Archive for February, 2012

The Ley

Posted in Challenge!, Haiku, Spring, Winter with tags on February 29, 2012 by Tito

A prize is offered to anyone who can explain this very obscure poem by the ancient Irish haiku poet, Tito O’Tit. Your theories via the comments key, please.


..... Hillside monolith -
..... From here, I shall walk the ley
..... Of the Leap Day sun.

Winter Haiku 2

Posted in Haiku, Winter on February 25, 2012 by Mayumi Kawaharada

A snow-flake cluster
Lights upon my red scarf––


Spring promise

Posted in Haiku, Spring, Winter on February 20, 2012 by John Dougill

We’re into the sankan shion 三寒四温 time (three days cold, four days warm), and with Kitano’s Baikasai 梅花際 (plum blossom festival) at the end of the week spring is about to burst forth despite Kyoto’s recent covering of snow… Here’s a trio of haiku from the past cold spell which draw on the traditional notion of looking forward to the new season…

Sweet Valentine –
Plum blossom bud
Shyly emerging


Grey sky, grey stream
Black cormorants brooding:
Kingfisher flash of spring


Frisky ducks
Oblivious to snow –
Forgotten memories

Another sleepless night

Posted in Haiku, Winter with tags , on February 15, 2012 by Tito

On my recent trip to Tohoku with Radio colleague, Julian, we visited the little hot-spring town of Iizaka near Fukushima. 323 years earlier, Basho had stayed here and been plagued by thunder, a leaking roof, mosquitoes and fleas. He tells us that he headed out of town at crack of dawn.
We too found ourselves a  ramshackle inn to stay in.

…. Late night thaw,
…. Snow crashing down from rooves:
…. As Basho’s was,
…. Another sleepless night?

(Iizaka, Fukushima, 6.2.12)

Tokyo snow

Posted in Haibun, Winter on February 10, 2012 by David Stormer Chigusa

Tokyo got snow about three weeks ago—only about 3cm. I was fortunate to happen to look outside the night it was snowing, and it was quite a storm, with snowflakes flying as furiously as snowflakes can with a kind of mute rage that lets itself out in a tiny frigid sting, then lingers for perhaps a delicate second or two, then melts—like cartoon bees.

What amazes me though is how long the quite light frosting the roads got remains. Until just a day or two ago, a whole two weeks after the snowfall, there were still patches of it on edges of roads and footpaths. And it’s at its most treacherous after a week when patches adhere to the pavement, almost totally transparent and clean forgotten, but stealing the unwary step in a second, landing you instantly on your ass.

Let out once a winter
Tokyo snowflakes
Really flounce

We were once pretty
Says this gutteral
Slurp underfoot

That glassy-eyed
Sidewalk wants sitting on
Real hard

For photos, see my JapanVisitor blog.

From the Icebox inbox – 24

Posted in Haiku, Submissions, Winter on February 8, 2012 by Hisashi Miyazaki

winter moon
pink camellias
till it’s time to go   ………   Michael Henry Lee

frost on the pane.
winter words shaken down
– icy cold breath     ………   Claire Gardien

moonlit shadow
the old dogs lick
each other    ………    P K Padhy

winter work day
filling the wheelbarrow
full of sunshine     ………   Michael Henry Lee

Immortal Love

Under a strong breeze
Kinoshita’s grey ricefield
Turns green and yellow.    ………    kamome