Haiku Attempts 2 - open - nitty gritty - favorites

Global Haiku • Millikin University • Spring 2013

infinite hot water
no motivation to shower

new semester

shared restroom
aim my stream
at the dried vomit

Charlie Decker (5)

frozen car door
this time
the key won’t work

last minute homework
not enough coffee
to keep me awake

eight inches of snow
popping in and out of sight
a dachshund

too much
of a good thing
ramen noodles

Courtney Burress (4)

A heaping pile of twisting noodles lay steaming in front of me, however I cannot bare to life my fork to destroy the mound. Steam from the bowl wafts up my nose and I repress a gag at the salty intrusion. When an angry grumble bubbles in my stomach I heave a heavy sigh and dramatically plunge the utensil into the ramen. Carefully I let my fork curl into the pile, slowly wrapping noodle strands around the metal teeth. Plopping the food into my dry mouth, I can’t help but to cringe at the attack of sodium on my tongue. After many weeks of the same meal, the ramen’s flavor seemed to completely vanish and in its place a dull, bland mush infiltrated my mouth. Therese

swimming practice
get out
of my lane

and homesick
first week in college

Therese O'Shaughnessy (7)

the small boy
watches his cows
be taken away

you would think
I had won the lottery

Sarah E. Kisly (3)

I can imagine the countless times I’ve scoured the stack of mail at home for something with my name, or opened my box at the mail center anticipating a piece of mail on the other side. The outcome and action is really irrelevant. It is only a piece of paper; it isn’t going to change my life drastically or, anything of that sort. Yet, every time mail comes, I expect something that won’t be there. Even if I hadn’t ordered anything online, or something of that sort, we still expect something to come. However, when mail does come it is all that more satisfying, no matter how insignificant it actually is. Matt

hiding his pain
with the puff
of a joint

the fear of falling fades
as we glide on the ice
and you hold on

Courtney Burress (6)

finally free
but you must do
your own laundry

he smiles her way
the ice in her heart
begins to melt

Emily Crutchfield (9)

five in the morning
a janitor saw
my walk of shame

Heidi A. Zapp (11)

hardest work
the paper comes back
as an F

curled up by the tv
a train chugs
onto a snow-covered street

Alex Buchko (5)

daddy's little girl
dressed in a miniskirt
and glitter

a girl with an earring
a boy with a glove
not wanting to forget

career day
lots of fathers
my grandpa stands proud

Emily Crutchfield (10)

i give the frost
on my bedroom window
a smile

Jordan Caulk (5)

frost on his heart
at the sight of her
it melts

Emily D'Ambrose (12)

but after
the party's gone
who will be there?

late night studying
brain so full
she falls asleep

surprise fire drill
pink bunny slippers
in the snow

Heidi A. Zapp (8)

social drinking:
only social
when drinking

Jordan Caulk (10)

she looks away
I wave

Charlie Decker (10)

This, I think, has to be one of the most awkward moments imaginable for multiple reasons. I could see it as someone trying to get someone else’s attention, but they’re a little too late and the other person completely misses it. Or it could be someone waving to another person, and either during or after the wave, the other person breaks eye contact and completely ignores the person waving. That’s a pretty big sign of rejection there; I know because I have both given and received this gesture. Jordan

from last night . . .
you don't remember

like the old pick up
in the garage

Kelsey Meredith

This is a beautiful metaphor. My grandfather was one of those men whose garage was always filled with broken things waiting to be fixed. He actually had 3 garages . . . but the one at his house always had a truck in it. Thinking back I can't remember if it was always the same truck or not, but it never moved. In this haiku, I think that if something is broken like the old pick up, then it isn't going to get fixed anytime soon. It's probably going to sit there rusting and waiting for the right part to come along and make it run. Heidi

streaked mascara
on my hot cheeks
while his glow

the icy world
cannot freeze
her warm spirit

Kenneth Albin (4)

snow flakes
perfectly shaped
in my mind

icicles growing
not up
but down

tears on my keyboard
are we friends
or not

Kelsey Meredith (6)

she says
my prince is out there
. . . is he?

listening to friends
make evening plans
he sits alone

Kenneth Albin

This haiku reminds me very vividly of situations I’ve been in at times.  I am a bit of a loner, and therefore understand what it’s like to be surrounded by people and yet feel very much alone.  In a word, I feel solitary.  However, this doesn’t have to be a lonely experience, per se.  The haiku indicates that the individual knows the people well enough to consider them “friends”, yet he chooses not to participate in their plans for evening revelry.  He hears the excitement their voices, and is glad that they seem to acquire so much pleasure from musing about the night ahead.  He hopes they have a good time, and stay safe.  It is likely that they will try to include him and ask if he wishes to join, but this evening he will decline, despite the fact that he is flattered by their enquiry.  In some ways, he wishes a night out would give him similar feelings of anticipation and cheer, but it does not, and he cannot force himself to pretend to enjoy it – not tonight, anyway.  Tonight is time for lounging, for blessed quiet, and to be alone. Sarah

eyes closed
alone with God
what do you want with me

the sting of pain
leaves a beautiful flush
upon her face

Kelsey Meredith (8)

This haiku remains my favorite from the ones that we read this week in the Kukai. To begin with, I love the contrast in word choice and feeling from lines one to two. The idea of this “sting of pain” brings such a negative image to mind, but when I think of it leaving a beautiful flush on a face, the imagery and feeling of the poem shifts immediately. Not only was the word choice beautiful, but I also felt a distinct connection to the poem. I know the feeling of being in the stinging cold wind, and I immediately felt this when reading the poem. I loved the connection that I had to the poem and the feelings and emotions that it brought out of me. Molly

This haiku has two really different meanings to me. In class, we talked about the sting of cold left a flush on her face. This was not the first meaning that I gathered, despite the topic being the cold. I first thought about a man beating his woman. As in, he slaps her and, despite the tragic situation, the red on her cheeks is pretty. While discussing this with my roommate, he brought it back around to the cold. Their relationship in this instance would be very cold and brittle. It really reminds of Swede’s haiku, where the good always accompanies the bad. Charlie

long days
longer nights
never ending

two hands
in his pocket
keeping her safe

Randi Mehrmann (9)

One of the things I love about this class is the different perspectives I gain from listening to other people share their ideas about what a haiku means to them. This one was a prime example of this. I could not picture what this meant, but when I heard other interpretations, an image suddenly popped into my head. Other people mentioned the image of a girl putting both hands in her boyfriend’s pocket and other similar stories. After I heard this a clear image popped into my head. I can imagine a boy and a girl holding hands inside the boy’s pocket. I can imagine the feeling of safety that comes when you are holding hands with someone that you truly love. I love that I was able to experience this interpretation because of something one of my other classmates said. Emily D

icicle sword fights
a puddle
on the kitchen floor

that one looks ok
he shakes off the . . .
Our Christmas Tree

chocolate covered raisons
spilled the box
the levee breaks

Emily Crutchfield (6)

This haiku is very easy to relate to, because everyone experiences that time when it takes a small thing to seemingly end your world, or “break the levee”. Although I have never personally spilled a chocolate covered raisons box, I have had that experience of everything seems to be going wrong and it takes even the tiniest incident to set me over the edge. Jon

I wish on stars
and know
I'm growing up

Alex Buchko (4)

The reason I really like this haiku is because I’m the kind of person that still likes to wish on stars and make the occasional wish at 11:11. I think all of us were that way as children. I mean, who didn’t sit by their window every night and recite, “Star light star bright…” But, many people grow out of that wish-making mindset. Others don’t, but their wishes change. Instead of wishing for a pony, I just wish for the finances to afford school. Instead of wishing for my parents to get back together (my most common wish as a child) I wish to someday find someone who I’ll share the rest of my life with. And instead of wishing to be a princess, I wish to just be okay. Kelsey

college laundry rooms
down here
it's dog eat dog

Sarah E. Kisly (11)

I chose this haiku to respond to because I can entirely relate. The laundry room in Dolson Hall is literally a battleground. I have walked down to find people moving my laundry to the top of a washer or to the dryer. I have walked down to find my still wet laundry pulled from the dryer and put on the table for some other person to use that dryer. How rude!! Emily C

still wet
cycle three

Randi Mehrmann

This is my life. This just reminds me of when I open the dryer to take out my clothes. As I am opening the door, I always hope that my clothes will be dry, but unfortunately, they never are. I start getting upset when I touch my clothes, only to feel their cold wetness. This is when I realize that I will have to spend more time waiting for my laundry to be done. The dryers at Dolson are absolutely horrible. My clothes never dry after just one 45 minute cycle. I have had to put my clothes in for three cycles before. It is terrible. Most of the time I put my clothes in for two cycles, but I should not have to put them in for any more than one cycle. 45 minutes should be enough. It is the worst when I have towels since they are so thick. There was one time when I put my towels on for three cycles and they still were not dry. By that time, I gave up and let them dry in my room. Sometimes you will get lucky with a dryer that decided to work that day. I know which dryers dry the best so I try to dry my clothes in those, but most of the time they are already taken. As a result of these terrible dryers, I have to sit in my room and wait for 135 minutes for my clothes to finally be dry. Amanda

I could really relate to this haiku. My clothes are always wet after I take them out of the dryer, but I never cycle them again because it is late at night and I need sleep. So I usually just leave the wet, so in the morning when I run in freezing temperatures with damp clothing, I have a lot of fun. This poem related to my frustrations and miseries of the mornings. I bought a rack to dry my clothes on this semester so that would not happen, but this poem is the story of my life. It feels like it was written for me. Kenneth

finals week
when did I last shower?
Oh god

Heidi A. Zapp

This haiku makes me think of how stressed I was last semester around finals time. I was so worried about my exams that everything else was put on the back burner. This paints the image of a person who has locked themself in their room with books scatter around them. They are practically hiding from the world unless it is time to go take one of her tests. Randi

a winter's halo
glitters in her
scarlet hair


Charlie Decker (9)

good student
front row seat
spit shower

Jonathan Robertson (7)

in just one day
I have all the time in the world
to do everything

Matt Swofford (8)

In a nutshell, this haiku was written about my mindset on Saturday and Sunday mornings. I wake up really excited that I have all this time to be productive and work ahead and get stuff done for the coming week… and then it doesn’t happen. I know a lot of people feel this way and avoid doing what needs to be done (I’m guilty, too), but that initial confidence is ironic. The day goes from “I’ll do it all!” to “Well, that didn’t get done,” and time passes quicker than one thinks. While I think the writer made it about college, I think that it can be applied to life as well. Everyone’s got a to-do list, and every day, something is left undone. Alex

I really enjoyed this haiku because it is a lot like the things I tell myself when I get stressed out. I will admit, I stress out a lot. I am a perfectionist and if I don’t get something right the first time I feel like I will never get it right and that I don’t have enough time to figure it out. Luckily, I have someone there who tells me that I will get it right and that encouragement is much needed on those days when I feel stressed out to the max. Usually, I try to keep the optimistic attitude that is evident in this haiku, and if I believe in those words then I have no reason to be stressed! Courtney

oh dorm room
thank you for
your constancy

snow shows that
something cold
can be molded

Courtney Burress (7)

While most of the haiku we wrote about the cold focused on it’s sting, the value of warmth, or used it as a method of transportation for another theme, this haiku simply looks at snow and finds something beautiful beyond it’s superficial value for sledding and snowball fights. I also love that depending on my mood, I can read the haiku entirely differently. The author doesn’t specify whether the snow’s ability to be molded is favorable. My initial reading of the haiku saw the capability to be shaped as a positive, but the word “cold” in the second line could suggest that the snow could be molded into something harsh or bad. Upon reading this haiku while in a bad mood, I envisioned the ignorant and mean people in the world being an example of the fact that even a ridiculously beautiful world like ours can produce evils. Darien

© 2013, Randy Brooks • Millikin University
All rights returned to authors upon publication.