Wednesday, January 17, 2018


Sarabande - these days have been unseasonably warm

サラバンデ - 最近は季節の暖かいです

January thaw

January thaw
the only prints in the snow
appear at our door

1月の雪解け -

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Genjuan International Haibun Contest 2018

Genjuan 幻住庵 is the name of the cottage near Lake Biwa where, in 1690, Basho lived for a time. His residence in this ‘Vision-Inhabited Cottage’ was probably the happiest period of his life, and it was there that he wrote his most famous short haibun.

The purpose of the Contest is to encourage the writing of fine haibun in English and maintain the connection between the traditional Japanese perception of haibun, and, what is evolving around the world. The judges are hoping that the Contest will continue to receive a warm response from all haibun writers. The award for the Grand Prix remains the same – a fine, full-size replica of a Hokusai/Hiroshige ukiyo-e print – and smaller gifts will be sent to the An (Cottage) Prize-winners. The writers of all the decorated works will receive a certificate of merit.

We sincerely look forward to your participation.

1 Subject: Free.

2 Style: No restrictions, but special attention must be paid to honour the spirit of haikai. This includes such features as the subtle linking of haiku with prose, omission prompting the reader's imagination, humour and self-deprecation.

3 Length: In total, between 7 and 35 lines (at 1 line = 80 spaces; a 3-line haiku counts as 3 lines; the title, as 1 line).

4 Haiku/Title: At least one haiku (no formal restrictions) should be included and each piece should be given a title, however short.

5 Format: Print each piece separately on one sheet of A4-size paper (and use the reverse if long) and write at the bottom your name (and your pen name, if you have one) together with your address, telephone number, and email address. Your privacy will be strictly protected, and the judges will not see your names until the result has been decided.

6 Deadline: All entries should reach the following address between 1 October 2017 and 31 January 2018. Please send your entries to: Ms. Eiko Mori, 2-11-23-206 Jokoji, Amagasaki-shi, Hyogo-ken 660-0811, Japan. Entries received after this date might not be accepted. Kindly avoid sending by express and using extra-large envelopes. Best write your home address on your envelope, too. We apologize for not being able to accept emailed entries.

7 Entry Fee: None.

8 Restrictions: Entrants can send up to three entries, but two is what we normally expect. They should be unpublished and not under consideration elsewhere. As we cannot return your entries after screening, please retain your own copies.

9 Questions: All queries should be sent to the address above or by email to Email Ms. Mori 2 weeks after sending your entries if you wish to have an acknowledgement of receipt.

10 Judges: Nenten Tsubouchi (emeritus), Stephen Henry Gill (Tito), Hisashi Miyazaki, Angelee Deodhar (newly appointed)

11 Special Request: The authors of the decorated works will later be requested to send us their pieces as Word-files by email. In this, we expect your cooperation.

12 Results: The results will be posted on the Hailstone Icebox by May after awardees have first been notified by email. Later, the prize-winning pieces will be posted there on a dedicated page. Judges’ comments will, in due course, be sent to awardees, together with prizes and/or certificates of merit.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

little New Year - 少し新しい年


at the food stall
a boy makes a face of a dog --
fish cakes and roe

{ ` }

nary a sound

降雪 ... 一晩中音なく

snow fall ...
all through the night
nary a sound

this idle life
led mostly in the mind

Friday, January 12, 2018

Black Moon - 黒い月


Black Moon
my footprints were lost
with the fallen leaves

Sbakko: Red Lights

マイナス20 - 机の上に「赤信号」のコピー

geruecht '43

minus 20 -- my copy of Red Lights open on the desk

More at Wikipedia

Thursday, January 11, 2018


snow moon wanes --
a faint light
in the jade rabbit's eye

雪のムーン衰退 -

Wednesday, January 10, 2018


寒さ雪と吹く雪 マップ上の空白

cold, and snow,
and blowing snow --
a blank space on the map

` * * * * * `

Monday, January 8, 2018

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Sunday, December 31, 2017

* * * * 2014 西宮神社 福男選び * * * * Nishinomiya Shrine Fukuo Select

Choosing the “luckiest man”! Every Jan 10th, there is a race at the Nishinomiya Jinja Shrine (in Hyogo Prefecture)…a mad dash of 230m from the gate to the main hall. The first 3 people to arrive are called the “Lucky Men”…and of course the winner is the “Luckiest Man”!

Green Shinto

Sunday, December 24, 2017

God Jul

so very long ago
` in a language for a child
I can hear their voices,
` a tang of green walnuts
the depth of red clay

とても長い前`子供のための言語で 私は彼らの声を聞く`クルミの緑の香り赤い粘土の深さ

Merry Christmas from the staff at


"from the most boring town in America -
. . . ain't nothin' goin' on!"

Saturday, December 23, 2017

last to close

Christmas eve -
the little corner store
last to close