Global Haiku Tradition • Tan-Renga 2017

Favorite Caps

standing at the top
looking over a sea of trees
king of the world

Kyle Kite

behind him, the queen
pulling all the strings

Sam Miller

other caps not chosen:

to the left of me
a pack of boyscouts

now all i need
is my Rose

an eagle's shadow
over the rocks



at the funeral
an old man
grabs the last cookie

Kyle McMahon

avoiding the guests
surrounding him

Kate Gebultowicz

other caps not chosen:

macadamia nut
peanut allergy

his wife, noticing,
looks the other way

more than in front of
the casket

waiting for
the building to close

and hands it to
the littlest girl

next door,
a young boy cries for a lollipop

false happiness
masked over her face
turning the volume up

Nicholas Kemp

singing along
so he won't see

Paige Dorsel

I liked this one because it flowed well with my original haiku and I felt like it was what I was going for in the first place. I liked how they included maybe a relationship aspect to the haiku which adds a layer on to the haiku that I felt was good. Nicholas

other caps not chosen:

the best man
dancing too close

hospital waiting room
husband calls into work
for his dead wife

Yunek Moore

I hear a family cheering
for their newborn

Jake Melssen

This was my favorite two-line cap from the hokku I wrote because it brings happiness to a truthful and very sad situation. I also like it because they are complete opposites, the hokku is about death and the two-line cap is about new life. It also gives a excellent visual, I can imagine the phone call then the families cheering in the distance, not making it easier for the husband but easier for the listener. Hearing the husband make that call took a toll on me, I couldn't imagine the pain of him or their children. However, if I was able to hear family cheers over a new born that would have made the situation so much better and wouldn't have bothered me as much.  Dub

other caps not chosen:

while his kids

lilacs in full bloom
in the parking lot

friends I haven't seen
we pick up
right where we left off

Nick Retherford

same old jokes
good ole times

Chase Smith

I really like this cap because it confirms and continues the feeling of belonging and happiness that you get with friends. It brings back memories of being in high school gathered around a campfire, talking and dreaming of the next four years of college. Now, we gather and reflect on what it was actually like and the good and bad times associated with college. I really like how it is able to bring this image to mind. Nick R.

other caps not chosen:

starting from high school
ending in college

ice cream headache
slurping the shake first

little fingers
reaching for my fries
     for the third time

Olivia Gonzalez

if only
her mother know


I liked this two-line cap the best because the haiku was intended to be cute and playful. This haiku was about my niece reaching for my fries and the last two lines are humorous because if a child's mother was present it would be a total different scenario. I always use that saying when my niece is doing something bad or not paying attention and the last two lines are relatable to my niece. If her mother found out that my niece was misbehaving...we will say no more. Olivia

other caps not chosen:

searching the room
for her parents

the mother keeps

i can hear
giggles in the other room
a couple's first sleepover

Andie Burns

i wonder if they'll go
to his house next time

Amanda Donohoe

other caps not chosen:

Mom and Dad
turn up Fox News

late night
we sneak to the train tracks
no one will see

Chase Smith

the crickets in the tall grass
confessing our sins to the moon

Sam Miller

I picked this cap as my favorite because it was the only cap written for my haiku. I think this is a very good cap though. It brings different things into the story. I like the crickets part because it brings out different sounds than just the train. I also think it put more focus on whoever is sneaking to the train. The confessing of sins adds a sense of mystery to what is happening at the train tracks. Chase

stands alone
protecting the house

Brittany Walsh

a gang of preschoolers
topple his head

Randy Brooks

other caps not chosen:

longing for
a companion

the creak and squeak
as I pedal
grandma's old bike

Caitlyn Latshaw

newfound freedom
in something old

Emily Chudzik

I really liked this cap to my hokku because it brought the essence of new and old into the poem. When I wrote the hokku I imagined someone that had never had a bike before climbing onto one for the first time and taking off on it. Even though the bike was old and creaked the rider still enjoyed riding the bike. The two line cap added to the hokku by explaining that the rider has this new freedom to enjoy on the bike even though the bike it self is no where near new. Caitlyn

other caps not chosen:

if only I had brought
Toto along

i think
has a whatshisname

Andrea Burns

but do they have as many
as me?

Jake Melssen

I enjoyed this cap because it completely flipped the haiku on its head. When I wrote the haiku I had no idea it could ever be “ended” with a question. I intended for the haiku to be accessible and unite people, but this cap brings a feeling of exclusivity and status suddenly into the picture. I just really like that juxtaposition and immediate switch of intention. Andie

other caps not chosen:

after a break up
of a long relationship

the waittress doesn't look
like an Alice

that they
don't like

but only some
actually forgot

i hope
i'm not it

lying on the
mapping out our future

Emily Chudzik

i secretly hope we
go separate ways

Emily Chudzik

Even though it's my own cap to my own haiku, I did like my cap the best. In my original haiku, I thought about a pair of friends lying on the trampoline talking about plans for college. They were eager and giggly, excited about all the possibilities. In my cap, I thought about a way to unexpectedly turn it. I then thought about a friendship that is on the rocks. They're still talking about future plans, but the narrator is hoping that they won't follow the same path. Emily

other caps not chosen:

distant coyotes
scare us inside

our mom waves us in
Dad's here.

with eagerness

staring at the stars
minds drifting


once more I find myself
by an empty home

Jacob Melssen

pouring Dad's bourbon
into a paper cup

Randy Brooks

other caps not chosen:

because I won't
come home to you

my space
free from all the stress

but I still remember
the pain she caused

if i knew
it was the last embrace
    i would've held tighter

Jordan Oelze

alone i wonder
if you would have too

Amanda Donohoe

This was definitely my favorite by far. I wrote this haiku about my brother-in-law that passed away. When in class people mentioned that it could be about death or a break up or an old friend. I hadn't really thought about the other options, so I love that people took it that way. I really appreciated this addition because it made it about a break up. I didn't mention being alone in my haiku, but this person made it about being alone and thinking on the embrace. I really appreciated that. It warmed my romantic heart, but also saddened it. I can just imagine the two people breaking up, the one writing the haiku didn't know it would be the last embrace, but maybe the other person did. I also love the use of the word wonder. They aren't sitting and thinking alone—they are wondering. It was such a great addition that I really appreciated. Jordan

other caps not chosen:

your kisses is what i miss most
man's Bestfriend

the casket so light
with six grandsons

the milky way
our headlights
and a full tank

Kala Keller

running late
to somewhere we don't know


other caps not chosen:

bullets flying by
high speed chase

windows down
we crank up the radio

never whispering
        a word—
the old willow tree

Kate Gebultowicz

on its final leaf

Nicholas Kemp

I liked the two-line cap about the willow tree being on its final leaf. I think it connects to the haiku, because willow trees live long time. They are old but like anything that is alive at one point sicknesses arise. I think it was a realistic perception of life that connected the life of humans to tree making it unique. Trees usually outlive humans but we both go through the same cycle, but at different times. I thought it was a deep cap that can be used to continue and advance multiple topics. It could connect the willow tree being on its last leaf, because it over sees how humans destroy the earth etc. There are many ways that the next hokku can be written after it which makes it a wonderful line cap. Kate       

other caps not chosen:

girl cousins capture
the secret fort

pondering life
on a boat
I drop my paddle

Paige Dorsel

reaching into the water
I look right into my eyes

Kate Gebultowicz

This was my favorite cap to my haiku because I felt that it had the most meaning. I think the haiku represents a person who is very lost in thought and then they lose their train of thought when they drop the paddle. I think the cap also adds even more of an element of surprise because it seems the person is a bit startled by their own image. I imagine that then the person almost gets lost in their own reflection. I feel that this represents the essence of my haiku. The initial reader really understood what I was saying and continued with the same train of thought as I would have to create a cap that went along with the haiku so well. Paige

other caps not chosen:

and float

the current
narrowing to whitewater

my hands on you
your hands on me
just awake enough to kiss

Samuel Miller

it's Saturday
go back to sleep

Randy Brooks

other caps not chosen:

morning breath
doesn't bother me anymore

the faint coos
of mourning doves

goodbye, awake
the door

mornings filled with love
make life easier

© 2017, Randy Brooks • Millikin University • All rights returned to authors upon publication.