A Haiku Handful

These eighteen poems all appeared in my 2009 trifold handout, A Haiku Handful, distributed mostly at the 2009 Haiku North America conference, held at the National Library of Canada in Ottawa in the summer of that year. Thank you to John Stevenson for first alerting me to my propensity for writing haiku about hands. These poems are also available as a PDF download on the Trifolds page.

spring breeze—

the pull of her hand

as we near the pet store

mountain spring—

in my cupped hand

pine needles

shooting star

in my hand

meadow heat

afternoon hike—

the pussy willows dwindling

from my handful

birthday picnic—

grandma’s throw

half way to the toddler

we walk the boardwalk hand in hand

sharing ice cream


beached kelp—

we examine each other’s

life lines

nude beach—

my gesture reflected

in her sunglasses

starting her shift

the blonde bartender

puts on a wedding ring

you squeeze my hand . . .

how still the sky

after fireworks

summer moonlight

the potter’s wheel


clicking off the late movie . . .

the couch cushion


gathering clouds—

the feel of the Gettysburg Address

etched in bronze

accumulating snow—

oven mitts

praying on the counter

toll booth lit for Christmas—

from my hand to hers

warm change

first cold night—

the click of your domino

as we play by the fire

Christmas Eve—

bits of a price sticker

stuck to my finger

dense fog—

I write your name

on the airport window

These poems have appeared in the following journals and anthologies: Basho Festival Anthology (Japan, 2004), Blithe Spirit (England), Bulgarian Haiku Anthology (Bulgaria, 2003), Carpe Diem: Canadian Anthology of Haiku (Ottawa, Ontario: Les Éditions David; Nepean, Ontario: Borealis Press, 2008), Dogwood Blossoms, Fan Magazine, For a Moment (Pointe Claire, Quebec: King’s Road Press, 2009), Frogpond, Geppo, Global Haiku: Twenty-five Poets Worldwide (Cullercoats, North Shields, U.K.: Iron Press; Oakville, Ontario: Mosaic Press, 2000), The Haiku Anthology (New York: W. W. Norton, 1999), Haiku: A Poet’s Guide (Lincoln, Illinois: Modern Haiku Press, 2003), Haiku Canada Newsletter (Canada), Haiku for Lovers (London: MQ Publications, 2002), Haiku Headlines, Haikü sans frontiers: Une anthologie mondiale (Ottawa: Les Éditions David, 1998), Heron’s Nest, IDG World Update, Illinois News, Inside the Mirror: 2005 Red Moon Anthology (Winchester, Virginia: Red Moon Press, 2006), Into Snow: 2001 Herb Barrett Award Anthology (Hamilton, Ontario: Hamilton Haiku Press, forthcoming), Midwest Haiku Anthology (Decatur, Illinois: Brooks Books, 1992), Mie Times (Japan), Mirrors, Modern Haiku, Moonset, Open Window (Brooks Books, online, 2000), Pebbles, Pontoon, Presence (England), San Francisco Bay Guardian, Snapshots (England), South by Southeast, Tiny Words, Tobacco Road, Tracing the Fern (Sammamish, Washington: Press Here, 2005), Vox Populi: 2007 Seattle Poetry Festival Anthology (Seattle: Seattle Poetry Festival, 2007), Waverley Writers (Palo Alto, California: Waverley Writers, 2007), and Woodnotes. In addition, “clicking off the late movie” was performed on the Mara Tapp Show, WBEZ, 91.5 FM, Chicago, and many of these poems have also won awards or have appeared on the Electronic Poetry Network at the Shreveport Memorial Library, Louisiana. Thanks to all the editors of these publications for lending me a hand!