Global Haiku • Spring 2016
Dr. Randy Brooks

Previous Home

Whitney Gray


Final Departure

Whitney Gray

Haiku is a new world for me. It has been a comfort and ultimately a pleasure to begin this walk of poetry. Haiku, for me, allows a release to connect with everyday occurrences, and turn them into a work of art.

As a small town girl, it is natural that many of the haiku reflect rural themes. Many of my haiku come from memories of hunting and fishing with my dad, or playing in the mud with my siblings. I like to focus on the intimate interactions between people, and use my haiku to bring beauty to life’s little moments.

This collection got its name, “Final Departure,” because it is the final haiku collection brought together from this past semester. Even though we may be leaving the class, I am sure that I will carry my newly founded love for haiku beyond the classroom.   

About the Author:

My name is Whitney Gray, I am sophomore from Greenville, Illinois and I am studying biology with a concentration in Pre-Medicine. I am involved in several groups here on campus including: Sigma Zeta, Alpha Lambda Delta, Tri-Beta, Phi Kappa Phi, and Tri-Delta. I have worked as a chemistry lab assistant, chemistry tutor, and office assistant for the Pre-Professional Program. My hobbies include binge watching New Girl and The Office while procrastinating while learning organic chemistry.

heart too cold
to have someone
to warm my hands

a midnight kiss
just another year
like the one before

Sunday morning
     wrapped in cotton sheets
I watch him dream

trail of clothing
she follows to find
the toddler running naked

Valentine's Day
dancing in the kitchen
with two best friends

clomping boots
and a hunting jacket
dad's duckling

Without Words

Watching the cloud of breath in the crisp morning air, my boots clomp along in dad’s footsteps, trying my best to be quiet. My body confused, I sweat from my heavy parka while the winter air bites at my fingertips. Finally, we come upon the deer stand, a ghostly sight among the dark forest. Dad straps me into my harness, and it hugs me tightly as I climb high up into the sky. Fingers burning on the steel, I grasp one rung after another until I can finally swing myself into the seat. We sit above the world for what seems like hours. The sun slowly creeping into the sky, and bringing the world back to life. Numb from the cold and anticipation, dad taps my knee, and gestures to the north pasture. The doe steps out into the sunlight, and I lift my gun.

sun peeking
over the horizon
the morning dove calls

my face buried in his neck
taking in his scent
the vet whispers, "it's time"

together we’ll always be young

freshly made
baking in the sun
mud pies

concrete scratched hands
scuffy knees
driveway artshow


unfamiliar faces
          foreign words
the same sky

grass in between my toes
worm guts under my nails
fishing with dad

first time sick
away from home
               missing mom

the hazy moon . . .
     gleaming tracks
she awaits a train

firefly love
glowing brightly
for just a moment

to his side of the bed
pillow thief


summer night
we kick the blankets
and settle for footsies

welcoming him home
Father’s day card
hidden behind her back

my faith in a penny
the koi circle
my final wish

small town diner
he realizes
he loves her


beer foam
I decide
to leave him

signature haiku

© 2016, Randy Brooks • Millikin University
All rights returned to authors upon publication.