Tag Archives: haiku


I had big intentions of a big cycling day. In the city. It is Bike to Work Day, after all.

Then, it didn’t happen. But this is for you anyway…

unchained spirit push and spin
hum along in time
touch ground with pedal and spoke

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Posted by on May 21, 2010 in poetry


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Verses from a December weekend

Two to share. A haiku inspired by a story I heard from Krista Tippet’s Speaking of Faith, and a freestyle verse on time and procrastination. By freestyle, I mean sometimes (usually, actually) I just scribble down some things really quickly on the fly, without any work or careful editing. It’s just kind of verse-improv. It’s usually not very good stuff, but I share it with hopes it will give you courage to try it.


Skates find dark abyss
Glass roof exit hides tonight
Rest in cold surrender


Tomorrow. (Written in the kitchen)

Don’t worry any more,
I’ll surely  start the morrow
with vigor’s determination,
Upon my proclaimed quest.

We’re right here by the door.

Light years ’til the dawn,
Far off across the wilderness,
No telling if far and wide
Will ever take us there.
Old day is never gone.

But wait–my plan is still within,
Untouched, as now becomes yesterday.

What if the buzzer sounds
And I am waiting still?
That perfect time
For my quest to just begin.

The next step that I make
We may fall through into another day.
Could be here already
By the end of this next breath.

Just blink and I will wake,
In time to turn the key.

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Posted by on December 21, 2009 in poetry


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reflective state of my moment (haiku for tonight)

lost in the ego
blinders of my humanness
but nature still smiles

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Posted by on December 16, 2009 in poetry, presencing


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Garden Surprise at Dusk

Just before bedtime tonight, in between swing set play and  some left overs from the Methodist ice cream social, the girls discovered these yellow beans ready for picking. Then we remembered that the north half of our pea rows are snow peas–great for picking and eating the whole pod. Hope’s excited to pack her lunch tomorrow for Totus Tuus (whatever that is).

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Another surprise at dusk for me: an awesome half moon seemed to suddenly appear against the pale blue sky. So I wrote this spontaneous haiku. I guess most all of my haikus are spontaneous–my friend Tim might call it slam haiku. Just whatever words are given.

half moon rises in still blue
solo artist on shy dusk
floating pearl sends rest
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Posted by on July 28, 2009 in garden, poetry, writing


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Sleep Walking and a Cottonwood

The Cottonwood is probably my favorite tree of all, even though I’m quite allergic to them. The majesty and dance of a mature Cottonwood just makes my soul smile–maybe a remnant of childhood evenings at Grandma and Grandpa Knox’s. So, for some strange reason I got up this morning and jumped on my bike without a plan (since Anne says I’m getting fat). 🙂  I pedaled up the Valley Road, past many young and old Cottonwoods, singing and dancing their soft song in the light morning current. I’ll share this haiku in their honor:

restless in soft breeze
song of the cottonwood tree
catching low sun's glow


Sleep Walking

We need new locks on our doors. The kind that are really high up and can’t be unlocked by a child. A child who is sleeping, and walking about the house (and who knows where else).

Imagine my mixture of surprise, fear and anxiety as I’m rushing toward our kitchen Sunday night, right after my wife shakes me awake with a terrified look on her face. “Joe. Someone’s coming in our house!” She heard the door handle shake, and then the deadbolt unlock. As I was stumbling my way to the kitchen in my underwear, I heard the door swing open and someone walk in. “Hello. Who’s there?!” I demanded (it was the only thing I could think of on the spot, OK). As I came around the corner, ready to bust out some ninja skills I was sure were inside me somewhere, I saw my middle daughter looking at me with a blank stare. When I asked what she was doing, she suddenly got angry and stomped off to her bedroom saying “leave me alone!”

Who knows how long she was in the garage. Or what she was doing. The lights were all on, the big door open to the summer night outside, and the door to the van left open. After she stomped off, Mesa came back into the living room confused and wondering what her parents were doing. She said she had to go out to the garage to get a bucket for her feet. (!?) Then she laid down on the couch with me and went right to sleep. She remembered none of it by morning.

Until we get some new locks, I’ll keep propping a chair against both doors so at least we’ll hear her moving them before she takes another midnight vacation. Any tips for newly discovered sleepwalking parents?

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Posted by on July 7, 2009 in funny, poetry, trees


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too late haiku

As exhaustion reigns
Eyes grow heavy, mind goes fog
Til another morn
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Posted by on April 13, 2009 in poetry


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Campfire Magic

What makes a good fire so magical? I mean there’s just nothing like it. They bring out the good spirits. In our neighborhood, a backyard fire also brings out all the neighbor kids (it could be the marshmallows and chocolate more than the fire). This is a fire I built Friday night on a little solo hike and camp (yes, I owe my wife). I wasn’t cold, and it wasn’t very dark (nearly full moon, even after I put my clothes back on). But that fire brought me a wonderful kind of peace and comfort out there. I wrote a little haiku verse about it.

flame dance on autumn night
from broken old oak limbs
ash comes home to earth

Friday early morning was a beautiful heavy fog in the valley where I was camping, so my morning of hiking left me soaked to the bone from belly to toes. I built this little temporary fire ring (and returned everything to the way I found it before I left, except a few ashes) so I could dry my boots. Hope and I are fans of the Discovery Channel show Man vs. Wild. We really loved the latest new episode–Bear was in the Black Hills  and Badlands of South Dakota! It’s on our DVR if you missed it. If you watch, you know host Bear Grylls tends to get naked a lot while he’s drying his clothes. Dad figures I must have been dancing around naked too. Only the blue jays and I–and the hunters who probably have little secret deer hunting cameras out there–will ever know…

I borrowed most of the gear for my solo hike/camp. So, thanks to Uncle Bob for the tent (at 3am Saturday morning I decided I might also ask for a rain fly next time), Dad for the rain coat, Greg for the sleeping bag you didn’t even know I borrowed, and Jason for the camping permit. And thanks to my wonderful wife for letting me go play mountain man while she chased three little kids around for a couple of days. Love you.

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Posted by on September 16, 2008 in hiking, poetry


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