Haiku Kukai 5 Favorites

Global Haiku • Millikin University • Spring 2020

sweatpants grasping my hips
sweatshirt hugging my shoulders
we dance

Niki Curatti (10)

community garden
among the budding plants
paper windmills

Kevin Escobar (4)

This was really sweet to me. My dad works for a health department and they focus on serving the community. They work hard to not only give people the tools and resources that they need, but also do their best to make their community a happier and healthier place for everyone. This community garden is doing just that. A community garden serves the community (big shock, huh) in very practical ways, but there’s always an opportunity to go one step above and put a smile on peoples faces. Those paper windmills were one way of doing that. The haiku did a wonderful job at conveying that message. It was hopeful and sweet. Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

spring morning
disco lights
through his tree

Michael Santos (7)

This haiku was so cool! It not only poses for an interesting haiku topic and sounds good, but it reinvented this idea for me! I love when I read a haiku that assimilates two things and I think to myself “WOW, I’ve never thought of it that way!”. Now, when I see the light coming through my window and dancing around, I get to think of it as a little disco party. I also really enjoy when haiku take you one direction, throw you for a loop, and then tie it all together in the last line. What in the world do “spring morning” and “disco lights” have in common? The light coming through the tree! Very thoughtful, observant, and innovative! Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

like shingles on a roof
together and sturdy
we wait for the storm


basement cupboard
our childhood hideaway
          I bump my head

on the stairs
I hold back tears

Olivia Tharpe (9)

a crescent shape on the floor
almost stepped on

Niki Curatti (3)

laundry taken down
sparrows perch
on the clothesline

Kevin Escobar (7)

spring cleaning
her father's memories
disposed of

Michael Santos (17)

mint tea
fresh from the garden
would you like a spot?

Niki Curatti (10)

days like these
I walk a little slower
to see your beauty

Morgan Timmons (10)

shabby haircuts
crying nights
a life together

Paige Boomer (5)

clovers and dandelions . . .
but where is the    best

to my side
a furry friend
never leaves

Morgan Timmons (6)

I’m sorry
my black eye
looks back at you

Shania Dvorak (7)

grab my hand
said the sun
I’ll show you something

Niki Curatti (15)

whirling my hair
with the wind
I can’t see where I’m going

Morgan Timmons (7)

I thought you were
a shooting star

Shania Dvorak (7)

While this haiku, I’m sure has a deeper meaning behind it, it made me think of famous people. We often look up to these “stars” and idolize them. They’re perfect, they’re so talented, and gorgeous, and rich, they have it all! But then we read on the news the next day that they cheated on their spouse, died of an overdose, or are going to jail on some crazy charge. This goes for the people in our personal lives as well. Sometimes we think people have it all together, but they end up having a lot going on on the inside that we don’t know about. This haiku is almost a reminder to all of us to focus on the more important things in life and to check up on others. Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

a shady trail
my foot prints
in the puddles behind me

Dalton Glasco

This haiku was very heavy to me. Not emotionally heavy, but verbally weighted. The words “shady” and “footprints” and “puddles” are all ones that are muddled. I liked how this haiku gives a lot of direction. The “trail” evokes a feeling that propels the reader forward. The words “footprints” and “behind” bring us back. Emotionally, this haiku led me to a feeling of endurance and trudging on no matter where we came from or what may lie ahead. Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

the smell of spring
in the first rain
from bed

Ashley Christensen (5)

midnight headlights
with the windows down—

Jared Chapman (7)

a cool spring night
on a tailgate
a drive-in movie

Dalton Glasco (8)

spring breeze
plants sway
waving hello

Ashley Christensen (6)

the smell of cigarettes
in our grey sheets—
I don’t smoke

Jared Chapman (3)

red blanket
on fresh green grass
the feast begins

smell of the sea
a gleaming sea shell
in the white sand

Ashley Christensen

This haiku just shouted “sensory!”. I could smell the ocean, I could hear the waves, I could see how the shell popped out of the sand and caught my eye, I could feel the white sand beneath my feet. While this haiku didn’t have some complex undertones, causing me to think intensely about the meaning or the origin, it instead caused me to do exactly what the author wanted -relax. Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

alone by the fire
you lay next to him
and think of me

Jared Chapman (7)

tiny coffeeshop
the HELP WANTED sign
      faded from sunlight

Kevin Escobar (5)

The use of font in this haiku was very cool. The “HELP WANTED” in all caps gives us an immediate picture. I love the phrase “faded from the sunlight”. It can take us in many different directions… maybe the coffee shop has been looking for an employee for a while? Maybe the coffee shop has been closed down for years and the sign still remains on the door? Who knows what the story may be. That “tiny coffee shop” feels nostalgic though and gives us all something to relate to. I also love the juxtaposition of the phrase “faded from the sunlight”. Faded seems to have a negative connotation, while sunshine is the epitome of positivity. If the sign had been “faded from the storm”, the haiku might’ve left us feeling sad, but because it was “faded from the sunshine”, it gave us a sense of peace. Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

the sun comes out
warmth reflecting
off my face

a breath of fresh air
out of my

Grace Newton (7)

This haiku has “spring” written all over it. During the winter, we bundle up, we stay inside, we keep to ourselves, and we practically become hermits. When the first signs of spring appear (in Illinois, this is when the weather hits above 30 degrees), we seem to all show up out of nowhere and blossom like flowers, or in this case, break free of our cocoons and emerge as something beautiful. That “breath of fresh air” was long awaited and much appreciated. Spring has sprung! Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

spring weather
we walk through the park
catching Pokémon

step by step
a neverending trail
I move forward

Taylor Parola (13)

packing away
the crumbs
ants in a line

Grace Newton (6)

sitting on the swing
the lonely creak
of the one next to me

Kevin Escobar (6)

I LOVED this haiku. A double vote from me! This spoke to many of my senses. I felt the wind blowing (causing the swing to move), I saw the swings, I heard the creak, and I emotionally felt the swings yearning. It was genius to think of the swing this way. The haiku could ultimately be alluding to the swing simply reflecting the emotions of the author at that moment. The swing was lonely for someone to sit on it, just as the author was lonely for someone to sit next to them. Maybe it was in some way comforting to the author to know that they weren't alone in their loneliness? Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

would you love me less?
if you knew . . .
the damage

stretching through
the roots
I awaken

Grace Newton (8)

This haiku was also a big indicator of spring for me. The trees lose their leaves in the winter and rest in the same positions until they can continue on with life in the spring. It’s that moment during the first signs of spring that I picture this haiku taking place. The haiku gives me a feeling of freedom, excitement, and opportunity. I can’t wait for this to start happening! Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

hugging the trunk
my eyes climb to
the tallest branch

in the basket
stealing my PB&J

Erika Castanon (6)

newly hatched birds
the mothers

Jada Miller (4)

we march forward
one by one
to climb Mt. Picnic Basket

Niki Curatti (5)

for a text . . .
no new messages

making my way through the hood
looking good
wish a . . . would try me

Jada Miller

This was such a goofy haiku. It made me giggle and brought a big smile to my face. A play off the song, this haiku incorporated pop culture and “actual” culture. I think there’s something to be said about how exclusive pop culture can be at times. Pop culture is often what’s “in” and what’s “in” isn’t always what most of the population can relate to. I think this is a fun haiku that opens up this song to more cultures than its origin. Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

red and white checkers
us and the grass

lonely night
I sit in silence . . .
thinking about him

it’s spring
fly a kite
or take flight

sweaty and itchy
in my Easter dress
I bow my head

Shania Dvorak (7)

under the tree
shade our picnic table
drinks in a cooler

spring rain
will I ever be happy

Olivia Tharpe (6)

picnic blanket
on the wet grass
soggy bottoms

Shania Dvorak (10)

windows down
nowhere to go
empty passenger seat

your eyes meet mine
in the cold air of December
have you made up your mind

talking through other people    I can't look at you

Morgan Timmons (7)

he's gone
he left
is it a running through the airport kind of love?

Paige Boomer (12)

met a man
who puts me first
I don’t know what to do

Taylor Parola (10)

delicately made
a home
for Charlotte

Hope Klessig (3)

This was a sweet haiku. I love the imagery of this. Spider webs often have such a negative connotation. They’re “spooky”, they’re “dirty”, they “get in the way”. They’re truly works of art. They’re so fragile and detailed. They’re both a home and an incredible work of nature. I’m grateful for movies such as Charlotte’s Web because they shine positivity on things that are so often looked down upon. This haiku did a similar thing for spider webs. By its beautiful lines and positive association, it’s an advocate for this incredible natural art. Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

freedom at last
we leave our coats

Hannah Watts (10)

we used to hold hands
and now
we can’t go back

staring in the mirror
she takes off
the necklace he gave her

Hope Klessig (11)

Oof, this one hit hard. It’s cold. And on both ends too. Staring is such a strong word and it’s used very purposefully in this haiku. She isn’t just taking off a necklace. This is a lot more symbolic than I can even begin to imagine. She’s intentionally making a deal out of taking off this necklace. There’s something going on in this relationship. There’s something going on in her mind as she’s doing this. I really like the dark ideas and questions that this haiku poses. It’s also written beautifully. Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

bike path
a long walk and talk
. . . with mother

Hannah Watts (4)

telling me lies
as you look me in the face
fake love

old box
I sweep off the dust
and open memories of us

Hope Klessig (6)

the ball . . .
flies off the bat

scrolling through old messages
I blame
. . . myself

his leash
keeps tugging me
to walk the path

iced tea
on this white porch
squirt gun!

homework on the porch
my cat peeks
out the glass door

Kevin Escobar (5)

break up
2 years later . . .
you call me

wedding day photos
the garbage collector
wonders why

Michael Santos (10)

park fountain
shimmering at the bottom
a child’s wish

Kevin Escobar (10)

GREAT haiku! Another two votes from me. This haiku appeals to the senses as well as a greater cause. I can hear the water and feel the spray coming off of the fountain, but I can also become the child. I dig deep and put my whole heart into a wish to be thrown into a fountain. It’s a magical moment that I think a lot of people can relate to. The author did an excellent job of opening this door for us by referring to the $1.37 in change at the bottom of the fountain as wishes rather than copper. They don't even give us the option to be adults while reading this haiku. We’re transported to a different time, to a different mindset, to a state of hope. I loved it! Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

next to you
so alone
holding your hand

he left . . .
the wilting tulip
nourished back to life

Jared Chapman (6)

A GORGEOUS haiku. It’s visually pleasing and also resolves so beautifully. The initial line is a bit scary, but I’m assuming that the initial part of the actual situation was as well. The tulip has a new opportunity at life. It has an opportunity to do something that it hasn’t been able to do in quite some time . . . live. This tulip is beautiful. I can see it as I read the haiku. I’m excited for it! Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

Page Avenue
the green steps
of Grandma's house

Jada Miller (3)

This was a very homey haiku. It’s exciting to bring someone to your hometown, to show them your old house, to introduce them to your family, and to invite them to the little quirks that you love about your memories. For this person, they know that it’s their grandma’s house, when they get to page avenue and see those green steps. To someone driving by, those green steps have no meaning, but to this person they mean the world and hold dear memories. This was a very special haiku to me. I really enjoyed it! Niki Curatti, Spring 2020

random chapstick
found in forgotten jeans
little treasures

Hailey Wimberly (8)

stick on moons
a galaxy
not so far away

Grace Newton (8)

highschool sweethearts
he cheats
and she forgives . . . again

Dalton Glasco (5)

never lost a family member
until today . . .
How do I grieve?

Jada Miller (6)

geese and ducks
at the park pond

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