Skip to content

Haiku Windows: dollhouse window


Haiku Windows

In the book Haiku: The Art of the Short Poem, editors Yamaguchi and Brooks quote David Lanoue:  “A haiku is a window”…

In the following weeks we will look at (or through?) the many possibilities raised by this thought – and you’re invited to join in the fun! Submit an original unpublished poem (or poems) via our Contact Form by Sunday midnight on the theme of the week, including your name as you would like it to appear, and place of residence. I will select from these for the column, and add commentary.


next week’s theme:  airplane window

A view of the tops of the clouds, or the runway scene after an hour stuck on the tarmac, or the toy-sized trees and traffic enlarging as the runway approaches, or the glint of a sunrise, or a friend waving hello or goodbye to someone standing outside – the airplane window…

I look forward to reading your submissions.


Haiku Windows:  dollhouse window

I have been overwhelmed once again by the response and the wonderful poems! Thanks to all those who have taken the time to submit! Several poets submitted similar poems – there was a recurring theme of tea, and the idea that dollhouse life mimics real life, for example. Some poets abandoned concrete images in favour of ‘dreams’, ‘imagination’, and ‘childhood memories’. Some poems took a much darker turn than I had anticipated… also, it is Week Two and I am already breaking one of the rules I had set for myself, which is to select no more than one poem per poet per week… I hope my comments will help explain why!

Again, all of the following poems deserve a few words, but I will limit my comments to the following four:

dollhouse window
the same argument
an octave higher

Betty Shropshire

This poem is an example of the best kind of haiku – it says so much in so few words. Will the doll win the argument where the child presumably did not? How easy it is to picture this scene, and the poet trusts that the reader will supply almost all of the information…

dollhouse window                                                   dollhouse window
my daughter and I                                                   my son and I
seeing eye to eye                                                     seeing eye to eye

Lori Zajkowski
New York

What a difference one word can make in a haiku! I was struck by this reaction when I first read these separate entries, and it would not have happened had I not read them both. Here the poet describes a scene that can be taken literally – the parent possibly on their knees to play at the child’s level – and yet with either a son or a daughter there is perhaps something more to the phrase ‘seeing eye to eye’…

school open day
painting windows
on my shoebox dollhouse

Marietta McGregor
Canberra, Australia

The poet brings what could be a memory to life in this unique take on dollhouse windows – the freedom of childhood, and painting whatever one wishes, is emphasized by the first line – ‘open day’…

attic dollhouse
the window that marked
my sister’s half

Roberta Beary
County Mayo, Ireland

Another unique view of the dollhouse window, again a possible memory, and again the reader will supply information to complete this poem, or to at least ponder the possibilities – here the poet ventures into the realm of sibling rivalry and the concept of sharing… or not sharing. The ripples from reading the poem may lead the reader to wonder why the dollhouse is in an attic (whose attic?), and about the state of the relationship of the adult siblings…


Here are the rest of my selections for this week:

doll’s house window
still taking tea
the dolls she loved

andrew shimield
isleworth uk


dollhouse –
in the bay window
a little moon

ANNA MARIA Domburg-Sancristoforo


it’s ajar
since she left –
dollhouse window

Arvinder Kaur


dollhouse window
the child peeks into
empty rooms

Bernadette O’Reilly


back then…
a dollhouse life
of glassless windows

Carole MacRury
Point Roberts, WA


power cut –
through the dollhouse window
candles flicker

Carol Jones


all day rain
lowering the blinds
in her dollhouse

Debbi Antebi


a little longer
for a bit more privacy
this kerchief curtain

Ernesto P. Santiago
Athens, Greece


dollhouse window
the plastic lilacs
always blooming

Giovanna Restuccia


sharing secrets
through the window
the doll and I

Hifsa Ashraf


just like Alice
my eye fills the frame
of the dollhouse window

Jennifer Sutherland
Viewbank, Victoria, Australia


morning at the dollhouse
drawing back the curtains
with a pin

Lee Nash
Cognac, France


dollhouse window…
the little hands pretend
to pour tea

Lucia Cardillo


junk shop –
cobwebs curtain
the dollhouse windows

Lyn Reeves
Tasmania, Australia


dollhouse window
three generations
of fingerprints

Marilyn Ashbaugh


upstairs window eye of the cat giant again

Marion Clarke
Warrenpoint, Northern Ireland



Mark Gilbert


spring cleaning
my little niece hangs
new curtains

Marta Chocilowska


the family
she always wished for –
dollhouse window

Martha Magenta
England, UK


dollhouse window   everything   just how she left it

Matthew Markworth
Mason, OH, USA


hurricane season
the dollhouse windows
boarded tight

Michael Henry Lee


her tiny nose
glued to the dollhouse window
since Christmas

Michael H. Lester


granddaughter closes
the dollhouse window

Mohammad Azim Khan
Peshawar Pakistan


dollhouse –
through paper curtains
a pink shine

Nazarena Rampini


night shadows
a noise behind
the dollhouse window

Olivier Schopfer
Geneva, Switzerland


dollhouse window
watching the girl
she never was

Peter Jastermsky


dollhouse window
glimpse of the childhood
I missed

Robin Smith
Wilmington, DE


discarded toys…
a night full of stars
in the dollhouse window

Ron C. Moss


Open Day –
the fly flies
through the dollhouse window

Serhiy Shpychenko
Kyiv, Ukraine


through a doll’s house window the grandfather clock of childhood

Shloka Shankar


late afternoon
the dollhouse furniture
casting shadows too

Simon Hanson
Tamborine, Queensland Aust.


draughty old doll’s house
the hair dryer finishes
new cling film windows



dollhouse window
my child
invites me in

Stephen A. Peters


the always draped
bedroom window

Susan Mallernee


his nightly visit
curtains closed on the
dollhouse windows

Terri French


abandoned home
a face in the window
of the dollhouse

Valentina Ranaldi-Adams
Fairlawn, Ohio USA


Katherine Munro lives in Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, and publishes under the name kjmunro. She is Membership Secretary for Haiku Canada and an Associate Member of the League of Canadian Poets. She recently co-edited an anthology of crime-themed haiku called Body of Evidence: a collection of killer ’ku.

This Post Has 44 Comments

  1. Down the window; Oh my, too late, too late, for a very important date:

    kewpie dolls
    between the stringer lights
    halo moon

  2. Great start to this series. Some achingly beautiful pieces here. Spent all day and most of the night flying on Wednesday, so excited for next week’s.

  3. I thoroughly enjoyed your selection, Katherine. My sisters and I loved playing with our dolls and their houses and I have such happy memories of these days.

    1. Thanks Angelee! The next topic is at the very top of this post – airplane window – you have until midnight Sunday (Pacific time) to submit…

  4. Just want to add my apologies to Lori Zajkowski – although the poems look right on my computer, when I looked on my phone the 2 poems were all mashed together… I’m so sorry about that! I am hoping that all readers will realize the error is mine, & I hope that everyone will be able to view the proper version on a computer!
    Thanks for your understanding!

    1. On my laptop (Apple MacBook Air 13″) Lori’s two haiku showed up perfectly, and I was mightily impressed by her work, and Kathy’s commentary showed an interesting and refreshing view.
      Thank you Lori for your work, and Kathy for presenting the double haiku.
      Wow, I cannot wait to see what appears next week, this is so exciting!
      deep bow to Lori, and Kathy!

    2. If you check the □ for request desktop site on your cellphone (which is what I had to do) it displays perfectly. Lovely verses, Lori!

  5. Another one (post deadline):

    dollhouse envy —
    he would never have chosen
    those curtains

  6. I thoroughly enjoyed these poems. I especially liked the twin poems of Lori Zajkowski, and agree that one word can have so much power. Her two poems belong together!

  7. Another marvellous collection of verse, so many different views.
    I do like Marietta McGregor’s – a lovely childhood memory evoking the many inventive play things we made as children from the humble shoebox.

  8. dollhouses with their windows were a theme i just couldn’t relate to. no such things in my growing-up time and anyway i never liked dolls (plush animals were a different matter altogether). however, this doesn’t prevent me from enjoying this selection of dollhouse window haiku :)

  9. Dear Katherine Munro, Greetings. Going through – each haiku a new insight.

    with regards

Comments are closed.

Back To Top