th volume.

      Parched land lying drouth
      Swan waves whitecaps in the cloud
      Drizzle! Petrichor!

      Pristine morn blue sky
      A White clouds is sailing through
      Buddha smiles alone

      1. Find your haikus very puzzling. Suggest the following books I can reach out in my small library. ‘Haiku in English – The First Hundred Years,’ Edited by Jim Kacian et al. ‘An Introduction To Haiku’ by Harold G Henderson, ‘Haiku Selected And Edited By Peter Washington’ Everyman’s Library Pocket Poets, ‘Echoes – The New Resonance Haiku Poets, 1999 – 2017. Jack Kerouac”s ‘Book of Haikus’ Haiku hits like a flash of lightning. Sitting down and forcing HAIKU generally ends up messy. Best Wishes.

  12. overcast day
    stratus clouds massing
    on his lungs

    Adele Evershed

    Too busy at the moment, so I’ve only glanced at Dialogues feature now and then.

    This first one really struck me.

    The great thing about haiku, once it eventually broke fully loose from hokku, is how robust and elastic it is, as it’s a genre, rather than the older hokku form.

    I’m very much into liminal realism, which is so close to what haiku attempt to capture.

    Yes, it can be uncomfortable reading, but remember what the New Rising Haiku of Japan suffered to get haiku really going, and also now is the 80th Anniversary of the Normandy Landings, which started the end of the war, although Japan carried on.

    stratus clouds massing
    on his lungs

    The switch from an overcast sky, and a type of cloud massing, then realising we have entered a serious medical condition is effective in jolting us away from simply a nature report, which Fay Aoyagi would approve! 🙂

    Have fun using the Using the Tsugi approach (The Next Lines) which I developed, against other haiku here.

    The Tsugi approach by Alan Summers
    https://www.thegloucestershirepoetrysociety.co.uk/2023-haiku-competition-results

    Alan

      1. Ah! Alan Summers has entered the ring.

        quit punching
        long time back
        battered clay
        (Muhammad Ali left the ring of life. A victim of Parkinson’s. I have been diagnosed with PD seven years back; amor fati!

    1. Wow thank you so much Alan- your comment made my day. And thank you Deborah Karl-Brandt for selecting mine and posting the poems alphabetically!
      Sitting listening to BBC Radio 2’s coverage of the 80th anniversary of the D-Day landings this ku snagged my eye

      wartime blues …
      angel-shaped clouds floating
      across the frontline

      Natalia Kuznetsova
      Russia

      Then as now unfortunately.

      And I have to also mention

      inside the cloud
      i read…the diary
      of a wimpy kid

      Nairithi Konduru, 9 years old
      India

      It made me smile and reminded me of my own children reading that book. It conjures up the way you can get lost in a book so you feel removed from the real world as if you are in a cloud. So well done

    2. Dear Alan,

      thanks for sharing the link. I find it very exciting to see how you approach the selection process.
      My first impression when reading is often intuitive. I then trace the feelings that are triggered. Whether the text engages me emotionally (it has to have something to say and not just two beautifully composed images) and whether it opens up scope for interpretation for the reader.
      Then I look at how the poem is formally structured (fragment & phrase, pivot line, kigo, kirenji etc., choice of words) and then I read it again. In fact, I love haiku that have a simple and elegant language. They sound to me like music or a stone polished smooth by the sea.

    3. Ah! Alan Summers has entered the ring.

      quit punching
      long time back
      battered clay
      (Muhammad Ali left the ring of life due to Parkinson’s. I was diagnosed with PD seven years back; amor fati!)

  13. Thank you so much for selecting one of my ku for this very special prompt. My name however is misspelt. It is Kavita Ratna (here spelt as Radna). Could it be rectified please?

    1. Dear Kavita,
      I apologize for the mispelling. I made the error when I transformed your poem into the long-list. Don’t be mad.

      1. Ms Munro, Kindly consider to having an indication that a reply has been posted at the first attempt. In the absence of which there may be a tendency to press the reply button more than once. Thanks.

  14. So many delightful, touching, sensual haiku! I enjoyed especially the following ones:

    outdoor tub —
    eyeing dragon clouds
    and each other

    Roberta Beary
    County Mayo, Ireland

    Brought me back to sitting in a tub with my sister, and stories my mother told about weekly baths in a tub for the whole family after the war.

    inside the cloud
    i read…the diary
    of a wimpy kid

    Nairithi Konduru, 9 years old
    India

    This is such a beautiful, poignant haiku. Bravo, Nairithi!! I hope she can read this. Please know that I’m in awe of this poem, and I hope to read many more by you!

    wooded path at dawn –
    eating the blackberries
    no one owns

    Deborah A. Bennett
    Illinois USA

    I in general enjoy Deborah A. Bennett’s haiku. This one takes me on a journey through a forest, and finding a treasure on my way. It’s so early, so either I have been camping outside, or am heading out for a hike, I have that sense of getting on an adventurous odyssey.

    1. I enjoyed both poems a lot. I really appreciate the sense of humor in Roberta Beary’s haiku. And I do like Nairithi’s wimpy kid. My nice loved this book too, but there are more layers to this poem. It could be a bully reading a diary which was snatched out of the hands of a wimpy kind. Then the poem would have had an darker meaning.

      1. I had all the Diary books in my classroom. An extra layer in this poem is that the ‘cloud’ could very well be the cloud within which the dialogue is contained. Or, at least, that sprung to mind for me.

      2. Dear Deborah,
        Thank you for selecting my haiku for the long list. I was excited to see my name ?

  15. white wrists the river braiding light

    John Pappas

    The alliteration and assonance, the rhythm, the imagery — everything comes together beautifully. Rhyming the first word with the last is subtle enough that it enhances the overall effect. This is a haiku to be read aloud.

      1. Yes, rhyme is generally discouraged in haiku. That’s the reason I pointed out the subtlety of the rhyme in Pappas’s poem. Because the first word of the fragment and the last word of the phrase rhyme, it doesn’t even register at first, unlike a poem that rhymes the last word of each segment. Pappas’s poem reads fluidly and not as a couplet because of his choices. General principles do not always apply. However, to your point, it is true that haiku should avoid obvious rhyme placement in most cases in order to avoid sounding like a traditional couplet.

    1. The rhyme closes the circle and the chosen form of a monoku supports the meaning of the poem in an excellent way. The image of a bracelet made of light that connects man and nature involuntarily arises before my inner eye. The theme of connectedness is perfectly conveyed by the elegant shape of the monoku.

  16. Kenshin Sumitaku
    21 March 1961 to 7 February 1987
    Charm is the power of fascinating, delighting and attracting.
    Sumitaku’s haiku written on his deathbed is the first. Morbid perhaps.
    I volunteer for blood donation. Can’t understand the hullabaloo.

  17. Hi again,
    let’s focus on the fine poems and Honor the hard work all the poets put into their pieces.
    I’m curious: let me know which of the poems you liked best and if you are amenable to share what’s the reason it turned out to be your favorite?

    1. The Haiku Foundation is a great ‘institution’ founded by the very respected Jim Kacian. THF opens the door for a lifelong journey of curiosity and wonder. I am indebted to Jim Kacian. I am not taking back my observations that has resulted in a healthy dialogue. Patting each other’s back is the surest way to smugness and eventual decline.

  18. What an incredible collection, Deborah! I can’t wait to see what you comment upon as there were so many diamonds in this long list.

    I particularly enjoyed the memories and romance in this one:

    canoeing
    on the river
    –her trailing fingers

    Nancy Brady
    Huron, Ohio

    1. Yes, Eavonka, and I was happy that my fellow haikuist explored so many different topics. It felt like a journey through the hole lifetime and through all of the emotions a human being can feel. 🙂

      1. ‘Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who couldn’t hear the music.’ Friedrich Nietzsche

    2. Thanks, Eavonka, for your kind words. So many excellent haiku.
      When I read yours, I immediately thought of my Mom racing to get the sheets off the line when it began storming. A good memory.

      Stephen Peters’ happy clouds brings to mind Bob Ross paintings. Absolutely delightful.

  19. A wonderful selection of poems! Congratulations to all the featured poets! Each poem was moving, but these ones touched me especially:

    deeper into the past
    the cut
    of the river

    Bryan Rickert
    Belleville, Illinois

    dark bush …
    swirling plastics in its journey
    the creek snakes through

    Madhuri Pilla
    Australia

    after the rainstorm
    the weight of stars
    in this bucket

    Maya Daneva
    The Netherlands

    yours and my river
    this summer it’s just me and
    an aging goldfish

    Urszula Marciniak
    Poland

    body-shamed
    the puffy cloud rearranges
    its shape

    Vandana Parashar
    India

    1. Thank you. Sometimes a poems hits right into the heart and let me see the world from a different view. I like that very much.

  20. Hello Krishna,
    Regret your behavior. The editors aim solely to share their love of poetry and haiku with as many like-minded individuals as possible, offering a common platform for this purpose.

    Your comments about the editors are unkind and misplaced and should be retracted.

    Your haikus have been featured on this platform, and you should be grateful for that. If you believe you are the greatest haiku poet, then who was Basho?

  21. My haiku in Ms Cynthia Rowe’s June edition of Haiku Expressions.
    noon watering
    first silent arrival
    rainbow butterfly
    Ms Rowe is my Haiku Guru. I also feel that the administrator of this page should change. New person fresh outlook.

    1. Krishna,
      I don’t wish to pick a fight, but Deborah Karl-Brandt is the guest editor. This is her first week choosing haiku for the long list. I would guess that she had about 250-300 (maybe more) haiku she had to read, select, and then put together in this list, which she alphabetized by the first name, in the space of four days. She then had to send this list to Lori and KJ, who behind the scenes, make sure there are no errors in the formatting before they upload the file for the posting on Wednesday morning. Deborah is a volunteer and both KJ and Lori do so much to help their guest editors be successful. In the meantime, Deborah will have chosen 10-15 haiku to comment upon as being illustrative of her theme, and that requires her to write the comments, and then get it into Lori and KJ, who, again, will do all the behind the scenes magic they do so well. Not only that, but because THE caters to poets around the world, the guest editor has to look up words that maybe unfamiliar to the editor. Check out where poets give as their residence, and you’ll see how many countries are represented.

      How do I know this? I was a guest editor, and for those weeks, it was rush, rush, rush reading each submission, cutting and pasting selected haiku into a document, getting the document(s) in on time, and repeating that process.

      I have the utmost respect for anyone who guest-edits and the utmost-est respect for Lori and KJ. Thanks, Lori, KJ, and Deborah for your hard work.

      Thanks, Deborah, for including one of mine this week, allowing me to be part of the group of haiku poets from around the world. Congrats to you all.

      1. Thank you Nancy for your kind words and for sharing your expirience as guest editor. It’s definitely a lot of work that needs to be done, but it is gratifying to be trusted with such a task. There were something between 400-450 poems to read and the selection process can never be easy, because there are so many different world views, cultural backgrounds and haiku aesthetics to consider (haiku aesthetics might be different depending the origin of the haiku poet. I am a member of the HSA, the Britisch Haiku Society as well as the German Haiku Society and my expirience ist, that even If my work is more and more successesful in the English speaking world it becomes harder and harder to be published in the German speaking countries. Quiet funny, isn’t it? ). So I do feel honored to be guest editor and I am consider myself lucky, because well…I can enjoy them all!

        1. Deborah,
          It’s indeed a lot of work, and I knew I may have downplayed the number of haiku since there are generally two haiku per submission, and as you mentioned, all the research required to understand some of the haiku. I wish you all the best and know you will do an outstanding job throughout your tenure here. I have always been impressed with your haiku; I can’t imagine you having difficulty with your native language haiku.

        1. Kathy,
          I started to say you and Lori were volunteers as well, but I wasn’t positive so I backed away. I just know how much time and work you two do throughout the year. I presume almost everyone who “works” here in The Haiku Foundation are volunteers. Thanks for all you do. I feel like I have learned so much from participating in Haiku Dialogue, and look forward to each week’s offering.

          1. Yes, Haiku Dialogue is a great way to learn more about haiku. Reading lots of different writers and seeing what they can do with this fascinating form, the different ways haiku can work, is very helpful. More so the commentaries are very enlightening to understand why some haiku are so excellent. You can read tons of quality poetry from some of the best authors for free! Which also means that everybody with the technical equipment can join in. I appreciate that very much.

    2. This is a confusing comment, as the editors who read and select the haiku on this page are constantly being changed out. There are new perspectives every month or so. And kj and Lori do an incredible job of making sure the selections are uploaded on time and professionally edited. I hope this is only a case of miscommunication on your part.

  22. So many wonderful haikus but Caroline Ridley-Duff’s especially movied me!!

    Babbling river
    tells me stories
    meant for the sea

    Caroline Ridley-Duff
    United Kingdom

    1. I’m glad you like the selection of haiku.
      This haiku by Caroline Ridley-Duff is very humorous and immediately conjures up an image in my head of a lady being chatted up by a gentleman.

  23. Many haikus are burdened with complex words. Haiku means an elegent simplicity. The charm is lost.

    1. I find it inelegant to make such a comment here. Especially as it doesn’t apply to most of the haiku.

      Helpful reminder: the plural of haiku is haiku. It is similar in this way to deer and moose.

        1. “The word haiku is a Japanese loan word and in Japanese, nouns don’t change depending on whether they’re plural or singular. Therefore, the plural of haiku is haiku. However, it is not uncommon to come across haikus as the plural form in English.”

          I believe, as the form and word is Japanese, that it is best to respect their plural of the word.

          1. Origami, ikebana, manga don’t have a plural form because they are singular concepts. Kimonos, haikus, ninjas are acceptable plurals. In this case your reminder is unwarranted.

      1. Jack Kerouac was perhaps the first to mention haikus.
        Should be ‘drifts’ and ‘Pillai.’
        Greatest haijin are Japanese to whom perfection is their middle name.
        I do have ‘Basho: The Complete Haiku’ translated by Jane Reichhold. However, my favourite is Issa.
        My impromptu effort:
        drunk looks up
        at swirling dark clouds
        a lion about to pounce

    2. The problem with defining haiku as “elegant simplicity” is that such a narrow definition ignores 400 years of the art form expanding into new variations. Some of the most acclaimed modern haiku poets occasionally use “complex words” and technical terms to write about their world. “Elegant simplicity” is merely one approach to haiku and needn’t restrain poets from exploring the boundaries. Haiku don’t need to be charming to be impactful, either. Charm is nice when you have it, but sometimes you need a blunt instrument. See the political and anti-war haiku of 1930s Japan, for example. Generally speaking, it is better to accept that an art form is varied and complex than it is to oversimplify it and reject those who create on the fringes. The fringes tend to become less and less fringe, and the sticklers tend to become less and less charming.

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