Global Haiku • June 2020
Dr. Randy Brooks

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Anna Ernst




Summer of Innovation

Anna Ernst

July 21, 2020

I was first introduced to contemporary haiku in the Global Haiku Traditions class at Millikin University, taught by Dr. Randy Brooks. It was completely different from the traditional Japanese poetry I expected. I enjoyed being able to read haiku written by published authors, as well as past students. When we met online for the first time, Dr. Brooks read aloud the haiku:

the sun coming up
five eggs
in the iron skillet

James Tipton, Bittersweet, p. 20

He then asked us to describe what we could feel through this haiku. It was apparent that in just a few moments after hearing this haiku, it could lead you to a specific place, time and smell. I imagined being at my grandparent’s house during the summer. I often spent many of my summer days with them. Every weekend, my grandma would cook us a big breakfast and we would all eat together at the table. I could feel being in the big queen sized bed, waking up to the smell of bacon. I pictured my grandma standing at the stove with the cast iron, cracking eggs into the hot bacon grease. I could imagine hearing the sizzling sound of the eggs as they reached the pan.

It was during this first meeting that I realized how much I was going to enjoy writing haiku myself. This selection of haiku comes during a time of global change and innovation. My approach comes from my own personal experiences and struggles. I like to write haiku that is relatable to others as well, showing that we are not alone during this time. My hope is to take the reader to a specific place where they can add their own experience and personal connection to the haiku.

About the Author:

Anna Ernst was born in Decatur, IL on May 22nd, 1981. She wrote this haiku collection during the summer of 2020, while studying Global Haiku Tradition under Dr. Randy Brooks. Anna is a wife, mother and student. She is the program coordinator at the Moultrie County Beacon in Sullivan, IL, working with adults with disabilities for over 20 years. Anna has a great passion for her family and friends. Her haiku comes from personal experiences and raw emotion. She is currently a senior at Millikin University and plans to graduate this fall with a Bachelor’s in Organizational Leadership.

running barefoot
through the clothes
on the line


muddy waters
bobbers swaying
in the trees


sound asleep
he hears the chirping
of one cricket

upon entering work
I pause . . .
to put on my mask


creaky wooden floors
have withstood
many secrets


middle child
fighting for
the front seat

away from home
our son has gone
wearing combat boots

daughter asks
so innocently
do you see what I see?


significant achievements
a speck.
in the sky



toes lightly tapping
to the beat
of my heartache


carefree and independent
she finds herself
with a family


family game night
cat paws
under the table


relaxing in the sun
a butterfly rests
on my hand


The American Flag
waves to
traffic going by


tan lines
where she’s been


walking alone
I reach out
for my daughter’s hand


rain falling
through the sunshine
we search for a rainbow


© 2020, Randy Brooks • Millikin University
All rights returned to authors upon publication.