I have just received an e-mail about an Asahi Newspaper sponsored haiku in English contest from Professor David McMurray at the International University of Kagoshima.

Would you please send your haiku before April 18?

His e-mail is as follows:

Dear Hiruta sensei,

Thank you so much for referring to the Asahi Culture Centre, I will read and review it. This Friday will feature many haiku about the first day of school. But here is something really special for you up in Akita at this time of year, the chance to go to Dogo Onsen in Matsuyama! Not quite Kagoshima, but warm…

Here is one more item for readers of your homepage. Please let me update you on the launch of an Asahi Newspaper sponsored haiku in English contest with the theme Europe and Japan affording a trip to Japan as first prize. For details please link to:


  If you and the readers of your homepage might have some time to write one haiku on this theme before April 18, you could  win a trip to Dogo Onsen in Matusuyama Japan, please link to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Japan homepage for the application form in English and in Japanese.


  In summary,

  The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Japan and the European Union are calling for haikuists to enter the Japan-EU haiku contest for a chance to win a trip to Matsuyama, the home of modern haiku.

  Before April 18, please send one haiku about Europe-Japan relations to (haikucontest@mofa.go.jp). Visit (www.mofa.go.jp/region/europe/eu/haiku_sub.html) for details.

Best of luck,

David McMurray

Last of all, we sincerely hope that you will send your haiku before April 18.

Hidenori Hiruta


Now in Japan we are in a cheerful mood, sharing the beauties and wonders of spring with each other.

With the coming of spring, Amur adonis appeared in the fields and camellias opened their flowers, from white to pink and red ones.


Plum and cherry blossoms are in full bloom here and there in Tokyo these days.

 Both of them have been loved and taken up in haiku or tanka since the ancient days in Japan.

At the end of March, I wrote the following haiku:


Fresh cherry blossoms

reflected in the pond

water mirror



Hatsuzakura  sugata o utsusu  kagami ike



First of all, let me tell you about my writing career of international haiku.

In May, 1998, I studied about international haiku and started writing haiku in English.

Professor David McMurray at the International University of Kagoshima(鹿児島国際大学) came to Akita and gave us a workshop on international haiku at the meeting of JALT (The Japan Association for Language Teaching)(全国語学教育学会). He told us about international haiku and showed us how to write haiku in English.

Since then I have been studying about haiku in English through Asahi Culture Center(朝日カルチャーセンター), where we can enjoy International Haiku Correspondence with Professor David McMurray.

As our mentor he gives us instructions and suggestions on how to burnish and improve haiku in English.

As a haiku poet he received NAGOYA TV AWARD at International Haiku Poetry Festival held as part of THE 2005 AICHI WORLD EXPO (愛知万博)in July, 2005.


White lilies

the feeding tube


David McMurray


Professor David McMurray is also the haiku selector and editor of the Asahi Haikuist Network column found in Friday edition of the International Herald Tribune Asahi Shimbun (ヘラルド朝日)and on the Internet at


In March, 2004, I wrote the following haiku, which appeared in the above -mentioned page of Asahi Haikuist Network by David McMurray:


Bush warbler

music in the eaves

rice cake dries



Uguisuno   utagoe  nokini    mochi kawaku


My haiku appeared in the Asahi Haikuist Network and also appeared together with Basho’s haiku in the blog by Angelika Wienert, a German poet, in 2005.



                   Uguisu ya  mochi ni fun suru  en no saki     

Bush warbler ―

shits on the rice cakes

on the porch rail

 Translated by Robert Hass


In July, 2004, I visited Kisakata(象潟), Akita, and wrote the following haiku in celebration of the 360th anniversary of Matsuo Basho’s birth:


Basho’s wind

circling stone tablet




Shou fuu no  kuhi ni tachi taru  manatsu kana




In October, 2004, I wrote the following haiku while reading “The Narrow Road to Oku” (Oku no Hosomichi) by Matsuo Basho(1664-1694) as translated by Donald Keene.

I composed it to keep cozy, when the nights were getting longer and chillier.


 Autumn winds

leaves flutter upon

the narrow road



Akikaze ya  Okuno Hosomichi  konoha mau



In November, 2006, I wrote haiku about first snow:


 Basho’s statue

dressed in white snow

narrow road



Hatsu yuki ya  Basho no koromo  kiyomare ri


My haiku appeared in the Asahi Haikuist Network, where Professor David McMurray  noted as follows:

The first snowfall in Akita was light, just enough to dust Matsuo Basho’s monument, writes Hidenori Hiruta. Or as the poet observed in 1686, enough snow fell to bend narcissus leaves: Hatsu yuki ya suisen no ha no tawamu made.  Hiruta alludes to Basho’s travel journal, “Oku no Hosomichi” (The Narrow Road to the Deep North).



Hatsu yuki ya  suisen no ha no  tawamu made


The first snow ―

just enough to bend

narcissus leaves


Translated by David McMurray


These two haiku above are quoted in the category, Literature of the Literature.net.

In January, 2009, I wrote haiku about New Year. This was selected and printed in the haiku magazine, HI , which is published by HIA (Haiku International Association)(国際俳句交流協会).


Sending out steam

dedicating Bonden

New Year’s Festival



Yuge tate te  bonden osamu  kan matsuri



 On January 23, 2010, the word ‘Bonden(梵天)’  was taken up as Kigo for the New Year in SPECIAL GALLERIES…..DARUMA MUSEUM (03) by Dr. Gabi Greve, a German poet, in Okayama, Japan.

In February, 2010, I wrote the following haiku:


 Frozen beard


valentine mails



Hige nagomu  barentain no  meeru kana


On March 5, 2010, this haiku appeared in the Asahi Haikuist Network.

That night I received the following e-mail for my haiku:

Dear Hidenori Hiruta:

I have enjoyed reading your haiku in today’s edition of the Asahi Haikuist Network

in the International Herald Tribune.  Congratulations!

Have a wonderful weekend–

With best regards,

Lenard D. Moore

Former President (2008 and 2009), Haiku Society of America(アメリカ俳句協会前会長)

Executive Chairman, North Carolina Haiku Society.

I knew Mr. Moore at the HIA 20th Anniversary Symposium held in Tokyo on November 28, 2009, which he attended as one of the panelists.

On March 8, 2010, Mr. Moore contributed his haiku to me and referred to his essay on writing haiku in his e-mail.

Dear Hidenori Hiruta,

Thank you very much for your kind words about my haiku.  I am very pleased to learn

that you attended last year’s HIA 20th Anniversary Symposium and posted haiku.

I am delighted to hear that you have heard my talk on the haiku panel.  However,

here is the website address for my essay on writing haiku with several of my haiku:


I am honored that you have read my following haiku:


 autumn sunset

helicopter rises

from the heliport

 –Lenard D. Moore

I am also honored to learn that you have appreciated my following haiku in the Asahi Haikuist Network:


 Cloudless sky

all over my face

this thick beard

 –Lenard D. Moore


 Closing year…

I open the jar

of pickles

 –Lenard D. Moore


Year-end rain

just the closed houses

up the street

 –Lenard D. Moore


Congratulations on all of the work you are doing for haiku on the Akita International Haiku Network!

I am grateful to you for inviting me to submit haiku to you for the Akita International Haiku Network.

Once again, thank you very much.  Have a wonderful week–

With best regards,

Lenard D. Moore


Last of all, let me tell you about what HIA President Akito Arima (国際俳句交流協会会長有馬朗人)concluded in the symposium on November 28, 2009.

Dr. Arima predicted as follows.

Haiku will spread out to the world more because of its brevity and its coexistence with nature.

More and more young people will get interested in haiku for its brevity, and enjoy writing and reading haiku.

More poets will share haiku with each other in their blogs on the Internet.

Global haiku contest or festival will increase on the Internet too.



The next posting ‘ International Haiku Spring Festival 2010 (Akita, Northern Honshu, Japan)’  appears on April 18.


― Hidenori  Hiruta

First of all,  I’d like to introduce Alan Summers to you.

He is founder / tutor of With Words which promotes the love of words through a number of inclusive literacy and literature events; courses; activities; workshops; writing walks; and renga projects.

The With Words website: www.withwords.org.uk

Alan Summers also has his Blog: http://area17.blogspot.com

According to his self-introduction, he is Japan Times award-winning writer for haiku  & renga.  He is Joint Co-ordinator for the 1000 Verse Renga.  He is also  Co-organiser for The Summer Japanese Arts & Film Festival 2010 in Bath U.K.


Secondly, we  post Alan Summers’ Travelogue on World Haiku Festival 2002 in Yuwa, Akita Japan.  He kindly contributed his article to our website.


Bullet Trains, Vending Machines and Cicadas

(group photo©Alan Summers/With Words)


L-R standing: Matsuko Teraoka, Deborah Russell, Alan Summers, Daniel Gallimore, Susumu Takiguchi, Debi Bender, Matsuo Basho (statue), Judit Vihar, Bruce Ross.

L-R seated: Brian Selby, David Barsky, Visnja McMaster

World Haiku Festival 2002

The beginning…

I landed at Kansai Airport, Osaka, in early September to be met by friend and fellow writer Maki Nishida, and I stayed at her parent’s house while Maki and myself took in all the sights of Osaka, and Kobe where her family live. My jetlag never stood a chance as over the next two days, we spent anything up to 18 hours a day on each city. The restaurants were good, but they could not get near to the excellence of mood, atmosphere, and culinary experience that Maki’s mother, Akiko Nishida, provided. During the waking hours of those two days, so much was packed in, and although it was not the New Year, we played a game of hyakunin-isshu before visiting Sumadera.

in-between seasons

the tsukutsukubõshi buzz

of “not yet Autumn”

Maki Nishida explained about a samurai legend at Suma Temple about cicadas and their semi-no-koe (chorus), a rasping call that made me think of a single, large bird rather than small insects.  This particular cicada chorus in September is often associated with the ‘official’ end to summer.

So, when the tsukutsukubõshi (cicada species, meimuna opalifera, nicknamed after their sound) give cry, it is the end of summer, rather than the beginning as is the case with all other cicadas; and it also signifies ‘not yet autumn’ at the same time, so says another legend. This is the country of legends, and you never know whether they will remain dormant or not.

The days with Maki and her family set me up beautifully for the rest of my Japan experience which would delightfully end at Akita. There are far too many images of Japan to put down here, though a few would be Bullet Trains, onsen, cicadas and jido-hanbaiki…

vending machines

the hot choice is always out–

Narrow Road to the North

And so, onto the Bullet Train…


a dog shape balloon

wags it tail

…to Kamakura to meet up with other haiku poets for a haiku experience organised through the World Haiku Club by the indefatigable energies of its Chairman, Susumu Takiguchi, and fantastically assisted by WHC Development Advisor, Debi Bender. Throughout this adventure it seemed that both Susumu and Debi worked 24/7 to make sure everything we needed was superbly taken care of.

This was indeed going to be a major expedition where we would retrace some of Basho’s steps, and with the aid of the magical onsen, I was able to recover from a severely swollen ankle originating in England. 

Thanks to Susumu’s perseverance to get me to regularly use the communal onsen ‘hot springs’ at various ryokan (Japanese-style hotels), my ankle quickly became less swollen.  In fact, to the point that I was able to undertake walks up and down hills and mountains that I would otherwise have been only able to view from ground level.

I was looking for Basho, and on our Far North journey, I felt I saw little glimpses here and there…

Toshugu shrine pines

I try to stay as still –

mist and dew

Kamakura was the start of this Basho inspired adventure and the meeting of numerous companions. I was very honoured to meet James Hackett, the famous haiku poet and friend of RH Blyth, with his wife Patricia Hackett, who is a very fine haiku poet too, as I found out at various kukai that were organised. They were the best companions to have on this journey, and I still pinch myself, after having met one of my biggest heroes of Western haiku.

Meeting Dorothy Britton (Lady Bouchier) at Kamakura was incredible too. Dorothy Britton had only just arrived from the U.S.A. and was immediately involved with the WHC Kamakura event, preparing for a talk to a large attentive audience, and also adding simultaneous translation to a talk by James W. Hackett. She looked so fresh and elegant while I was  bedraggled with fatigue.

There were several other Kamakura highlights including sharing a great sense of humour with American artist and haiku writer Deborah Russell, and meeting fellow haijinx online ‘humor in haiku’ magazine colleague, Carmen Sterba.

Carmen and myself temporarily left the WHC crew to take up an opportunity to stay at Kris Kondo’s house; Kris took us back to her fantastic Aladdin’s cave aka apartment. The next day I said farewell to Kris (thank you Kris for being such a fine hostess), all too, too brief a stay, and left with Carmen to catch up with the WHC party starting their next leg inTokyo.

Carmen Sterba and myself had the best of the day together, just two poets strolling around part of Tokyo, and then on to the Basho Memorial Museum where the other poets caught up with us. It is so refreshing to be able to meet up with people you want to meet, but have only ever known via email. I certainly made an effort to make the most of the remaining time to get to know so many haiku poets I might never meet again in person.

I was fortunate to spend time in the company of Visnja McMaster of Zabreb, Croatia, the inventor of the ‘Haiku Cards’ teaching game. Visnja has unselfishly done so much with, and for, Croatian children, proving what a powerful tool haiku can be to lift children away from certain everyday harsh circumstances, including the after effects of the breakup of the old Yugoslavia.

Working with Visnja was a major highlight for me, playing the ‘Haiku Cards’ game with her, and workshopping with several groups of local Japanese schoolchildren in Akita; a time that I shall never forget.

Other poets I met, who are also groundbreaking in their haiku and renku, were Ikuyo Yoshimura and Eiko Yachimoto, great ambassadors, each respectively of those art forms — which brings me to an observation: I have mostly named women!

Other than the exceptions of James Hackett and Susumu Takiguchi, this has been a catalogue of the female persuasion, and so I must make amends.

So, in this spirit, I must tell of a fellow traveller harking from Oxford, who exuded the spirit of Basho that I was so desperately seeking. This traveller was Brian Selby. Of all the people present, he seemed to have that intriguing mixture of pure honesty, gentleness, generosity, sabi and other haikai characteristics about him, that makes me feel that Basho would have liked him very much for a travelling companion. I certainly did. 

Sadly Brian Selby passed away before I could meet up with him again in Oxford, England but I have never forgotten him.

WHC’s Japan experience held many adventures and treats including a trip down the Mogami River…

in-between season

I follow the Mogami River

by riceboat

…and visiting hills, shrines and their flower gardens, and mountains:

moon mountain –

I climb up through all this gorse

into Basho’s Northern Honshu

Gassan (Moon Mountain), Yamagata

Alan Summers

(To be continued)


Last of all, I, Hidenori Hiruta, translated Alan Summers’ travelogue into Japanese.

Would you please read my Japanese translation too?




(グループ写真/アラン・サマーズ/‘With Wordsの写真)














































The next posting “Alan Summers’ Travelogue on World Haiku Festival 2002 in Yuwa”appears on March 6.

Hidenori Hiruta


Professor Kirby Record teaches as director of English for Academic Purposes at Akita International University (AIU) (国際教養大学) in Akita.

He also writes haiku. He is a fellow haiku poet of mine.


Professor Kirby Record contributed his book of poetry titled ‘A Welcome Coolnessto me.

 I post poetry in his book, dividing them into some parts and giving them a Japanese translation, which isn’t sometimes literal. It’s me, Hidenori Hiruta who translated his poetry into Japanese.

The title of his book is derived from the following haiku:

a sudden breeze

in bright winter sunlight, leaves

a welcome coolness


冬光に 爽涼迎ふ 風そよぐ

Toko ni  soryo mukau  kaze soyogu


 Here I post haiku about winter by Professor Kirby Record, recalling the winter in Akita.

on the window pane

the rain remains frozen

in the wind’s direction



Kazamuki ni  ame kooreru ya  mado no waku 



at the sea’s edge

i stare into nothing

tasting snowflakes



Umi no heri  seppen ajiwau  hoka miezu



japanese maple:

falling snow only darkens

its crimson branches



Furu yuki ya  irohamomiji no  aka kokusu  



in this empty room

i draw back curtains to let in

cold winter stars



Ka-ten o  hiite mane kan  fuyu no hoshi



something keeps falling

 brushing against the shoji

shadows of snowflakes


shoji : sliding paper door



Furiyama zu  shouji o kasumu  yuki no kage



a woman’s shadow

   across an icy rice field

keeps calling a cat



Neko o yobu  hyouden yogiru  kage onna



snow begins to fall

on fields already whitened

by a flock of swans



Hakuchou no  muragaru hata ni  shiroi yuki 



icy rain

on thawing snow

tiny holes



Hisame furi toke yuku yuki ni  koana kana



winter dawn

old man on bicycle pulls

dogs on a leash



Fuyu no kure  baiku rojin  inu o hiku


first buds of winter:

beads of ice glow faintly red

japanese maple



Fuyu tsubomi  momiji no koori  akai tama



cold monochromes–

sky, snowfall, and waves breaking–

splinter white ice



Tanshokuga sora yuki shiranami  kona goori



white and shapeless

rice fields deep in snow



Iki shiroshi yuki no shinden  katachi nashi


ice on stone

each breath pain

blows back again



Ishi goori haku iki itaku  fukikaeru



the December sea—

through clouds, a tiny opening

for a tiny sunset



Shiwasu no umi  yuuyake kumono  sukima kara


sun bursts out

my shadow darkens

on fresh snow



Taiyo ni waga kage kuroshi  shinsetsu ya



above the sea

sunset about to snow

a brilliant white



Kaijo no  yuyake yuki o  hakugin ni


a sudden shadow

on the snow from the pine grove

becomes a crow



Matsubayashi  setsujou no kage  karasu nari


both rain and snow

falling at the same time

on the same place



Yuki majiri ame no furiotsu  onaji chi ni


black is black

trees at night above the snow

white is white



Kuro to shiro  yoru no kigi tatsu  yuki no ue


blurring past,

only a rabbit’s footprints

in the snow



Kako oboro  usagi no ashiato  yuki no naka



 a ray of sunset

leaves a trace of crimson

on ordinary snow



Yuyake no  akaki senseki  setsujou ni


swirling snowflakes

suddenly float slow-motion

near the pine forest



Seppen ya  uzumaki yurumu  matsubayashi


newly-built houses

rooftops of different colors

under the same snow



Shinchiku no  yaneiro chigau  yuki onaji


picture window

turns the whole room grey

winter dusk



Miharashi mado  heya haiiro no  fuyu no kure


snow glazing

the needles of giant pine

winter blossoms



Yuki saete  matsu no shinyo  fuyu no hana


with a black leash

a dog is pulling its master

across a snowy field



Kuro kusari  inu shujin o hiku  yuki no hara


a saffron sunset

softens jagged grey ice

on the winter sea



Safaran no  yuyake umi no  koori wasu




icicles from my roof




Shizuku otsu  yane no tsurara ya  pota pota to


winter night

the clock from this dream

keeps ticking



Fuyu no yoru  kono yumedokei  chiku taku to


winter solitude:

in white tips of pine needles

i can see the wind



Tojaku ya  shiroki matsuba ni  kaze o miru


The next posting  “Alan Summers’ travelogue on World Haiku Festival in Yuwa 2002”  appears on February 27.  


― Hidenori Hiruta



Professor Alexander Dolin teaches Japanese Literature and Civilization Studies at Akita International University(AIU). He also writes haiku.


Professor Alexander Dolin taught haiku to the students in his class of Japanese Literature and contributed their haiku to our website.



Ms. Yukari Sakamoto(阪本縁) kindly translated English haiku by Nick Corvinus into Japanese.

She is a graduate student at AIU and sometimes writes haiku in her academic career.

Firstly, we post English haiku by Nick Corvinus and their Japanese translation by Ms. Yukari Sakamoto.


Haiku by Nick Corvinus (USA)

Nick Corvinus, a student at Colorado University at Boulder, wrote haiku on November 24, 2009, while studying about Japanese Literature at AIU.

Autumn Haiku  秋に寄せて

                                           Aki ni yosete

Four hours I walk,

The leaves crunch and split apart

Someone is coming.



Sanpo michi  ochiba fumishime  hito ga yukikau 



As the fire rises

You sit and smoke, while your breath

Goes on forever.



Ochiba taki  suwatte ippuku  kemuri tanabiku



Where has the sun gone?

It used to follow me home

I’ll drink with the moon.



Hi ga kakure  konya wa hitori  tsukimizake


In my quilted coat

There is an old camera

But no color film!



Gaitou to  furui kamera to  monokurofirumu


The days are shorter

And while you dress, I see that

You take much longer.



Ichinichi mijikashi  kimi no yosooi  hitohi no gotoshi



Haiku by Ye Ran Lee (ROK)

Ye Ran Lee, a student at Sogang University, wrote haiku on November 24, 2009, while studying about Japanese Literature at AIU.


The thing falling down

Is the sound of rain drops

The red autumnal leaves



Chirikuku wa  ameno furu oto  aka momiji



The thing which is dyeing

Fallen water of rain

Turning into the red



Somaru no wa  ochita amamizu  akairo ni




A golden plain

Of the sunset moment




Yugure no  kogane no hara  kagayaki ni




Now setting,

From the Setting sun

The given thing



Shizumi yuku  taiyou kara no  okurimono



Or it is

The thing which abundant prosperity

Yields by itself



Samonaito  michita houjou   umishi mono




The chilly wind

Causes loneliness, though,

The color itself is warm



Hieta kaze  sabishikumo  iro atatakana


Haiku by Ayuko Nagata (JAPAN)

Ayuko Nagata, a student at AIU, wrote haiku on November 25, 2009, while studying about Japanese Literature at Professor Dolin Alexander’s class.


mini shimiru   kaze ga tsutaeru   sugishi aki


being pierced by the icy wind

the wind tells us

autumn is gone



hatsu yuki ga  oshiete kureru  fuyu kuru to


 it is the first snow

that tells us about the fact

winter is coming soon




aki kaze to  ame yuki taeru  yureru kaki


 tolerating the autumn wind

tolerating rain and snow

persimmon is waving


The next posting of ‘Haiku by Professor Kirby Record (Part 3) ’  appears on February 20.



― Hidenori Hiruta


Professor Alexander Dolin teaches Japanese Literature and Civilization Studies at Akita International University(AIU). He also writes haiku.


Professor Alexander Dolin taught haiku to the students in his class of Japanese Literature and contributed their haiku to our website.



Ms. Yukari Sakamoto(阪本縁) kindly translated English haiku by Sidney Schaben into Japanese.

First of all, let me introduce Ms. Yukari Sakamoto and her haiku to you.

She is a graduate student at AIU and sometimes writes haiku in her academic career.

She won Honorable Mention at AIU HAIKU contest, Japanese Section for Students, by CRESI’s “Kokyo Yuwa” (「交響雄和」実行委員会)on October 11, 2009.


Shinryoku no   naka o kakenuke  tookou su


I’m riding

through such fresh spring green

to school


Secondly, we post English haiku by Sidney Schaben and their Japanese translation by Ms. Yukari Sakamoto.

Haiku by Sidney Schaben (USA)

Sidney Schaben, a student at St. Cloud State University, wrote haiku on November 30, 2009, while studying about Japanese Literature at AIU.

When summer passes

The din of the cicada

No longer is heard


  夏過ぎて   蝉の鳴き声   遠のいて 

Natsu sugite    semi no nakigoe    toonoite


When the grass turns brown

And the ground begins to freeze

The world sleeps soundly


草枯れる  大地が凍る    冬籠る

   Kusa kareru   daichi ga kooru   fuyu komoru


Soon the trees will shed

And the absence of their leaves

Creates new music


木の葉落ち   裸の冬木     新たな息吹

Konoha ochi    hadaka no fuyugi  aratana ibuki


The flood waters come

And by the end of each day

The world is cleansed


秋出水     その日が終わり  世事浄化せり

Aki demizu      sono hi ga owari      seji jouka seri


When the sun and moon

Live together in the sky

The air grows colder


太陽と月   ともに浮かべば   冬近し

  Taiyou to tsuki    tomo ni ukabe ba     fuyu chikashi 


As the leaf falls down

It traces a mournful path

Soon it will be dead


舞い降りる  落ち葉行く路  地に帰る

 Mai oriru       ochiba yuku michi   chi ni kaeru




Haiku by Kim Pool lib (ROK)

Kim Pool lib, a student at Sogang University, wrote haiku on November 30, 2009, while studying about Japanese Literature at AIU.

秋が来た   何をするかな   雲の横

        Akia ga kita    nani o suru kana   kumo no yoko


Autumn has come

What am I going to do?

Beside the clouds



果てしない   自然の変化  今度は秋

  Hateshinai       sizen no henka   kondo wa aki



Change of season

This time is autumn


赤い山   一人で感じる  雲と鳥

    Akai yama   hitori de kanjiru   kumo to tori


Seasoning mountain

Feeling it by myself

Clouds and bird



Haiku by Eunji Sohn (ROK)

Eunji Sohn, a student at Seoul National University, wrote haiku on November 30, 2009, while studying about Japanese Literature at AIU.

赤い葉や あなたを見たら 恥ずかしい

Akai ha ya   anata o  mitara      hazukashii


Oh, red leaves

I feel shy

when I see you


秋空は    どんな匂いが するのかな

Akizora wa      donna nioi ga    suru no kana


 What does autumn sky smell like?


秋溝は    落葉たちの  お風呂かな

Shukou wa  ochiba tachi no  o furo kana


 Is autumn ditch

the bath of fallen leaves,




The next posting of ‘Haiku by Students at AIU (Part 3) ’  appears on February 13.



― Hidenori Hiruta


Professor Alexander Dolin teaches Japanese Literature and Civilization Studies at Akita International University(AIU)(国際教養大学)(秋田). He also writes haiku.


Professor Alexander Dolin taught haiku to the students in his class of Japanese Literature and contributed their haiku to our website.


Ms. Yukari Sakamoto(阪本縁) kindly translated English haiku by Rebecca Cox into Japanese.

First of all, let me introduce Ms. Yukari Sakamoto and her haiku to you.

She is a graduate student at AIU and sometimes writes haiku in her academic career.

She won first prize at AIU HAIKU contest, Japanese Section for Students, by CRESI’s “Kokyo Yuwa” (「交響雄和」実行委員会)on October 11, 2009.


Ravendaa  hachi to watashi no  ikuukan


the bee and I

in the world of lavender 

each in our own space


Secondly, we post English haiku by Rebecca Cox and their Japanese translation by Ms. Yukari Sakamoto.

Haiku by Rebecca Cox (USA)

Rebecca Cox, a student at the University of New Mexico, wrote haiku on November 19, 2009, while studying about Japanese Literature at AIU.

Autumn Haiku                      秋に寄せて

                       Aki ni yose te



The Many Motions of Fall            秋の多彩な動き

                               Aki no tasai na ugoki



The rain trickles

The red leaves tumble down

Fall has many acts!


雨しずく  紅葉舞い散る  舞台が回る

Ame shizuku  momiji mai chiru  butai ga mawaru



View from a Window               窓からの眺め

                               Mado kara no nagame



The dark green trees

Red, yellow and orange leaves

against a sad sky.


針葉樹    紅葉の彩り    空哀し

Shinyouju  momiji no irodori  sora kanashi




Thoughts                    物思い

                            Mono omoi

The leaves die and fall

Autumn’s strange beauty wakes

I think of my home.


枯れ葉落ち   自然の移ろい   故国想う

            Kareha ochi        shizen no utsuroi    furusato omou




Haiku by Yui Suzuki  (Japan)

She wrote haiku at AIU on November 25, 2009.


Natsukashiki  hon yori hirari  momiji kana


When I opened my good old book,

one red maple leaf

beautifully fell from it.




Ine o saki  akisame wa yuku  mada tooku


Going through rice fields,

autumn rain continues

further and further…



Lily-yarn o  kuru t e akaramu  aki no yoru


While I am playing with lily-yarn,

my hands turn red

because of the autumn cold night.


*Lily-yarn(リリヤン)is Japanese-English.  This is the name of toy in old days, which can knit lace by using colorful yarn.

Haiku by Nanase Inoue (Japan)

She wrote haiku at AIU in fall, 2009.


Akisame no  shizuku to tomo ni  konoha chiru


Leaves fall

from the trees

with drops of the autumn rain


I think that autumn leaves falling with rain is very beautiful and a little bit sad.  I think it represents the ending of autumn.


Akino yoru  suzushii kaze to  mushi no koe


I felt cool breeze

and heard songs of bugs

at autumn night


In Japan songs of bugs represent autumn, so I always feel the changes of season summer to autumn with songs of bugs.


Amaguri o  muki tsutsu sugosu  aki no gogo


All autumn afternoon

I spent eating

sweet chestnuts


In autumn sweet chestnuts are sold everywhere, so it is a pleasant time for me to spend  doing nothing but to eat sweet chestnuts.

The next posting of ‘Haiku by Students at AIU (Part 2) ‘  appears on February 6.


 ― Hidenori Hiruta


Haiku poets write haiku and sometimes say to themselves, “What is haiku written for?  What is the meaning of haiku in life?”

Some of those poets have their blogs in the hope that they will share haiku and exchange ideas or comments with each other on the Internet.

Gabi Greve, a German poet, writes haiku in Okayama, Japan. She has studied about the season words used in haiku, and the cultures of Japan.

Gabi Greve has presented us what she learns, in her blogs: ‘!Haiku and Happiness…..WELCOME!’, ‘World Kigo Database’, and ‘WASHOKU-Japanese Food Culture’.

first shrine visit

only the sound of

snow melting




Hatsumairi  tokeru yuki no  oto bakari


This is a picture of their local Hachiman Shrine at Ohaga, Okayama prefecture.

My haiku sometimes has something to do with the cultures of Japan.

Last year the following haiku appeared in ‘HI (HAIKU INTERNATIONAL)’ , a haiku magazine published by the HAIKU INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION (HIA) (国際俳句交流協会)in Japan.

The HIA President Akito Arima (会長有馬朗人) always advises us to share haiku with each other on the Internet.

Sending out steam

dedicating Bonden

New Year’s Festival




Yuge tate te  bonden osamu  kan matsuri


In the Bonden Festival in Akita, teams of young men carrying the bonden do their best to be the first to reach the shrine and place the bonden inside.

Afterwards they make an offering of the bonden to the god to pray for a bountiful harvest, prosperous business and the safety of their families during the year. 

Roberta Beary writes haiku in Washington, DC, USA.

She has her blog ‘Roberta Beary’. 


New year’s day

in newsprint the names





Ganjitsu ya  senshisha no naga  shinbun ni  




John McDonald writes haiku in Scots as well as in English in Edinburgh, UK.

He has a web-page of Scots haiku in his blog ‘zen speug’  which he tries to update daily.

on a brig

twa trevellers

skair a wurd….’Pace’


on a bridge

two travellers

share a word…’Peace’




Hashi no ue  tabi no aisatsu  heiwa nari



Joshua Sellers writes haiku in West Memphis, Arkansas, USA.

He has his blog ‘SKETCHES FROM LIFE’.



a cold breeze rises…

and the coming new year




Hoshi miage  kanpuu soyogu  toshi akeru



William Sorlien writes haiku in St. Paul, Minnesota, USA.

He has his blog ‘HAIKU BANDIT SOCIETY’.

the crow’s voice

unlike I remember

new year’s day




Karasu naku  itsumo to chigau  ganjitsu ya



P K Padhy writes haiku in Bhubaneswar, Orissa, India.

He has his blog ‘POETIC RESONANCE’.

Candle lights

welcome new age

birthday party.




Rousoku no  hikari ga mukau  tanjoubi



RAM SHARMA writes haiku in MEERUT u.p, India.


In the hour of disaster,

Search the hope faster,

Do with your strong will




Saigai ni  kibou wo sagasu  tsuyoi ishi



Ettore Mosciano writes haiku in English as well as in Italian in Rome, Italy.


New Year, morning light,

the lark sings across the sky,

to comfort the Earth.




Hatsuakari  chi wo nagusameru  hibari kana



Last of all, let me post my haiku, a photo and some comments on my blog ‘AKITAHAIKU’.

I posted them on January 5, 2010.


The old bear

dreams of eternity

a bamboo grove




Chikurin no  oishi kuma miru  towa no yume



In the snow

too cold for the lute

 into silence




Yuki no naka  biwa no ne kogoe  shijima e to



Magyar gave me such an instructive comment below, from Cape Cod, USA.

He writes Haiku, Senryu, and an occasional Haibun or Cinquain in his blog ‘Magyar Haiku’.


Hiruta San…a very nice pair!

_In my humble view, if linked, they could be seen as a very nice Sedoka(旋頭歌)… in the modern form. _m


_An echo:

with cold fingers

this painting cannot be made

a silent lute



Juhani Tikkanen sent me his haiku as a comment from Turku, Finland.

He writes haiku in English as well as in Finnish in his blog ‘TIKKIS’.

eternity –

it’s snowing

onto an old snow


(furi tsutsu in Ogura Hyakunin Isshu # 4(小倉百人一首・第4) was also in my mind here)


A happy Tiger’s Year for you, Hiruta san!



We wish you a fruitful HAIKU year!



 The next posting, Haiku by Students at AIU, appears on January 30.


― Hidenori Hiruta

First of all, let me introduce Vihang A. Naik (b. September 2, 1969), a contemporary Indian poet, translator, literary and art critic. He is a founder of POETRY FiRST, where they pledge global peace by putting POETRY FiRST.

I’m a member of POETRY FiRST, contributing my haiku to it.

I presented two of my haiku about swans and their photo on December 22, 2009.

Swan grooming

by the reed bank ―  

on the way



hakucho no  michi no tsukuroi  ashi no kishi



Migratory swans

stay anywhere free

expecting guests



hakucho no  tourai nozomu  mi wa jiyu 



On January 5, 2010, P K Padhy, an Indian poet, replied to my writing as follows:


Dear Mr Hiruta,

I am delighted to read some of your haiku, especially entwined with picturesque photographs. Japan is the land of Haiku. I wish you may like some of my attempts recently appeared under the title, Pearls of Word. I shall be pleased if you translate some that appeal you much.


Warm Regards

             Happy New Year

P K Padhy



The following day I replied to his comment, saying that I’ll translate his haiku into Japanese and post them on our website.

Would you please appreciate some haiku by P K Padhy and check out his website ‘Poetic Resonance’ ?

Birds chirp around

shadows sail in the sky

it is solar eclipse.



nisshoku ya  tori saezurite  kage ga tobu



An expression

distinct from the rest

smiling on our natural face.



kyusoku ni  hohoemi ukabu  omote kana



Proudly declares

A lonely leaf on top of the tree

it is still alive.



hokorashiku  itadaki ichiyo  ikiiki to



Inside window wide opened

gentle breeze ripples all around

an inspiring garden.



mado no soto  soyokaze niwani  shijou waku



Bird reaches

tries best

to its nest.



tori kitari  aran kagiri ni  suzukuri wo



Concisely I reside

bright sun flowers

oriental poems.



touyoushi  himawari no goto  kan ni ari



Tree paints its green,

flower spells its smile

romance arrives.



ki no midori  hana no hohoemi  roman waku



Stream muses to the rock

bird chirps around

heaven descends.



tori no uta  kawa iwa omoi  kami orinu


Stays cleaned

leaving the garbage

at neighbour’s door.



tatsu mono wa  ato wo nigosazu  rinka kana



Her dream script

word divides

she is divorced.



rikon kana  yume no kyakuhon  moji chigai



This is the first part of haiku by P K Padhy.



Hidenori Hiruta