Photo/Illutration(Illustration by Mitsuaki Kojima)

  • Photo/Illustraion

winter moon the constant pull of the dark side

--Marion Clarke (Warrenpoint, Northern Ireland)

* * *

this full moon

shining down on you

somewhere else

--Marina Colne (Geelong, Australia)

* * *

a lonely pear tree

the moon draws a mate to it

on the quiet field

--Mile Lisica (Bosnia and Herzegovina)

* * *

going for a drive

the moon on the sea

follows me

--Lucia Cardillo (Rodi Garganico, Italy)

* * *

The moon is up there

yet the sea is reflecting


--T.D. Ginting (Inzai City, Chiba)

* * *

cold moon

the bare tree branch

turns into a crow

--Hifsa Ashraf (Rawalpindi, Pakistan)

* * *

Black words in white space

Purity is sickening

We become the void

--Jonathan Williams (Oakland, California)

* * *

the very thread

between heaven and earth

her thin body

--Iliyana Stoyanova (St. Albans, U.K.)

* * *

The silence

crescent moonlight

on dead souls

--Junko Yamada (Kamakura, Kanagawa)

* * *

here this mountain road


the moon’s halo

--Marshall Hryciuk (Toronto, Canada)




zinfandel sky

I sip the waning moon

from my glass

--Kat Lehmann (New Haven, Connecticut)

The haikuist began her evening with a glass of red wine from California made from grapes with Croatian ancestry. Slobodan Pupovac cheered the moon in Zagreb, Croatia. Arvinder Kaur sipped a cocktail in Chandigarh, India.


red lipstick smudged

on the wineglass

* * *

salt on the rim--

from the sky to my glass

autumn moon

Corine Timmer enjoyed a chance encounter by moonlight in Portugal. Masumi Orihara had “an unexpected encounter with a deer …” remarking, “I held my breath for a few seconds enchanted by its graceful posture and gaze.”

the hawk moth

visits a wayside weed

--grain moon

* * *

a glimmer of light

in the thickest bamboo bush

a deer glances back

The full moon of December will cast its frigid light this weekend while haikuists are celebrating the winter solstice. Alegria Imperial says she plans to cherish the moment in Vancouver, Canada, because the auspicious event won’t occur again during her lifetime. Andrea Cecon, a hearing aid technician, intends to focus his full attention on the occurrence in Cividale, Italy.


to the touch--

my last Cold Moon

* * *

fragile moon ...

losing myself

into the silence

Teiichi Suzuki likely feared being chased by bikers heading south to Okinawa for the winter. Tomislav Maretic was warmed by the sight of a moonlit tree in Zagreb.

Motorcycle gang


a cold wintry wind

* * *

Frozen tree

glistening moonshine

every twig

Eleven-year-old Breanne Clements was fascinated by the nine lights of a candelabra used during the 8-day Jewish holiday of Hanukkah that ended on Dec 10 this year. Zanka Zana Boskovic Coven, 57, loves the orchestra. Claire Vogel Camargo applauded dancing trees in Austin, Texas.

December evening ...

the dancing flames

of the Menorah

* * *

Bare branches dancing ...

hedgehog wears a coat to the

autumn symphony

* * *

modern dance

on a wintry stage

bare branches

Angela Giordano connected an earthly design to the heaven above Avigliano. Luciana Moretto was pleasantly surprised right at home in Treviso.

the bare branches--

hands rise to the sky

in prayer

* * *

December at home--

a neglected orchid

about to bloom

Arvinder Kaur scattered Indian rice cakes. Eleven-year-old Sophia Amador caught a snowflake at Sollars Elementary in Misawa, Aomori.

food court--

a sparrow’s hop

from idli to idli

* * *

The odd one out

a snowflake


Nearing Christmas in Edmonton, Jeanne Jorgensen pined for two important women in her life.

breath of cold air

the window open ... enough

to let mom pass

* * *

Slavic grandmother’s

hot, buttered noodles and cheese

Chokecherry wine …

Kanchan Chatterjee’s orchard in Jamshedpur, India, had nothing left to give. There was no moonlight to soothe pamela a. babusci when she composed her haiku in Rochester, New York.


under a bare tree ...

a fruit seller

* * *

new moon

every bone in my body


Lucy Whitehead attended evening prayers at an Anglican Church in Essex, U.K.

cold moon shining

through stained glass


Rosemarie Schuldes may have heard someone up her chimney shout “Ho, Ho, Ho!” Lilia Racheva sang “Drummer Boy” in Bulgaria. Goran Gatalica’s family celebrated. Satoru Kanematsu just sighed.

tea & biscuits

at the fireside--

his hoarse voice

* * *

white moon,

sound of the song

… of Christmas toys

* * *

winter light--

father opens the bottle

sparkling wine

* * *

One more time

reusing the teabag

a long night

Finding it unseasonably warm, Kanematsu lay on his futon--and sighed again.

Getting trapped

a roach, my roommate

poignant night

Kanchan Chatterjee felt enlightened in Jamshedpur, India. Marshall Hryciuk levitated in Toronto. Anna Goluba discovered a parallel world in Warsaw.

cold moon ...

a lone cricket chirps

under my bed

* * *


from meditation

a floating moon

* * *

In a faraway dream

on the streets of my city

a pride of lions

Giordano listened to her favorite hymns. Guliz Mutlu walked to Trabzon, Turkey, to find a monastery dedicated to the Virgin Mary. Florin Golban drove down a lonely road in Bucharest. Evgeny Ivanov slowed his pace in Moscow.

patron saint--

the musical band

on the balcony

* * *

the road to Sumela

a pilgrim drinking

raindrops from a leaf

* * *

autumn rain--

just the leaves

making the hitchhiker

* * *

Through the field--

wolf bypasses

the lone traveler

Eleven-year-old Ieisha Jack shivered. Seventy-two-year-old Dennis Woolbright contemplated retirement in Vietnam.

The crow flies

through the cobalt sky

loneliness strikes

* * *

Cloud covered globe

struggles to shine

through our gloom

Eleven-year-old Grace Sproston worried about a tree near Misawa Airbase. Ashoka Weerakkody found relief in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

Whimpering willow

grasping for

the cooling wind

* * *

newly cut willows

sooth my untouched pains

fragrance of sorrow

Isao Soematsu admired a splendid view. Julia Guzman visited Mount Fuji.

On the left then right

driving on a winding path--

Mount Fuji appears

* * *

Bus ride

crossing through a tunnel--

the Sacred Mountain

In Kent, U.K., Andy McLellan salutes the centenary of the ending of World War I: one hundred years of silence--Armistice day.

Rika Inami in Akita, and Guzman in Argentina, respectively, cheered the past. Thais Fernandes held a candle to the future of Sao Paulo. She believes that the history of a nation is founded on the experiences of its immigrants. Teiichi Suzuki wonders where the migrant caravans will spend Christmas.

Red wine--

a toast to the old times

and our smiles

* * *

rose wine--

one sweet memory

thinking of you

* * *

Candle of my spirit

untold memories

of a homeland

* * *

Shooting star

north of the border--



The next issues of the Asahi Haikuist Network appear Jan. 4 and 18, 2019. You are warmly invited to send haiku about the first time you do something in 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 (

* * *

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).