Bill Waters ~~ Haiku

Haiku + Tanka, Haibun, Rengay, Shahai, & More

Archive for the month “August, 2015”

Taken with the tide

“It isn’t pretty.” My elderly mother-in-law said that in a wry tone of voice during hospice, which for her lasted only about a week. She thought she knew what to expect going into it, but some of the experiences she had as her body prepared for its final rest were — why deny it? — undignified and uncomfortable.

so sharp
it could cut —
shadow on snow

We were thankful she didn’t lose her sense of humor along the way, because it takes one to face a death of dwindling. And she felt no fear about her impending end.

ebbing . . .
they talk about

She left us in the dead of night, her sleep transformed into a deeper silence. And since she loved the ocean, we will take her ashes to the shore when the weather warms up. We will mingle them with the ashes of her husband of 59 years, and we will scatter them on the sea.

on top of the snow
more snow
and spring’s first robin

Published in Haibun Today (, 8/28/15.

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Other people’s trash

When you’re a boy, trash is treasure. I remember walking to school one day with my best friend — when was it? third grade, maybe? — and we saw a smashed plastic ship model lying on the curb beside some empty trash cans. There were planks and spars and tangles of rigging and, to our great delight, a double-handful of tiny cannons.

We gathered up what we could and hurried on to school with our booty. Over the next couple days, we combed the grass for any further bits of ship debris as we passed by until a lawnmower told us more decisively than words that we would find no more pieces.

I still have one of those cannons — the sole surviving relic of a distant memory and a valued piece of flotsam from the lost world of boyhood.

sea spray
and the sting
of blowing sand . . .
even a broken clock
can’t stop the tick of time

Published in Atlas Poetica: A Journal of World Tanka (Issue 22), 8/26/15.

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Writing the final chapter?

No one’s wishing for a nuclear winter, but we’re not hoping for the incremental extinction of global warming, either — a summer of sorts, and a death by degrees.

Too much pollution, too much fixation on consumerism and quarterly profits… Is this how human history will end? In a drawn-out, slow-motion moment of self-destruction? Or will we, against all odds, unite for the common good and save our planet — and ourselves?

silence now
where once the brook . . .
have been sighted
near the interstate

Published in Atlas Poetica: A Journal of World Tanka (Issue 22), 8/26/15.

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A taste of fiction

Can a tasteless story be tasteful and tasty? I invite you to decide for yourself!

New flash fiction at Bill Waters ~~ NOT Haiku.  ;- )

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Across the night sky

across the night sky

a shooting star —

fragile brilliance

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False cypress

the texture

as I stroke it

false cypress

Published in Modern Haiku 46:2 (summer 2015 issue), June 2015.

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Rewriting “because I could not stop for death”

As if the immortal poetry of Emily Dickinson needs *my* help to keep it relevant to 21st-century sensibilities! Still…

New flash fiction at Bill Waters ~~ NOT Haiku.  ;- )

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