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July 2007 Kukai

Dear Haiku Friends,

Here are the results for the July 2007 Kukai, wherein our Kigo subject was "Flea" and our Free Format subject was "Weekend Activity".

Congratulations to Paul Hodder, winner of our Kigo section and to Nancy Smith, winner of our Free Format section!

The haiku are listed in order of total points received from voters. The numbers reflect the number of voters who gave the haiku either three points, two points, or one point -- followed by the total points for all votes.

Those who were given less than three points and who requested anonymity in such a case are so noted.

In the listing below, after each poem the author is listed, and then a three digit code revealing how many 3-point, 2-point, and 1-point points were cast for this poem by the other participating poets.

(214 = 12) would indicate that the poem above received two 3-point votes, one 2-point vote, and four 1-point votes.

July 2007 Results
Kigo Theme:
Free Format Theme:
Weekend Activity

First Place -- 34 points
flea haiku ~
I scratch
my head

Paul Hodder
(3,4,18) = 34 pts

No more than clever, perhaps, but no less.

Second Place --28 points
sand fleas
the bites don't stop
at her tan line

Susan Constable
(1,7,11) = 28 pts

Very seasonal without the use of "summer" and great, vivid image. I feel those bites on her covered parts.
Of course, it's none of my business . . .
I'm not sure what 'tan line' has to do with it, but I am sure the boyfriend had fun checking for more.

Third Place -- 25 points
flea market
the bargainer stops
to scratch his head

(2,5,9) = 25 pts

Nice play on words not quite erring on the clever side.

Fourth Place -- 24 points
summer fleas
teaching the dog

Marianna Monaco
(1,6,9) = 24 pts

Charming; dog behavior well-observed and appropriately seasonal.
Zenny and funny.

Fifth Place -- 21 points
on the pillow
one flea between us
not much else

Neil Muscott
(3,5,2) = 21 pts

I took this at first to reflect the wearing out of love that sometimes occurs, but it could also reflect material poverty. The latter has a more wistful flavor. The former perhaps more bitter.

Sixth Place -- 14 points
souvenirs —
sand fleas

Allen McGill
(0,4,6) = 14 pts

Perhaps a colon rather than a dash? Generally, resort souvenirs are of little more quality than 'fleas' so this is a fitting and ever so brief tribute to them. The brevity and humor here has the almost senryu flavor of commentary.

Seventh Place -- 13 points
dawn heat
fleas along the rim
of a doe's eye

Joyce Clement
(0,3,7) = 13 pts

Eighth Place -- 12 points
sunlit blanket
fleas burrow the wrinkles
of a bulldog

Collin Barber
(1,2,5) = 12 pts

Nice textures.

flea market —
my memories
in a new light

Ana Cadarin
(1,3,3) = 12 pts

long after
the neighbor's dog
a flea

Quendryth Young
(0,3,6) = 12 pts

Ninth Place -- 11 points
police siren . . .
my cat battles
the flea

Kathy Lippard Cobb
(2,1,3) = 11 pts

Tenth Place -- 8 points
flea collar
the dog's bark
looks louder

Bill Kenney
(2,0,2) = 8 pts

after the all-natural
flea powder

Roberta Beary
(1,0,5) = 8 pts

I've noticed that modern industrial chemistry often has advantages over traditional remedies.

Eleventh Place -- 7 points
Beijing sunrise
a flea has left its marks
and left

Tore Sverredal
(0,2,3) = 7 pts

I really liked this one and would have given it more points except for the last word "left" repeated which seemed to detract from the haiku. Perhaps “gone” would have been better.

itching for more
we applaud the last act
...flea circus

doris kasson
(0,2,3) = 7 pts

VACANCY VACANCY we check the mattress for fleas Dana D. (0,1,5) = 7 pts midnight thumping . . .
our old beagle hosting
the flea circus

Carol Raisfeld
(0,1,5) = 7 pts

spring litter
the puppies tip over
scratching their fleas

Carmel Lively Westerman
(0,1,5) = 7 pts

hot summer night
the flea escapes

Sjs (Stevie)
(0,1,5) = 7 pts

Twelfth Place -- 6 points
first warm day in May
young kittens explore our yard
fleas hitching a ride

Harvey Jenkins
(2,0,0) = 6 pts

flea market...
a carved coffin waits
for its client

Tanya Dikova
(0,3,0) = 6 pts

spring floods —
the cat and I scratch
one thousand fleas

bre :^)
(0,2,2) = 6 pts

dog days
gramps calls his old mutt
a flea bag

tom painting
(0,1,4) = 6 pts

A grumpy couple?

librarian's dog
a flea jumps in
the Guinness Book

(0,1,4) = 6 pts

flea market —
the caged pup scratches
his flea collar

Darrell Byrd
(0,1,4) = 6 pts

mid-summer birthday
my dog gives mom
his fleas

Pris Campbell
(0,0,6) = 6 pts

Thirteenth Place -- 5 points
bedroom sunlight
a flea’s trail of bites
on my stomach

(1,0,2) = 5 pts

Driving my car —
The cat’s fleas get a free ride
to the vet.

Daniela Bullas
(1,0,2) = 5 pts

Egret stands proudly
but ten feet away....
fleas bite my ankle

Glenn Laundre
(0,2,1) = 5 pts

A nice image.
Nice contrast of images to show a complete scene.

the flea
jumps on a greyhound –

Mary Davila
(0,2,1) = 5 pts

blue eyed kitten< —BR> her wedding dress dotted
with baby fleas

(0,1,3) = 5 pts

I picture a little girl owner is playing 'dress-up' but they both will need a bath more. I like 'kitten' combined with 'baby' fleas, and imagine the girl is very young too. An artful haiku.

summer bath
the old dog scratches at
his new flea collar

(0,0,5) = 5 pts

Nice contrast and homely.

Fourteenth Place -- 4 points
do remove my fleas
said my mother’s Siamese
I’m obliged to please

Deirdre Godwin
(1,0,1) = 4 pts

I'm overcome by the urge to rhyme in haiku every now and again. This is clever enough to get away with it.

a boy in the sea
washing a brown cow-
still fleas

(1,0,1) = 4 pts

Outstanding! A beautiful image and fine contrast.

blessing of the pets
a crowd of leashes gives room
to the one with fleas

Dan Schwerin
(1,0,1) = 4 pts

morning stroll
sand fleas in the flotsam
every which way

Cherie Hunter Day
(0,2,0) = 4 pts

kitty's birthday —
he shows his daughter
how to use the flea comb

aom (tim)
(0,2,0) = 4 pts

so excited
she cannot stop kissing him
a flea in her ear

john Daleiden
(0,2,0) = 4 pts

I love the "aha" moment in this one. Even knowing ahead of time that the kigo was flea, this haiku made me think of humans first.

little fleas
children dancing in my room
while I sleep

(0,2,0) = 4 pts

on a clean white bed
how can i create haiku
without Issa's fleas

Paul R. Cassidy
(0,1,2) = 4 pts

I like the way this reflects the current distance from nature. Without Issa, how gratified would we feel to be writing about fleas at all?

fleas in my jacket
warmth for the book
of Issa

Tony A. Thompson
(0,1,2) = 4 pts

asleep dog
on the beggar's hand:
a flea

Dorota Pyra
(0,1,2) = 4 pts

Fifteenth Place -- 3 points
feral cats wait...
scratching their fleas
for the soup kitchen's cook

Rose Marie Stutts
(1,0,0) = 3 pts

A flea Circus
stopped performing
Union strike

(1,0,0) = 3 pts

under the granary —
the dog scratches its body
to remove fleas

~ Samson Onyango
(1,0,0) = 3 pts

pre-race stretches —
a flea bounds away
from old legs

George Hawkins
(1,0,0) = 3 pts

beach dogs  —
ticks take the place
of fleas

Audrey Downey
(0,1,1) = 3 pts

"You'd do this to me?"
the cat's eyes ask
from the flea bath

P. O. Williams
(0,1,1) = 3 pts

Been there!

Monday morning . . .
one of my dog's fleas
hitches a ride

Nancy Smith
(0,1,1) = 3 pts

winter morning —
my only friends fleas
wake me up gently

Vanja Nikovic
(0,1,1) = 3 pts

the flea
is a summer kigo?
... now I know!

Isabelle Prondzynski
(0,1,1) = 3 pts

he sells it
as a package: a dog
and its fleas

Zhanna P. Rader
(0,0,3) = 3 pts

summer festival
the main attraction
a flea circus!

Meredith Stern Cavalieri
(0,0,3) = 3 pts

on the cat on my lap

Beth Powell
(0,0,3) = 3 pts

I'd put an article in line 1, but I like the sense of acceptance in this.
Quite Dr. Seuss-y.

proudly sitting
at the flea market  —
the stray dog

Petar Tchouhov
(0,0,3) = 3 pts

General Comments (Kigo Section):
You really challenged us this month!
Nice entries!

First Place -- 34 pts
long weekend…
the gardener cultivates
his shadow

Nancy Smith
(4,5,12) = 34 pts

The sun constantly at his back. Could describe many moments, but manages to keep it to one.

Second Place -- 28 pts
packing …
unpacking …
weekends with dad

Nancy Nitrio
(2,5,12) = 28 pts

You can hear the weariness in this.
Simply captured and original. A familiar routine for so many.
The bit in between is sadly lacking.

Third Place -- 27 pts
jazz festival . . .
the glint of a sax
at sunset

Carol Raisfeld
(2,3,15) = 27 pts

I can almost hear this one!

Fourth Place -- 18 pts
Sunday dad ~
in his pocket
a dying daisy

Paul Hodder
(2,3,6) = 18 pts

Very evocative of the 'single dad' trying to pack fathering and Dating anew into his weekend - or perhaps still carrying a torch or 'daisy' for his ex-wife. Also a hint of the competition for children's affection which can arise between divorced parents. I also like the alliteration of the 'hard' 'd' sound between 'dying' and 'daisy' - almost like the sigh of finality that separates regret from acceptance.
Point of view a bit shaky here (What are we doing in his pocket?), but a real and poignant moment comes through.

Sunday morning —
a lawn mower drowns
out church bells

Neil Muscott
(1,3,9) = 18 pts

Fifth Place -- 15 pts
Sunday at the beach
three kites holding
a conversation

Bill Kenney
(1,2,8) = 15 pts

Sixth Place -- 14 pts
a little bit of everything
on my plate

Beth Powell
(2,3,2) = 14 pts

darkening skies
sudden raindrops sizzle
on the grill

(0,2,10) = 14 pts

cool saturday
I walk from grave
to grave

Jacek M.
(1,2,7) = 14 pts

Seventh Place -- 13 pts
another husband
following his wife
into the bead store

P. O. Williams
(1,3,4) = 13 pts

family gathering —
hidden in the garden
I write haiku

Vanja Nikovic
(1,3,4) = 13 pts

The counsel is often given not to write about writing, as too many writers do. Yet in this case I like the suggestion of 'the secret garden' of our minds, as we are mostly introverts.
Neatly suggests the complexities of family relationships.
We are not obliged to approve of the poet's behavior.

Eighth Place -- 12 pts
the Monopoly board
with hotels on Park Place
summer rain

Cherie Hunter Day
(1,2,5) = 12 pts

Ninth Place -- 11 pts
sunday walk
our hands
on the stroller

Dorota Pyra
(1,1,6) = 11 pts

A precious moment, perfectly captured; a triumph of understatement.

the lord's day
a lengthy drive
to the first tee

tom painting
(0,3,5) = 11 pts

Humans may worship many strange gods, but the worship is sincere.

opera booming
she sips chilled wine
and folds warm laundry

Leslie Montgomery
(0,2,7) = 11 pts

A pleasant contrast between 'chill' and 'warm'. I envision a woman trying to lighten a mundane chore with her favorite pastimes.
Good contrasts in this one!
Performing a routine chore and making the moment hers; effectively sensuous.

Tenth Place -- 10 pts
Saturday concert
her clear voice soars over
the vacuum cleaner

Petar Tchouhov
(1,1,5) = 10 pts

I love haikus that deal with sound. This is beautifully balanced and every detail counts.

Eleventh Place -- 9 pts
going out

(0,3,3) = 9 pts

sleeping in
the dog's damp nose
on my cheek

Irene Golas
(0,2,5) = 9 pts

Cozy and evocative. I can almost smell puppy breath.

Twelfth Place -- 8 pts
satin sheets —
the alarm clock
doesn't ring

(2,0,2) = 8 pts

Sensual! I love how the silent alarm clock says it all and implies so much...well done.

still drunk —
waking at noon
with my shoes on

Collin Barber
(0,0,8) = 8 pts

weeding —
a ladybug lifted
from leaf to leaf

Ann K. Schwader
(0,0,8) = 8 pts

Thirteenth Place -- 7 pts
fresh coffee
at the water's edge
sunday city

marlène buitelaar
(0,1,5) = 7 pts

I love the imagery this haiku presents: a slow and easy weekend.

serious work
oiling his bike chain
a crow critiques

Ruth Powell
(0,1,5) = 7 pts

Two serious guys, a nice portrait.

Fourteenth Place -- 6 pts
driving the kids
to church

Roberta Beary
(1,0,3) = 6 pts

Poets angling...
instead of fish
Basho's frog

Vasile Moldovan
(1,0,3) = 6 pts

backyard badminton
the new puppy runs away
with the shuttlecock

(0,2,2) = 6 pts

Fifteenth Place -- 5 pts
picking saskatoons
wearing my best church outfit
with purple fingers

Harvey Jenkins
(1,0,2) = 5 pts

I had to look up saskatoons though it was pretty clear from the context that they are a sort of berry. Weekends are often like this - hurrying from one 'leisure' activity to another. I like the juxtaposition of berry stains and church finery.

weekend anglers —
a carp-shaped kite takes
to the air

(0,2,1) = 5 pts

Anglers, carps, and kites, nice connections.

lingering day . . .
a different daydream
with each household chore

Marie Summers
(0,1,3) = 5 pts

Saturday grind
villagers against a cart wheel
recycle gossip

Kala Ramesh
(0,1,3) = 5 pts

Sixteenth Place -- 4 pts
seaside ice cream
more on my child
than the cone

Meredith Stern Cavalieri
(1,0,1) = 4 pts

Sunday dusk, caught
watching the barn swallows whirl ~
so much yet to do

Shelley Krause
(1,0,1) = 4 pts

a last chore —
deadheading the geraniums
the scattered petals

Bruce Ross
(0,1,2) = 4 pts

at last
getting to know each other...
me and the rain

(0,1,2) = 4 pts

rainy weekend —
even the snails
abandons the orchard

(0,1,2) = 4 pts

sunday wakes up

Tanya Dikova
(0,0,4) = 4 pts

church bells tolling —
the love we make
before breakfast

max verhart
(0,0,4) = 4 pts

sunday comics . . .
the cats and I
just chillin'

Kathy Lippard Cobb
(0,0,4) = 4 pts

cottage evening —
my new pen
lost underneath the deck

Mike Montreuil
(0,0,4) = 4 pts

Seventeenth Place -- 3 pts
sails slat —
searching for cat's-paws
in Chesapeake calm

Glen Keener
(1,0,0) = 3 pts

all the homely things
packed into my leisure time
once just “woman’s work”

Deirdre Godwin
(1,0,0) = 3 pts

Saturday service —
in a converted church
we attend salsa lessons

Daniela Bullas
(0,1,1) = 3 pts

sunday evening...
a big soap bubble
from her loop

K. Ramesh
(0,1,1) = 3 pts

second-hand smoke —
forced off my deck by
my neighbor's barbecue

(0,1,1) = 3 pts

each weekend
my blind friend kayaks

bre :^)
(0,0,3) = 3 pts

weekend to do list
wash the dog
clothes and kids

Carmel Lively Westerman
(0,0,3) = 3 pts

This evokes a usual activity for a working woman. On weekends one washes 'everything' often wishing it all could be dumped in together - rub-a-dub-dub.

weekend shopping
mom's arms are loaded
and so is dad

doris kasson
(0,0,3) = 3 pts

sunday afternoon —
i join our dog
sleeping in the sun

(0,0,3) = 3 pts

GENERAL COMMENT (Free Format Section):
Sunday afternoon was the right time to read these.
I had a hard time with this one!
This part was very hard to select for voting as there were some excellent entries that I enjoyed very much.

Thank you for participating in the July kukai! Please note there will be no kukai this August. We will be resuming in September. Look for the Call for Submissions on Monday, September 3rd.

We look forward to receiving your entries then.

With much appreciation,

Robert and Jennie, co-secretaries
Gary Warner, web host

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