Haiku Kukai 1 - Cold Haiku Favorites

Global Haiku • Millikin University • Spring 2010

Slip and Slide,
a childhood game,
also my walk to class

Garrett Derman (3)

I like this one a lot because at first I thought it was going to be warm and about summer (which confused me a little because of the assignment), but then I read the last line and I started to laugh. I love the humor in this haiku and the visualization I get by comparing a slip and slide and someone walking to class. It says just enough without saying too much. Kari

leaves fall slowly
harsh gusts
storm rushes in

Kari Thornton

This haiku transitions the reader from a calm atmosphere in the first line to a hectic one in the last one. The words “slowly,” “harsh,” and “rushes” are ordered to describe the sequence of an incoming storm. I can imagine the children outside playing when they feel the gentle breeze roll in. They glance around, noticing the trees swaying, causing leaves to slowly float to the ground beneath. Suddenly, a strong gust of wind blows through the neighborhood, sending the children running for shelter in their homes. Before they can make it safely inside, the storm’s harsh rain begins pouring down, slanted by the gusts of wind. Jade

icy roads
the car slides
into darkness

Nathan Bettenhausen (5)

I really liked this haiku first of all, because it shows the dangerous side of winter. Most people get really excited at the first snow of the season but in all reality, it is incredibly dangerous. I personally hate driving in snow and this haiku put a lot of my fear into words. Also, ice has a connotation that makes me think of light and reflection. Thus, I like the contrast from ice and light to the darkness. Becky

morning dew
frozen on the ground


bundled up
wobbling towards the hill
"Here we go!"

Susie Wirthlin (4)

What I like best about this haiku is that I get the sense of winter without any mention of snow; "bundled up" works as a subtle seasonal element. "Wobbling" emphasizes the cold, and reminds me of all the layers of clothing one puts on (or told to put on) as a kid. Another image that comes to mind is the younger brother on A Christmas Story when he's so bundled up, his arms are sticking straight out and he can barely move. In this haiku, however, the kids are determined to get up the hill to go sledding, which is emphasized by the last line. I also like how between "bundled up" and the word "hill," the reader gets a sense of sledding. Aubrie

seeing my breath
welcome winter
a fresh semester

Becky Smith


morning snow
on her bottom lip
a drop of blood

Aubrie Cox (6)

I love the vast contrast in this haiku. It starts out with something beautifuland ends with something sad and scary. It plays well on the emotions, and I never expected the last line to beanything like that. It also leavesso many questions. Perhaps thegirl just fell and cut her lip. Perhaps she is biting her lip in frustration. Perhaps there isn’t any real blood, but the blood is ametaphor. The snow may be asubstitute for cold emotions. And why is there blood on the bottom lip instead of the top? The exciting thing is that I don’t havethe answers. It is such a cryptic haiku that really makes you think. Nathan

I loved this haiku because the first image that came to mind was of Snow White. I saw a pale girl, her skin glistening like snow, with lips as red as blood. Then I saw this girl all bundled up, stepping out into fresh snow, and her chapped lips cracking to perfectly let one drop of blood spill out. The image of the bottom lip also made me think of a soft surface, parallel to the image of soft snow resting on the earth, untouched. Susie

This haiku was the only one that stood out to me. It immediately set me in the winter outside in the snow. To me, I felt my tongue sticking to the fence much like when I was a five year old and did this myself. What I like about this one, is that you can really look at it one of two ways. First, you can look at it as the morning snow being on her bottom lip. Or, you could look at it as a drop of blood on her bottom lip. By looking at it in different ways it takes a completely different meaning. When the snow is on her lip, it seems like a happy picture, until she sees the drop of blood in nearby snow. When the blood is on her bottom lip, it makes it seem rather scary and tense the entire time. You don’t know where the blood came from or why it is there. Certainly it is not supposed to be though. Another great aspect of this is the contrast of the blood versus the snow. As we know, blood usually stands out bright red in the fresh white morning snow. I can see the color difference in my head. Overall, this haiku really made me feel like I am there, seeing this take place. Olivia

icy wind
forced open doors
met with painfully closed eyes


all hope is lost
in the trenches
through the winter air

© 2010, Randy Brooks • Millikin University
All rights returned to authors upon publication.