“Great day”   I say,
my neighbor, not to be outdone, says,
“Best one yet”
  – Frank Robinson
**
The laugh’s on me:
   this year’s man
     is last year’s man
        – Ching-An
 **
on the freeway
discussing the chocolate bar
in the trunk
    – Dee Evetts
 **
The last kid picked
running his fastest
 to right field
 – Mike Dillon
 **
       deadline approaches
    my nose drips
faster
    – John Stevenson
 **
 radio interview
the candidate
adjusts her hair
 – Hilary Tann
 **
 even with the mikes on
 the politician
shouts
  – Anita Virgil
 **
She’s running for office-
for the first time
my neighbor waves!
 – Alexis Rotella
 **
neighbor’s children leave…
casually the cat slips out
of the hall closet
– Patricia Neubauer
 **
birdsong
my imaginary lover
alive again
– Yu Chang
**
300 miles away-
my father makes sure
I hear him sigh
  – Alexis Rotella
 **
 remote village
 after the camera’s click
 her smile
 – Ruth Yarrow
 **
Undressed-
today’s role dangles
from a metal hanger
– Alexis Rotella
 **
channel dispute
she aims the clicker
at me
 – Dee Evetts
 **
nothing good on t.v.
every channel
 for about three hours now
 – John Sheirer
 **
three times I’ve said
 “your husband…”
now we can just talk
– John Stevenson
**
safe for a while
around the haiku poets
a fly
– Mykel Board
 **
his dust mask
a hole poked through it
 for the cigarette
– Dee Evetts
**
 bad movie
 I’m only awake
during the explosions
– John Sheirer
**
 table for one
 the waiter doesn’t
 light my candle
– Bruce Detrick
**
in the breakdown lane
I contemplate
my life
  – John Sheirer
 **
new flypaper
she waves her arms
to get them going
 – Dee Evetts
 **
 strap hanging
a top view
of his careful hairdo
– Karen Sohne
 **
first cold night
the fat tomcat hangs from
the window screen
 – Carl Patrick
 **
 road construction
my life
still under construction
– John Sheirer
 **
his “eyeball it”
for the rest of our days
a crooked wall…
– Carol Montgomery
 **
turning down the t.v.
   to hear more
of the neighbors’ argument
               – John Sheirer
 **
 my easy heart
 two drinks
 and it’s love
– Michael Ketchek
 **
 checking the driver
as I pass a car
 just like mine
– John Stevenson
**
 loud applause
for the last speech
 before lunch
 – Dee Evetts
 **
 while I’m gone
 my dog
 takes the driver’s seat
– Christopher Herold
 **
Clear about
everything
the window washer
 – vincent tripi
 **
 20,000 feet
 traces of masking tape
on the jet engine
– Dee Evetts
**
Empty school bus;
smile on the face
of the driver
   – Garry Gay
**
bags
under his eyes-
traveling salesman
– Michael Dylan Welch
 **
Weight lifter
slowly lifting
the tea cup
 – Garry Gay
**
single living
I allow the kettle
a full whistle
 – Carmen Sterba
 Oscar night
adjusting the cuffs
of my pajamas
  – John Stevenson
 **
the men on both sides
have taken
my armrests
       – Karen Sohne
 **
inserting a piece
 in my jigsaw puzzle
 the TV repairman
 – Francine Porad
**
paint by number
the child’s river
escapes its bank
   – Tom Painting
**
 my nephew’s fast ball-
 I hand back the glove
 and keep the sting
– Barry George
 **
morning commute-
recognizing
most of the strangers
 – Dorothy McLaughlin
 half-empty bed
 I try to recall
 his faults
 – Peggy Heinrich
 **
war begins-
my husband and I
stop bickering
   – Margaret Chula
 **
mid morning bus
 no one young enough
 to give up their seat
– Sheila Butterworth
**
game over
men turn to leave
the tv department
– John Stevenson
 **
 on my dying bed
 a neighbor reads out
 the ball scores
– H.F. Noyes
 **
January 3rd
the Weight Watchers meeting
doubles in size
    – Carolyn Hall
 **
store window
the young couple take turns
testing the double bed
  – Dee Evetts
 **
new hammock-
my beer on the other side
of the porch
     – Mark Brooks
 fiftieth birthday
standing a little closer
 to the toilet
 – Mykel Board
 **
the mirror
wiped clean
for a guest
– John Stevenson
 **
long night
 I adjust my breathing
 to his
– Francine Porad
 **
Starbuck’s
a man in cowboy boots
asks for latte
    – Yu Chang
 **
by phone
my sister says
we are in touch
– Hilary Tann
**
word for word
she remembers
our last argument
 – John Sheirer
 **
 Trying to forget him
stabbing
 the potatoes
– Alexis Rotella
 **
 running away,
 Mommy
 helps me pack
 – Adele Kenny
 **
midwest interstate
car ahead signals a turn
for fifty-nine miles
– John Sheirer
**
 girls in bikinis

the man I’m with
trying not to look
– Brenda Gannam
**
on the twelfth floor
a life’s work holds open
the book-reviewer’s door
– Martin Burke
 **
While the guests order,
 the table cloth hides his hands-
counting his money
 – Clement Hoyt
**
new dean
all blackboards
turn white
– Yu Chang
 **
 red light
 I study the face
 of my tailgater
 – Hilary Tann
 **
eye exam
i stop trying
 so hard
  – Hilary Tann
**
circuits lab
his mistakes
in the air
– Yu Chang
 **
A selection of classic senryu from old time senryu anthologies in Japan:
when a man
comes asking for a loan
how honest he looks!
 *
*
*
someone at the door:
the scolding session
stops – for awhile
 *
*
*
when he finally
falls in love with his wife
the end is near
*
*
*
she’s been let go
yet in her mother’s words
“she’s left him”
*
*
*
“Don’t let this worry you”
he says, then tells you something
that has to worry you
 *
*
*
his wife knows
how to scare a collector:
“He’s down with typhoid”
*
*
*
the weapon he uses
for threatening his mother:
a distant land
*
*
*
now that he has a child
he knows all the local dogs
by name
 *
*
*
a son kicked out-
several houses down the street
a wife is divorced
*
*
*
the whole town
knows of it, except
the husband
*
*
*
“Bad for my health”-
when you begin to feel so
you’ve begun to age
*
*
*
    the wife-
so much harder to handle
than the mother
*
*
*
having lash out
too much at his wife
he’s cooking the rice
*
*
*
since their baby was born
telling him what to do
has become her habit
*
*
*
suckling the baby
in bed, she shakes her head
at her husband
*
*
*
convenient
and inconvenient-
having a wife
*
*
*
no nagging on the day
her husband was a winner-
now there’s a woman!
*
*
*
“Just a father-in-law
whose days are numbered”
says the matchmaker
*
*
*
professional smile
of the mortician’s wife:
a look of grief
*
*
*
to put it briefly
courting is tantamount
to begging
*
*
*
“older daughter first”
the parents kept saying, until
the younger eloped
*
*
*
the love letter
from the man she doesn’t care for
she shows it to mother
*
*
*
first eye to eye
then hand to hand
and mouth to mouth
*
*
*
many excuses
he has used before – his wife
remembers them all
*
*
*
her husband’s
becoming a little too kind
weighs on her mind
 *
*
*
united at last
in death, a pair
of happy faces