Each Day a Haiku



There are some people who write haiku poetry to make a living.
You know what I think?
We should make our living become haiku poetry.
You might toil in a clattering factory
or on a tossing fishing boat
or be battling to make a living in a dingy shop.
There are people who have written inspiring haiku poems in such unpoetic situations.
And we, if we really want to,
can make any occupation,
and twenty-four hours of each day,
into a poem.
Of course, first we have to create a heart
that is both serious and light!
We have to gaze below the surface of things,
search out the hidden beauty that is everywhere
and discover the glorious things all around us.
Then each day becomes a haiku poem.

~Dr. Takashi Nagai, survivor of the Nagasaki atomic bomb



closed my eyelids to
finality of sunlight’s
reach, and glowed within



Unsettled Petals


Everyone feels grief
when cherry blossoms scatter.
Might they then be tears –
those drops of moisture falling
in the gentle rains of spring?
~Otomo no Juronushi (late 9th century)


Thoughts still linger –
but will those who have parted
return once again?

Evening is deep in the hills
where cherry blossoms fall.
~Shinkei (1406-1475)


If there were no cherry blossoms in the world,
My mind would be peaceful.
~ Fujiwara Norihira


A fallen blossom
Returning to the bough, I thought –
But no, a butterfly.
~Arakida Moritake (1473-1549)

Blond Moon

photo by Josh Scholten

“Many solemn nights
Blond moon, we stand and marvel…
Sleeping our noons away”
― Teitoku (Japanese Haiku)
May I never lose my wonder at the universe suspended above my head, whether it is vast galaxies spreading like a canopy, a golden blond moon or photos beamed back from the surface of Mars from the rover Curiosity.

May I marvel at what is beyond my capacity to understand and my capability to see with my own eyes.

May I never snooze oblivious, unaware of the privilege that is being here, if only a little while.