Late winter haiku

Old crow lingers

The old crow lingers
on his cold and barren branch
although I draw near.

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Crow haiku

hewise crow seeks shelter
Kawanabe Kyosai, “A Crow and Reeds on the Bank of a Stream.”

Far wiser than I,
the crow knows to seek shelter
from cold autumn rain.

Crow haiku

Japanese Woodblock Print by Kyosai (1831-1889)
Japanese Woodblock Print by Kyosai (1831-1889)

Crows show up in some of the most poignant haiku. They are such marvelous creatures, it is not surprising they captured the notice of the haiku masters.

My favorite guy, Issa, wrote this:

The crow
walks along there
as if it were tilling the field.

Perhaps the most famous crow haiku is Basho’s Autumn Crow:

A crow
has settled on a bare branch —
autumn evening.

Spring came early to western Washington this year. On a recent walk, I encountered some crows who were very upset about my presence.

Relax, noisy crows,
I mean your babies no harm.
The cat, however …