The topic for this week’s contest was retirement.
Many of the entries were melancholic, but our winning poem was chosen for its empathy.
bridleless the old racehorse gallops when he wants Andrew Shimield, England
Our guest judge Graham High, author and president of the British Haiku Society, notes: “The stark opening word ‘bridleless’, conjures up a person thrown on their own resources to fill the time.”
The first runner up is:
08.02am he misses the train and his old colleagues Frances Trosborg, England
retired; now — in winter even the birds forget to sing — Ernest P. Santiago * retirement through faded curtains falling leaves — Rachel Sutcliffe * at the senior center . . . he rocks on the dance floor — Charlotte Digregorio * equally alike the days are moving forward — time for haiku — Anna Maria Domburg-Sancristoforo * retirement fresh out of excuses — Michael Henry Lee * retirement card all the people whose names you never knew — Jennifer Hambrick * too poor to quit I find myself retraining life coach — Karen Harvey * stately bonsai from desk to kitchen home at last — Lynette Tan * these mayflies are having the time of their lives counting the days — Mark Gilbert * retirement . . . how many cherry petals in my hair — Diana Teneva * sleeping in not sleeping in retirement — Johnny Baranski * retirement party the cake knife slices through my name — Joe McKeon (Failed Haiku 1.3) * long-awaited retirement my daughter phones me to ask if I can babysit — Christina Sng * my golden years more gray than black and white — Mary P. Myers * amid laughter her promise to read all of Dickens — Marietta McGregor * well-deserved rest an old alarm clock is still near the bed — Nikolay Grankin * last day . . . the spiteful boss fakes kind words — Samantha Sirimanne Hyde * last year to retirement calculating benefits — Mohammad Azim Khan * chase — retirement bounces always farther — Maria Teresa Sisti * winter dawn — his wristwatch only marks free hours — Maria Laura Valente * honey-do list #9 — a terraced garden-scape — Jan Benson * granddaughter with office bag my half-way smile — Pravat Kumar Padhy * nowhere to be today same can be said for this red azalea — Ron Scully * after two months retirement becomes tiring — Amy Losak * last working day amid applause worry line — Srinivasa Rao Sambangi * a lifetime of pushing pen how do I smell the roses . . . — Madhuri Pillai * retired teacher on vacation dreams smiles of his pupils — Elisa Allo * retirement party the urge to put on my comfortable shoes — Brendon Kent * retired playing solo chess before dinner — Eufemia Griffo * heat wave the old dog takes refuge under the shady tree — Olivier Schopfer * sembra la neve sui fiori del miscanthus — è solo luce the snow on the miscanthus — it's just light — Disingrini Severa * newly retired I make a to-do list for my hobbies — Debbi Antebi * even longer walks in the park at anytime — MR QUIPTY * to leave the trail and pack it in . . . see ya later! — Michael Stinson * high heels Goodwill pantyhose in the trash ransomed toes wiggle — Trilla Pando * Last day at work already someone has taken the stapler from my desk — Alexis Rotella * retirement — new ideas for the young drifter in his novel — Steve Smolak * old tailor — stitching dark matter into stars — Roberta Beary * insight — a dazzling sun beam crosses my therapy office — Lucia Fontana * retirement party his watery eyes in the end — Pasquale Asprea *
Next Week’s Theme: The Commute
Send your poem using “workplace haiku” as the subject by Sunday midnight to our Contact Form. Good luck!
From October 2014 through April 2016 Haiku Foundation president Jim Kacian offered a column on haiku for the London Financial Times centered on the theme of work. Each week we share these columns with the haiku community at large, along with an invitation to join in the fun. Submit a poem by Sunday midnight on the theme of the week, from the classical Japanese tradition, or contemporary practice, or perhaps one of your own, which you might even write for the occasion. The best of these will be appended to the column. First published 16 October 2014.