Holiday Haiku

From 1 December 2022 to 4 January 2023, thirty of my haiku were projected on a large screen at the Buoyant Pavilion stage at Redmond, Washington’s Downtown Park. They were part of the city’s 2022 Redmond Lights festival. A video of my poems, shown here, was projected four times an hour for six hours each night for the duration of the festival. Photos of the installation, showing each poem at least once, appear below in the order the poems appear in the video. All poems had been published previously. My gratitude to the City of Redmond for funding this installation and for the opportunity to share these seasonal poems in a public way. In 2007, I also published a small chapbook titled Holiday Haiku. See also Christmasku.

My artist’s statement, on the Redmond Lights website:


Holiday Haiku features 30 haiku and senryu poems celebrating both the warmth and the cold of the holiday and winter season. These poems offer reminders of common experiences you may have had in December or later during the winter. Take a moment to dwell in each poem and feel the personal moment it presents, responding with a smile or a nod of understanding.

My collection of “Holiday Haiku was one of three installations projected four times an hour for six hours each night on the Buoyant Pavilion in Downtown Park in Redmond, Washington from 1 December 2022 to 4 January 2023.

first cold night—

the click of your domino

as we play by the fire

talk of snow—

the stems of roses

recently pruned

cold apartment—

through the long night

a neighbor’s cough

first frost . . .

a pair of shoes

left at the door

morning chill—

the bag of marbles

shifts on the shelf

first snow . . .

the children’s hangers

clatter in the closet

snow day—

your apple compote

bubbling on the stove




northern lights—

    snow sifts

through the bird feeder

morning sun—

     a patch of frost

in the Holstein’s shadow

December commute—

I catch the yawn

of the driver beside me

Christmas tree up—

I stir the skin

back into my soup

crackling fire—

a hint of eggnog

in your kiss

toll booth lit for Christmas—

from my hand to hers

warm change

home for Christmas:

my childhood desk drawer


deep red sunset

     on Christmas Eve

the phone’s sudden ring

Christmas morning

    a drift of snow

through the sun porch

after-dinner mints

passed around the table...

slow-falling snow

a chime of bells

across the snowy field—

          the horse’s breath

winter stillness . . .

a strand of tinsel

in the tilted pine

distant church bells . . .

a sparrow’s breath

lost in the holly berries

mountain morning—

all over the red berry bush

snow in tiny heaps

The Open Sky, 1997 Yuki Teikei Haiku Anthology

job interview—

the snow shovel

lifted from its hook

toboggan run—

I discover

my coccyx

warm winter evening—

the chairs askew

after the poetry reading

another frost—

in a poetry book I find

the peace of wild things

fresh snow—

a single candle burns

on the mahogany pulpit

winter light—

the barber’s breath

against my ear


the toboggan’s pull rope

shiny at the bend

New Year’s Day—

the fresh snowfall

as white as my diary