Global Haiku Tradition / Heather Aymer
Millikin University
© Randy Brooks 2002
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Shelly Mauer

my mother
kneads the dough
her arthritic hands

I like this haiku a lot because it is about my mother. My mother has painful arthritis but it never stops her from doing the things that she loves. —Shelly Mauer

under the car
the cat sleeps
in the shade

I wish I could write haiku like this one—brief, direct, balanced, and with a simplicity of language and an image that’s truly engaging. I see the cat lying on its side; not a care in the world. It’s not a dog’s life after all. It’s a cat’s.
—Bob Reed


  waiting . . .
the cup of tea
no longer warm
after yoga practice
the train's rumble
  mother's vase
then falls to the floor
the lost shoe
through the rapids
  spraying each other
the sisters run with hoses
across the lawn

the paddle
rests against the tree
rafters eat lunch

I like this haiku because it is about my white water rafting experiences. I love to go white water rafting; it was developed into a passion of mine. I like the fact that the haiku is about the paddle resting against the tree placed there by the rafters. I enjoy the contrast between the wild rapids that the rafters just emerged from with the peaceful attitude that they now share as they eat lunch. —SM

The rafters rest, and so does the paddle. But only one paddle. Is the other on the ground, left in the raft, or maybe lost to the river’s current? I picture a small group of friends out for the day, relaxing more than exerting—like that painting by Renoir, I think it’s called The Boating Party, something like that. Men and women, neither young nor old, having sandwiches and wine by a shade tree. Romantic intrigue? Perhaps. Gracious living? Without a doubt. —BR

  friends gather
around a bonfire
the beer cheer