Pine Needle

by Christine Nelson, DeVar Dahl, Michael Dylan Welch, David Ash, Merilyn Peruniak, Inge Uhlemann, Vicki McCullough, Alice Frampton, Karen Sohne, Jessica Tremblay, Helen Baker, and Marshall Hryciuk

Published in Haiku Canada Review 3:2, October 2009, pages 43–47. Begun 10:30 p.m., 17 May 2009 at the Haiku Canada weekend in Vancouver, British Columbia, and completed at 2:15 a.m. on 18 May 2009, led by Marshall Hryciuk.

last year’s

pine needles

arced in the new grass Christine

earthworms moving

across the sidewalk DeVar

third date—

my feet suddenly remember

the steps to the dance Michael

on the last day of apple-picking

a cool breeze David

stars all around

I dip my paddle

in the moon Merilyn

the smell of matsutake

all through the house Inge

empty rest area—

a rip through the face

of the most-wanted poster Michael

trying to get closer

I lend him my sister’s phone Lin

a vodka shot

for every girl he bum-grabbed

stale taxi home Vicki

ice-cubes floating

in my bath tub Alice

her bridesmaids

stop fanning her

as the veil is pinned David

the reading of the will

in Spanish Michael


the kitten

with the rosary beads Karen

if Gretzky is coming

we call them “The Firebirds” Lin

swine flu

does the bacon taste a little off DeVar

cleaning out the barn

seeds in the manure Christine

under the trees

lovers picnic

a haze of forget-me-nots Karen

at the return of Jessica

his heart thaws David

mountain summit

a man-made

water fountain Jessica

40 below zero

I ignore my scratchy underwear Christine

calling mom

to lift the head

of the snowman Jessica

a week to Christmas

icicles dipped in sugar dye Michael

thanks for the tip sweetie Christine

the taste of strawberries

on your tongue Michael

slow-dancing to “Telstar”

the diner lights

spark Vicki


his sunglasses on and off Jessica

underground river

hell hounds strain

against the light Vicki

Woden’s day

what are we meant to do? Karen

upside-down plumber

hanging by his belt

waxing crescent David

the imprint of leaves

in wet cement Michael

only my face is stiff Lin

by the back of his head

I knew him in Moose Jaw Helen

morning birdsong

passes with the clouds

mist mixed with rain Marshall

tadpoles’ legs

front and back DeVar

forgetting the combination

to the garden shed . . .

drifting blossoms Michael

wheeling three horses

for the win Vicki