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Farm Haiku by Glen Keener

in swine barn pens  
kids sleeping with their hogs -  
we whisper shaking hands
  with a retired farmer-
  his hands soft now
steam engineer  
explains valves and pistons  
with a lisp and hiss this delicious tea
  of lemon basil
  from stinky compost
bright yellow dots  
in the birches, shivering  
from a chill wind  
Glen's 'attempt' at translation:  
kanba no ha
madarani iro zuki
kaze sayogu

Glen Keener is retired from a 32 year career in the US Army. He spent most of that time in Asia, with 22 years in Japan where he learned to appreciate Japanese arts. He speaks Japanese, Korean and Chinese. He is retired in Minneapolis surrounded by a collection of Japanese furniture, folk art and a few fine art pieces. He spends his time woodworking, gardening, rereading classics, brewing heavy beer, writing light senryu, teaching a bit of photography and indulging grandchildren.

About his offerings, he states: "These senryu relate to my visits to the Minnesota State Fair, the largest in the world, we are told. It is a very strong experience for the senses."

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