Photo/Illutration(Illustration by Mitsuaki Kojima)

  • Photo/Illustraion

winter afternoon-- a pair of mallards glide down the lake

--Angelee Deodhar (Chandigarh, India)

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blue moon of January

night skiing

making each breath count

--Claudia Coutu Radmore (Carleton Place, Ontario)

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Cross on a church

leans and trembles …

windy February

--Jiro Oba (Kawasaki)

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first day on the slopes

it is NOT like riding

a bicycle

--Marcyn Clements (Mammoth Lake, California)

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scarlet-winged buckeye

skips by the sulphur terraces

Mammoth, Yellowstone

--Marshall Hryciuk (Toronto, Ontario)

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snowy day

a squirrel on the fence

scattering sunshine

--Elizabeth Crocket (Burlington, Ontario)

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gazing outside

a wing flick of snow

and a woodpecker lands

--Jean Jorgensen (Edmonton, Alberta)

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Frozen prairie

distant grain bins the color

of starlight

--John Martone (Charleston, Illinois)

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road trip

all of our memories

covered in snow

--Andy McLellan (Canterbury, U.K.)

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peaceful faces

children sleep

on dry futons

--Minako Noma (Matsuyama)




mountain vacation

painting until nightfall

writing until morning star

--pamela a. babusci (Rochester, New York)

The haikuist thinks it would be wonderful to go “to a mountain cabin for the winter, light the fireplace and paint during the light of day with the warmth of logs burning.” She wonders whether she could “write dusk until dawn with the curtains wide open to let in the moon in?” Julia Guzman described her holiday abode in Cordoba, Argentina, as follows: The frozen stalactites-- how they hang from the wooden roof. Junko Yamada regretted not being able to finish the letter she had started before nightfall. Teiichi Suzuki wrote by starlight.


at coldest midnight …

unfinished letter

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Winter hush--

mirrored galaxy

on the pond

Jiro Oba finished writing the 100-page “sleeping rhinoceros,” a fine collection of haiku in English and Japanese recently published by France-Do (2018) and superbly bound and wrapped in an ivory-colored obi by Nihon Hicom. Some selections deftly describe family or gently critique his love for films. The veteran writer is at his best, however, when he boldly takes us down into the trenches of warfare.

winter sunset …

if the shadow of my son

looks up

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Inside pocket

a shabby movie ticket--

wintry mist

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Old Man Winter

sound of his military boots

marching in

Satoru Kanematsu was relieved to learn that he need not look up to the winter skies in fear, for the moment anyway.

Winter lull--

the Olympic talk

no missiles

Realizing how quickly past atrocities and cruelties are forgotten or covered up, Junko Saeki asked rhetorically, “How long should our memory be?” Her alter ego had no clue of the killing fields, so she concluded, “it may be that Man is resilient enough to quickly pick up the pieces and move on.”

winter vacation

a young friend raves

about her trip to Cambodia

Christine L. Villa set her goals during the first rainfall of the year in Sacramento, California. Charlie Smith went for a midnight walk with his wife, just for the fun of listening to the snow falling on Raleigh, North Carolina.


patches of dreams

in my vision board

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warm whispers

snow-boots crunch

Luciana Moretto shared a spiced sultana brioche with visitors who literally sang about how good it tasted in Treviso, Italy. Lysa Collins experienced the “very first taste of fresh, traditionally made mochi.” Isao Soemasu wrote about his couch potato vacation right-at-home in Nagoya. Karen O’Leary felt submerged in West Fargo, North Dakota.

panettone crumbs

on my balcony--

winter holiday for birds

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New Year’s Eve--

the alchemy

of pounded rice

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Winter vacation--

watching videos

all day long

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hard to look over

the neighbor’s fence …

beer cans in our yard

In Bedford, Massachusetts, Daryl Muranaka sighed, “spring seems so far away while cleaning your skis.”

Mommy & her kids

lead down to the wetland

ski tracks in the yard

Nina Kovacic reported from Zagreb, Croatia “winter has changed its face into that of spring.” Aju Mukhopadhyay in Pondicherry, India refers to risshun, the first day of spring which arrives tomorrow according to the lunar calendar.

on the window

shadows of snowflakes shower

her fluish face

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rangoon creeper twisted

looks freshened at the onset of spring

tomorrow it’ll smile

An Asahi Haikuist Special: 7th Matsuyama Photo Haiku Contest results appears Feb. 9. The next issue of the Asahi Haikuist Network appears Feb. 16. Readers are invited to send haiku about the Winter Olympics on a postcard to David McMurray at the International University of Kagoshima, Sakanoue 8-34-1, Kagoshima, 891-0197, Japan, or 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).