H  A  I  K  U     S  P  I  R  I  T

This the hour                       
Looked for, strived after –               
A stray dog runs noiselessly               
Under stars.                       

(Arashiyama, Kyoto, 11.11.74; first broadcast on Nippon TV, ’91)           

In slant-light of evening
Boatmen fish a river,
Their every silhouette
On blue mercury.

(Angara River, Irkutsk, 18.8.74; first published in ‘Palpi’, ’87)

Heat of the day –                   
A pine-clad cliff                   
Down which a washing machine           
Has tumbled.                       

(Mount Ogura, Kyoto, 13.8.03; first broad. Osaka TV, ’04)               

Chancing on a pattern
That I wish to hold forever –
Of ten thousand flowers.

(by Primrose Hill, London, 9.91; first broad. BBC Radio 4, ’91)

Cup your hand                   
Under the first drops                   
Of midday rain –                   
Three or four, enough to drink.           

(Araku, Orissa, 16.4.90; first pub. ‘Haiku Quarterly’, ’91)               

Hot summer wind –
The scarecrow’s smile
Almost lost
In waving rice.

(Kitasaga, Kyoto, 4.9.95; first pub. ‘Ginyu’, ’98)

Only the mole                       
Rubs their shoulders –               
Blank rocks peering                   
From a dank moor.                   

(Eldroth, Yorkshire, 7.1.74; first pub. BHS ‘Hidden’, ’02)               

Rickety bus’s
Plume of dust
Having settled…
A stack of ravaged tires.

(Sanchakou, Xinjiang, 30.7.99; first pub. ‘Modern Haiku’ ’04)

Cycling along                       
In the spring wind,                   
Box of eggs                       
In my pocket.                       

(near Buckingham Palace, London, 2.3.77; first pub. ‘The Haiku Seasons’, Kodansha Int. ’96)   

Along the dirt track,
A dead insect –
Autumn storms
On the prairies.

(nr. Big Springs, Nebraska, 17.9.78;
first pub ‘Haiku Spirit’, ‘95)

A buffalo day –
To browse in pastures
Rub against a tree
Grunt in the water-hole.

(nr. Kaski, Nepal, 22.9.81; first pub. ‘A Guide to Haiku for the 21st Century’, Gendai Haiku Assoc., ’97)

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