Simply Haiku: A Quarterly Journal of Japanese Short Form Poetry
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Autumn 2006, vol 4 no 3

HAIBUN

The pine table
 

with warm, amber wood, holds the books that did not make the best seller's list. At least until the store decided to change its layout. How fortunate for the poor bookseller, who takes it to the sparse apartment he shares with his young wife. They place it in the corner of the small kitchen along with metal framed chairs.

More than meals are eaten here. At times its surface is softened by layers of terry cloth to receive a crying baby, pink-sweet from a bath in the kitchen sink. Some days, a sprinkling of flour is cast before the kneading of bread dough into pillowy forms. Late at night it witnesses the wife's creased brow as the scratch of a pen balances the checkbook.

The glow of varnish wears away from years of bleach water. A frustrated child gouges the alphabet into the soft wood. Eventually, it too is not enough to support the family. In a moment of inspiration, the legs are sawn in half, diminishing its height to child's play: toy cars and tea parties. But the role is short lived as a proper play table is purchased.

Surrounded by reading chairs and the piano, it rests in the sitting room. Again, it bears the weight of many books.

sunny window --
across the morning headlines
a cat naps

Esin Goldman


Esin Goldman Born in the mountains of North Carolina, Esin Goldman has spent most of her life surrounded by the beauty of the Florida Panhandle. Her interest in writing began in childhood and continues today, with the past four years being devoted to the study of haiku and its related forms.

In her words: "This tradition is engaging to me as both a student and a writer, yet respects the demands on my time as a wife and mother. The contemplative quality of the form has trained my eyes to see subtle wonders in what one would call the mundane."