Haiku Kukai 4 Favorites

Global Haiku • Millikin University • Spring 2020

blink blink
the eyeshadow falls
smears on the pillow

Taylor Parola (5)

Someone coming home late. He or she doesn’t feel like removing their makeup because they are very tired. They lay on their bed and trying to fall asleep. Opening their eyes once in a while which then smears their pillow. There might also be two much eyeshadow on this person and as they blink some of it falls off their face. Pascaline Muhindagiga, Spring 2020

my dream
can’t look in the mirror

Taylor Parola (6)

Someone who has fallen, but hasn’t found a way to get back up. They are disappointed with themselves and don’t want to face their reality at the moment because it make everything seem real. Pascaline Muhindagiga, Spring 2020

one text
my everything

porch light
front door covered with moths
a portal to hell

Hailey Wimberly (10)

this one really made me laugh because it is so dramatic. Obviously this person does not like moths at all. Moths can be really freaky, I understand. The idea of portals is also very fascinating to me. I can see the warm porchlight and the door covered in moths. I would want to run far away. Olivia Tharpe, Spring 2020

I enjoyed this haiku because it reminded me of the nights that I stayed out past curfew. On these nights I would be terrified to go into the house because I knew my mother would be waiting on the other side of the door. Furthermore, I would be dreading the alarm my small dog would sound because he, too was confused on why someone was coming in the door so late. A peaceful sight normally, turned into a nightmare past 12 am. Shania Dvorak, Spring 2020


she leaves for work
traveling on a highway
her daughter hopes she’ll come home

cool night
with friends at home
tacos and tequila

Pascaline Muhindagiga (7)

This haiku makes me think of how I spend my Friday nights here on campus. My friends and I love to just hang out after a long week of school. We usually always order in a pizza and pick out a movie to watch. I enjoy the company of my best friends, and these nights have been some of the best memories I have made. All of my friends enjoy watching movies, but we love romantic comedies the most. The nights at home are some of the best nights ever, because you can wear no make-up and put on a pair of sweatpants. Erika Castanon, Spring 2020

This brings back memories from gathering my friends together and enjoying a weekend night at one of our houses. It brings a sense of nostalgia after reading it. Now everyone is in different colleges and it does not happen as often. When it does happen we make the most of it and just feels like a reoccurring night every single time that I would relive till I die. Dalton Glasco, Spring 2020

I enjoyed this poem because every time I’m home for a weekend or break from school, I make it my duty to go to a restaurant called Mission Taco back home in St. Louis. Mission taco is a place that has $2 shots and $2 tequila. One day, my sisters didn’t want to go out, so they decided to have a really cool night at the house, eating tacos and drinking tequila. Jada Miller, Spring 2020

she questions her worth
more and more
with each not enough

Hailey Wimberly (5)

car trip
after hours of driving
finally      the final destination

Pascaline Muhindagiga

This haiku makes me think of the long car rides I used to take with my family. My family used to drive to Florida every summer to see my god mother. I imagine stepping out of the car and feeling the sunshine on my face. I always stretched out my body the moment I stepped out of the car, because my back was always so tense. This haiku made me look back on the times when my family would pack up our lives, and head on down to Florida. These trips we took every summer made me hate driving in the car for long periods of time. So now I enjoy flying everywhere I go, because I can’t sit in the car for that long. Erika Castanon, Spring 2020

a picture
of two people
smiling . . . lies

Taylor Parola (10)

I enjoy this haiku because I like the mischievous dark nature of this false moment of happiness. Whoever the two people are that this haiku are about are either separated are no longer in each other's lives. Perhaps the author is one of the two people in the picture and they are reflecting on how they thought this person was one thing but turned out to be another. I just really enjoy the contrasting images. Michael Santos, Spring 2020

I liked this haiku a lot because I am a firm believer that social media and photos can ruin relationships. While all things might look great and happy in a photo, that is not always realistically what it is like. By looking at a photo, you are not going to be able to tell how someone's relationship is, but that is the way people usually see it. This haiku reminded me that you don't really know the relationship from a photo, because no one wants to capture and post the ugly parts of a relationship. Morgan Timmons, Spring 2020

I really love this haiku because I feel that pictures are often so staged and not an accurate representation of the moment. When looking at a picture, you don’t know exactly what happened in the moments leading up to the picture being taken. Perhaps the people were fighting and are just trying to take a picture to post online to appear happy. Maybe the two people in the picture have a fake friendship all together. Or perhaps the picture is just heavily edited. Kevin Escobar, Spring 2020

cops on the corner
underage in the house
everyone out         ID?

Pascaline Muhindagiga (6)

his hands
around her neck
she cannot scream

she does not remember
he continues
the story

Shania Dvorak (14)

When I read this, I thought of the movie The Notebook because this haiku basically explains the whole plot of the movie. I also think about those couples that have relationships and one of them does have alzheimers or dementia and the passion that they must have to keep moving forward and not getting held back by the challenges. Morgan Timmons, Spring 2020

My imagined felt response to this haiku was warmth. This haiku makes me imagine true love and a couple that has years of memories together. The warmth comes from knowing that this couple is so close and in love that they can finish each other’s sentences. I also thought of the Nicholas Sparks movie ‘the notebook’ and remembered the plot of that movie and how he spends his time telling the love of his life their life story, because she was unable to remember. Hannah Watts, Spring 2020 

heart beats fast
she’s no longer
with us

unfamiliar city
a woman in pink
floats down in a bubble

Jared Chapman (7)

cool breeze
through the window
my head on a pillow

Jared Chapman (9)

i love the image of the window open at night. I visualize the curtains blowing in the breeze. I get so hot at night when I am sleeping and always need some kind of way to cool myself off. I imagine the smell of summer nights and the coolness of the breeze. Olivia Tharpe, Spring 2020

I really like this one because it brings me to ease. I don't feel as stressed or overwhelmed. I feel as if someone has taken a wet rag and put it on my neck to relax me. Paige Boomer, Spring 2020

when silence mocks
he eats the rude . . .
Hello Clarice

Jared Chapman (6)

the baby cries
into the monitor.
no it's your turn

drifting down the stream
she screams!
fish between her feet

Dalton Glasco (6)

with my
de niro

Niki Curatti (6)

dreams of becoming an actor
a contract with the devil

Niki Curatti (3)

As a performer I can appreciate the humor this author is trying to evoke. It is very difficult to become famous, and a lot of people with dreams of making it big never do. At points it must feel like the only way someone could reach these heights is is by supernatural means. I also enjoy the flow of idea in this haiku. You need to start with a dream. Then you need to make a deal with the devil. And then and only then can you achieve fame. This haiku places the perception of fame as unattainable. Michael Santos, Spring 2020

thud dud thud dud
the beat comes
from my chest

Dalton Glasco (7)

I really liked this haiku because it wasn’t just feelings or thinginess, it was a sense! You can literally feel this haiku, whether that feeling is positive or negative. Your heart could be beating from excitement, or from stress, or from fear, but that is up to the reader’s individual perspective, which is what I think makes this haiku special. Grace Newton, Spring 2020

unknown faces
going to different places
headphones in

Bre Johnson (6)

This haiku made me imagine myself in New York City. Thousands of people passing each other, never getting to know each other or stopping to say hi because they have their headphones in. When I put my headphones in, it's because I don't want other people to stop and talk to me. I want to be in my own world. I also like that the author rhymed the first two lines, but not the last. Hope Klessig, Spring 2020

coming up the steps
longing for attention

Bre Johnson (5)

nothing new to give,
I am
not enough.

Niki Curatti (5)

I connected with this one a lot because it's how I feel right now. I'm about to graduate and I have no clue what I'm doing anymore. I used to be on top of the world and now I feel like nothing. Paige Boomer, Spring 2020

I think this haiku was very cleverly constructed. It sends a meaningful message, but also does not include any imagery. This lack of imagery is important because it makes it more evident that there is nothing new to give. The phrasing in this haiku is enough to make it personal, there isn’t any imagery needed to describe this feeling of being insufficient. Jared Chapman, Springe 2020

moonlight sky
I sit in the grass
with my love

Erika Castanon (7)

This was simply happy. It’s a haiku that puts you right in the shoes of the author and if you’ve ever experienced anything like this, it brings you right back to that moment. A simple haiku, but sweet. I enjoyed it a lot. Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

There are a lot of sensory feelings associated with this haiku. First, you see the moonlit sky, then feel and smell the grass, then you feel the warmth of your love, who is right next to you. I think it was clever, in the first line, how the author said “moonlight sky” instead of “moonlit sky.” It slightly personified the moon, which seemingly claims the sky as its own. This wording made me see the moon as a separate image than the sky, whereas, if it said “moonlit,” I would see the moon as a part of the sky. Jared Chapman, Springe 2020

windows down
listening to music
wind blown hair

boarding first
who will i be with?

at a movie
chit chat
they glare us

Hope Klessig (4)

end of the movie
the worst part 

stars shining bright
I wonder . .
what could go wrong?

90 degrees
the angle of our legs
and the temperature 

tree in the window 
the smell of snow

Olivia Tharpe (5)

This haiku reminded me of my own childhood, particularly the final line about "the smell of snow." As a child, my favorite season was winter in large part because Christmas was my favorite holiday. I could and still can identify that specific smell that came with the first snowfall. I can remember how exciting that smell made me feel. And that feeling and the mention of childhood are the main reasons chose this haiku as one of my favorites. Michael Santos, Spring 2020

the crescent of
the moon
fumbling for the right word

Grace Newton (5)

fidgeting with
a little gold ring
indent on my finger

Grace Newton (6)

wide open highway
windows down
I taste the wind

ballet teacher 
peers down 
"your shoes are too big"

Olivia Tharpe (6)

running late
shirt on backwards
I sprint to the first hole

Erika Castanon (6)

one by one
she drops
the rose petals

Ashley Christensen

This haiku is almost visible to anyone who reads it. The author does a great job portraying a scene that almost any reader can think of what is happening while putting there own twist to it. Is she playing “he loves me, he loves me not”? or is she sitting there tearing off pieces of a representation of her heart because she was broken by someone? Dalton Glasco, Spring 2020

I'm not super specfic about why I like this one. I know its referring to the he loves me he loves me not ritual but I thought of it as something a bit more dark. It might just be the mindset I'm in at the moment. Paige Boomer, Spring 2020

steaming vegetables
I cook dinner
in my mother's pot

Hope Klessig (5)

the buzz on my wrist
that you still don’t care

Morgan Timmons

This haiku reminds me of my Apple Watch. When I was going through a rough patch with my boyfriend, I would always get notifications, but never from him. To me, it was a constant reminder that he did not care and that I was not on his mind. This haiku was a reminder of that feeling. Getting notifications but never from the person you care about and you want them to care for you the same way. But those notifications remind you that it is not an equivalent partnership. Shania Dvorak, Spring 2020

I enjoyed this poem because I relate to it a lot. I’ve had my apple watch for about four years now and to this day, the watch will buzz on my wrist and I was ignoring the notifications. And as the poem stated, I don’t care. I don’t care because sometimes I need a break. There’s no need to check every notification as soon as it comes to my watch. I also ignore it because I often find myself stressed and I don’t even want to look at the watch to see who’s calling, texting, or snapchatting. Jada Miller, Spring 2020


time moves slower
the steaming water
runs down my spine

Morgan Timmons (11)

This haiku makes me think of the best time of the day, and that would be when I get to take a shower. I love taking showers after a really long day, because I love the feeling of washing the day away. My mom hates me for this, but I always take the longest possible showers. I will just stand there and let the warm water run down my back. I don’t really have time to myself, so when I shower I enjoy the time by myself. Showers are so relaxing and make you feel so clean once you’re done. I believe the best feeling in the world is stepping out of your shower and putting on your towel. Erika Castanon, Spring 2020

My imagined felt response to this haiku was sadness. Reading this haiku instantly allowed me to picture myself just sitting in the shower with water running down my back. I often find myself doing this only if I am going through a hard time or am stressed out by something. This haiku makes me think of tough decisions and tough times that need a lot of deep thinking. In my opinion the shower is a place of calmness where everything can just wash over you literally and metaphorically. Hannah Watts, Spring 2020

The immediate feeling of this haiku is amazing. The author put us in a place of relaxation and calmness where everything works in slow motion. For me it’s a feeling and place where I can stand and let the water pelt my skin and feel the stress leave my body. Others may find this as their hiding place where they let their water run as tears meld with it and just giving you more time to think about what happened. Dalton Glasco, Spring 2020

I just really relate to this haiku because the shower is one of my favorite places to just clear my mind. I easily fall into taking really showers because I just completely lose all sense of time. I also like the image of water running down the spine. There is something very vulnerable about this image which I enjoy. It gives me a sense of just letting all the worries of the day wash off your body temporarily. Kevin Escobar, Spring 2020

store bought flowers
un bloomed
in the waiting room

Ashley Christensen (8)

As we talked about in class this poem can be read in a sad or happy way. Also it was clever that the un bloomed flowers were in the waiting room. As if the flowers were also waiting to bloom. It was a beautifully thought haiku and that is why it is one of my kukai favorites. Taylor Parola, Spring 2020

I love how this haiku can go many different ways. I initially took it in a light way, as the unbloomed flowers were “waiting” to bloom. There's also something very sweet about the act of someone bringing flowers to another person. Did someone just make it through an important surgery? Did someone just have a baby? Is there something to celebrate? Is it a nurse’s or doctor’s anniversary and their spouse is bringing them flowers? Or maybe the flowers were bought unbloomed because someone will be in the hospital for a while . . . I like how interpretive this haiku is. Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

the cold space
next to me.
where you used to lay

beads of sweat
running down her forehead
physical therapy

Hannah Watts (3)

pop.. pop..
the boot glitters in the sun

sunglasses on . . .
cool guys don't look
at explosions

Michael Santos (4)

sticky fingers
a doughnut away
from finality

Michael Santos

This haiku is just hilarious to me. Doughnuts are my weakness as far as junk food goes, and that notion of finality is definitely applicable to when you’re eating them. They're fried, they’re heavy, they’re sugary—one too many and your stomach is sick to itself for the rest of the day and you wont move until you’ve slept it off. There’s certainly a metaphor in there about what too much of a good thing can really do to you. Grace Newton, Spring 2020

maroon jacket
a stranger
turned friend

don't open the door
don't open the door
she opens the door

Hope Klessig (13)

packing for college
mom asks
do you want these measuring cups?

Hope Klessig (11)

I chose this kukai as one of my favorites because my mother does this all the time. When reading this haiku, I was able to get a clear image of my mom saying those words the night before leaving for college. It gave me the feeling of being at home, which I enjoyed a lot. Taylor Parola, Spring 2020

sweet potato chips

your greasy hand
slides into mine
buttered popcorn

Hope Klessig (7)

This haiku just made me feel warm and happy inside. It brings me to the beginning of a simple and young relationship. I see a first date from this haiku that is strictly innocent, and one that is going rather well. It makes me giggle a little bit also because I was not expecting the last line, but that is where the humor comes from. Morgan Timmons, Spring 2020

This haiku gave me vivid imagery as well as physical feeling on my hands. When I read this haiku, I could feel the hand in mine with the grease on it and some crumbs of popcorn. I did not particularly enjoy the feeling, but it was so vivid, I had to choose this as one of my favorites. The author of this haiku cleverly instrumented the term “slides.” It seems to give the haiku an entirely different meaning than if it were to just say “your hand in mine.” Jared Chapman, Springe 2020

in bed
asleep for the day

Niki Curatti (7)

I thought this haiku was very cute because it made me think of stars sleeping. We often associate stars with the night, because that is when we can see them. Even after we go to sleep, they still burn bright until dawn break. But the stars are still there in the day, you just cannot see them due to the sun. So, while we are awake, going about our day, they are asleep until the moon rises, and they become awake again. Shania Dvorak, Spring 2020

a tear rolling
into my popcorn
a little more salty

Grace Newton (13)

plucking raspberries
in the backyard
taste-test casualties

Niki Curatti (11)

after the funeral
the long drive home
    our favorite song plays

Kevin Escobar (11)

I liked this one because I could feel the pain that the author must be going through in this moment. I imagined that "our" means the author and the person who died. That made it much more emotional. Although, it could also mean the author and the person in the car with them. I also like the use of the word "long." It gives some specificity to the haiku and puts me in a different mood than if it were a short drive home. Hope Klessig, Spring 2020

boarding the coaster
the safety bar
wiggles slightly

Kevin Escobar (9)

OOO! This was my favorite one because it triggered the exact same emotion I would have if I was actually getting on a roller coaster and that happened. I'm the type of person who makes the ride worker triple check my seatbelt and safety bar so that I know I'm going to be safe. You can imagine how I would freak out if my bar was loose and the ride was starting. Hope Klessig, Spring 2020

I keep scrolling
why can't I move?
it's taken over

Paige Boomer

Technology is taking over our world today. I chose this kukai as one of my favorites because it was able to express a deeper meaning in a short amount of words. Technology has become a part of who we are today, it can feel like a trap. When turning on your phone you can scroll on it for hours and not even realize that much time has gone by. Taylor Parola, Spring 2020

cherry blossom petals
on a necklace of wind

Pat-rice Rooney (10)

There is such a quiet beauty in this haiku. The beauty of the petals floating in the wind is such an artful and peaceful image to have in your head. I really love that while this haiku has motion, it also has this serene, almost slow-motion stillness that allows you to take in what its saying. There is such lightness to the way this is written, and I just genuinely enjoyed reading it and allowing the imagery of those blossoms to float through my head like they do on the wind. Grace Newton, Spring 2020

I thought this haiku was genius. It’s beautiful in its diction. It's beautiful in its imagery. It’s beautiful in its movement. It’s beautiful in the feeling of peace it evokes. This haiku put me in a place of serenity. I loved it. Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

stench of decay
a trail of ants
leads to the body

just take a step
don't take it!

water boiling
red pot
Ramen noodles on the counter

Jada Miller

It’s hot to the touch, might even burn someone. Ramen is a representation of someone who lacks the funds to properly feed themselves. The price of ramen is so low. This haiku shows one of the ways to make ramen. How easy it is and all you need is water, which is something inexpensive. Pascaline Muhindagiga, Spring 2020

running through the halls
    the family portrait
      now slightly crooked

Kevin Escobar (10)

I loved this mainly because it reminded me of a Jane Austen movie. How the big families always have huge family portraits that are displayed through the house. I could imagine little kids running through the halls and disturbing the peace. Olivia Tharpe, Spring 2020

My imagined felt response to this haiku was a sense of comfort. This haiku instantly reminded me of my grandparent’s house. At my grandparents’ house my grandma has several pictures of all of her grandkids lining the walls of the main hallway. Especially when we were little, the pictures would become crooked after we ran back and forth through the house. Now that we have gotten older and don’t play around as much the pictures are much more level. Looking back one thing that seems funny now is that my grandpa would always tell us to stop running so the pictures didn’t fall off, but she would never straighten them back up. I think this is because she knew the next time we came to visit we would do it again. Hannah Watts, Spring 2020

as I climb
high above
my heart d

Shania Dvorak (13)

I enjoyed the poem because I literally felt both the thrill and imagery of this poem. It reminded me a lot of childhood times at 6 Flags. When I was younger, my favorite ride the Mr. Freeze. The Mr. Freeze is a ride where the carts went all the way to the top and the dropped back down at 60mph. As we would get to the top of the ride, I remembered how my heart would drop, but as soon as the chain snapped, we rushed down and my stomach jumped out of my stomach. So, this poem definitely reminded me of times in my childhood. Jada Miller, Spring 2020

cloudy sky
a soggy, black glove
lost on the ground

Jared Chapman (4)

my family name
carved in stone
above the newly dug plot

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