Love, Kristen: Do You Haiku?

Best-wishes02I really wish spring would hurry up and get here. We got a taste of it over the weekend with temps near seventy. Now it’s snowing out and will be throughout tomorrow. We’re supposed to get about three to four inches .

That’s not much compared to the blizzards the Northeast got this winter, but one inch of the white stuff here in the mountains shuts things down everywhere.

The schools close in Beckley with just a weather forecast for snow. With all the hills and slippery, curvy roads in the county, the superintendent doesn’t want to endanger any of the children who ride the buses, nor those who rely on other forms of transportation; hence, no school tomorrow.

Stopping in to say hi, I took a break from grading some poetry the kids in my class wrote for a homework assignment. We had spent a couple of periods exploring the various forms of poetic verse. Haiku seems to be the students’ favorite, as its structure is fun to work with: three lines, first and third with five syllables, while the middle one has seven.

For example:

Snow on the rooftop,

Blazing fire down below,

Get to sleep in late.

Notice the words don’t have to rhyme, which makes it a lot easier than most forms of poetry.

For the assignment, the children each had two particular topics about which to form their haiku. I hate to label my pupils as coming from redneck families; however, by some of their work, that’s an accurate assessment.

Allow me to share some of the gems I’ve been reading tonight:


A painful sadness.

Can’t fit big-screen TV through

Doublewide’s front door.


Distant siren screams.

Dumb-ass Verne’s been playing with

Gasoline again.


Flashlights pierce darkness.

No night crawlers to be found.

Guess we’ll use some frogs.


Joyous, playful, bright,

Trailer-park girl rolls in puddle

Of old motor oil.


Seeking solitude,

Clem’s ex-wife Betty files for

Restraining order.


Tonight we hunger.

Grandma sent grocery money

To Jimmy Swaggart.


In WalMart toy aisle,

Wailing boy wants wrestling doll.

Mama whups his butt.


Sixty-five dollars

And cyclone fence keeps Pa from

His El Camino.


Grinning, Jed displays

The seven hundred beer cans

Filling pickup bed.

The students all got an A for their efforts, except for the ones about “A Blaze” and “Deprived.” Those two were written by Johnny Hatfield, who else?

He still hasn’t got a handle on his trash mouth and pen. I gave him a C for his grade with the offending words circled in red. At least the structure of the poems was correct.

Oh well, back to work. I want to get this grading done tonight. A bunch of us are taking advantage of the weather and going to the slopes tomorrow for some skiing and won’t be back until way late. Wish us luck.



About Mike Slickster

As an early retiree with an honorary doctorate degree from the proverbial "School of Hard Knocks," this upcoming author with a lot of free time on his hands utilizes his expansive repertoire for humorous yet tragic, wildly creative writing that contains years of imaginative fantasy, pure nonsense, classic slapstick, extreme happiness and searing heartbreak; gathered by a wealth of personal experiences throughout his thrilling—sometimes mundane or unusually horrid—free-spirited, rock-'n'-roller-coaster ride around our beloved Planet Earth. Mike Slickster's illustrious quest continues, living now in Act Three of his present incarnation, quite a bit on the cutting edge of profundity and philosophical merriment as seen through his colorful characters, most notably evident in the amusing Thirty Days Across the Big Pond series, all of which can be found at
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