Selected Haiku (and a tanka)

Matisse tanka

Calm red inside
and blue veins climb. A woman
touches the fruit bowl.
In the window, trees
white-blossoming.






More grandson haiku


Before school
ten minutes in heaven
drawing devils

It’s after bedtime -
he proffers a specious argument
with a smile.

Drawing
he moves his mouth in silence
as the head appears.





Koan retreat haiku


On Here Hill,
at Now o’clock, I meet This.
A chestnut stallion.

A new gentle me -
sheep keep their distance
the crow flaps off

Roshi’s sermon -
a wren at the window
hops from thought to thought

Fire-heat and the lamp’s hiss.
Whilst from the kitchen
the sound of a whisk.

Path to the farm -
herringbone ruts
glistening with ice


Zazen - I have
“Ordinary Mind”; my shadow
ordinary head

Daydreaming
the demon plans a well-received
study of demons.


Tralfamadorians
sit under their stars
sharing our wonder






Haiku


Maglev train
picnic party - the floating world
on a concrete path

Three people
I judged uncultured
kind to me today

Again and again
the white surf breaks
as we hold from talking

Kitten
in my stiff fingers
its eager heart

Rain on the window.
The knife in the bowl
trembles

Ten thousand bright waves -
the anchor warp squeaks
as we bow to each one.

Lord Plover
in wet ermine
sucks mud

Dad never spoke of love
but now, the tongue risen
the mouth gapes

The curlew’s call
still resonating, I dream
the withered baby

Spotlit, stepping
on a gold-flecked plinth,
the chipped old buddha.

One son missing
the other a fool
Christmas marmalade

Tugged half under,
the mooring buoy
in the spring ebb tide

Incense for John
rising into whatever
the grey sky is

Cockerel
the same notes at dawn
for 10,000 years

Contorted trunk
clambers its twist to
a tuft of birdsong

Sparrows
splash and scream
in an angel’s wing

In the winter wind
between derelict factories
waterripples

Feeding ducks
the ginger skinhead
opens and shuts his mouth

The wipers sweep, sweep,
on the radio news
an abandoned child

Orange sun white cloud
through the plane’s
egg window

Flapping fingers
stinking of varnish
she laughs at vanity.

Always roaring
the echo in me
of the wind between stars

Fractals in sand -
the ebbing tide
knows how

Picking winter scraps
in The Mower’s blades
old yellow-beak.

Always roaring
faintly in the background
tinnitus of bliss

Ken’s Great Leap
into the all-too-clear
from the unknown

Golden snakes
behind the bins,
the dog eating wasps

Flickering shag -
at first thrilling...
then baffling     

(after Basho)

Under the hill
tarmac whispers
shadows of passing

To stragglebush
the topiarist
brings pride

In a non-world
I taste the salmon sandwich
I didn’t choose

Rounding the headland home
the shushing of ripples
licking the hull

Forgiveness -
and after the rain swallows
feast over fields

That pretty cloud
I saw yesterday
and liked so…

On the hilltop
lying back listening as
the skylark disappears

Family barbecue
the moon sails West

clouds sail East

Rain on the frail roof
fiercely drumming
Ancestor Blues


In reverie I feel
her shadow cross my eyelids.
Rockpool scattering

I bow to great nature
and wave a goodbye
to all of you

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