The Perfect Haiku

by William M. Ramsey

The brown-haired woman walking the beach my way

carried an afterbirth, fresh and dripping,

as sea foam rose to curl around her ankles

and then receded into the wrinkling ocean.

I watched her stride northward toward the point,

to a rising moon that was eggshell white and oval,

and from my lips came silence. Cutting my umbilical

I began the journey, drying in the breeze,

carrying a pageless book, a pen, and a yellow bloom.

I wrote a haiku on the flower, pressing it in the book,

at dusk lying down by a jagged driftwood to sleep,

particles of sand, wind-driven, rolling into mouth and eyes.

From Modern Haiku 39:3, Autumn 2008, page 78.