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HAIKU DIALOGUE – Haiku Prism – Green

Haiku Prism – A World in Color

During this dark time we could all use something to brighten up our weeks. I believe that each one of us carries an inner light that can be a source of solace for others. So let’s take that light and channel it through the magic and wonder of haiku to express our world in all its glorious colors. Let’s let haiku be our prism.

Each week I will be providing a new color for you to meditate on and write about. You do not need to name it in your haiku, simply let it be an aspect. You can take this in any direction you like from various flora & fauna, fruits & vegetables, clothing items, celestial bodies, household objects, etc…to various associated moods. Even think in related colors such as pink for red or gold for yellow. I am also happy to accept sub-genres including scifaiku and mythku.

next week’s theme: Pink

Please send up to two unpublished haiku by clicking here: Contact Form, and put Haiku Dialogue in the Subject box. The deadline is midnight Eastern Standard Time, Saturday, April 25, 2020.

Selected haiku will be listed in the order they are received with a few chosen for commentary each week.

Please note that by submitting, you agree that your work may appear in the column – neither acknowledgment nor acceptance emails will be sent. All communication about the poems that are posted in the column can be added as blog comments.

Below is my commentary for Green:

Thank you, everyone, for your submissions this week. I know Haiku Prism is a bright spot in my life as I hope it is in yours. If you have yet to share this column with your family and friends, I encourage you to do so. Let’s share our colorful work and spread the message of light. Beginning and seasoned poets alike are welcome to submit!

This week you will find another fantastic range of style, tone, and subject matter. All of you inspire me week after week! Here are a few that stood out to me in particular:

green behind the ears my first yoga pose

Marisa Fazio

One of the delightful qualities of senryu is the allowance for colloquialisms. This playful use of the word green to imply inexperience while conjuring up images of complicated yoga poses is clever and quite amusing. I am reminded of my own initial yogic attempts which were undoubtedly quite comical as well!

quarantine kitchen
canned green beans
gets a makeover

Bona M. Santos, Los Angeles, CA

As we look back on this time, I believe we will marvel at our ingenuity as a species. We are finding new ways of communicating, new ways of entertaining ourselves, and new ways of engaging. As many of us live off of stockpiles or work with limited options, we indeed have to “makeover” a few things. I appreciate the fresh and creative use of turning quarantine from a noun into an adjective giving the word its own makeover.

well-manicured lawn
the prickly edge
of social status

Rashmi VeSa

What an enjoyable pivot in line two that provides such a great “aha” moment at the end! How often do we get caught up in appearances? Our vanity runs deeper than the state of our lawns. As we try to impress one another and display our socio-economic status, or the illusion of said status, we get caught up in the most ridiculous fashions and trends. There truly is a “prickly edge” to all we put ourselves through. Who really needs all those fancy towels anyway?

still water –
my penny turns green
in the wishing well

arvinder kaur

I’ve read many wishing well senryu/haiku before. This one strikes me as a new take on this symbolic act. For me, I get the sense that the moment of wish-making has long since passed, and that the wish remains not only unfulfilled, but abandoned and possibly forgotten just as the well has been. Hopefully a new wish is blossoming in its place!

after rain . . .
the wafting scent
of green tea

Taofeek Ayeyemi, Port Harcourt, Nigeria

I find this to be an intriguing pairing. There is so much I want to know here. Who is making the tea? Why? Is the poet alone or with others? Are they celebrating the end of the rain? Warming themselves up if the rain came with cooler weather? There is space here for multiple interpretations without the poet interjecting their own emotional take on the scene. I have heard it said that a haiku is not complete until it has been read, and this is a great example of where the reader gets to finish the story.

The following are the rest of my selections for the week. Happy reading!

mossy rock
the wish to sit
a little longer

Pat Davis, NH

 

a lighter shade of green
all that laughter
in my child’s eyes

Stephen A. Peters

 

green cornfields,
some scarecrows have
nests for hearts

Dan Campbell, Virginia USA

 

summer grace—
…….taste of green
……..in the early peas

Louise Viera

 

autumn wind
tightly holding
a green leaf

Bakhtiyar Amini

 

mint fields –
the cool of the evening
in the countryside

campi di menta –
il fresco della sera
nella campagna

Dennys Cambarau, Italy

 

grass moon
for the first time
the vireo’s song

Kristen Lindquist

 

blush of spring
something stirs
deep inside

Liz Ann Winkler

 

green wheat –
in one poppy
a haiku

il grano verde –
in un solo papavero
un haiku

Angiola Inglese

 

chartreuse mountain
monks sipping enlightenment
from a glass

Nancy Liddle

 

spring chill
the deep green
of a succulent leaf

Alegria Imperial

 

teenage lockdown
her only clean top
the difficult green

Roberta Beary, County Mayo, Ireland

 

i write haiku
like i smoke weed –
bloom after bloom after bloom

Milan Stancic Kimi, Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

 

barefoot-
on the newborn grass
my somersaults

a piedi nudi-
sull’erba appena nata
le mie capriole

Angela Giordano, Italy

 

parrots in cage
I mind
my language

Rajeshwari Srinivasan

 

spring training
a boy plays baseball
on his phone

Tom Bierovic

 

prayers seeping through her fingers green rosary beads

Steve Tabb

 

woodland burial
the pettiness
of green foliage

Eva Limbach, Germany

 

bounty
of the desert gardener
two green beans

Rehn Kovacic

 

Saint Patrick’s Day
he dodges a pinch
with his green eyes

Jackie Chou, Pico Rivera, CA, USA

 

first day of spring
her toes disappear
in the clover

Wendy Toth-Notarnicola

 

vernal pond
the songs of wood frogs
silence into tadpoles

Kat Lehmann

 

snake eyes
your garden-variety
temptation

C.R. Harper

 

free …
on my pants
grass stains

libera…
sui miei pantaloni
macchie d’erba

Daniela Misso

 

a green flash
the mirage of hope
at last light

Peggy Hale Bilbro, Alabama, USA

 

a sister’s envy
grandma’s green eyes
in mine

Karen Harvey

 

green-and-white sweater
all that’s left
of her team spirit

Roberta Beach Jacobson, USA

 

hunter’s moon—
the scent of wild thyme
from my dog’s fur

Corine Timmer

 

beach vacation
the way lime zings
my taste buds

Claire Vogel Camargo

 

after the rain
grass growing
on her grave

Margaret Mahony

 

corona news–
lingering taste of
green tea

Teiichi Suzuki

 

Mint tea-
happy the days that
.we dreamed together

vincenzo adamo

 

motley butterflies
vanish in greenery
memory of mom

Stoianka Boianova

 

pampas grass
our long conversation
drifts

Agus Maulana Sunjaya, Tangerang, Indonesia

 

greenery lost
in the mist . . .
cataracts

Valentina Ranaldi-Adams, Fairlawn, Ohio, USA

 

snipping chives
i’ve done nothing
to deserve them

Clifford Rames, Freehold, NJ

 

pistachio muffin
the mess my toddler makes
of words

Jonathan Roman

 

napping by the pond
even the frog
wears a mask

Astrid Egger

 

bedtime stories
seeing the Emerald City
for the first time

Joshua Gage

 

green signal …
i start for
nowhere

Vijay Prasad

 

distancing . . .
out of nowhere
a grasshopper lands

Manoj Sharma

 

from slimy coat
to velvet garb
the Prince kisses back

Greer Woodward, Waimea, HI

 

new leaves
the branches come closer
one with other

Nazarena Rampini, Italy

 

freeze tag
one of the little army men
throwing a grenade

Randy Brooks

 

Earth Day
teaching my daughter
the tints of green

cezar-florin ciobîcă

 

the jungle
on my desk –
earth day

Jessica Wheeler

 

under an oak tree
those green eyes
unforgettable

Elisa Allo

 

every leaf
a new nuance …
April light

in ogni foglia
una nuova sfumatura …
luce d’aprile

Lucia Cardillo

 

dry eyes I don’t let the gremlins get me

Susan Burch

 

midwinter
the screensaver freezes
on a spring meadow

Rich Schilling, Webster Groves, MO

 

red light
how I long for it
to turn

Kath Abela Wilson, Pasadena, California

 

freshly mown grass
she looks ahead
to summer

Nancy Brady, Huron, Ohio

 

blind date
the green herb my tongue
wants to wash away

wendy c. bialek, az, usa

Guest Editor Tia Haynes resides in Lakewood, Ohio, near her beloved Lake Erie. She was featured in New Resonance 11: Emerging Voices in English-Language Haiku and has appeared in journals and anthologies worldwide. Much of her inspiration comes from the landscape and people of the American Midwest as well as life with her two small children. Her chapbook, leftover ribbon, (Velvet Dusk Publishing) is available on Amazon. Follow her on Twitter: @adalia_haiku

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).

This Post Has 34 Comments

  1. Thank you Tia and all at the Haiku foundation for publishing my haiku. Thank you Jessica and Nancy for the kind compliment. I’m glad you enjoyed it. Though we can’t all go out and do much right now with the quarantine, we can still go out in the yard and dip our toes in the grass…or clover!

    Kudos to all. What a wonderful group of haiku again this week.

  2. Tia,
    Thank you for the work you do for this column, and for your commentary. This is such a treasure trove of haiku, and it never ceases to surprise and give us the ah…that now seems so precious!

  3. Happy Earth Day 2020!
    .
    here is a gift: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zk11vI-7czE
    .
    here is my earth day card: a little bluer the sky….now maybe we can start to find a new green solution!
    .
    thank you tia for this green display of diverse messages.

    here are some words i would like to share about:

    snipping chives
    i’ve done nothing
    to deserve them

    Clifford Rames
    .
    when things were before covid-19 hit….(which i believe has been around….for at least two years…before they are saying) and i would be shopping at my local organic market…..i would often share my little story with any shopper i noticed was reaching for a bunch of chives…..i would let them know, how i put mine in a cup with just enough water to cover the roots and place them on a door shelf of my fridge and they grow there….and i snip them as i need them.
    .
    so i don’t have to buy them frequently.
    .
    i don’t know if this relates to clifford’s poem….but it did bring back memories for me….when casual shopping and sharing conversations with strangers was quite enjoyable for me.

  4. Thankyou for this collection, Tia. An amazing line-up of greens, congratulations to all poets.
    .
    napping by the pond
    even the frog
    wears a mask
    — Astrid Egger
    Well, maybe it wouldn’t be so lucky at this time to have a surprise kiss, even from a beautiful princess, and there’s no taking any chances, here.
    I laughed aloud when I read this, a great visual, would make a smashing animated sketch.
    Could I have your permission to do just that, Astrid?

    1. I too was moved by this Carol.
      .
      napping by the pond
      even the frog
      wears a mask

      Astrid Egger
      .
      It being spring here, it was nice to see frogs get a mention in more ways than one. Astrid’s poem though took me on a journey. Linking basho’s old pond poem, the current pandemic and providing hope at the end in knowing the mask comes off and we again can breathe easy.
      A lovely poem Astrid.
      Thank you for the journey.

    2. Of course, Carol. I am glad you enjoyed it.
      I could really visualize it when I wrote it, and I was looking at my N-95 blue green mask…
      Astrid

  5. parrots in cage
    I mind
    my language
    .
    Rajeshwari Srinivasan
    .
    The little bit of humor in this one made me smile.

  6. Thank you, Tia for your comments on my haiku! You always have very insightful comments that gives more depth to the poems.
    Kudos to you, Kj & Lori for making this HD installment a success. It’s always been a joy having haiku as our ray of light during these tough times.
    For all poet contributors, congrats for another delightful set.
    Do stay healthy & keep safe everyone!

  7. Once again, a delightful collection of haiku and senryu. Here are a few of my favorites.

    red light
    how I long for it
    to turn
    —Kath Abela Wilson, Pasadena, California
    .
    I love the fact that KathAbela has captured perfectly the color green by referring to red. Very clever!
    .
    .
    every leaf
    a new nuance …
    April light

    in ogni foglia
    una nuova sfumatura …
    luce d’aprile
    —Lucia Cardillo
    .
    Another clever way of pointing us toward the color without ever mentioning it. This one appeals to me because I’ve often struggled to describe the amazing delicate green of new spring leaves.
    .
    .
    greenery lost
    in the mist . . .
    cataracts
    —Valentina Ranaldi-Adams, Fairlawn, Ohio, USA
    .
    Poignant recognition of the loss of vision, perhaps referring to one of many pleasures lost to us as we age.
    .
    .
    prayers seeping through her fingers green rosary beads
    —Steve Tabb
    .
    A beautiful visual image of faith. Lovely.
    .
    .
    So many beautiful poems, too many to comment on all! Thank you for including mine, Tia. Kudos to all my fellow/sister poets included.

  8. What a wonderful selection and the brilliant commentary opened up new vistas too.
    Thanks so much to all contributors and the Haiku Dialogue Editorial team.

  9. Thank you, Tia, for a lovely selection! The verses cover a whole gamut of emotions and feelings this week. Two poems that spoke nostalgically to me were-

    pistachio muffin
    the mess my toddler makes
    of words

    Jonathan Roman

    Distorting words with aplomb is indeed the toddler’s privilege. When my daughter was younger, she refashioned words and names with a confident assurance as she could not pronounce them and insisted that we also speak her language. This verse neatly packs in this quality of toddlers, the use of the word mess in L2 fits in both the crumbly muffin as also the complication of pistachio.

    bedtime stories
    seeing the Emerald City
    for the first time

    Joshua Gage

    The Wizard of Oz continues to be a favourite story for several generations. We had enacted a portion of this story in high school and spent many hours discussing the Yellow Brick Road and the Emerald City. This verse struck a chord, use of the word seeing in L2 enhances the experience.

    Thank you also, Tia, for commenting on my senryu ! It has been an absolute pleasure to participate in Haiku Dialogue and am in awe of your hard work, especially during these difficult times.

    Stay well and safe!

  10. So happy to be a part of this wonderful collection. Thanks Tia for selecting my poem and for the commentary. I totally enjoyed reading your analysis. All poems are lovely.I particularly enjoyed the one by Pat,by Dan Campbell,By Liz Ann Winkler,Steve’s one liner and Manoj Sharma’s poem. Thanks once again.

  11. Thank you Tia for selecting my haiku/senryu. Thank you so much for your commentary too. I’ve very much enjoyed reading the GREEN haiku collection. Very refreshing and reflective. Congratulations to everyone !! All the best to you and to the Haiku Dialogue team.

  12. from slimy coat
    to velvet garb
    the Prince kisses back
    .
    Greer Woodward, Waimea, HI
    .
    whimsical

    1. Thanks for commenting on my haiku, Valentina, and for selecting it, Tia. This has always been a tale I’ve enjoyed. Although my poem is about something else, I’ve always wondered how much of the frog remained in the Prince.

      Greer

        1. Valentina,

          I see I’ve shuffled my thoughts here. The haiku is a look at the traditional Frog Prince tale with emphasis on the Prince’s enthusiasm on once again being human. What I meant by wondering how much of the frog remained in the Prince was a reference to stories in which characters switch species but inappropriately retain characteristics
          of one of the species: a handsome Prince who jumps into
          ponds or has tender feelings for tadpoles, a frog who prefers cookie crumbs to flies.

          Greer

  13. Thank-you Tia for selecting my haiku for publication. Thank-you also to the others at the Haiku Foundation who help assemble this column. Congrats to all the poets. Happy Earth Day 2020 !!

  14. All are wonderful selections! I loved the imagery of Wendy Toth-Notarnicola’s haiku:
    first day of spring
    her toes disappear
    in the clover
    I love going barefoot in grass!

    And also Manoj Sharma‘s
    distancing . . .
    out of nowhere
    a grasshopper lands
    The grasshopper reminds me of trying to stay distant while grocery shopping and looking up and seeing someone standing right next to you.

    1. I understand the feeling of grass between the toes. I laughed when I read it because my son and his wife just posted,a photo of our youngest grandson (7 months) sitting in grass for the first time, crying and/or showing displeasure about the event. I remember his older brother in a similar pose when he encountered grass for the first time. Maybe it is an acquired feeling.
      As for me, clover and bare toes is divine. Nice ‘ku.

  15. A perfect collection for Earth Day! Thank you, all–I enjoyed so many of them, including this one:

    snipping chives
    i’ve done nothing
    to deserve them

    Clifford Rames

    *

    And this senryu made me chuckle:

    spring training
    a boy plays baseball
    on his phone

    Tom Bierovic

  16. Thank you Lori. I found this an exceptional collection. Love the many nuances and every one spoke to me. Well done contributors.

  17. A wonderful, varied collection this week. From green eyes ( one of the rarest of eye colors, by the way) to the greening of our earth (especially appropriate for Earth Day celebration) and everything in between except for envy/jealousy (and I could have missed the references), well done all.
    .
    A special shout out to my fellow Ohio poets. Joshua…loved the Oz ‘ku, and Valentina…for opening my mind to the misting of sight because of cataracts. Thanks Tia for all of your hard work here…and all without payment (the green!)

  18. A wonderful GREEN collection! Congrats to all featured poets & a big thank to you, Lori!

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