The Shiki Monthly Kukai

November 2009 Kukai

Dear Haiku Friends,

Here are the results for the November 2009 Kukai, wherein our Kigo subject was Cold or Flu and our Free Format subject was Decorations.

Congratulations to Elinor Pihl Huggett, winner of our Kigo section and to Ann K. Schwader, 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.

November 2009 Results
Kigo Theme:
Free Format Theme:

First Place — 24 points
mid-winter thaw
even the snowman
has a runny nose

Elinor Pihl Huggett
(0,7,10) = 24 pts

Second Place — 23 pts
the aspen leaves
shake with me

Maria Tomczak
(0,6,11) = 23 pts

Third Place — 18 pts
autumn morning—
a street dog
also sneezes

Israel Lopez Balan
(1,4,7) = 18 pts

Fourth Place — 14 points
Indian summer
a fly keeps buzzing
near my headache

Harvey Jenkins
(0,3,8) = 14 pts

Fifth Place — 13 points
sneezing fit
the dog retires
to another room

Carmel Lively Westerman
(0,3,7) = 13 pts

I can see the dog and the room -- what a great scene! The word "retires" is very well chosen here.

Sixth Place — 12 points
first snow —
vitamin C added
to the grocery list

Mike Montreuil
(0,2,8) = 12 pts

Seventh Place — 11 points
city square —
startled by my sneeze
a dove takes wing

Gautam Nadkarni
(0,4,3) = 11 pts

I love the simplicity of this. A true observation -- no desk haiku could go like this!

a night of fever —
clouds brush the face of
a smouldering moon

jon davey
(0,3,5) = 11 pts

fever dream
the falling snow
swirls into stars

Catherine J.S. Lee
(0,1,9) = 11 pts

Eighth Place — 10 points
cold autumn —
the warm days move away
with the cough

Jordi Climent
(0,3,4) = 10 pts

the rolled-up sleeves
of the night shift
flu shots

Deborah P Kolodji
(0,1,8) = 10 pts

Ninth Place — 9 points
flu season...
even my car coughs
all the way

Jacek. M
(0,3,3) = 9 pts

flu season
the rush of heat
up the chimney

Tom Painting
(0,3,3) = 9 pts

Tenth Place — 8 points
frog chorus
in line
for the vaccine

Alan S. Bridges
(1,0,5) = 8 pts

Eleventh Place — 7 points
flu season
teaching grade one
the elbow cough

Beth Powell
(0,2,3) = 7 pts

Twelfth Place — 6 points
The old throat
A flu jumped in

Anne Zooey Lind
(1,1,1) = 6 pts

snow moon
asking if the scarecrow
may catch a cold

Rita Odeh
(0,2,2) = 6 pts

the world is as one ...
by flu

Tom Maretic
(0,2,2) = 6 pts

Thirteenth Place — 5 points
cold season -
the kindergarten classroom
still and quiet

freddy gier
(1,0,2) = 5 pts

By far the strongest of the bunch, I felt. I loved the punch it carries - the realization of "oh! no, a K classroom *shouldn't* be quiet..."

howl of dogs
and my nose running
into the moonless night

Sabine Tamarinda
(1,1,0) = 5 pts

floor tile
of my nun's cell
cold comfort

Donna Bauerly
(0,1,3) = 5 pts

flu symptoms
nothing seems to slow
the spin of a maple seed

Cindy Tebo
(0,1,3) = 5 pts

feverish —
the short walk to the doctor
so long

Isabelle Prondzynski
(0,0,5) = 5 pts

Fourteenth Place — 4 points
the temperature
at the sun's centre

Garry Eaton
(1,0,1) = 4 pts

swine flu…
the dog ignores
my scratchy voice

Barbara A Taylor
(0,1,2) = 4 pts

a hot brick
tucked under the quilts —
Spanish flu

Janice Hornburg
(0,0,4) = 4 pts

rattle of dry leaves —
moonlight deepens
on the sickbed

Penny Harter
(0,0,4) = 4 pts

Fifteenth Place — 3 points
my brother
struggling to breathe —
swine flu

Harrison Mwangangi
(1,0,0) = 3 pts

I found this one very moving. So, so simple but such a real situation and emotion.

autumn mist
the frog jumps into the sneeze

(0,0,3) = 3 pts

down the aisle to the
cans of chicken soup

(0,0,3) = 3 pts

early dusk
the stifled cough
wins out

Ann K. Schwader
(0,0,3) = 3 pts

med school
lecture punctuated
with coughs

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

Sixteenth Place — 2 points
first one sneeze, then two
the cats and the dog all look
what? no gesundheit?

todd eddy
(0,1,0) = 2 pts

Mar’s launch . . .
a sneeze echoes back
from the canyon

Ron Moss
(0,0,2) = 2 pts

Intriguing verse.

dreary as the day
I lie in my bed and read
without much interest

(0,1,0) = 2 pts

stormy autumn night
he cuts an onion in two
against her earache

Ralf Broker, Germany
(0,1,0) = 2 pts

season greeting
with the mail
a sneeze

Ben Gieske
(0,0,2) = 2 pts


crossing the street
to avoid a sneezing

(0,1,0) = 2 pts

black medicine
begins to shine

(0,1,0) = 2 pts

dry cough
the crunch of cherry

Terra Martin
(0,1,0) = 2 pts

november morning park
a group practising
aaahh chi

Jon Espen Vassbotn
(0,1,0) = 2 pts

The first line could be more compact, but I love the idea!

fevered night
between wheezing coughs
an erection

Carol Raisfeld
(0,0,2) = 2 pts

H1N1 pandemic
I choose to not panic
and write a poem instead

Stevie Strang
(0,0,2) = 2 pts

counting coughs
on the airplane
flu season

Terri L. French
(0,0,2) = 2 pts

I fly a lot and this really hits home!

Seventeenth Place — 1 point
Cough, sneeze and snuffle
Warm lemon-carob julep;
Lozenges and mints.

Tanja Cilia

swine flu alert...
the bride and the groom
wearing their masks

Keith A. Simmonds

my pig’s fluttering his ears —
i’m afraid it has
bird flu

Petru-Ioan Garda

waiting room —
almost everyone coughs
into their sleeves


best type of flu —
though too sick to go to work
well enough to read

Elaine Riddell

Red noses gleaming,
brilliant beacons glowing,
winter cold gripping.

Jean Lewis

terrible cold —
a sneeze at the
tip of my nose

Narayanan Raghunathan

cold afternoon —
the rhythm of sneezing
in our classroom

Jedidah Nduku

paper walls
my neighbor’s cough
awakens me

Meredith Stern Cavalieri

No points this time, sorry.
sore biceps
yearly flu shot —
picking the last peas


Fit of sneezes
no winter allergy —
thinking of sex


Pain, achingly cold
Frozen hard
Bullets of ice

James Sawers

headache and sore throat.
body aches, chills, and the cough
human flu symptoms


hysteria rises
as the needle pricks
flu season

Susan Sanchez-Barnett

writing unsparingly
to spare
my sore throat

A Dharma Bum

Was mass extinction
caused by the virus just found
in ancient ice ?

Lorraine Margueritte Gasrel Black

first thing grandma touches
my sleeping daughter's forehead
though I told her not to

John Thompson

head in hand
staring at dinner
my stomach turns over

Bill Hudson

Scholarly meeting
high in the snowy mountains
with flu absences

Horst Ludwig

forecast -
another fire/throat
begins the season

Merrill Ann Gonzales

your stormy sneeze —
hardly seen, hardly heard
migrating storks

oana posnaies

my throat a desert
raw with viral grit
i flood it with salt


Liquid eyes spill streams
Rivulets carve throat canyons
Kleenex, cough drops, hot tea, ahhhhh!

Pat Lammers

nonstop runny nose
in each room of the house
two boxes of tissues


mother's back turned
toddler's tongue catches
his nose drips

Diane Mayr

my dog and i
both shivering with cold -
autumn blues

natalia kuznetsova

Falling snow,
my nose feels the cold -
I must sneeze.

Trevor Camp

blocked nose —
just humming
We are the Champions


he hawks a loogie
that splats on the street
and coughs on by


grandma stirs
hot lemon and honey
for my cough

Ruth Powell

long underwear
my second skin
guards against ah-choo!

Marilyn Hazelton

The chilly morning
coughs up a long line
for vaccination.


rivulets of rain
cloud the windows—
a sore nose

Marylouise Knight

a sneezing student
wipes mucus with her hand --
quiet exam room

Stephen Macharia

sneezing aloud —
mucus drips into
my handkerchief

Elkana Mogaka

stinking handkerchief —
a student's nostril flooded
with mucus

Stephen Nzomo

chilly morning —
mucus flowing from
my sore nose


aromatic liniment —
my aunt dabs at her
swollen tonsils

Beryl Achieng

my grandmother
with a soaked handkerchief —
peeling nostrils

Vivian Adhiambo

my mother washing
a slippery handkerchief —
sniffs from a running nose

Erick Mwange

a drop of mucus
on my exam papers —
cold morning

Patrick Wafula

streaking snot
from elbow to wrist
the sniffling schoolboy

Terry O'Connor

winter colds
ongoing attempts to
dam head canals

Frances McCarthy

back and forth
from nose to mouth
a snotty finger

Dejan Pavlinovic

a damp cold —
honey and lemon
soothe the throat


First snow fall —
I sneeze violent
and the cat throbs


body shivers —
into the frozen ear
her hot words


surgically masked
by the only free chair
at the clinic


General Comments:

A difficult choice this time. Interesting how the latest epidemics and the latest warnings have spilled into these haiku!

First Place — 22 pts
snow fills
the pumpkin’s grin

Ann K. Schwader
(1,6,7) = 22 pts

Second Place — 13 pts
just one orchid in
the bamboo vase

Narayanan Raghunathan
(2,2,3) = 13 pts

Minimalism in haiku. . . how effective.

The starkness of this haiku reflects perfectly the beauty of the one orchid in the bamboo vase. Enough -- well said!

her embroidery needle
in and out

Terra Martin
(2,2,3) = 13 pts

I can see grandma's hand's moving and her contented face and feel the chill in the air.

Third Place — 12 pts
ah! the midnight moon
sprinkling sequins again
on the old pond

Anne Zooey Lind
(0,4,4) = 12 pts

Fourth Place — 11 points
New Year's Day
the homeless man decorates
a discarded Christmas tree

David Grayson
(1,1,6) = 11 pts

winter jays
decorate the one pine
left standing

Beth Powell
(0,3,5) = 11 pts

The image is startling, the sound beautifully alternating with harsh and soft.

Fifth Place — 10 points
holiday home
a bittersweet wreath
on the barracks door

Catherine J.S. Lee
(0,4,2) = 10 pts

I love the play on the word "bittersweet"

"bittersweet" is the right word in the right place; "barracks" a wrenching contrast with "holiday home"

surprise visitor
I place one more gourd
in the centerpiece

Harvey Jenkins
(0,2,6) = 10 pts

Quite warm and pleasant.

Sixth Place — 9 points
leaves gone
a tree's bare black limbs
decorate the sky

miriam chaikin
(1,2,2) = 9 pts

coffee table book
an opening at the end
of the universe

Garry Eaton
(1,1,4) = 9 pts

a spider finds
the spray-on web

Alan S. Bridges
(0,2,5) = 9 pts

Christmas morn
a flock of crows festoons
the old pine

Warren Gossett
(0,2,5) = 9 pts

deep frost —
the moon decorating
snow flakes

Petru-Ioan Garda
(0,3,3) = 9 pts

Seventh Place — 8 points
office party
a sprig of mistletoe
in her cleavage

Carol Raisfeld
(0,2,4) = 8 pts

smashed pumpkins
litter the street —
a biting wind

Marylouise Knight
(0,0,8) = 8 pts

Eighth Place — 7 points
a glint of tinsel
in a high corner web

Barbara Snow
(1,0,4) = 7 pts

The inclusion of the kigo "Epiphany" greatly adds to the beauty of this haiku.

Green Beret
red roses decorate
the coffin

Carmel Lively Westerman
(0,2,3) = 7 pts

Grandma’s lacy shawl
decorates the empty
rocking chair

Lorraine Margueritte Gasrel Black
(0,1,5) = 7 pts

Ninth Place — 6 points
rotting jack-o-lantern
the menacing grin
now befuddled

Meredith Stern Cavalieri
(1,1,1) = 6 pts

Graphically and amusingly evocative.

the tree sways
from side to side
last piece of tinsel

Susan Sanchez-Barnett
(0,2,2) = 6 pts

garland trims
the parking meters

Tom Painting
(0,1,4) = 6 pts

student house
a tinselled traffic-cone
atop the tree

Terry O'Connor
(0,1,4) = 6 pts

Tenth Place — 5 points
old man's beard
adorns his tree —
the hermit

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

What a marvelous image and a great haiku.

childless at Christmas . . .
my love places an angel
on the tree

Ron Moss
(0,1,3) = 5 pts

Eleventh Place — 4 points
under mistletoe
the young girl waits hopefully
I sip my eggnog

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

strewn about —
the wedding's off!

(0,1,2) = 4 pts

macaroni angel
still on grandma's tree

Diane Mayr
(0,1,2) = 4 pts

every fire truck out...
volunteer firemen hang
Christmas decorations

Elinor Pihl Huggett
(0,1,2) = 4 pts

breakfast pancakes —
the fridge is decorated
in toddler art

(0,1,2) = 4 pts

Twelfth Place — 3 points
on a school poster
autumn leaves

Dejan Pavlinovic
(0,1,1) = 3 pts

the collage grows stronger
as the refrigerator
attracts another magnet

A Dharma Bum
(0,0,3) = 3 pts

Texas steakhouse
the rooftop Santa Claus
rings a dinner bell

(0,0,3) = 3 pts

christmas down under
snowflakes sprayed on the windows
under summer skies

Elaine Riddell
(0,0,3) = 3 pts

chopsticks and fork
Buddha illuminated
by Christmas lights

John Thompson
(0,0,3) = 3 pts

A lot of ingredients, but this one says a lot too.

greeting card garlands...
my own stack
of unsent letters

Deborah P Kolodji
(0,0,3) = 3 pts

christmas lights
dangling from the roof
another foreclosed home

Stevie Strang
(0,0,3) = 3 pts

Thirteenth Place — 2 points
High thin pointed hats
high class fashion long ago
now threat trick or treat

Horst Ludwig
(0,1,0) = 2 pts

rays of divine light
lead us to reach destined goals
decorating, thoughts

(0,1,0) = 2 pts

big box store —
hob-goblins share a shelf
with Santa Claus

Janice Hornburg
(0,0,2) = 2 pts

another year
wiped away —
broken Christmas globe

oana posnaies
(0,1,0) = 2 pts

entwine the sky
kites on a wind

Jacek M.
(0,0,2) = 2 pts

A novel approach to decorations.

birthday bash —
a blown-up blue balloon
suddenly bursts

Gautam Nadkarni
(0,0,2) = 2 pts

color-blind boy
paper turkeys
bright as peacocks

(0,0,2) = 2 pts

January chill —
a colourful wedding emerges
from the church

Isabelle Prondzynski
(0,1,0) = 2 pts

in an old oak
twinkling, fairy lights
midsummer night

Ellen Compton
(0,0,2) = 2 pts

in the attic —
christmas decorations and...
hidden memories

natalia kuznetsova
(0,1,0) = 2 pts

that anxious feeling
like grocery-store Christmas lights
earlier each year

freddy gier
(0,1,0) = 2 pts

empty nest
cornucopia spilling

(0,0,2) = 2 pts

late Friday night —
the thrown wine glass smashes
her favorite vase

Bruce H. Feingold
(0,0,2) = 2 pts

Fourteenth Place — 1 point
A friend's house
By the pumpkin's inner glow
Happy children

James Sawers

outdoor rice lights
multiplying rain
drop by drop by drop

Donna Bauerly shimenawa
tied to a grand cedar
in the park

Barbara A Taylor

LCD lit tree —
filling stockings
with nuts and oranges

Terri L. French

Autumn tines of trees
Raking the sky’s burnished leaves
Uncovering gray

Pat Lammers

day after halloween —
Christmas displays
at Walmart

Mike Montreuil

Late evening,
many bright stars shine —
Christmas lights.

Trevor Camp

Traditional scene,
old decorations dusted,
reused each Christmas.

Jean Lewis

ornamental gourds
arranged by the walkway
slowly blacken


sex worker's autopsy —
the tatoo: "only for John"
over her symphisis


No points this time, sorry.
festive yule symbol
now just a tree with lights
day after Christmas


November first
candy corn sticks to the boy’s grin


this year's Christmas tree
with last year's decorations...
thanks to the downturn

Keith A. Simmonds

green turkey
tiny hands with crayons
help to decorate

Bill Hudson

first almond biscuit ...
she stores away
a plastic pumpkin

Ralf Broker

soft moonbeams
asleep with lilies
dreaming into tomorrow

Ben Gieske

walking spiderman
past Christmas decorations
trick or treat

Tom Genovese

of orchard squash — too pretty
to eat

Merrill Ann Gonzales

christmas at grandma’s —
on the christmas tree still
the same decorations

Andrzej Dembonczyk

the cage door
is left open .. Wedding

Rita Odeh

with sky for a
hat decorated by

carol pearce-worthington

school children
look for pilgrims,
find santa


cracks spreading
in the Easter egg —
the blue albumen

Penny Harter

i am sweet on
sugar tits and candied buns
her decorations


snowflakes fall gently to the earth
sparkling softly floating with the wind
-the best decorations in town

Jeanne Fiedler

that plastic camel
draws kids(and some adults)
to my cacti

Jon Vassbotn

To brave soldiers
a royal oak carved headstone
evenly split


lizards struggling to
climb on a newly painted house —
sunny morning

Winslause Yamame

purple jacaranda blooms
decorate our lawns again —
the short rains

Patrick Wafula

baubles dazzle cheaply
yet child-eyes gleam
in wonder

Frances McCarthy

False fruits
decorations of beggar –
harvest home


Thanksgiving turkey
to admire
Pine cone
Pipe cleaners

Mary E. Gray

her first pumpkin
now a snowman


annual tree trimming
the way the branches
change sizes

Judith Gorgone

Thank you for participating in the November 2009 Kukai!

We will be posting the December Call for Submissions on Monday, November 30. See you then!

With much appreciation,

The Shiki Kukai Team

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