the robin and I sing
a little longer
This one was a clear winner for me with a lot going on in just a few words. The robin is the main feature of the image but the sounds we cannot hear are told in the haiku with fine suggestive detail. We have the contrast between the shortest day and a little longer; this sets the scene for a landscape of emotional suggestion. The poet creates a lovely deep connection between the robin and the witness. So much so that you can see there’s no separation between the two. Wouldn’t we all love to sing a little longer and to be fully present and alive in the world?
an old loner
in search of a mate
spring in the heart
This is another example of emotional storytelling, captured beautifully with the striking first line that connects with the image right away. The feeling of spring in the harshness of winter is an optimistic view of life and the natural progression of things. We are drawn into this constant search, a yearning to find love or the completeness of things. These elements all combine to create an effective haiku with the balance of all the elements.
the comfort of a small heart
This is a delicate haiku that captures a tiny moment in focus that resonates through the image and back to the haiku. There’s a continuation of life with this tiny heart beating through a cold winter’s day. There’s a lovely association with the red of a Flame Robin’s breast and the heart. The poet has taken us on a journey beyond what is seen in the image.
a flame robin
sings in its territory
With this lovely haiku we are given the moment of a young fledgling in its first winter at full voice in the snowy setting. Time waits for no man, or bird, so the courtship has started even in the harshness of winter. The common term for this species in Tasmania is Flame Robin and this adds another layer. An old flame, or in this case a young flame, adds more meaning to this courtship scene.
a flash of red
at the bird feeder
This is a very pleasing classical nature haiku that merges effortlessly with the image. The suggestion of a bird feeder leaves us in no doubt that the poet sees more in the scene than what is depicted in the image and we are left richer for the added layers.