Sixth Sense

      by Tom Clausen and Michael Dylan Welch


First prize winner in the 2007 Haiku Poets of Northern California rengay contest. First published in Mariposa #18, Spring–Summer 2008, page 30. Also published on the Rengay page on the Haiku Foundations Haikupedia website. This rengay had a long gestation, in fits and starts, and probably took the longest to write of any rengay I’ve written—an unintentional twelve years. Tom and I wrote the first two verses on 25 October and 1 November 1995. And then we neglected this rengay for seven years, for reasons that now escape me. We wrote the next three verses on 24 May, 20 June, and 21 August 2002. Shortly after that, I moved from California to Washington State, and once again we neglected this rengay, as it got lost in a box of papers. I wrote the concluding verse on 25 October 2007, and sent the rengay in to the HPNC rengay contest almost as an afterthought along with other entries.



the baby’s eyes

change color

with the sky                                                                       Tom


        loud train horn—

        ice crystals hang in the air                                    Michael


three-cheese lasagna—

a bit of garlic stuck

to the pulled-out hair                                                     Tom


at the seaside museum

the sample otter skin

worn bare                                                                            Michael


        parking lot’s fresh blacktop

        simmers in the sun                                                  Tom


Peter and the Wolf

my toddler’s eyes

opening wider                                                                   Michael