Global Haiku • Fall 2014
Dr. Randy Brooks

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Jonathan Rieck

kasen renga:
from the sea we
come and go

haiku fiction:
A Stitch of Time


Budding Blooming Flourished

Jonathan Rieck

This is an introduction, of sorts. I'm not exactly good at these kinds of things. I can only hope that whatever pours onto this page will make sense to someone, if anyone, and hope that they will see what I see when it comes to writing haiku.

Writing something is more than just a few strokes of a pen on a page in a notebook. There's something so much more intimate to the development of thoughts, feelings, and ideas. Our creativity is molded to fit whichever container we choose to put it in, and we are the dictators of that small kingdom. Our writing is simply that – ours. There isn't really a right or wrong way. If it comes from you, if it comes from your heart, or if it's something that just fell onto the table, it's good. It's yours. It's as special as you want it to be.

I can remember numerous times in which I was called to write, be it from necessity or responsibility. But, I have found that writing is something that should be natural, like breathing. Writing should be as effortless and as timeless as the standards in the Great American Songbook. Writing should roll from your mind like the waves in the Caribbean.

For me, writing is much like a séance. Reviving something that has been omnipresent, but not quite in the consciousness. I often find myself going back to times in which life was simple, beautiful, and easy. But, there are other times in which I find myself writing about the darker torrents of the soul—we all have instances in our lives that we'd love but cannot forget. Reviving those memories and timespaces has always been cathartic. Writing should be that way, I think. Expressive, emotive, and filled with feeling.

Keeping this in mind, we do realize that haiku is not extensive or elaborate. Haiku plays cards with simplicity, the essence of true and raw beauty. I think that there's no better way to explain it. Writing haiku for me is finding the balance between me and the rest of the world. I yearn to be relatable, but I also tend to be confessional. Insert pieces of my life is always something that occurs when I write, and maybe that's because I'm a confessional person. But, there's absolutely nothing wrong with that. My haiku creates a small time capsule that I can reflect on, if I so choose to. In short, my haiku is me.

Hopefully you've derived something from this. And, if you haven't, I apologize for the confusion and shackles that are my mind. But, I sincerely hope that you enjoy this little collection of mine. These are my proudest haiku, and they are all from a very sacred place within my heart. Enjoy.

Peace and love.

Jonathan is a very dear friend to me, one of my closest. It is an honor to put some of my words before his collection begins. Within his haiku, Life breathes freely. The sensations are vibrant, the pictures are realistic, and each snippet of experience brings us closer to knowing more about him and about ourselves. That's one of the beautiful things about Jonathan that shines through his words: he relates to so many people in many ways. His approach is often subtle, but afterwards, we find ourselves seeing sunspots. His haiku do not sit in the shadow of the person that he is. In them, love, fear, desire and hope are all illustrated; so are myriad other emotions. They are astounding haiku because they are written by Jonathan's soul, and that is indeed a beautiful thing.

Taylor Hagerdorn

bent in keen inspection
tadpoles plankton minnows

~ for Kimberly Jean

the sun also rises
even when I
fail to hear the call

she spoke of him—
he put the stars in her sky

basement piano;
I use the washing machine
to keep in time

shouldn't we love freely?
sparrows will always
find their way home.

~ for Taylor Rae

she lit my cigarette
outside the late night diner—
lasts are always bests.

~ for Courtney Eileen

she kept his picture
on her armoire forever
love of the old man and the sea

~ for Wing and Ginger


velvet skies—
our skin paler
in the moonlight

darkened kitchen
he fetched a beverage
"I don't hate you, you know."

we spoke of soulmates
under a bridge—
people have purpose

~ for Gabriela Rose

spent cigarette tossed
in the clouded air
my own shooting star

cheapest wine
from the drugstore
come as you are

running fingers
through my bedhead:
legs just as tangled


catching my breath
before the leap

couldn't cure a broken heart
this side of paradise

~ for Fitz

windier night
the sounds of gunfire:
a cup skirting the street

an elder man
plays chess in the cafe
happily alone

our affections
enclosed in palms
budding blooming flourished

~ for my dearest someone

string lights
reflecting on his glasses
andromeda's eyes

© 2014, Randy Brooks • Millikin University
All rights returned to authors upon publication.