Photo/Illutration(Illustration by Mitsuaki Kojima)

  • Photo/Illustraion

Maple leaves flat as if printed wet pavement

--Kiyoshi Fukuzawa (Tokyo)

* * *

deep winter--

noises from chainsaws

echoes of geese

--Antonio Sacco (Cilento, Italy)

* * *

snowdrift

my daughter’s maple

a little shorter

--Kat Lehmann (Connecticut)

* * *

hummingbird

lapping nectar from

bottlebrush

--Stephen J. DeGuire (Los Angeles)

* * *

forest path--

acorns visible

in wet snow

--Evgeny Ivanov (Moscow, Russia)

* * *

cider-making--

a young boar bobs

for apples

--Joanne M. Reinbold (Delaware)

* * *

the ice on the leaves

inside my backyard firebowl

the air not smoky

--Chris Graves (Halifax, Canada)

* * *

fresh

air after a snow

no idea the time

--Marshall Hryciuk (Toronto, Canada)

* * *

Passing clouds

rob the sundial

of its time

--Satoru Kanematsu (Nagoya)

* * *

secondhand ...

the ticking of mother’s

mattress

--Eric A. Lohman (Powder Springs, Georgia)

------------------------------

FROM THE NOTEBOOK

------------------------------

Baci foil wrapper

I fold under a war sky

turtle dove in flight

--Francis Attard (Marsa, Malta)

Origami is the art of folding paper into decorative figures. Unfolding haiku reveals the art of figurative language that alludes to something profound without directly stating it. After indulging a chocolaty kiss alone, the haikuist gently mused on words of love while contemplating the springtime return of migrating pigeons from the grayness of the heavens above North Africa. The delicate creatures stopped over on their way to breeding grounds in the U.K.

In Rawalpindi, Pakistan, Hifsa Ashraf looked skyward. In Ghaziabad, India, Richa Sharma heard prayers.

cherry blossoms

the colours of her love

in the air

* * *

Homemade candies

Mom’s morning prayer

Before an exam

In Essex, U.K., Lucy Whitehead received news.

talk of peace

the cherry blossoms

come early

* * *

a prayer

that is answered

cherry blossom

Murasaki Sagano reread a novel for clues. Her favorite author keeps giving her what she wants in ways she had never expected.

Mystery

with lots of bookmarks

spring musing

Aya Ito took her little son to see fields of bright yellow rapeseed wrapped around Mount Kaimon, a perfect conical volcano in the south of Kagoshima Prefecture. Eleven-year-old Chloe Dorado Martinez spotted a bright yellow flower that was overlooked in Aomori Prefecture.

Five-month’s old

beside himself with canola

candy cane

* * *

the painter paints the sunset

not seeing

the lonely dandelion

Satoru Kanematsu served a traditional breakfast to his granddaughter while teaching her the names of seven different green plants that were mixed in the soft rice: parsley, shepherd’s purse, cudweed, chickweed, nipplewort, turnip and radish.

Herb porridge

all their seven names

taught by mom

Feeling under the weather, Murasaki Sagano recalled a mother’s recipe. Junko Yamada tried a natural remedy in Kamakura. Guliz Mutlu acknowledged the perfect food in Ankara, Turkey. Julia Guzman was in Patagonia, Argentina, to assist with an earlier than expected arrival.

Tofu cubes

in hot soup for the

common cold

* * *

Soft spring snow

thaws away …

slight depression

* * *

breastfeeding

under the tree

white magnolias

* * *

earlier cherry blossoms--a premature baby sipsher mother’s breast

Teiichi Suzuki slept in Osaka. Antonella Filippi jumped out of bed quickly in Torin, Italy. Attard loves Sunday. Jennifer Hambrick enjoyed a lazy weekend in Columbus, Ohio. Lucy Whitehead had hotcakes at night in Essex, U.K. Stephen J. DeGuire overindulged in Los Angeles.

Late riser--

slow hands of a clock

in spring dream

* * *

winter morning

merry and bright--

unmatched socks

* * *

Siberian cat purrs

mandarin orange jelly

on Sunday crumpets

* * *

breakfast for dinner

sunset seeps

into my pancakes

* * *

a plate of pancakes

glistening with syrup

spring moon

* * *

sweetening

oatmeal and pancakes--

pure tree sap

Slobodan Pupovac inspects the trunk of a tree tapped to collect sap when temperatures rhythmically rose above zero in the day and fell below freezing at night. Jeanne Jorgensen looks forward to traditional treats made by boiling, then cooling, the sugary sap. A pot-bellied stove awaited Ann Magyar’s family. Melanie Vance once lived in Quebec.

early spring

fresh wound on the bark

of the maple tree

* * *

that time of year--

Maple taffy on a stick

rolled in fresh snow

* * *

maple grove

the warmth as we approach

the sugar house

* * *

whisper of white smoke

over the sugarhouse

accent of Canada

Masumi Orihara’s nephew, who resides in Canada, visited her home in Kanagawa Prefecture carrying a precious souvenir in a big, heavy metal can. On a cold day in Montreal, Richard Jodoin stayed home to sort through cards stored in a box.

rich amber

of heavy maple syrup

land of vast forests

* * *

In a shoebox

simple friendly words

“to meet again”

A fascinating lute performance interspersed with readings at a small cafe in Tokyo, transported Murasaki Sagano into the magical world of Shakespeare. Kiyoshi Fukuzawa gave an appreciative nod toward the brass section.

Lutanist

takes me to those times

dreams of spring

* * *

Her brass horn

as the symphony goes deeper

perfect gold

The small upholstered sofa for two occupied, Adjei Agyei-Baah ate his own heart out in Accra, Ghana. Nancy Rullo played with a grandchild in Brooklyn, New York. Yuji Hayashi shivered in Fukuoka, perhaps reminiscent of the cold winter night in 1888 when Vincent Van Gogh severed his own ear. Ed Bremson witnessed self-amputation take place in Raleigh, North Carolina.

Valentine’s Day

the lovers’ seat

taken by two cats

* * *

I give you paper

I have cut so carefully

--red replica hearts

* * *

Coldest month

sharp-edged moon

could cut my ear

* * *

pine bark ...

on my fingers

a lizard’s tail

This March 21 Angela Giordano can embrace a full moon coincident with the vernal equinox and early arriving cherry blossoms.

in the moonlight

the embrace of lovers--

three red roses

* * *

cherry trees--

bloomed in one night

full moon

Enjoy sweet-tasting haiku at http://www.asahi.com/ajw/special/haiku/. The next issue of the Asahi Haikuist Network appears March 29. Readers are invited to send haiku about warming oceans 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 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).