Haikus collected

haiku. I have been relatively indifferent towards this form of poetry until I discovered that it is one of the few ways of getting a more or less conscious observation about your surroundings or nature on paper when a monstrous daily workload prevents you from doing anything that isn’t work-related. When I gradually started to like the haiku there was no way back.

Often when I get up in the morning I see the world reflected in the mirror while shaving. A very small portion of the world, that is. About 45 x 30 cm, which are the dimensions of the bathroom window of our house. From that vantage point I see a disused chimney of the part of the house that was formerly an annex with small stable. Behind the chimney some trees in the neighbouring gardens, now leafless, paint a very picturesque background against the winter sky.

chimney on the annex roof

Throughout the year a crow couple is following its daily routine around the chimney. They probably built a nest there. Beautiful and intelligent birds.

With the recent precious gift of snow the poetry of the scene is perfect. What a waste to let these fleeting images, quiet observations, and associations slip away each day. So I try to make it a daily routine to jot down the lines that cross my mind in a small black notebook while still scuttling around in the bathroom, and later add them to the haiku-group ‘wall’ during the first coffee in the morning after having arrived in my study. And apparently some people like them too. Nice!

Long ago I have made some attempts at writing poetry. Some poems even got published. The specific haiku form however, which I, erroneously, deemed kitsch for a long time, is a great way to force yourself to the utmost clarity. It’s the economy and extreme scarcity of words that sometimes yields very rich images. … Not always though. But it is very nice and rewarding to see many people struggle with the very strict rules, and still get very good, and sometimes brilliant results.

1

silent gathering
prints of small feet in the snow
enigmatic crows

2

a river meadow
cold night covers it swiftly
geese get together

3

distant thunder rings
but snow dampens its effect
the strangest contrast

4

an unused chimney
great location for a nest
the crows like it too

5

dissolved in darkness
little melting hills of snow
will be gone next dawn

6

crow lands on chimney
highly philosophical
and misunderstood

7

complex messages
being sent from tree to tree
black crows in winter

8

darkness has set in
no snow to reflect the light
winter lost its soul

9

snow adrift outside
the fire burning in the hearth
the winter is back

10

like gossamer veins
the blackish leafless branches
cross the grey-white sky

11

wind gaining in strength
and falling in temperature
cuts like a razor

12

the bathroom mirror
frames the chimney on the roof
and the crow on it

13

scent of burning wood
birds silently settling down
a winter evening

14

the quiet river flows
grey fragments of icy snow
sheep on the riverbanks

15

our winter garden
is a blank canvas again
may nature fill it

16

a dog, a man, snow
no cars, no sounds, no echos,
silent saturday

17

peanuts in a net
finches and robins appear
oh no! There’s the crow!

18

roof of the old school
must be large enough to land
if you’re a sparrow

19

smoke leaves the chimney
the logs now only glowing
sparrows gathering