Haiku by Michael Dylan Welch in USA (2)



On May 18,2010, I received a comment on haiku by Roberta Beary for Int’l Haiku Spring Festival from Michael Dylan Welch as follows:


Nice to see these translations of Roberta’s poems from the book!



Since then we have been exchanging e-mails.


First of all, I would like to introduce Michael to you.


Michael Dylan Welch has written haiku since 1976. He’s a longtime vice president of the Haiku Society of America, cofounded Haiku North America in 1991 and the American Haiku Archives in 1996, and founded the Tanka Society of America in 2000. He is editor/publisher of Tundra: The Journal of the Short Poem (since 1997) and of Press Here haiku and tanka books (since 1989). He previously edited Woodnotes (1989–1997). Michael’s haiku and longer poems have appeared in hundreds of journals and anthologies in fourteen languages, and he’s won first prize in the Henderson, Brady, Drevniok, and Tokutomi contests. These invited poems focus on plants and trees of the Pacific Northwest.

Individual poems first published in various haiku journals. Two of these poems (“after-dinner mints” and “bookmobile day”) were also stamped onto paper grocery bags distributed at selected Seattle grocery stores, and also part of Bob Redmond’s SLUG Food Haiku Reading that I participated in at Seattle’s Jewelbox Theatre on 24 August 2009, and also appeared in a handmade anthology of poems from this poetry event. See photos and the Seattle Times article about this reading.


 Now I present you Food Haiku by Michael with my Japanese translations. You will find his haiku in his website ‘GRACEGUTS’ at https://sites.google.com/site/graceguts/haiku-and-senryu/food-haiku.


birthday picnic— 

grandma’s throw 

half way to the toddler 







we walk the boardwalk hand in hand 

                sharing ice cream 








after-dinner mints 

passed around the table 

. . . slow-falling snow 







busy Italian restaurant— 

happy birthday 

sung to the wrong table 






express checkout 

     the fat woman counts

           the thin man’s items







at his favourite deli 

the bald man finds a hair 

in his soup 







rice chaff 

whitens the scoop— 

supper alone 





apples picked 

and the casket chosen— 

lingering sunset 





grocery shopping— 

pushing my car faster 

through feminine protection 







a crab apple 

from the highest branch 

rattles down the rain spout 





the waiter interrupts 

our argument on abortion— 

a choice of teas 





first day of school— 

I eat my buckwheat pancakes 

in silence 





bookmobile day— 

huckleberries bloom 

along the white picket fence 





breakfast alone 

slowly I eat 

my melancholy 





a table for one— 

   leaves rustle 

in the inner courtyard 






a deer leaps— 

the hunter’s 

         closed eye 






tarnished silver 

        the only guest 

               eats in silence 





a withered apple 

caught in an old spine rake 

. . . blossoms fall 





gunshot recordings

echo over the vineyard . . .

a grackle’s stained beak






a broken bamboo cane—

         ripe tomatoes

         glow along the ground




cafeteria line—

the good-looking girl

looks at my plate




I sincerely hope that you will appreciate food haiku by Michael, and that you will try to write food haiku too.  

The next posting ‘ Haiku by Angelika Bygott in Canada’ appears on August 21.

Hidenori  Hiruta


3 Responses to “Haiku by Michael Dylan Welch in USA (2)”

  1. Alan Summers Says:

    Here are a few food-related haiku ranging from 2001-2010.

    steak & mushroom pie
    my newfound uncle wants
    to call me brother

    six egg omelette
    I recall my childhood
    and add some relish

    8oz prime rib steak
    the view of a white horse
    from the pub garden

    fried eggs—
    so many hand-me-downs left
    around the fir tree

    spaghetti bolognese –
    i sip cooking wine
    finger dishevelled hair

    all my best,


  2. P K Padhy Says:

    Beautiful manifestation. I liked “the waiter interrupts” and “a broken bamboo cane” very much.

    six egg omelette by respected Mr. Alan adds beauty to the food-related haiku. It is a great value of poetic feeling.

  3. Alan Summers Says:

    Thank you PK Padhy,

    I don’t know how many youngsters had six egg omelettes, but our family was initially poor, so six egg omelettes once or twice a day was quite a luxury.

    I think I’ve only had six omelettes a few times since adulthood, but bring back many childhood.

    A diet not to be recommended. 😉



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