Haiku Kukai 3

Global Haiku • Millikin University • November 2014

carpet of knockout roses
underneath garden stone—
a slug

lost in thoughts
radio knows
just what to say

Kristina Swaggerty

passenger seat
I'm the built in

Andee Cavanaugh (4)


This last comparison I did like it was said in class whenever ever you are in the passenger seat you are the DJ, nowadays it went past the radio and now you can play the music through your phone with hookups in your car now. I do still listen to the radio and like haiku said the radio knows just what to say. There is always a song on I can relate to it seems like. Karianne

nothing to be thankful for
a Cowboy's fan
on Thanksgiving

Cristi Haddock (9)

love letters from college—
binding us together

to-do list
all checked off
Oh no!

Kristina Swaggerty (4)

I chose this one because I thought it was funny. It discusses a to-do list being finished and then thinking oh no at the end. Normally when someone finishes a to-do list it's a happy time, but according to this it isn't. It leads to the idea that someone is finishing a to-do list and then realizing that they missed something or have the feeling they did. Sam

aliens landing
first contact
all they want is booze

Sam Reisman

one song
to first love

Cristi Haddock (5)

on my way to a test
past the big M
rub it for luck

ball glove
catches dreams when
broken in

Brian Johnson (7)

perfect mess
we have created
time to laugh

a fine wine
old friends are
better with age

Cristi Haddock (12)

I like this one because it is so fitting. Aged wine is rarer and more expensive. You seem to treasure it more when you have a glass or bottle of it. I feel your close, best
friends are in a sense valued as a good aged wine. Nothing can compare to a good friend and a good glass of wine. Karianne

This haiku could not be more true. When it comes to having good friends, a few great friends is better than having a lot of surface friends. I have four close friends who I consider them to be almost family to me and I would do anything for them any day. As the years go on, we only get closer and our relationships only get stronger. Much like a fine wine that gets better with age, so do great friendships. Andee

This is so true, just like with wine the older I get the more I realize that friends are hard to come by and the older you get the more they stick around. Tatum

feet on dashboard
mountains and streams

driving through the night
snow coming down
hope I make it home

blustery night
they honk and wave as they
parade about

studio space
listening to the beat
of my heart

Andee Cavanaugh

My husband and I love to make music so the first thing that comes to mind from this haiku is a recording studio. I see how the last line of the second and third line of the haiku could be true for us. Music is the blood that runs through our veins and through every part of our lives. Listening and making music is extremely important to us. Brittani

keepsake photo
Mom's high school graduation

7 years old
her story tells
all of her dreams

holiday table settings—
wedding flatware

Danette Renee Beach (2)

chipping paint
and cracked windshield
my first love

Kristina Swaggerty

rust stains on the hood
dents in the doors
but it was my first

Sam Reisman


I chose to compare these two because they are so similar in meaning. This makes me remember when I was getting ready to turn 16 and be able to drive. When kids are finally getting their license they do not care what they get to drive, in many cases, and therefore they cherish what they have. If it gets you where you want to go, the rest isn't all that important. Unfortunately not all kids are like this especially now days they are too spoiled, but when I was younger I remember that it didn't so much matter what you were driving as long as you were driving! Dana

turn the key
rpm up . . . up . . .

a stranger passes
avoiding my gaze
someone I once knew

Amber Hendricks (8)

I really like this haiku, it reminds me of when I see friends from high school or someone I once knew and don't want to make eye contact with them. I want to avoid the conversation and pretend I do not see them. Tatum

This reminds me of almost an everyday occasion. It is un real to think about how many people you pass who you've been friends with, talked to, use to see everyday and you can hardly even look at them. I see people I went to high school with a lot and I don't talk to hardly any of them. I may see them at work, at the store, picking up my daughter, or just out somewhere and some of the time you turn and look the other way. It isn't always this way but if there aren't any good memories there is no reason to have a conversation. They are now a stranger to me. Katie

games from ages ago
blowing into the cartridge
the start-up sound hums

Sam Reisman (6)

Again, this haiku takes me back to my childhood. It seems that, unless they were brand new, you always had to blow into the video game cartridges to get them to play. I remember doing this at my house and at the all my friends’ houses. It seemed like a never-ending struggle to get those games to work. Sometimes we would “battle” a game for a half hour to get them to work, and, as children, it was important enough to keep struggling to play those damned games. After all the struggling, though, nothing was better than the thrill of victory when you heard the first notes of the starting music. It’s comical to think that in order to play the game you, first, had to win a game of getting the game to work. Paul

holiday hair do

cherry vanilla traces
uncle's pipe
fragrant in the attic

cold winter night
gas light is on
long walk home

my first thanksgiving
in my first home

senior prom tux
makes a comeback
25 year reunion

smoke everywhere
from the tailpipe
daddy's beat up truck

Crissy Lennon (5)

sunset on the beach
sand between your toes
I Do

Katie Luedke

I chose this as my favorite haiku from kukai 3 because it reminds me exactly of my honeymoon with my wife. After we were married this past June, we flew to Florida for a cruise and spent a few days on the beach beforehand. We liked to sit and watch the sunset and just sat on the beach one night, just taking in the enjoyment of our big event and being together. When I read this, I imagine either my honeymoon, or a wedding that is taking place on a beach during the sunset, with everyone taking in the joy of the event. Brian

This makes me think about this coming May, our best friends will be saying I Do on the beach in Florida. I feel honored to be a part of their wedding and can't wait to enjoy the sun and sand. Even though I'm not the one saying I do, I can't wait to send some time on the beach with my husband since we haven't been on a vacation in six years. Monica


out of the boat
on to the water
faith keeps me

rusty broken bridge
I drive across

Crissy Lennon (8)

over the horizon
I see myself
just one step closer

Crissy Lennon (6)

This is one of my favorite haiku from the Kukai 3. When I read this it makes me feel at peace. I currently am working towards my Bachelor's degree as well as working full time in a fast-paced environment at CEFCU. I am currently one of the top member service representatives in sales at my member center as well as among the regional area. I find my everyday life hectic, full of responsibilities and goals that I need to maintain and exceed on a monthly basis. Going to school to further my education and having a busy career has been difficult, especially from a financial standpoint since I am paying for my college all out of pocket. So, once my Bachelor's degree is fulfilled I will be able to be a part of the management team! I have already caught wind from my manager that my vice president over the member centers is nominating me next year. This is an ambiguous accomplishment and I am honored. I feel that I am headed down a path towards great accomplishments and I cannot be more thrilled, scared and stressed. Reading this haiku brings me peace of mind that I am, one step closer . . . ! Veronica

I chose this one for the same reason as we discussed in class, my college journey. Starting school as an adult was not and is not easy for me. There are times when I don't think that I can do it and feel like giving up. But it makes it worth it every semester when I work my tail off and successfully pass my classes with good grades. I prove not only to others but most importantly to myself that I can do it. Every semester I am a little closer to the bog accomplishment and see the light. Dana

sad faces
no Christmas tree
dad's laid off

Crissy Lennon (10)

busy office
everyone waits for the
closing bell

How divine!
You decide.

mother's diamonds
grandma's diamonds
all in one

Tatum McCutcheon (5)

tire pressure
pink chiffon
in lace

old tin roof
drops of rain
scent of dirt

Crissy Lennon (2)

I like this haiku because I like gardening outdoors and the smell of fresh soil. This haiku also reminds me of how I feel when I am visiting my grandparents' and my Dad's homes in Tennessee. This haiku makes me reflect on the expanse of red soil, grass, and fields. I also hear the sounds of nature. The "old tin roof" reminds me of chicken coops and sheds. I feel a connection with family ties and the land. As a reader, this is a wabi-sabi haiku that signifies peace. Danette

ripped here—patched there
fits just right
I don't care

Shannon Lucas

I chose this haiku because every time I read it I am reminded of my favorite pair of jeans that I still have to this day. These jeans look pretty rough, holes and stains all over them. Every time I wear them I receive comments, both good and bad, but as the Haiku states, I don't care. I love these jeans and will continue to wear them until they cannot be worn anymore, they fit perfectly. Jaime

wind chimes sing
a stormy affair
she looks away

a baby born
with two fingers

Amber Hendricks (8)

sunny day
green grass
perfect golf swing

ice cold watermelon
the children
ask for more

Kristen Johnson (4)

I like this one because it takes me back to my early teenage years, the weekend in May when the boat races use to be at Decatur Lake. Summer start weekend was a fun time to catch up with friends after a long school year. My mom's boyfriend would always bring food to grill out and the watermelon. This particular year, he brought two. One was for the kids to enjoy, and the other for those over 21. By the next day, I forgot which one was for whom and started to eat the watermelon anyways. It tasted amazing! By the time I knew it, I had eaten the rest of it. As I'm taking the last bite, my mom comes home from work and asked me which watermelon I had dug into. As I manage to slur out the words and aimlessly point, my mom couldn't help but laugh. Needless to say, I wasn't going anywhere for the rest of the day. Kristina

wings expand
into the darkness

Crissy Lennon

webbed feet
they wobble
as they walk

emptiness fills the fridge
hunger lurks in
my son's stomach

the corner of the garage
36 chevy hotrod

she threads
sewing machine

Apple iPhone

Veronica McQuire (2)

jewelry box
blow the dust
what treasure

I open the lid
no music plays—
grandma's jewelry box

Amanda Prahl (2)

football game
she wipes her cheek
colors disappear

Mona Lisa

Veronica McQuire (2)

it still sits on top
of our lit Christmas tree
our tarnished Christmas star

Amanda Prahl (5)

Growing up my mom would pull out the old box of ornaments and we know it was time to decorate the tree. The last thing we would do was put the star on top. I would wonder why she would keep the same star year after year. Now I know it was just a family tradition. Crissy

Christmas tree
bottom half

Tatum McCutcheon (6)

This haiku makes me think of either a baby or an animal that messes with the tree, therefore you have to decorate the bottom half. We try and put our special ornaments towards the top because our cat will try and knock of the Christmas ornaments if they are low enough on the tree. Melissa

summer kiss
lotion bottle
please one more dollop

Veronica McQuire (3)

front porch podium
momma yells
street lights blaze

Shannon Lucas (8)

I chose this haiku because it reminds me of my childhood. I grew up in a small town and no matter where you were you had better have your butt home when those street lights came on. If I was late my mom would stand on the front porch and yell my name and then I knew I was in trouble. It makes me think of a time when life was much simpler and all I had to worry about was the street lights. Crissy

a full day of shopping
ends with hot tea—
and my comfy sweats

curled hair
new dress
rip in my panty hose

Melissa McFadden (8)

hands held around
the table

Andee Cavanaugh (9)

Finally over!

Amanda Prahl (8)

This particular haiku kukai stood out and I related to it because it reminded me of my 18 month journey of pursuing my BS Organizational Leadership at MU. Graduation is finally here and it takes place on next Sunday and I cannot begin to express how this haiku stood out for me. I am in the stage of unbelief and happiness and I realize it is FINALLY over. All the late nights of studying, writing papers, and working on projects have come to an end. Ocamie

all the mistakes
I made with you.

Veronica McQuire (6)

snow covered road
hoof prints

late November
first sight of snow

white stuffed bear
from a dying grandmother
a final gift

Sam Reisman (3)

cool Autumn day
thin and blue
cozy warm sweatshirt

my old jeans

child's favorite movie
and parents too

Monica Ashley (5)

a life that seems perfect
on my side of the screen

Brittani Allen (9)

I chose this poem as my favorite because it speaks to modern culture. It is a modern day keeping up with the Jones's. The current generation is so absorbed with being glamorous. There is so much fake reality on television, it is upsetting and it makes it difficult for a parent to teach a child how far from reality many forms of entertainment are. There is a show on MTV called catfish that helps people discover if an image on facebook is everything it claims to be. In many cases, the life on the other side is a complete lie. It is so easy for young people to believe the lie. Youlanda

family gathered
for the first holiday

in the flicker of light
i see his smile
candlelit dinner

Brittani Allen (6)

as we sit by the fire
the puzzle pieces
start to fit together as one

Jaime Taylor (4)

a shot of vanilla
in the ice cold coke
drugstore soda fountain

Brittani Allen (3)

Sometimes it can be difficult to explain why a particular haiku is a favorite. The reasons for a favorite are not always understood by the reading audience. Personal likes and life experiences are the most common reasons why a reading audience will select a haiku as their favorite. I have selected this haiku to complete a reader's response because of my personal like to vanilla flavored Coke. I have an addiction to caffeine and enjoy soft drinks. Over time I have become bored with regular flavor soft drinks. A splash of vanilla adds a level of pleasure and enjoyment to the drink. Vanilla flavored Coke can be purchased in cans at most stores. However, fountain drinks are more flavorful than canned soft drinks. I have found the best fountain vanilla Coke soft drinks are at Steak and Shake restaurants. Steak and Shake will allow you to adjust the amount of vanilla in your soft drink to your own personal satisfaction. I have not developed a talent to make vanilla flavored Coke with fountain taste at home, although I have tried. Mark

This haiku reminds me of my childhood. The closest local pharmacy to where I grew up had an old-fashioned soda fountain in the back. As a child whenever I was sick enough to require a visit to the doctor's office it was usually followed to by a visit to the pharmacy to get a prescription filled. My mother would take me to the soda fountain where we would enjoy soda or malt while we waited for my prescription to be filled. I can still remember my first taste of a Coke flavored with vanilla from that soda fountain. Coke Vanilla from a can doesn't even compare. I think it's sad that the small town local pharmacies are going by the wayside in favor of larger corporate establishments with no small town feeling or care. Paul

hand wash
instead of gentle cycle
old habit—

one part lemon, two parts whiskey
grandma's homemade

Youlanda Johnson (9)

Christmas lights
whisky in my cup
keeping an open mind

stayed up all night
baking holiday pies
just like mommy

Youlanda Johnson (3)

every year I pretend to be better but
it never gets easier
missing you

Youlanda Johnson (12)

on the vintage couch
I nap where grandpa did
as a child

Brittani Allen

I LOVE this Haiku! It can move me from different locations based off of what I am thinking about. It mostly makes me think about my grandpa would take naps at Christmas or Thanksgiving. He wouldn’t sleep on a vintage couch but after dinner/lunch he would lay in his recliner and sleep. Sometimes when I go to my grandparents I will sit in the same recliner and it brings back so many memories. Most importantly, the memory of him always making my sister and I get out of his chair so that he can “rest his eyes”. Takes me back to the period of time where I was a child and reminds me of childhood innocence and being with my sister. My sister now lives 14 hours away and is unable to come to things like thanksgiving and Christmas every year. I am thankful for the ones that we did and do get to share together. Kristen

American muscle
the older it gets the
better its value

Jaime Taylor (7)

problems not understood
by those on the outside
my city

aged wood—outhouse
at Grandma's

cold hospital room
whisked away
see you on the other side

dressed up
ready to go
new coffee stain

Melissa McFadden (4)

This haiku makes me feel apprehensive. I hate the anxiety that’s felt when I have to get ready for an event that requires me to dress up nice, and moments before walking out the door, I notice a stain on my shirt or trousers. I am instantly and simultaneously struck with a sense of frustration and helplessness. I am left with the discouraging choice of leaving for the event looking like a slob, or taking the time to change, thus making myself late. Either choice demonstrates social ineptitude, but nothing can be done to avoid it. Paul

broken in
fits like a glove

worn shoes
still lead me down
the correct path

early morning
dancing in the snow
the dog had to potty first

giving forgiveness
on Thanksgiving
I let him back in

chill felt
through the holes
my favorite jeans

Dana George (4)

awkward silence
small talk
we used to be best friends

Amanda Prahl (16)

In the summer of 2012, I asked God to bless me with godly friends. He answered and gave me several, strong Christian friends. There were two women in particular that I became especially close with. We attended bible studies together, prayed for one another, encouraged each in our walk with Christ, and spent a lot of time together. These women helped me grow in my relationship with Christ and I valued their presence in my life. The time came for me to return to my studies in the PACE program, and naturally, socializing got moved down on the list of priorities. We still saw each other at church and on the weekends, but slowly I began to see a shift in the friendship. My two friends began spending more time together while I was left out of the equation. I tried holding on to my “spot” in trio but it slipped through my hands, like oil. Now, our short time together is just a memory. The relationship has been dwindled down to nothing more than exchanging pleasantries and hugs on Sunday morning. It saddens me, especially since their friendship has outgrown me. It hurts and I feel rejected. I constantly battle with feelings of jealously, resentment, and confusion. Throughout this experience God is teaching me valuable lessons. It’s a struggle but God is showing me how to forgive and be gracious even in the midst of pain. Shannon

Thanksgiving dinner
giving thanks
looking at an empty seat

Kristina Swaggerty

midnight mass
singing carols

white dress
a mother's touch

Karianne Woods

a long day
cool clean sheets
calling my name

Kristen Johnson (7)

Dad's white tshirt
sleeve rolled up
Marlboro reds

Amber Hendricks (3)

hair salon
I bring
my own hairbrush

Kristen Johnson (3)

a little boy
walked through the gates

Kristen Johnson (2)

beneath the stars
first kiss
our wedding day

August afternoon
sweat dripping
fish on the line

Amber Hendricks (3)

This makes me think of a hot summer day, sweat dripping off your face, no breeze, the air so heavy you cant take a deep breath, and my dad and I are sitting out back by his pond with our lines in the water trying to see who can catch a carp first. We don't talk much but say enough just sitting there next to each other. We have been doing this for the last several years now, and it is our way to be able to spend some quality time together. Amanda

sucking his binky
old blankly in hand

Karianne Woods (5)

I think of my older son being a toddler. He would always watch his cartoons with a stuffed tiger that my mom bought for him, binkie in his mouth, and watching cartoons. This really took me back to several years ago and brought a smile to my face. Amber

barely legible
pages worn
grandmother's cookbook

Karianne Woods (9)

old Bible from 1874—
first family church

clean house
now and then

Mark Sweeney (3)

her recipe I follow
never turns out
quite like hers

Cristi Haddock (11)

This image is of a recipe that I tried to make that was my husband's Grandma's. Almost every holiday she would make this dessert that had a pecan crust, chocolate pudding, and cool whip with nuts on top. She passed away and so none of us had it for a while. I attempted to make this which I thought would be so simple. I got the recipe and followed step by step. It was not right and was watery. What a waste cause we had to throw it out. I have not tried to make it since. Jacqueline

This reminds me of Thanksgiving. My grandma used to make homemade mac and cheese. Since she passed my mom has been making it. She tells me her recipe, but mine never turns out quite the way hers does. Tatum

country life
down home feel

hitting the road
to see a friend

new puppy
on black friday
a long drive

Jacqueline L. Davis (2)

pillow talk
you and me

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