“Constellation prize” haiku


Sons of Perseus
Cosmic radiance no myth
Lighting the night sky

Perfect atmosphere
For Smith-Tuttle to put on
Its annual show

Meteor shower
What better way for comet
To clean up its act?

“Tears of St. Lawrence”
To some Catholics: Sparks rain down
On that martyr’s day

A.D. 36
First record of these fireworks
Credit the Chinese

Adolphe Quetelet noted they
Appear every year

We could’ve told Dolph
What goes around comes around
But he told us when

Satellite competes
This time ’round, but pre-dawn moon
Will Gibbous a break

Year’s best viewing wanes
Better look this up tonight
Check Google today

Class of 2014 haiku

Graduation day
May 18th, Twenty-fourteen
Olathe North High

Looking forward, back
At the same time — nostalgic,

The class roll is called
More than 400 — each name
A life unfolding

Among them’s our girl
Just 18, so strong and smart,
With so much ahead

Some mid-’90s names:
Ashley, Cassidy, Amber,
Connor, Brody, Nate

Guadalupe, Magali,
Isidro, Satchel

Sallem, Nabiyat,
Ramzi, Mihret — students born
In a dozen lands

And for this moment
We’re all one — one hope per heart
And one lump per throat

The last name is read
Principal’s farewell spoken
The Eagles take flight

“Love in the margins” haiku

For Valentine’s Day, 2014

Love in the margins
Filled with doodled daydream notes
Her skin, lips, hair, eyes

Love in the senses
Perfect recall, unbidden
Her shape, smell, taste, touch

Love in the wrinkles
A map of treasured decades
Stretched belly, etched hands

Love in the marrow
Unshakeable, imprinted
Forever memories

“What goes around” haiku, or “Ferris Doodle’s Day On”

Written Valentine’s Day, 2013, keyed off the Google Doodle that day for George Ferris’ 154th birthday.

“What goes around” haiku

It’s Valentine’s Day
What better time to visit
Love’s amusement park?

Love disorients
It’s Tilt-a-Whirl, Loop the Loop
And Atomic Drop

Love distorts, deceives
It’s funhouse mirrors — and meals
Of cotton candy

Love tantalizes
When that Tunnel of Love kiss
Whispers “Forever”

Love shows us heights, depths,
Crushingly quick endings — it’s
A roller coaster

Our brains — and stomachs
Know we can’t live like this, yet
We keep going back

Heartache and heartbreak
We line up, punch that ticket
To know we’re alive

This Valentine’s Day
Google honors George Ferris
And his smoother ride

He died young but first
Fashioned his romantic dream
For the world to share

Civil engineer
Known for mastering railroads,
Bridges and tunnels

Exhibition challenged to
Out-Eiffel Eiffel

Ferris offered wheel
264 feet
In diameter

46-plus tons
Of metal forged its axle
U.S. steel, writ large

Judges terrified
Rejected it as unsafe
Then reconsidered

Ferris made it real
And millions came to catch its
Unparalled view

Ferris died alone
But his wheels turn on and on
Like a love that lasts

And here’s a favorite wrencher, about when that wheel gets bent.

“Hail, no” haiku

Ever was the quest
Explore, discover, conquer
Claim it for the crown

But conquest exacts
This dear price — exploration,
Exploitation blur

Possession, not love,
Never yields a true victor
But spoils aplenty

To quest, not conquest
Let us discover anew
— With understanding

A.C. haiku

Windows broken out
Or as we say in the hood
Air conditioning

He heated up when
Asked size of his unit, but
She meant Btu

Air conditioning
One time in life it’s good to
Be a Carrier

Of body’s perspiration
Natural a.c.

But it sure is nice
To put this heat on ice through

Vacation haiku, part 3

Lots of beach reading
Love, war, dragons — and after
The tattoos, some books

The hourglass figures
Seldom have the time of day
For gray-haired tourists

Gymnasts coil, uncoil
Hand- foot- hand- foot- hand- foot-prints
Handsprings eternal

Dapper old surf dude
Wetsuit and walrus moustache
Looks good catching waves

Yellow boogie boards
Carry freezing frolickers,
Smart kids in wetsuits

Waves’ frigid beauty
Irresistible — result:
Frozen bananas

Batman water wings
Happy-tiger-face beach chair
The tot patrol’s here

Endless energy
Bodies less than 3 feet tall
Scoot like windup toys

Plastic-diaper twins
Vertical leap 2 inches
Hop over “big” waves

Toddlers with shovels
Big diesel earthmovers pale
In comparison

Low tide, castle waits
So exquisitely detailed
Exquisitely doomed

Blue, blue green, gray green
Silver flash of sun, foam, crash
Waves rinse and repeat

The tensions of life,
No match for the endless waves,
Go out with the tide

Vacation haiku, part 2

A quick ferry ride
We’re on Balboa Island
For a lovely stroll

Wind, sun at our backs
Flowers painting rings around
Picture perfect homes

Little downtown strip
Blooms originality
Just two signs alike

“Frozen Bananas”
The rage — two shops claim to be
“The Original”

On ferry ride back
Three cars, bicycles, tourists
Crowd the tiny barge

On ferry ride back
Little girl tells her nanny
“He’s not my boyfriend”

Beach highway beckons
Air so light, cool, crisp with just
A touch of salt taste

Sign says Oceanside
I wonder how they ever
Come up with these names

“No beach out of reach”
Says Navy assault station
— And local surfers

Surreal white pods dot
Grounds of idled reactor
Like alien craft

Independence Day haiku

The 4th of July
A Declaration

Self-evident truths
Rights unalienable
Life and liberty

No Mother England,
No Father King, they declared,
Would deny their rights

Battles with British
Had started one year before
Would last 5 years more

But Declaration
Marked the point of no return
For a new nation

Two signed right away,
John Hancock and Charles Thompson;
Others a month hence

56 signed on
Signed their death sentences if
Revolution failed

But Washington led
Troops that bled at Valley Forge
Refused to give up

French aid was crucial,
Let’s not forget, and freedom
Eventually rang

50 years later
Adams, Jefferson died, but
Their work continues

The Declaration
Excluded women and slaves
But it was the start

Declaration lit
Flame that vanquished slavery
Gave women the vote

And equal rights’ quest
Will never die if we keep
Hearts and minds open

Vacation haiku, part 1

Actually, it’s back to work today. But last week was fun.

Didn’t shave today
Therefore, I’m on vacation
Norelco, buzz off

Misty morning flight
Patterned land recedes, clouds fill
Windows with unknown

Leave early, just beat
The lightning strikes that will ground
Other planes today

Beverage cart squeaks by
No inch to spare on board jet
Everything’s compact

Brazil concentrates
In OJ cup; Springsteen fits
In tiny iPod

Change planes in Dallas
Then on to John Wayne Airport
Orange County’s proud field

Some moms trying hard
To look just like their daughters.
In Golden State, tin

OC: Orange County
Or Obsessive Compulsive?
Sorry, HAD to ask