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Spring 2005, vol 3 no 1

Haibun ~ John Sexton


The road is shadowed with willow. My sixteen-year-old son walks on ahead.

This morning I shaved him, bathed him. Then for forty minutes he ran around the house in nothing but his socks, refusing to get dressed.

Now he walks the road ahead of me, talking to others I cannot see. Moths flit by, are gone. Light streams through the tree gaps.

Suddenly he stops. He is holding a small dead creature by its tail. Its body has been flattened by some passing car. He holds it up to the light, its body turning gently from left to right, right to left. The light shines through it and it appears lit. As I approach him he hands me the tiny corpse. I take hold of its tail, hold it up just as he had done.

palimpsest mouse
a leather page
written with sunlight

John W. Sexton lives in Ireland. His haiku have appeared in Ginyu, Modern Haiku, The Illustrated Ape and also in translation in the Irish language publications Feasta and .

His first collection of haiku, Shadows Bloom / Scáthanna Faoi Bhláth, with translations into Irish by Gabriel Rosenstock, was recently published by Doghouse.

His children’s novels, The Johnny Coffin Diaries and Johnny Coffin School-Dazed, are published by The O’Brien Press.

Copyright 2005: Simply Haiku