Haiku Attempts 02

Global Haiku • Millikin University • Fall 2021


afternoon sun showers
I wear a grain bucket
as a hat


nobody will ever
love you like i do
raised eyebrow

Daniel Clear (9)


rainbow outlines
the white barn
a halo

Shay Buchanan (3)


two corndogs and a yogurt
I guess that’s dinner

Daniel Clear (8)


sitting on the riverbank
toes swimming
with minnows

Trinity Pesko (7)

I can feel this haiku. The sun beating down on my already pink neck and drying out my bathing suit, the wet spot on the wooden dock I’m sitting on, and the cool water up to my ankles. I can feel the tickle of lake weeds on the bottom of my feet, and the little minnows nibbling at my toes. Swishing my feet in the water, I watch them swim away and come back when I’m still again. I love that the toes are “swimming” with the minnows in this haiku. It adds more character and whimsy to imagine your toes wiggling along with the little fish. I also love the way this poem looks on paper with “swimming” and “minnows” right on top of each other. A simple eight words brings my senses back to my childhood in Minnesota. Emily Nicholas, Fall 2021


cosmic botany
vast fields overlook
constellations upside down

Daniel Clear

The imagery in this haiku is fantastic. I love the word choice and the contrast of the earthy botanical references with the cosmic stellar references. This haiku feels very grandiose and classy. It is sort of romantic even. Yet, you can relate to it because it uses images we are familiar with. I like the idea of the stars and planets being like corn in a field, or any other crop for that matter. I also like that the constellations are upside down, giving new perspective whilst retaining their beauty. This haiku also has a good mouth feel when spoken aloud. Barrett Van, Fall 2021



surrounded by people
but still alone
fallen leaves

Shay Buchanan

I can absolutely relate to the feeling of loneliness captured in this haiku. There have definitely been moments in my life when I’ve found myself sitting in a crowded room, or outside on a bench, with people walking by, and yet finding myself completely and utterly alone. There is nothing more isolating that finding yourself surrounded by people and not knowing how to talk to any of them. Mason Hoyt, Fall 2021

This haiku was peaceful yet had a lot of meaning to it. There are times when I am at events in my sorority and I am surrounded by people yet I feel completely alone in the room. It is difficult being an introverted person in a room full of extroverted people that get along so well with others. Although I assume the author meant to set the scene outside in the fall, I interpreted the “fallen leaves” as watching the leaves fall through a window because someone is just isolated inside. I imagined an individual just zoning out and focusing on the leaves outside falling because that was their way of staying connected with reality. However, this image also created a contrast between the dark and lonely mind and the bring orange and red leaves as they fall, inspiring some sort of hope to bring color back into their life. Diana Hernandez, Fall 2021


sitting on a lucky penny
shimmering green

Shay Buchanan (3)


learning to love
my crooked smile
in every mirror

Allison Durham (8)

I like this haiku because it is so sweet! Everyone has flaws and quirks, and I love that this author is embracing theirs. I love that “learning to love” is on its own line. Not only could it be interpreted as learning to love their crooked smile, but learning to love in general. Also, “my crooked smile” is nice on one line by itself because it allows you to really focus on that and appreciate it. I love the “in every mirror” because it implies loving all aspects and perspectives of their crooked smile and accepting it fully for all that it is. Maya Gomez, Fall 2021

I just love the message of this haiku. I know I’ve definitely struggled with image issues, as have many, and it’s taken me a long time to be able to say that I do appreciate the way I look. It’s definitely a long and painful road, but I’m glad I’m in a better place than I used to be in that regard. Mason Hoyt, Fall 2021


wasn’t even 18
for 5 hours
when he groped me

Allison Durham

This haiku really hit deep. I think most young women can relate to this, and that really truly saddens me. We are so often objectified and treated like property. Men think they have a right to our bodies. She was only considered a legal adult for a matter of hours before someone took advantage of her. That is disgusting. What is even worse is that usually people don’t even wait until you are 18 to do this. I love that the author was able to capture this disgust and upset about being handled like someone’s property. The fact that she is so freshly 18 also really says something. It also implies that this is her birthday. He was probably someone close to her to be around her on her birthday. I felt so many emotions reading this. It is an excellent commentary. Barrett Van, Fall 2021


your car's extended warranty

Allison Durham (9)

I LOVE this haiku so much. I know for a FACT that I get so many phone calls from random numbers that I don’t feel like answering. It seems that every single time they leave a voicemail though, it’s someone calling about trying to renew my car’s extended warranty. It’s funny, because people could be having super deep conversations, then get a phone call they don’t want to answer. Then, when checking to see if the voicemail is important, you break any tension in the conversation when finding out it’s yet another spam call. This haiku just feels like a breath of fresh air that’s desperately needed during a stressful time. Gabe Henderson, Fall 2021



a teddy bear
with no head
my baby

Shay Buchanan

I love this haiku. It reads a little morbid at first. People do not tend to look fondly upon decapitated stuffed animals. However, the last line really changed the tone of this haiku for me. “My baby” gives us insight into the author’s feelings about this toy. The author loves this toy and treats it as if it were their child. This made me then think about how toys tend to be ugly and worn after a child loves them dearly. The kid probably dragged this bear around with them everywhere and did everything with it. The head is gone, but the author still loves the bear just as much. This is a very powerful feeling in children. This haiku also reminded me of The Velveteen Rabbit. I love anything that is part creepy and part cute. Barrett Van, Fall 2021



chipped toe nail polish
summer day
broken in flip flops


our steps
in sync
you and me

Reece Brown

What i really appreciate about this haiku is the sense of cadence that it employs. The steps of syllables are out of sync. The phrases “our steps” and “in sync” because of the way the mouth forms around each word it pushes the beats off of each other. But then it lines up very nicely in “you and me.” It’s also just a nice simple thing that I want to think about more. Paul Cushman, Fall 2021


glide of the canoe
riples across still water
peepers croaking as the sun goes down


freshly sharpened pencil
the tip falls out

Nathan Gallop (6)


talking him down
knowing next time
we might not be there

Nathan Gallop (8)

Reading this haiku, I pictured the opening scene from a TV show from a few years back, Touch. Jake, a mute eleven-year-old, climbs to the top of the cellphone tower. His father, Martin, has to coax him down. The sheer look on Martin’s face as he tries to tell Jake to come down is exactly what I pictured when reading this poem. Trinity Pesko, Fall 2021


over a trash can
Nature Valley

Nathan Gallop (12)


horchata flavored
keeps me company


rainy morning after
our conversation
on a mental loop

Priscilla Sabourin

This haiku reminded me of a movie scene in twilight where Bella and Edward break up and she sits in her chair looking at rain as she recalls all the good moments in their relationships. I really liked this haiku because it reminded me of the difficult moments I would face. Sometimes when I couldn’t stay inside I would sit in my garage watching the rain. I would smell the rain and listen to drops hitting the payment. Yet, I would be lost in my thoughts as I replayed conversations that led me to break down. I would reflect on how I felt and how things could have gone differently. The word “loop” really embodied my emotions because oftentimes I feel stuck in my own head without an outlet. When I have an argument with someone and I say something I regret, the toxic behaviors I demonstrated replay in my head hoping to change my actions. Diana Hernandez, Fall 2021


starting from the top
is not the same
as giving up


the gentle morning sun
reminding us that the monsters
were just trees

Priscilla Sabourin (13)

This haiku felt very nostalgic as it reminded me of the nightmares I had as a child. There was a tree in my backyard and the branches would reach my window. During the day I absolutely loved the tree since it held up a swing and it was a great hiding spot for hide-and-seek. However, at night I would be terrified of the tree. It was a constant cycle of loving the tree and hating it at night. When there would be horrible thunderstorms I thought the tree would grow legs and break in through my window. It was those nights I would have my father sleep in my room to defend me from any monsters. One day, my dad was fed up with sleeping in a child sized bed and decided to cut the branches that hit my window. He knew how much I enjoyed the tree so he made sure to only cut the branches that were the “monsters” at night. Diana Hernandez, Fall 2021

This haiku triggered a specific sense memory for me. I live in an old house, with an old, messy dogwood tree right outside my window. When I was younger, it would scrape and tap on the window and it would keep me up all night, petrified thinking that there were swarms of mice crawling on the floor, up the walls, or that some murderer or burglar was tapping on the walls trying to get in. In a broader sense, this haiku reminds me that our anxieties and worries that can keep us awake at night are nothing but trees, harmless and still. Daniel Clear, Fall 2021


wild onion
my brother

Nico Velazquez (4)

I like how simple this haiku is. Structurally, not a lot is happening. A noun with an adjective and a noun with a verb. Too me this feels like day old clothes and dusty air. There are clouds few and far between, and you are with your siblings, but separate from them. They are scampering around looking for the wild onions that they were told grow here, despite not knowing what they are looking for. Wild Onions seems like a pet name to me. Paul Cushman, Fall 2021


where’s my exemption card?
I gave them their
lD lO T.

Nico Velazquez (8)


umbrella lowered
she looks up
dancing in the drizzle

Barrett Van (2)


blue string lights and
yellow lamps
nothing helps me sleep

Mason Hoyt (2)

This haiku makes me think about how we over complicate things and try to correct too much for things that would be better off untouched. I could just imagine myself lying awake at night trying to figure out why I can’t sleep and thinking “Ah, yes, more light.” Generally speaking less light is better for sleeping, so it would probably be a bit counter intuitive to put up more lights. Shay Buchanan, Fall 2021


sleeping medusa
what secrets lurk
in the eyes of men

Mason Hoyt

This Haiku wasn’t talked about in class today which saddened me because it was such an intriguing piece. To start, I loved the use of the word “lurk” instead of lie. To me, that just means that the author knows that there are no pleasant secrets hiding in the mind of men and that all thoughts are lurking just to be inconveniently let out. Also, the idea that medusa knows more about men than anyone else since she’s seen men’s true nature through their eyes is absolutely chilling. Due to the lack of a question mark at the end of the haiku, I feel like this was a chant of some sort of to raise medusa from the dead. The poem has such witchy feminist vibes that I really appreciate. Nico Velazquez, Fall 2021


a whisper
bounces off
empty church pews

Barrett Van (2)

This haiku was only as meaningful as it was because of the timing of it. Whatever the author intended was lost on me as I applied this to my current situation. This past Sunday, my hometown priest and close family friend passed away unexpectedly behind the altar at church while preparing for the liturgy. He was not old or unhealthy, so it was quite a shock to all of us. As my sister described what had happened over the phone, I pictured the scene. My father and the visiting priest standing silent, shell shocked after watching their beloved friend fall to the ground. Thankfully, it happened before any of the parishioners arrived. So the pews were indeed empty as the whisper that was his soul leaving his earthly body bounced off the church pews and started its journey home. But honestly, in my opinion, his soul and the legacy he left behind was way more than a whisper—rather a deep yell that echoed for miles and miles. Priscilla Sabourin Fall 2021

As someone who goes to church and has experienced their own congregation empty, this definitely brought me back. Churches are very acoustic most of the time, as to allow for fuller singing, and this is just a reminder that even a whisper could echo throughout a church when empty. In a sadder sense, this also indicates a lack of people within the church and possibly dying congregation or, God forbid, a dying religion. In an empty church, despite a melancholier undertone, it’s also easier to be closer to God. You see characters in movies and TV shows go to church alone sometimes to feel a sense of hope that something or someone is looking down on them. They have heart-wrenching confessions sometimes, and that emotional connection to a higher being is something that I’m reminded of when I read this haiku. Gabe Henderson, Fall 2021


free bird
flies in and out
of a zoo enclosure

Barrett Van (7)

I love this haiku because of the juxtaposition of free and enclosure. This bird is free yet still flies into a place that seems like a prison. Part of me feels like this haiku is showing the free bird as taunting the animals in the zoo that are not free and are trapped and isolated. To me this represents privilege. This free bird is completely arrogant to the fact that these other animals do not have the same opportunities as the bird. This haiku could also mean people coming and going from their hometown. I imagine a college student who always said they wanted to get out of their hometown but continue to go back. Katie Curtis, Fall 2021


little jackalope
what do you say to someone
who says you don't exist

Mason Hoyt (3)


the seam ripper
was tucked beneath
drolls of blue butterflies

Paul Cushman (2)


pressed into the mud
broken prints
smaller puddles


the rocking of a chair
stories from grandpa
forever a memory

Katie Curtis

This takes me not to a rocking chair, but to the bed in my grandparents’ spare room. Probably a queen, the mattress felt massive to my little four year old body. The bed was usually shared between at least two or three of us, me and a sibling or a cousin. However, no matter who was inhabiting the bed at night, we would always be joined by one more person right before bedtime. My grandpa would come in to say goodnight and after incessant pleading from the small humans in the spare bed, he would take a seat and rub our backs while telling us a bedtime story. I would later learn that these stories and characters that I thought he had created were actually just plotlines from the Three Stooges. However, fraud aside, those moments will always be special to me. Priscilla Sabourin Fall 2021


sitting by the fire
the kids are restless
Santa is coming


plans cancelled
mask up Millikin
when will it end?


along the plodded path
a plastic bottle
offers up what's left


dive bar
playing pool
with new friends


matching pace
we discuss the trivial
and the existential

India Guerrero (8)

A true, genuine connection: that is what I picture when reading this haiku. I love having a conversation with someone where we are bouncing thoughts, laughter, hopes, fears, and smiles back and forth effortlessly. Finding someone to do this with is rare and should be treasured greatly. Reading this, I imagine two people sharing a bed, transitioning from cuddling to sitting criss-crossed and even tickling each other until stomachs hurt. All throughout the night, the two talk, and by the time they’re even tired, the sun begins to rise. A special night spent with a special person. Allison Durham, Fall 2021


looking over my shoulder
i smile
catch up


flat on our backs
gazing at ropes above
as if they were stars


Belle got her rose
and I did too
thank you

Emily Nicholas (4)


bloodied palms
from grasping something so beautiful
way too tight

Bailey Banks (8)

I love this haiku. The line “bloodied palms” jumps out at you and is rather shocking because of its violent nature. Then, the next line continues to surprise you as the author describes being hurt by a beautiful thing, not something violent and hideous. I like what a classmate said in class about this haiku: that it reminds them of getting cut by glass. I like the glass imagery with this haiku, and I love it as a metaphor in general. I feel like this haiku could wonderfully describe a romantic relationship or a friendship, or even something. I think this haiku is very versatile. Maya Gomez, Fall 2021

This haiku brings up two images for me. The first is quite literal: a girl has her hands clenched around a glass swan and it breaks under the pressure, cutting her palms. She just stares at the dripping bloody mess in her hands, not realizing she had the strength to do that. It takes her back to reality from whatever intense emotions she was feeling. She feels guilty for breaking something so beautiful for no reason but a fit of passion. The other way I interpret this haiku is more metaphorical. I see a relationship straining and cracking under the tight grip of one clingy partner until they break up. The partner was anxious and so scared of the relationship failing that they didn’t realize their own actions were causing the tension. The beautiful relationship that had potential came to an unfortunate end. Emily Nicholas, Fall 2021


fighting up
four flights of stairs
but finally in person


i cling to your words
a safety blanket

Bailey Banks

This one speaks to me quite a bit. Specifically, it makes me think of how sometimes, during a really hard swim practice, my mind will drift off somewhere else. Usually this is to a story I’m writing, but sometimes it’ll drift off to just thinking about my loved ones. I’ll just be reliving memories with them and of things they said, completely forgetting that I’m swimming and it hurts really bad. And then I snap out of it and realize I’ve lost count and have no idea what’s going on. Shay Buchanan, Fall 2021


your starry eyed stare
i was your muse
nothing more

Bailey Banks

This haiku did not get mentioned in kukai, but it was definitely one of my favorites. I picture a woman falling in love with a man, only to realize he was only in love with her beauty. She realizes that the way he looks at her is not out of love after all. She realizes this, and sadly leaves him, even though it hurts to. This poem is so romantic. I love the word choice of “starry eyed” and “muse.” Trinity Pesko, Fall 2021

This one just resonated with me, and I can’t even put my finger on why. I think in any relationship, people run the risk of idolizing their partner, and creating an unrealistic version of them in their minds. In a way, using someone for artistic inspiration, rather than enjoying their company and putting the work in to maintain the relationship, is incredibly selfish. Mason Hoyt, Fall 2021


too broke
for Anna Thai and
cheap red wine

Allison Durham (8)

I really appreciate Haiku capturing the college experience. Anna Thai is such a gem of a restaurant in Decatur and it’s most likely what many people think when they say they want something a little nicer for dinner. The mention of cheap red wine is funny since they already said they were broke, further emphasizing how broke they are. Overall, the poem gave me new girl vibes in a way and I love that show. Nico Velazquez, Fall 2021


the stars last 
forever like 
we were supposed to 

Diana Hernandez (7)

I read this haiku with a hint of regret and hurt in the person’s voice. This haiku is slightly ironic because the person is obviously upset that their relationship didn’t last. This person truly felt like they had found the one and something messed it up along the way. With that being said, stars don’t actually last forever. Eventually, they burn up all of their gas and explode into a supernova. This haiku (possibly unintentionally) serves as a symbol that even if we will as though something is meant to be forever, that this may not be the case. People come into our lives for different times and different reasons. We grow out of who we once were and the people we surround ourselves with and that is okay. Everyone comes into your life to teach you different lessons and make you stronger in the end. Reece Brown, Fall 2021


when I grow up 
I dream of 
being nothing like you

Reece Brown (10)

I felt such generational trauma from this haiku and I feel for the author so much. When I read this Haiku, I knew the author had their parent(s) in mind. While I had a happy childhood, I was surrounded by friends who did not live in happy homes all of their lives and because of that, I can sympathize for the author feeling that they may never want to resemble their upbringing when it’s time to show for what in the form of being a parent or even just an adult. I appreciate the starry-eyed feeling in the first two lines just to be completely polarized by the third line. In a way I imagine this resembles the author’s feelings of reflection on their childhood. I imagine it went where one day they realized that their parent(s) are not perfect and are the source for all their trauma. Nico Velazquez, Fall 2021

This haiku reminds me of someone very specific at this moment. A friend of mine has basically been getting bullied by one of their professors since last semester. And not in a jokey-bully way. In a “this professor should be fired because they show total lack of regard for the emotional wellbeing of their students and happily make their lives unbearable” way. I’ve met many people in my life that I never want to be like, but there’s nobody on earth that tops this person. If I end up in my fifties and I have to pick on a bunch of college students to make myself feel better, I clearly have failed as a person. Nathan Gallop, Fall 2021 


one more scoop
of ice cream 
to heal what you broke


quickly ambling
up a wall
on eight legs


left all
my sweat and troubles
on the marley floor

Allison Durham (7)

This haiku brings me back to the days that I danced all day everyday. I would go from school to dance team practice to dance studio classes to competition rehearsals every day. I spent so much time on that marley floor. It was a place where I could release all my troubles and worries of the day. I could focus on me and my artistic expression. Dancing allowed for emotions to be released in a different way than just talking about them. It was such a big part of me. The lifestyle brought many battles but at the end of the day you could leave it all there, and this haiku really encapsulates that feeling. Katie Curtis, Fall 2021


bouquet of alfalfa
munched between
a wet pink muzzle


pregnancy cravings
barn cat begs
for leftover milk


pigeons in the
water trough
silage on the bottom


your wrinkly hands
from washing my dishes
i was not yours to fix

Bailey Banks (10)

This haiku was my favorite for this Kukai! I love the imagery and the feeling it physically provides. You can recall the feeling of wrinkly fingers from having your hands under water for too long; you can smell dish soap and feel water on your skin. The last line is what really makes the haiku. It comes as a surprise, but one that makes complete sense. I’m almost at a loss for words describing this haiku, I like it so much! You wonder if they never asked for help with the dishes, if they’re treated as lesser and incompetent. You wonder who “you” is — a lover? A friend? A family member? There are so many ways this haiku could go. Maya Gomez, Fall 2021


riding on the shoulders
of an old friend
long gone


follow the rat
if you want to find
the sewer

Shay Buchanan (7)

This haiku is the perfect mixture of funny and seriously true. It’s a very plain statement. Rats are usually sewer dwellers, so if you spend your time following around a rat, you will most likely end up in the sewer. I believe the same goes for the people you surround yourself with. Although I am a firm believer in the idea of being kind to everyone, I don’t believe that you have to go through life with anyone and everyone. Rat might be a little bit of a harsh word to use as a metaphor for a human, but to put it simply; if you spend your time with people who don’t support your growth or create a toxic environment for you, you will mentally end up in the sewer. Keep your eye out for the people you follow. Priscilla Sabourin Fall 2021

I just like rats, and they’re kind of a running joke between my friends and I, so this is why this haiku initially stood out to me. Once I thought about it a little more though, I liked it even better because I can see how the rat and the sewer are a metaphor for a nasty person and where you might end up if you follow that person. I think it is very true that we become who we surround ourselves with and who a person is friends with says a lot about them, so I really like the idea that if you follow “the rat” you might end up in “the sewer.” The sewer could be a state of being or an actual place, but regardless I think this haiku serves as a warning to surround yourself with people who make you better, not who bring you down. India Guerrero, Fall 2021


he needs
a quick nap too
the sandman

Shay Buchanan (3)

First and foremost, I like this haiku because it’s a little bit goofy, and it made me laugh. On a deeper level though, I like the idea that the sandman might need a nap too. He’s the one putting everyone to sleep and making sure everyone has sweet dreams, but I’m sure nobody ever thought to check on him and see if he needs a nap. I feel like I relate to this in a way because sometimes I can play the role of the “therapist friend” which I love doing and is rewarding to me, but nobody ever thinks the therapist friend might need a little therapy herself. In a broader sense too I think this haiku is a reminder to check on our friends and family that seem to be taking care of everyone else and see if they need to be taken care of a little bit too. India Guerrero, Fall 2021


hello friend!
it is nice to meet
your nose and mouth

Emily Nicholas (10)


old spice deodorant
four years later
my morning routine


sherbet sunset
we drink wine
on the roof

India Guerrero (5)


childhood toys
stay in the box


the oven is not preheated yet
my stomach reminds me
that time is a concept

Priscilla Sabourin (13)

I really enjoyed this haiku as it pertains to food, while also being philosophical at the same time (two of my favorite things). The instant I read this, I imagined the many times I’ve just waited, staring at the oven, for my pizza rolls to get done. While looking at the clock, it seems time moves slower every passing second; however, distract yourself for a second and, before you know it, the alarm is going off and the pizza rolls are yours. It’s something we all experience, and it’s funny to think that even small things like cooking pizza rolls can get the mind rolling in such a deep direction. Gabe Henderson, Fall 2021

I think about time often. From the larger scale of human existence to how quickly the day has gone by, time finds a way to be on my mind. On top of that, I’m a super busy gal. My days are packed with dance rehearsals, classes, tutoring sessions, homework, workouts, and extra theatre projects, so at the end of the day, when I’m covered in dried up sweat and runny makeup, and all I want in the world is dinner, I can’t stop staring at the clock of the oven or microwave as I wait for a meal and a little bit of peace. As the minutes dwindle down to seconds, I anxiously await for a taste of food and consider how my patience rests upon the man-made structure of time. Allison Durham, Fall 2021


I call
back and forth
a barn owl


early birds chirping
college apartment
turned ghost town


crash in the kitchen
paw pads
run across the floor


a cracked sidewalk
staggered me
and the trailing cop

Nico Velazquez (6)


unwind the branches
through the evening light
you flicker


well spoken
the willow sighs
from deep in it's shade


my parents
weren't soulmates
now I feel like the luckiest kid

Reece Brown (6)


climbing higher
what goes up
must come down


nothing hurts more than
a razor
scooter to the ankle

Reece Brown (15)

I thought this haiku was extremely clever. The line break between “razor” and “scooter” really got me. I thought it was going one way, and then it went completely opposite at the last second in a really funny way. Other than that, the haiku illustrates a very vivid pain that I think everybody can relate to. I’ve hit my leg on my bed frame more times than I can count this year, and each time hurts just as bad as the last. Nathan Gallop, Fall 2021


your favorite things
on my lips

Maya Gomez (9)


pink and yellow
dragon squishmallow

Maya Gomez (5)


home alone
a creak
on the wooden floor


when it's hard to love
I lend you vertebrae

Maya Gomez (8)

I like this haiku. I love the line I lend you vertebrae. Just by itself that line feels very tender and thoughtful. I love that the word you get its own line, it places it separate and central from everything. It is special. I also like that there is a separation between when it’s hard to love and you, because in a relationship sometimes it is just hard to love. And it isn’t the others’ fault, but it is still something they will have to deal with. Paul Cushman, Fall 2021

This haiku is so powerful to me. The use of the word vertebrae brings such a unique element to the structure of this. I interpret it as someone who constantly is giving themselves to someone that is not right for them. This person takes so much from them but they continue to have such a strong dependency on, not necessarily the other individual, but on the relationship. This relationship is all they know and all they know how to live by, that they consider it as their backbone. Katie Curtis, Fall 2021


which way?
I don't care
I'm with you


the bed shifts
a whiskered face
appears over mine

India Guerrero (5)

It’s mid-morning. The sun is shining through a window to my right. The walls, blankets, sheet are all white. Then all the sudden, over the pile of blankets, peers the face of an orange cat, meowing and trying to get me to get up and feed him. This image is so cute and wholesome even though it would be slightly annoying to the narrator. Trinity Pesko, Fall 2021

I recently got a puppy with my boyfriend. He is a seven-month-old Aussiedoodle and is the light of my life at the moment. We are obsessed with him. When our dog, Huxley, wakes up in the morning he lays down on the floor and entertains himself until we wake up. Once we do, he wakes up and jumps onto the bed, stands right over our faces, and starts licking us. He is fully awake and so happy that we are no longer sleeping so he can play and see us. It is the cutest thing and this haiku made me envision this moment oh so perfectly. This haiku made me feel warm and happy. Reece Brown, Fall 2021


winter night
dog socks


standing in the rain 
waiting for your return 
black dress

Diana Hernandez (5)


red, blue, orange
tree creaks . . .


the sound of a songbird
cool grass in my feet
waiting for sunset


you catch my breath
and hold it
in your irises

Maya Gomez (10)

I loved this piece. It feels like a very intimate moment, maybe the first time you “know” about someone. I can very clearly imagine the silence filling the room, each person just listening to the other’s breath and being aware of absolutely everything that happens on each other’s’ faces. The image of holding breath in the iris is also so cool to me. It’s almost as if when the pupil dilates, that’s the breath being pulled in, and then it just stays there. Nathan Gallop, Fall 2021

This haiku is the definition of “you took my breath away”. It reminds me of a love-at-first-sight moment. Two people see each other from across a room. She breathes in sharply at the sight of him, and his eyes contact holds her there until she realizes she hasn’t breathed in ten seconds. They are captivated by each other and there is an energy between them. It’s as if he literally stole her breath and they are now physically and emotionally connected. People’s eyes dilate when they see someone they love, and I imagine that happening in this scenario. It’s almost as if their bodies know they’re soulmates before their minds do. Emily Nicholas, Fall 2021


joints creak
and ankles crack
jiffy pop

Mason Hoyt (6)


i don't have to stay
i could go anywhere else
but the food!

Mason Hoyt (5)


mascara runs down her cheeks
peace sign
mirror selfie

Barrett Van (11)

This haiku starts off as sad and dramatic, but then the next two lines flip this haiku around and make it humorous. I love this haiku because it is so accurate when it comes to our generation (Gen Z). We make self-deprecating jokes and we are all struggling 24/7 it feels like, yet we make jokes about it because there aren't much better alternatives. It’s funny and a little bit sad (mostly funny). Gen Z is also the first generation to be able to relate to this haiku. Generations before this didn’t have nor rely on technology and phones like we did. Reece Brown, Fall 2021

This is a gen z haiku. I was feeling just this way in class when we read this haiku—sometimes when the world seems to be falling apart around us, the beset thing we can do is sob, feel our feelings, then go back to whatever gets us through life. Send a snapchat, then go back to normal, because the alternative is such debilitating anxiety or depression that we’d fall apart. Because of this tendency, we also all have a penchant for making light of our troubles. For example, I recently heard a story about a friend of a friend sharing her cancer diagnosis via memoji. We are irreverent and silly to cope. Daniel Clear, Fall 2021


snowed in
my fire place erupts
soft blanket in hand


for the last time
looking at us

Nico Velazquez (5)

When I first read this haiku, I circled it three times. I don’t know if it was written in this context from the author’s standpoint, but I read it in the context of the “male gaze.” This haiku makes me think of the way women are objectified by men on a daily basis. I read it with a ton of exacerbation — please stop looking at us. Stop looking at us as objects, as something to control, as something to conquer, just stop all together. I love that it says “for the last time” too because I think every woman can relate. We are all tired, and we just want it to stop I think. India Guerrero, Fall 2021


bark chipping
from inside out

Nathan Gallop

This haiku generates the image in my mind of a mask flaking and falling off, like the bark of a tree chipping off. The other interesting tactic in this haiku is that the author specified the tree is decaying from the inside out. By the time the bark begins to chip off, the inside of the tree must already be deeply rotten. Sometimes this is how I feel when a depressive wave hits. Like the happiness I was just feeling inside has rotted and the outside has calcified into a mask that is about to finally chip off and crash to the ground. Daniel Clear, Fall 2021




open fridge
her phone call

or 92

open fridge witnesses
phone call



© 2021, Randy Brooks • Millikin University
All rights returned to authors upon publication.