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The Shiki Monthly Kukai

June 2008 Kukai

Dear Haiku Friends,

Here are the results for the June 2008 Kukai, wherein our Kigo subject was "Sand" and our Free Format theme was "Secrets".

Congratulations to Edward, winner of our Kigo section and to Tom Painting, 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.

Voters comments are in italics below the respective poems.

June 2008 Results
Kigo Theme:
Free Format Theme:

First Place – 37 Points
sand sculptures
a mermaid slips back
into the sea

(7,2,12) = 37 Pts.

Well done!

Second Place – 25 Points
her youngest daughter
calls me daddy

Colin Stewart Jones
(2,5,9) = 25 Pts.

Love it! There is a whole touching story in this.

A complex story most economically told.

Third Place – 23 Points
from sandcastle
to sandcastle

Jacek M.
(1,6,8) = 23 Pts.

Fourth Place – Twenty-two Points
marking my place
in last summer's book —
beach sand

Shelley Krause
(0,5,12) = 22 Pts.

My favorite among the entries that took time as their theme. It's been years since I read on the beach, but this brings it all back.

Fifth Place – Eighteen Points
the soup spoons
begin to disappear
sandbox season

Ann K. Schwader
(2,1,10) = 18 Pts.

One of life’s many little mysteries. Well done.

sand castles . . .
she helps me fill
the empty hours

Francine Banwarth
(1,4,7) = 18 Pts.

cool sand ~
my footprint fills
with Pacific

Paul Hodder
(1,3,9) = 18 Pts.

Sixth Place – Seventeen Points
after all these years
sand still falls
from the shell

jean cully
(0,4,9) = 17 Pts.

Seventh Place – Fifteen Points
white sand
a child asks why
I'm wearing shoes

Bill Kenney
(1,3,6) = 15 Pts.

Eighth Place – Twelve Points
white sand —
the flip side
of the sunbather

Collin Barber
(1,0,9) = 12 Pts.


old sandals
treading sand
back to the shore

Helen Buckingham
(2,2,2) = 12 Pts.

climbing the sand dunes
one step forward
two back

(0,3,6) = 12 Pts.

An amusing observation of a situation most of us have experienced. Well done.

high summer . . .
sands from Mongolia
dust the vineyard

Michael McClintock
(1,2,5) = 12 Pts.

Ninth Place – Eleven Points
my footprints
disappear in the wet sand —
morning waves

Israel Lopez Balan
(1,2,4) = 11 Pts.

sand ripples
wave after wave
after wave

Melissa Spurr
(1,2,4) = 11 Pts.

What can I say? I tried to write this one and couldn't.

Tenth Place – Ten Points
end of summer
the ribs of fishing boat
half-buried in sand

Kirsty Karkow
(0,1,8) = 10 Pts.

last day —
waves take the sand
from under my feet

Joyce Clement
(1,0,7) = 10 Pts.

That's life... and death. Well done.

A great pairing of inevitabilities, the ocean's waves and the end of vacation.

Eleventh Place – Nine Points
a day off —
the ant carries another
grain of sand

Robert Naczas
(1,2,2) = 9 Pts.

Twelfth Place – Eighth Points
sand in her spinach . . .
again she dreams
of the pearl

Bill Pauly
(0,2,4) = 8 Pts.

under the broom
of the beach

Bill Hudson
(1,1,3) = 8 Pts.

open window...
voices drift up
from the sandbox

Irene Golas
(1,1,3) = 8 Pts.

Thirteenth Place – Seven Points
sandy shallows
the sunlight ripples
on the bottom

(0,1,5) = 7 Pts.

looking back —
my footprints on the sand

Gosia Zamorska
(1,0,4) = 7 Pts.

beyond the boardwalk
ten thousand bird tracks
on the sand

(0,2,3) = 7 Pts.

sand in my eyes...
the pearls I dreamt have sunk
back to sea bottom

(1,1,2) = 7 Pts.

A lovely metaphorical verse. I like it without quite seeing the seasonality, but still well done.

the grit of sand
between my toes . . .
his gnawing words

Mary Davila
(1,0,4) = 7 Pts.

tide is held
within sandcastle moat—
north star

(1,1,2) = 7 Pts.

Fourteenth Place – Six Points
On the Golden Sands
your toes trying to write
the first haiku

Adina Enachescu
(1,1,1) = 6 Pts.

simmering sand
the zigzag footprints
of a beachcomber

Audrey Downey
(0,1,4) = 6 Pts.

red roses
the white sands part

Ben Gieske
(0,2,2) = 6 Pts.

I liked this simple observation.

the wind from the sea
moves the sand
in my shadow

helge t.
(1,1,1) = 6 Pts.

Hourglass —
the last grain of sand

Gautam Nadkarni
(1,1,1) = 6 Pts.

on the sand
a statue of the Buddha
and bullet holes

(0,2,2) = 6 Pts.

a grain of sand
in the oyster shell
seven year itch

Leah Ann Sullivan
(1,1,1) = 6 Pts.

feeling better
the truant shakes sand
from his shoes

LeRoy Gorman
(0,2,2) = 6 Pts.

drifting sand
where people were

Rose Marie Stutts
(1,0,3) = 6 Pts.

summer vacation
slipping through fingers like sand
the children growing

todd eddy
(0,0,6) = 6 Pts.

Fifteenth Place – Five Points
heat haze —
the fry cook looks out
over the boardwalk, over the sand

aom (tim)
(0,2,1) = 5 Pts.

I wanted to award this a point. But 'over the sand' sounds tacked onto a finished poem in order to qualify.

sand dollars
scattered by the tide
his leaving

Beth Powell
(0,0,5) = 5 Pts.

The natural world may seem to come ‘unglued’ with a relationship lost. Well done.

True summer sandwich:
Ziploc-warmed peanut butter
and jelly and sand

Conrad Sienkiewicz
(0,1,3) = 5 Pts.

This doesn't scan perfectly, but absolutely captures something worth capturing.

sandy beach —
the murmur of footprints
at sunset

Dejan Pavlinovic
(0,1,3) = 5 Pts.

wave demolishing
the sand castle –
the child's cry

(0,2,1) = 5 Pts.

sand clock...
to see the beauty
of each grain

Rita Odeh
(0,2,1) = 5 Pts.

Sixteenth Place – Four Points
short night~
the sand slips
through the hourglass

(0,0,4) = 4 Pts.

beneath my bed
a zen garden in a box
spilled sand

(0,2,0) = 4 Pts.

hiding from June sun
in dime-sized sand caves
1,000 new frogs

Bridget Cougar
(1,0,1) = 4 Pts.

ebb tide —
in the quiet of morning
sand fleas scurry on

Carol Raisfeld
(0,1,2) = 4 Pts.

Crowd on the sand —
above the ocean
only a seagull

Constantin Stroe
(0,1,2) = 4 Pts.

My mind's eye rising as I read down this haiku... nice.

morning mist —
sand crab digs
beneath the wet sand

(0,1,2) = 4 Pts.

ebb tide sand
the child jumps over
a crab hole

(1,0,1) = 4 Pts.

lonely ramparts
in the sinking sun —
sand castle

Linda Papanicolaou
(1,0,1) = 4 Pts.

The best version of the sandcastle cliche.

two names in sand —
our romance swept away
by time and tide

Mary Lee McClure
(0,1,2) = 4 Pts.

child at beach fills pail
empties it, fills, empties
—zen mind

miriam chaikin
(1,0,1) = 4 Pts.

with a handful of sand ...
the stars

(0,0,4) = 4 Pts.

The more I read it, the more I like it.

hurricane's eye
the crunch of sand

(0,1,2) = 4 Pts.

Seventeenth Place – Three Points
childhood sand beach
under the only tree
the day lingers

Bruce Ross
(0,1,1) = 3 Pts.

beach weather
from the washing machine
the sound of sand

frederick gier
(0,0,3) = 3 Pts.

left behind
in the back seat —
swimsuits and sand

(0,0,3) = 3 Pts.

a trail of sand
and bathing suits
the bedroom

Neil Muscott
(0,1,1) = 3 Pts.

to sand
~ a life span

(0,0,3) = 3 Pts.

sunning on the beach
the sand sticks to her oiled skin
footprints by the chair

Rebecca S.
(0,1,1) = 3 Pts.

early summer —
stretching out in the sun
sand for my pillow

(0,1,1) = 3 Pts.

First Place – Twenty-nine Points
play therapy
the jump rope
in knots

tom painting
(4,3,11) = 29 Pts.

Well done to show us there is a secret instead of telling us. I saw that distinction as the key to what I wanted to vote for.

Second Place – Twenty-seven Points
spring thunder
I promise not to tell
her mother

Bill Kenney
(0,6,15) = 27 Pts.

An excellent haiku! And an intriguing/noteworthy juxtaposition of thunder and mother.

Third place – Twenty-three Points
just when
I'd almost forgotten
wild roses

Ann K. Schwader
(0,4,15) = 23 Pts.

Recalling nostalgically, from an 'age of wisdom’ the poet's youthful 'walk on the wild side? Well crafted and one of those few one-sentence haiku that succeed.

Fourth Place – Twenty-one Points
face down
on the end table
my wife's diary

Neil Muscott
(0,6,9) = 21 Pts.

“face down" really makes this powerful.

How much weaker this would have been in the third person. Question: If he reads her diary, will this be recorded in his diary?

The tension of this moment is heightened through careful word choice... "down" and "end" both quietly foreshadowing a not-so-happy outcome, at least for this reader.

Fifth Place – Fifteen Points
missing sandwich
the scent of onions
on the dog's breath

Melissa Spurr
(2,2,5) = 15 Pts.

Unusually successful for a one-sentence haiku, plus I'm a sucker for anything 'dog'.

Sixth Place – Fourteen Points
their wedding photo —
bride's eyes fixed on
the torn edge

Gosia Zamorska
(1,4,3) = 14 Pts.

Seventh Place – Thirteen Points
third postcard —
he says nothing
about her

(2,0,7) = 13 Pts.

Of all the haiku focused on the secrets of omission, this one stayed in my mind the longest.

Eighth Place – Twelve Points
after her death
a shoebox full
of secrets

(0,2,8) = 12 Pts.

3 a.m. darkness
he steps on the dog's
squeak toy

(0,1,10) = 12 Pts.

Got my vote, but dropping the word "darkness" would have made it even better.

Ninth Place – Eleven Points
sweet sixteen
how cool the summer sand
at midnight

(1,0,8) = 11 Pts.

my smile at him
while I write words
in the water

Li Ree
(0,2,7) = 11 Pts.

when the old gate
in the garden squeaks ...
she lifts her head

Tomislav M.
(0,3,5) = 11 Pts.

Tenth Place – Ten Points
eyelash moon ~
the way she
looks away

Paul Hodder
(0,2,6) = 10 Pts.

Eleventh Place – Nine Points
telling nobody
where we hid the firecrackers —
the cat and I

Zhanna P. Rader
(0,2,5) = 9 Pts.

whispered secrets
the dapple-grey pony
twitches her ear

sheila windsor
(1,1,4) = 9 Pts.

I can see this so clearly! And it’s nice to have secrets that aren't freighted with negative baggage.

schoolyard huddle
the facts of life

Meredith Stern Cavalieri
(1,3,0) = 9 Pts.

her secrets
lost in the fog –
autumn chill

Mary Davila
(0,3,3) =9 Pts.

peeking moon –
he washes away
her trace

Elena Naskova
(0,1,7) = 9 Pts.

So economical, and terrific use of "peeking".

wheat field —
only two ears reveal
the deer's location

cindy bene
(0,3,3) = 9 Pts.

A vision most of us have seen, at least in pictures, but well done.

quiet child
her whispers only
for teddy

Beth Powell
(0,2,5) = 9 Pts.

Having been one of those, I find this evocative.

An aspect of childhood precisely caught. I generally hate kiddie-ku.

This and #60 were very similar in concept and wording. The difference is that #59 shows us a child with a secret while #60 explicitly tells us that there is a secret-- even using the word.

her birthday —
a melted chocolate bar
in my pocket

Barbara Campitelli
(1,1,4) = 9 Pts.

Twelfth Place – Eighth Points
the childhood
never talked about

(0,1,6) = 8 Pts.

Who we used to be and who we've become. A trenchant social observation.

in my empty room
an unexpected gift —
the scent of her perfume

Jacek M.
(0,1,6) = 8 Pts.

when the cook
has left the kitchen . . .

Kirsty Karkow
(0,1,6) = 8 Pts.

This is maybe more about sneakiness than a secret, but it made me smile.

I wait
on the steps at dusk . . .
the wind in the trees

Marylouise Knight
(1,1,3) = 8 Pts.

Thirteenth Place – Seven Points
business trip
from the laundry falls
a used condom

(1,1,2) = 7 Pts.

The cell phone rings
her hand covers the number
deep intake of breathe

Angelika Kolompar
(1,1,2) = 7 Pts.

at his wake —
who is the gorgeous blond
in the big black hat?

Betty Kaplan
(0,2,3) = 7 Pts.

the depths of stars
all those nights
when mother was asleep

Collin Barber
(0,1,5) = 7 Pts.

Everyone's adolescence.

a stranger's letter
tucked under her family
recipe for moon cakes

Francine Banwarth
(0,1,5) = 7 Pts.

a shadow falls
across a backlit curtain
then another

(0,2,3) = 7 Pts.

late spring moon —
my neighbours
turn off the lights

Israel Lopez Balan
(0,1,5) = 7 Pts.

Fourteenth Place – Six Points
missing candy –
a child-shaped lump
behind the drapes

Nancy Smith
(1,1,1) = 6 Pts.

Derivative from the kukai example, but with humorous wording to make up for it.

high tide hissing
                       in and out . . .
practicing his whispers

Bill Pauly
(0,2,2) = 6 Pts.

closed eyes
reading the night skies
with your fingertips

Jon Espen Vassbotn
(0,2,2) = 6 Pts.

what goes on
behind the closed door?

(0,1,4) = 6 Pts.

Fifteenth Place – Five Points
dawn —
on her pillow
a note

Jon Baldwin
(0,1,3) = 5 Pts.

father's day —
a tiny fistful
of something that still squeaks

Lin Geary
(0,1,3) = 5 Pts.

Ha! I don't even want to think about it!

spilling through the keyhole —
someone giggles

Linda Papanicolaou
(0,0,5) = 5 Pts.

pine cone...
distant memories crumble
in my pocket

manoj saranathan
(0,1,3) = 5 Pts.

bush cherries all gone —
and I never even saw
the birds

Paul O. Williams
(0,1,3) = 5 Pts.

graveyard - so many secrets buried

Robert Naczas
(0,1,3) = 5 Pts.

Sixteenth Place – Four Points
70th birthday
he buys himself
a motorcycle

Audrey Downey
(0,1,2) = 4 Pts.

first confession
she whispers her secret sin
to the priest

carmel lively westerman
(0,2,0) = 4 Pts.

class reunion —
his old room mate Phillip
now answers to Phyllis

Carol Raisfeld
(0,0,4) = 4 Pts.

our secret place —
the moment ruined
by a bee

Mary Lee McClure
(0,1,4) = 6 Pts.

for having secrets
you need a good memory
and that I don't have

emile molhuysen
(1,0,1) = 4 Pts.

in sleepless eyes
the shadow of recent tears;
"nothing" she says

frederick gier
(0,0,4) = 4 Pts.

after all these years
finding out daddy's real name —
the family secret

Hazel A. Witherspoon
(0,2,0) = 4 Pts.

watching Saturn
I remember that night
long long ago

Jeff Hanson
(0,1,2) = 4 Pts.

opening the book
to the page where she screamed ––
crushed spider

(0,0,4) = 4 Pts.

holes in my yard
in the next block
a man plants lavender roses

Rose Marie Stutts
(0,1,2) = 4 Pts.

Seventeenth Place – Three Points
between the pages
of the yard-sale romance
a ten dollar bill

Barbara Snow
(0,1,1) = 3 Pts.

my hushed tone
tightening her grip —
high-tide mark

Colin Stewart Jones
(1,0,0) = 3 Pts.

Once in a blue moon…
Cupid shooting an arrow
into a bowman's heart.

Daniela Bullas
(0,1,1) = 3 Pts.

high school parking lot
the new kid flips an ice pick
into the dumpster

(0,1,1) = 3 Pts.

lost diary key
I wish I could remember
what I wrote

Jo McInerney
(0,0,3) = 3 Pts.

stones skim with
big leaps on the lake
he has a secret

(0,0,3) = 3 Pts.

The first time I read this, I thought that the big leaps were the result of strong, emotion-fueled throws... thereby allowing the watcher to think about a secret underneath. Then I thought that maybe the secret is simply the secret to great stone skipping. I liked it both ways.

the secrets she told me
waiting for the stars

(0,0,3) = 3 Pts.

young, teenage love
only the cottonwoods
whispering secrets

todd eddy
(0,0,3) = 3 Pts.

General Comments:

Intriguing topic. I have been introduced to a new aspect of haiku.

There were a lot of good senryu here, but I had to stop and think, because many were evocative private memories and not really of the universal way we keep secrets.

I may have misread or misunderstood the concept here, but any of the haiku that had the word "secret/s" was automatically nixed. It certainly made the selection process easier. #38 got my 3 pt vote for humor, originality, and according to a story my Mom used to tell, I got caught with green onions on my breath when I was about 3 or 4 years old. I'd been playing outside in the garden. When she called me in and started washing me up she said, "Gary, you've been eating onions!" I said, utterly surprised, "How did you know?" Moms know everything.

Thank you all for participating in the June 2008 Shiki Monthly Kukai. We will open the July 2008 Kukai to submissions on or about Monday, July 7th.

With much appreciation,

Robert Bauer, Secretary
Gary Warner, Web Host

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