Photo/Illutration(Illustration by Mitsuaki Kojima)

  • Photo/Illustraion

Sultry night her pearl necklace breathes a secret

--Teiichi Suzuki (Osaka)

* * *

Sun and sand

burnish skin to gold

an unending summer

--Neena Singh (Chandigarh, India)

* * *

Wild berries

bursting with flavor

purple kisses

--Jessica Renee Dawson (Courtenay, British Columbia)

* * *

Sunshine

hoisting the Hinomaru

at the stadium

--Mohammad Azim Khan (Peshawar, Pakistan)

* * *

Endless summer

little bit of shade

passersby

--Richard Jodoin (Montreal, Quebec)

* * *

Barefoot

on searing asphalt

involuntary dance

--Christina Sng (Singapore)

* * *

The baby asleep

lying over my heart

summer deepens

--Marjorie Buettner (Chisago City, Minnesota)

* * *

Father’s name

fades from the stone

seventy-first summer

--Kiyoshi Fukuzawa (Tokyo)

* * *

On the night row

the stars lure me

out of the canoe

--Daryl Muranaka (Bedford, Massachusetts)

* * *

High Alps meadow

where there is no haying

crickets

--Bruce Ross (Hampden, Maine)

* * *

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FROM THE NOTEBOOK

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This long hot summer--

no end to wildfires, earthquakes

and heated debates

--Natalia Kuznetsova (Moscow, Russia)

The haikuist has had enough of summer, but hot air keeps blowing. Try to remember the cooling breezes we enjoyed last spring when John Jennings wrote this poem in Galway, Ireland.

Cherry blossom fall

let pink petals dress my clothes

scattered by spring breeze

Elizabeth Crocket remembers the joy of picking fruit in Burlington, Ontario. Ian Willey remembered his wedding in Takamatsu, Kagawa. Priscilla Lignori seems reticent when remembering her birthday in Montgomery, New York.

Strawberry picking

children’s faces

growing redder

* * *

Anniversary

a plastic flower spinning

opposite directions

* * *

September birthday--

amid the gifts and wishes

lengthening shadows

Helen Buckingham remembers an electrifying kiss: first kiss static bouncing off the stars. Eva Limbach wrote this one-line haiku recalling how much she enjoyed the first blooms on her rose bush last June: late summer roses let’s do it again.

Eleonore Nickolay met a man with no name. John Hawkhead is ecstatic. Ana Drobot surrounds herself in purple perfume.

blind date

he tells me that he’s

a ghost writer

* * *

her arms about me

I wonder about flying

like this to the stars

* * *

lazy afternoon--

summer lost in the

lavender field

Once those refreshing, tingling winds died down however, temperatures soared. At the beginning of summer in Raleigh, North Carolina, just as Charlie Smith set about repairing his veranda the thermometer hit 35 degrees. Mario Massimo Zontini dreamed of fresh fruit in Parma, Italy. Sheila K. Barksdale’s pet played with dried out bamboo leaves in Florida. Smajil Durmisevic Zenica appreciated the value of water in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

First scorcher

second sweaty shirt

third ice cream

* * *

Another hot day

I buy a melon and cut it

for tomorrow

* * *

Worsening drought

but there’s our cat, patting the stems

of bamboos

* * *

Summer heat--

a pigeon bows drinking

at the old fountain

Some days the extreme rain made it hard to breathe, noted Miljenko Simunovic in Ivanic Grad, Croatia and Marek Kozubek in Bangkok, Thailand. Dejan Pavlinovic breathed so hard the clouds blew away from Pula, Croatia.

Summer rain

melts on

hot roof tiles

* * *

Hot summer dawn--

giving thanks to God

another breath

* * *

With every breath

a rain cloud farther away

from a dried up field

After heavy rains left Matsuyama and the sun reappeared, Iris remarked, “The trees took a deep breath.”

After rain

twirl my parasol

fireworks come

Readers are invited to enter the Matsuyama Photo Haiku Contest organized by the Matsuyama Haiku International Promotion Committee and supported by the Asahi Culture Center and The Asahi Shimbun. Information on how to enter is available at this link: http://www.matsuyamahaiku.jp/contest/eng/

At this end of summer, haikuists continue to experience extremely wet, muggy hot days, defined by the Japan Meteorological Agency as 35 degrees or higher. Paul Faust suggests we rename the season.

Humidity high . ..

outwardly a season of

perpetual heat

The seas around Japan are also hot. Temperatures over 30 are bleaching the colors from the corals and killing fish in Okinawa. Yusei Iida and Yoriko Tashiro, respectively, wrote haiku during a university campus festival in Kagoshima.

Ocean Day

significant lesson

prof’s haiku

* * *

Ocean Day

a new kind of fish

deep sea bed

Craig Steele seems tempted to write lyrics for the sounds of the edible sea snails he found on the beach. Simon Hanson goes fishing in Queensland, Australia. Greg Longenecker collects seashells. Goran Gatalica goes sailing in Zagreb, Croatia. Mohammad Azim Khan just floats in Peshawar, Pakistan.

The sea’s song

broadcast

by every whelk shell

* * *

Under the pier

fish meander

among shadows

* * *

the pale pink

of summers’ past

seashell shelf

* * *

A long hot summer

sea buoys

warm to the last regatta

* * *

Hippo summer . ..

mostly by the side of the pool

submerged

It has been an endless summer, but Nina Kovacic realizes that when our green foliage canopy starts to dry out in October, the planet must brace itself for a surge in carbon dioxide levels. As leaves wither, plants stop fusing carbon and concentration levels will spike. The lowest readings this fall will likely exceed the highest point recorded last year. Her haiku was translated by Durda Vukelic Rozic in Croatia.

Withering flowers

on the balcony

summer holidays

Hanson lives in an eco-friendly home.

All afternoon

the ceiling fan plays

with a potted palm

Eleonore Nickolay dreams of cooling off in Vaires sur Marne, France. Muscovite Evgeny Ivanov and German Christof Blumentrath, respectively, crack ice.

Dog days

in the husky’s eyes

the ocean

* * *

Hot August,

but water in a pool

is already ice

* * *

Heat haze

cracking ice cubes

in a single malt whiskey

Ed Bremson accepts his fate in Raleigh, North Carolina. Maria Laura Valente sends her first haiku from Italy.

It’s still summer

and you’re already gone

cicada

* * *

First fallen leaves

whirling in the hot wind--

echoes of summer

Writing from New York, Carol Pearce-Worthington formed a haiku chain titled “Endless Summer.” The opening line begins “i the rain” which is followed by this stanza

all night through the moon rain

summer rain I could sleep all day

drops in every space rain

The poem delightfully flows over eight more haiku-like moments and concludes in these three lines of fallen autumn leaves.

what’s dropped on the wet sidewalk also shines

in ten years those trees won’t fit into this sky

end of the rain sunlight in my eyes

Guliz Mutlu ends summer in Ankara, Turkey, in one line: a bee my overjoyed summertime.

Bob Friedland continued for five lines in Richmond, British Columbia.

Woman-scented sea,

exhaled cigarette smoke,

the coughing start-up of the engines,

and the peculiarly pleasant smell of the exhaust

before the heat of the day

Gabriel Rosenstock salutes a fallen hero. Marc Riboud (1923-2016) the French photographer famous for his Asian reportage passed away Aug. 30.

Fading glint

of a flower . ..

Ramona Linke begins fall in Germany without her beloved father.

Cloudy moon

a slight autumn gust . ..

missing dad

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The next issues of the Asahi Haikuist Network appear Oct. 7 and 21. Readers are invited to send haiku about spiritual stones such as rosaries, crystals, salts, or amulets on a postcard to David McMurray at the International University of Kagoshima, Sakanoue 8-34-1, Kagoshima, 891-0197, Japan, or e-mail to mcmurray@fka.att.ne.jp.

* * *

David McMurray has been writing the Asahi Haikuist Network column since April 1995, first for the Asahi Evening News. He is also the editor of OUTREACH, a bi-monthly column featuring international teachers in The Language Teacher of the Japan Association for Language Teacher (JALT).

McMurray is professor of intercultural studies at The International University of Kagoshima where he lectures on international haiku. At the Graduate School he supervises students who research haiku. He is a correspondent school teacher of Haiku in English for the Asahi Culture Center in Tokyo.

McMurray judges haiku contests organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Asahi Culture Center, Matsuyama City, and Seinan Jo Gakuin University.

McMurray's books include: "Canada Project in Kyushu" Vol. 1 (2006) - Vol. 7 (2011), Pukeko: Fukuoka; "Haiku in English as a Japanese Language" (2003), Pukeko: Kitakyushu; and "Hospital Departmental Operations--A Guide for Trustees and Managers," Canadian Hospital Association: Ottawa, Canada.