Photo/Illutration(Illustration by Mitsuaki Kojima)

  • Photo/Illustraion

roof satellite dish


the gibbous moon

--Michael Dudley (Minto, Ontario)

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mansard roof

the mysterious Morse

of falling rain

--Eleonore Nickolay (Paris, France)

* * *

spring-fed creek

two bullfrogs make stones

of her grandsons

--Stewart C. Baker (Monmouth, Oregon)

* * *

Posing as a leaf--

cardinal on a tree branch

on Thanksgiving Day

--Priscilla Lignori (Montgomery, New York)

* * *

Turning the sacred page

of a blood-tinged leaf

to read the other side

--Patrick Sweeney (Misawa, Aomori)

* * *

three little sisters

and a small house . ..

how many fireflies

--Lucia Cardillo (Rodi Garganico, Italy)

* * *

Days shortening . ..

two dinners delivered

shared by three

--Kiyoshi Fukuzawa (Tokyo)

* * *

three single socks . ..

my mother wore two of them

when she died

--Isabelle Prondzynski (Nairobi, Kenya)

* * *

frozen pond three wolves

the midnight in poet’s book

safe hideout in dreams

--Pawel Markiewicz (Warsaw, Poland)

* * *

Standing and gazing:

the mountain

veiled in mist(ery)

--T. D. Ginting (Chiba)

* * *




exotic rice

on misty Po valley

a coconut moon

--Lucia Fontana (Milan, Italy)

Immaculate white coconut flesh shines as bright as moonlight and has a chewy texture that takes time to taste, so it must have mystical properties, according to the haikuist. Sheila K. Barksdale knows that carpenter’s weed, milfoil, and woundwort are lovely white flowering medicinal herbs with the power to cure fevers, toothaches and bloating. In her haiku she implies it may also have a dreamy effect on girls in Gotherington, U.K. Doc Sunday watches inquisitive high school students explore old temples in Hiroshima Prefecture.

yarrow patch

Cousins’ careless wood-shavings

are rings for her fingers

* * *

High schoolers

sniff at ginkgo nuts

ancient shrine

Sparks from the fireplace work their magic on Angela Giordano in Avigliano, Italy. Barbara Haveron is first to feel a cold breeze in Devon. Also in the U.K., Martha Magenta decides to sit closer.

windy evening--

gathered around the fire

Grandma recounts fairy tales

* * *

smoke in our eyes

debris falls from the sky

too windy for fireworks

* * *

campfire sparks--

our shadows touch

behind us

Pat Benedict Campbell knows how to rock a baby to sleep in Calgary. On a quiet evening in Nairobi, Antony Waswa tucks in the bedcovers. Terrie Jacks tidies up after a gorgeous day in Ballwin, Missouri. The Lignori’s end an evening together.

for my grandchild

a lullaby in Irish--

the moon does the rest

* * *

the stubbornness

of my daughter’s snores--

silent night

* * *


the sound of family


* * *

Thanksgiving evening--

one-thousand puzzle pieces

spread on the table

Writing from Warsaw, Anna Goluba attributes her source of poetic inspiration to these words by the magician and poet Aleister Crowley: “Every man and every woman is a star.” Natalia Kuznetsova holds her kin close in Moscow. Adjei Agyei-Baah may have found purgatory in Kumasi, Ghana. Martha Magenta finds just the right flower for a funeral in the U.K.

All these bright stars . ..

My departed and future


* * *

grave-visiting day--

the family reunion

in its entirety

* * *

funeral grounds--

cult and family in ritual battle

for a goner’s soul

* * *

autumn sunrise . ..

golden chrysanthemums

for the cat’s grave

Following a funeral and a few days rest at an old family home in Eiheiji, where colored trees and silvery grass swayed in the autumn breeze, Teiichi Suzuki penned these two haiku to mark his mother-in-law’s death at the age of 90. Marina Bellina stood in awe of the heavens over Bagnolo San Vito, Italy. Tuvshinzaya Nergui prayed in Mongolia.

Grateful to all

mother’s last words

autumn galaxy

* * *

Autumn funeral--

deleting mother’s name

from the cellphone

* * *

dark matter

wondering where

her other universe is

* * *

temple bell . ..

snow flurries twice

on a bodhi tree

Amy Losak took a brisk walk before breakfast in Teaneck, New Jersey. Saffron and white wine are magic ingredients that Fontana adds to risotto alla Milanese, a typical fare of rice topped with hand-stuffed pork sausage and served for Sunday lunch. Eufemia Griffo admired a painting of a woman with long reddish brown hair.

crisp fall morning--

hospital lampposts

wrapped in cornstalk

* * *

around the table

time seems to rewind

rice and luganega

* * *

Ophelia’s hair

stealing the colors

of a Bordeaux wine

Maria Luisa Bartolotta enjoys a lazy day in Melilli, Italy. Satoru Kanematsu bows his head in Nagoya. Horst Ludwig counts his blessings in the small college town of St. Peter, Minnesota. The retired professor said “residents watch deer peacefully walk by their living room windows.”


the sun warms their pebbles

in the autumn

* * *

Cats asleep

at the temple gate

falling leaves

* * *

Back from dinner--

at the door a wooden box

filled with yellow pears

Barbara A. Taylor drank Greek wine flavored by tree resins on Mountain Top, Australia. Nickolay envied a host’s swagger. In Croatia, Zelyko Funda reflected on Genesis.

summer evening

a stick insect clings

to the retsina bottle

* * *

Montmartre grape harvest

the flow of tourists welcomed

by a tipsy tramp

* * *

wine party

no one envies God

for his completion

Tony Burfield approves of a little girl’s selection of colored leaves in Pinewood Springs, Colorado. Beate Conrad peered through hand-shaped red leaves in Waterford, Michigan. John Rowlands covered up in leaves.

leaf collection--

her belief that her teacher

is wrong again

* * *

With holes maple

winds increasingly shifting

points of light

* * *

bubbles rise

in our sparkling wine . ..

another shower of leaves

Ramona Linke watches birds flying south from Germany. Anthony Q. Rabang gets ready to party in Ilocos, Philippines. Junko Yamada feels uprooted in Kamakura. Kanematsu has a travel companion.

Cranes calling . ..

the wine moon splits clouds

above the sea

* * *

earthen jar

the moon peeks

sugarcane wine

* * *


in autumn azure--

floating clouds

* * *

For a while

in the train window

winter moon


The next issues of the Asahi Haikuist Network appear Dec. 15 and Dec. 29. Readers are invited to send haiku for the New Year on a postcard to David McMurray at the International University of Kagoshima, Sakanoue 8-34-1, Kagoshima, 891-0197, Japan, or by e-mail to (

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David McMurray has been writing the Asahi Haikuist Network column since April 1995, first for the Asahi Evening News. He is on the editorial board of the Red Moon Anthology of English-Language Haiku, columnist for the Haiku International Association, and is editor of Teaching Assistance, a column featuring graduate students in The Language Teacher of the Japan Association for Language Teaching (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 Ito En Oi Ocha, Asahi Culture Center, Matsuyama City, Polish Haiku Association, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Seinan Jo Gakuin University, and Only One Tree.

McMurray's award-winning books include: "Only One Tree Haiku, Music & Metaphor" (2015); "Canada Project Collected Essays & Poems" Vols. 1 -- 8 (2013); and "Haiku in English as a Japanese Language" (2003).

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