Crows Return

by Marshall Hryciuk, Claudia Coutu Radmore, Michael Dylan Welch, Hans Jongman, Margot Gallant, Karen Sohne, Merilyn Peruniak, LeRoy Gorman, Christine Nelson, Philomene Kocher, Melanie Noll, Terry Ann Carter, and DeVar Dahl

Published in Haiku Canada Review 4:1, February 2010, pages 35–38. Begun 10:45 p.m., 16 May 2008 at the Haiku Canada weekend in Ottawa, Ontario, and completed at 1:05 a.m. on 17 May 2008, led by Marshall Hryciuk. My “lightning” verse was incorrectly printed with “the startled mouse” instead of “the startled moose.”

two years away


perched on the verandah Marshall

the first click

of marble on marble Claudia

the candle melted

into itself

my book unfinished Michael

on the burlap sack

faint smell of potatoes Hans

the cat

whiter still

by moonlight Margot

tree shadows

across the kitchen floor Karen

too much Mr. Clean

the dachshund

spinning his wheels Michael

i stop trying to change him Merilyn

rolling off the righteous

rain warming LeRoy

her bathing suit

rides up

and has sand in it Christine

watching him

watch someone else Philomene

only half-formed thoughts

not written

in time Melanie

mantel clock stopped

before the ball drops Karen

the eyes of a child


in the Mayor’s amulet Hans

tin soldiers all in a row Terry Ann

flashlights slowing

smelt in the shallows Philomene

calla lilies

the young bride

changes her dress DeVar

this way and that

the still-wet foal Michael

ex cathedra

the pope says

we can believe in aliens Claudia

Alberta vote—

working dogs round up the sheep DeVar

the snowshoer’s tracks

disappear in the distance—

forgotten birthday Michael

the burnt-out bulbs

on the women’s shelter

windows fogged Terry Ann

who needs

the view? LeRoy

the smell of her

still in his beard Melanie

“i got ‘mammed’”

oh, some young bastard

at the parking lot Marshall


black out Hans

counting the moons

in the puddles

my toddler Michael


sunlight a-twitter Hans



the startled moose Michael

killing frost DeVar

she swirls

her drink

as he talks Christine

a bus of seniors

arrives at the casino Karen

she repaints

her bedroom

robin’s egg blue Terry Ann

earth through worm

to earth Claudia

dead or sleeping?

the old retriever

with blossoms in his fur LeRoy

between the clouds

stars and a satellite Christine