PACE Global Haiku • PACE November 2014
Dr. Randy Brooks

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Brian Johnson

Below the Surface:
Haiku of Robert Gibson

The Long Journey

Brian Johnson

I chose to name my collection The Long Journey for many reasons, but mainly due to my long journey through college, that actually brought me into contact with the art of Haiku. I began taking the Global Haiku class at Millikin University in my hometown of Decatur, IL during my final semester before graduation to serve as a "filler" type class, one to meet general education requirements, but discovered this simple yet valuable art of self-expression.

The Long Journey represents not only my collegiate career that I write about in some of my poems, but it also describes the approach that I attempt to take the reader on, and the many different places that one singular haiku can take anyone on. The haiku becomes a vessel for the imagination, an invitation to dream, and the window of the soul of the reader. The poems allow us to draw on, and remember our most cherished and vivid memories from days forgotten and passed. I attempt to draw on these situations, or even ideas of situations to come, to pull in and reintroduce the reader to them, and to allow them to remember or re-imagine their memories and life experiences.

I would hope that the readers of my poetry enjoy the jumping off points provided to them, while recalling and re-envisioning some of the best memories of their lives as they come vividly back to life through imagination and literature. I would like to personally thank Dr. Randy Brooks, my Global Haiku professor at Millikin University, for teaching me this soul-felt art craft and allowing me to mature in it. I dedicate this collection to everyone who loves to dream and still carries the courage to do so. Please enjoy.

the long journey
is capped by
a few steps

crowded lines
a last minute purchase


dawn breaks
coffee pot perks up
my mind

children running through
green grass




chiming bell
the man stands alone with
his bucket

The Cycle

flowers arranged
the aisles take
their place

nervous hands
prepare for new life

promises made
not followed

dinner table
dining for one

passing thoughts
what happened

new life comes
this time different


ball glove
catches dreams when
broken in

robe and cap
dresses up
my dreams


honors cords
don't shine as bright as
my smile

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