Photo/Illutration (Illustration by Mitsuaki Kojima)

still summer--mother’s silence in every room
--Giuliana Ravaglia (Bologna, Italy)

* * *

ragged flag
on the border post
a ghost’s fingers
--Hifsa Ashraf (Rawalpindi, Pakistan)

* * *

hundredth day
whistling ducks bring
the lake home
--Salil Chaturvedi (Goa, India)

* * *

Aroma of home
flowering chestnuts
after the rain
--Tsanka Shishkova (Sofia, Bulgaria)

* * *

I rediscover the forest
of my childhood
--Claudia Brefeld (Bochum, Germany)

* * *

wisteria blossom
lost in the tunnel
amid the purple light
--Mona Iordan (Bucharest, Romania)

* * *

lichen lines our nostrils
I kiss her lips
we share the virus
--Mark Gilbert (Nottingham, U.K.)

* * *

just one shifty look
the cat slides through
horizontal blinds
--Alan Summers (Wiltshire, England)

* * *

Sliding the shoji--
the long shadows
of people from the flood
--Jorge Alberto Giallorenzi (Buenos Aires)

* * *

climate refugees
the changing coastline
of pacific islands
--Madhuri Pillai (Melbourne, Australia)


Marching ants--
what made one turn back
--Satoru Kanematsu (Nagoya)

The haikuist was stymied by a question from his granddaughter. Together they admired the lifestyle of an insect hiding at the base of a conical sandpit waiting for an unsuspecting ant to fall in.

just waits to survive
in its trap

Tsanka Shishkova was amazed to see how fast ants build nests in Sofia, Bulgaria. Writing from Rijeka, Croatia, Mihovila Ceperic-Biljan feared he’d be uprooted.

new anthill
in the garden

* * *

hot afternoon
the ants are moving
the edge of a wall

A murder of jungle crows awaited Kanematsu to throw the trash this morning. Mark Gilbert leered knowingly at a raven in Nottingham, U.K. Patrick Sweeney fed a pet crow in Misawa, Aomori Prefecture. Manoj Sharma baked a humble rook pie in Katmandu.

Black morning:
crows flocking, cawing
the plague news

* * *

black death
without the sickle

* * *

my crow dropped a peanut
to come get

* * *

summer heat ...
a baby crow
looking at me

Multitasking at home in Sebastopol, California, Paul Geiger kept one eye on the oven door while the other watched the stovetop.

kitchen timing
biscuits done
gravy not yet

Ian Willey and his wife of 18 years shared a freshly baked dessert while watching the moonrise. Tiffany Shaw-Diaz hid deeper into a darkening room in Centerville, Ohio.

Sturgeon moon rising
our anniversary cake
down to the last slice

* * *

into isolation
waning moon

Louise Hopewell watched as beautiful but noisy birds flocked to Melbourne, some 500 kilometers from their native habitat in Eastern Victoria to search for something to eat. Teiichi Suzuki searched the sea.

smoke plume
black cockatoos
crowd the city sky

* * *

The tip of
a diver’s spear--
following lobsters

Veronika Zora Novak offered this one-line haiku after the passing of a long, high sea wave caused by an earthquake: after the tsunami butterflies.

Anne-Marie McHarg ventured outside to exercise; but continued to keep at a distance. Melanie Vance created a little island in Dallas.

In a kayak

* * *

swinging in the porch hammock
six-foot distance between two palms

Natalia Kuznetsova struggled to stay ahead of 2,020 waves.

a second wave
on top of the heatwave--
leap year surfing

Traveling between Washington, D.C., and Lima, Peru, Dina Towbin keenly felt the flow of summer to winter.

Your warmth has escaped.
Sunlight glimpsed disappears.
Layers upon layers.

Rose Mary Boehm waited for a wet and wrinkled butterfly to emerge from its chrysalis, before announcing the launch of her poetry book, “The Rain Girl,” published Aug. 28 by Chaffinch Press.

Coloured wings unfold
Working through layers of shell
In the morning sun

Kanematsu skillfully layered auditory and visual imagery. The haikuist sensed sounds in the distance through a rhythmic boom, boom, boom, of undulating colors. On Sept. 2, his sense of smell remembered the 75th anniversary of the ending of World War II.

Faint thunder--
a guppy flashes
its fantail

* * *

Nostrils scream
the smell of burnt soil
Defeat Day

John Hawkhead felt a layer of warm air rising up from the ground in London seemingly intent on building into a huge, violent cloud. Kanematsu suggested we listen to the homophone “missed” on the third line of his haiku. Mist formed when air flowing in from Tokyo Bay encountered the cooler land where the Paralympics Closing Ceremony was meant to be held this Sunday.

ground heat
the distant thunder
I yearn for

* * *

Tokyo Olympics
summer mist

Arvinder Kaur praised the utility of a long colorful scarf worn in northern India. Towbin drifted off to sleep.

scorching sun
mother’s duppata
the only shade

* * *

I dreamt of warm nites.
Toasty days around the fire,
Wrapped in woolen scarves.

Goran Gatalica watched as a darning needle outlined a black robe in Zagreb, Croatia. Lothar M. Kirsch paid tribute to the largest and most prestigious cemetery in Paris.

heat spike ...
a blue dragonfly explores
the monk’s shadow

* * *

White shrouds on
Pere Lachaise at two a.m.
Red wine they drink

Meghan Elizabeth Jones points to the ghost of William Wordsworth and his romantic poem about a monastery in Wales. While visiting the grounds that she had heard about as a child, she “felt immediately at home” until she “turned to the huge altar windows and saw a monk’s ghost take shape and fill the window.”

at Tintern Abbey
empty altar windows
filled by a monk’s ghost

Mike Gallagher felt haunted in Ireland. Francis Attard watched a play.

these days
her ghosts the pointing fingers
of the past

* * *

paper-folded skull
Hamlet’s text of jumbled words
New Globe Theatre

Rashmi VeSa watched someone teeter in the unbearable heat of Bengaluru, India. Elancharan Gunasekaran could not escape the heat in Singapore. Marek Kozubek found a new fantastic place in Bangkok.

deep summer
street beggar balances heat
foot by foot

* * *

within shadow
summer heat everywhere

* * *

in my mind
changed thoughts--
a whole new world

Pitt Buerken watched wild pigs overrun a deserted main shopping street in Berlin. Sue Colpitts waited for a four-legged pedestrian to cross an aptly named street near the center of Peterborough, Ontario.

an illegal wild boar race
on Ku’damm

* * *

Park Street
a black bear


Mysterious The next issue of the Asahi Haikuist Network appears Sept. 18. Readers are invited to send haiku about truffles on a postcard to David McMurray at the International University of Kagoshima, Sakanoue 8-34-1, Kagoshima, 891-0197, Japan, or 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).