f/k/a . . . the archives

January 25, 2008

butterfly haiku

Filed under: Haiku or Senryu — David Giacalone @ 11:18 am

On the morning of my father’s recent funeral, I learned why the Bartolomeo & Perotto Funeral Home Inc., in Rochester, New York, chose the monarch butterfly as its symbol. Before closing the casket, a funeral director gave each family member a silver-tone butterfly lapel pin. It quickly came to mean more to me than I had thought it would at the first moment the pin was placed in the palm of my hand (when I figuratively rolled my tear-filled eyes). To my surprise, I found myself touching the pin often throughout that day and the days since, making a quick connection to my Dad.

B&P uses a poem by Evelyn Phillips to help express the butterfly symbol’s many facets. Because I prefer more indirect poetic explanations, I decided to bring together many of the butterfly-related haiku that have appeared here at f/k/a over the past few years — written by our Honored Guest family of haijin, and by myself. As good haiku should, they speak to us of many insights, emotions, and connections (not all sweet or maudlin), one butterfly moment at a time.

sunset stroll –
searching snowbanks
for butterflies

…………………………………………. by david giacalone
[in mem., Arthur P. Giacalone]

Monarch butterfly circle of life” [by Peggy Greb & Stephen Ausmus, USDA]

garden butterfly–
the child crawls, it flies
crawls, it flies…

the flute-playing servant
is the village headman!
butterflies dance

borrowing an antler
the butterfly
rests

window open–
a butterfly pulls my eyes
across the field

flecked with sand
from the whirlwind…
little butterfly

…………………………………………………….. by Kobayashi Issa,
translated by David G. Lanoue [hundreds more, here]

hitchhiking
an orange moth fills
the emptiness of Texas

………………………… by ed markowski
- Mainichi News (Sept. 2005)

the butterfly’s path …
my son swings again
and misses

……………………….. by Tom Clausen
- Homework (Snapshot Press 2000)

relaxing my arm
butterfly
on the bullseye

……………………. by Michael Dylan Welch
3rd Place, Drevnoik Award 2004, Haiku Canada

eviction notice —
a moth ricochets
in the lampshade

insomnia
the break-up
moth by moth

………………. by Alice Frampton
“eviction notice” – The Heron’s Nest (March 2004)
“insomnia” – The Heron’s Nest (Nov. 2003)

record heat –
a moth the color of heather
on the heather

…………………………………….. by Billie Wilson
- The Heron’s Nest VII:2 (2005)

this butterfly
has places to go
spring journey

one last teatime
for the autumn
butterfly

……………………….. by David G. Lanoue .
from Dewdrop World (2005)

[orig.] “Monarchs feeding” [Image source: Allen Montgomery, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service]

flitting butterfly
to Buddha’s lap
returns

yellow gang, white gang
the butterflies stake
their claims

claiming
the big sake cup…
a little butterfly

………………………… by Kobayashi Issa,
translated by David G. Lanoue

among the yellow roses
the yellow butterfly
grows still

after the rain
a white butterfly
on the clothesline

……………………. by George Swede
“among the yellow roses” – Almost Unseen (Brooks Books, 2000)
“after the rain” from Haiku Moment (B Ross, ed, 1993) ; Inkstone I:1 (1982)

my son noticing . . .
the attention i pay
to butterflies

……………………………… by John Stevenson
- The Heron’s Nest — Vol. 1, #1 (1999):

a butterfly
so long at my window
summer dusk

the long night
a kaleidoscope of moth parts
in the overhead lamp

………………………………………. by Carolyn Hall
“a butterfly” – The Heron’s Nest 9:1 (2007); Winner, The Snapshot Press Haiku Calendar Competition 2007
“the long night” – The Heron’s Nest (IV:3, March 2002); Water Lines (2006)

the garden butterfly–
my daughter not close enough
then too close

one wing
folded against the other–
colors of a dead butterfly

nowhere else
but the next flower –
afternoon butterfly

………………………………………… by Gary Hotham
“the garden butterfly” – The Heron’s Nest (Sept. 2001)
“one wing” – The Heron’s Nest (Dec. 2001)
“nowhere else” – The Heron’s Nest (May 2004)

mountain butterfly
from her boulder
to mine

…………………….. by randy brooks
- Modern Haiku XXXI:2; glimpse of red: rma 2000

drowned moth
the wax hardens
around it

…………. by Jim Kacian
from Presents of Mind, haiku and illustrations

fluttering madly—
butterfly in the slipstream
of a passing freight

legs pawing
in the summer wind—monarch
in the wiper blade

………………………. by Lee Gurga from Fresh Scent

dwindling heat
a butterfly lengthens
the rosevine

…………………………………………….. by roberta beary
- Hermitage 2006

A clear hot day butterflyN
the silence
behind the butterfly

Windblown curtain–
from a fold, a white moth
flutters out into moonlight

……………………….. by Rebecca Lilly,
from Shadwell Hills (Birch Prees Press, 2002)

flitting from
watercolours to oils
a butterfly

beneath work
i haven’t finished
a trembling moth

……………………………. by Matt Morden
“flitting from” – Morden Haiku (Aug. 29, 2007)
“beneath work” – Morden Haiku (June 16, 2006)

p.s. I’ve created a butterfly haiku memorial collection for Papa G., which is a Word document that you can print from this website, to create a two-sided, trifold brochure. It contains most of the poems found above.

 

3 Comments

  1. David:

    Beautiful post. Nicely laidout trifold. (one too many 0′s in 2008).

    best,
    Don @ Lilliput Review

    Comment by Don — January 28, 2008 @ 9:03 am

  2. Many thanks, Don, for both the compliment and your “prooofreading” prowess. It will take a lot of work to correct that mistake and still have the same URL for the brochure, but I hope to get to that chore one of these days.

    Comment by David Giacalone — January 28, 2008 @ 9:13 am

  3. i love them all!

    p.s. enjoy,

    in arms length distance-

    colorful as life itself

    oh, what shiny scales!

    Comment by anuh rivera — February 26, 2008 @ 8:56 pm

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