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Haikus on a Sunday Night

20 Oct

We did haikus at school, right? You learn that they go 5 syllables – 7 syllables – 5 syllables. And you think, ‘what’s the point?’

Well I’ve recently discovered, since reading ‘Haiku Poetry Volume Four’ by James Hackett, that there’s a bit more to it than that. With haikus you are trying to capture a moment truly. It is all about being in the now (much like what they teach me in my yoga classes), being witness to nature and capturing it without trying to be artful or clever. Anyway… I thought I’d try it last night. Witnessing nature is quite difficult when you live in the centre of Auckland City. But still, I found it peaceful.

Haiku #1

The supermarket’s

ventilation system:

A seat for the gull.

Haiku #2

He preens his feathers,

white chest not sooty at all.

A clean scavenger.

Haiku #3

It could be the sea

outside our window tonight

Roaring traffic waves.

A poem for October

8 Oct


Frazzled sun

light leaning on old bricks and iron roofs.

Oamaru stone stained, and students’

pump bottles and beat-up shoes.

Faded signs advertising vacancies outside

stucco white motels.

Threadbare, sodden sofas

on rusted fire escape rails.

Chip packets clogging drains,

facades lined with vines.

Taxi’s owned by ex-railway workers

and bins full of empties and buses

full of the retired.

Moss and slime and shadowy places

and crawling yards with mint.

Teenagers in their petticoats and Robbie Burn’s head

covered in seagull shit.


God it’s good to be home.