Friday, 20 July 2012


I am cobbling this post together before I drive up to Leeds, a five hour drive on a Friday, for my brother's 60th birthday party. Sixty years on this earth, amazing. Though the nearer I get the younger I think sixty is. 

It was my birthday the other day and my daughter came to Bristol with me for the day. We were looking forward to a Lebanese meal, both being big fans of middle eastern cuisine. As we neared the restaurant it began to rain (hence the mangling of the Al Stewart song for this week's title), and when we found that they had closed for good it began to rain, stair-rods, as they say. During the day I kept writing haikus in my head and scribbling them down when I had the opportunity (-yes I am fun to go out with! It's a good discipline to get in to, try it sometime.)

Anyway here are my humble attempts to describe a day.

Daughter texts her friends,
I look out at flat, wet Levels,
Water logged July.

Fleetingly Bridgwater,
We leave known landmarks behind,
Bristol approaches.

Sign says "Ceased trading."
Lebanese restaurant shut,
Heavy rain now falls.

Broadmead in the rain,
A vast expanse of concrete,
There is no shelter.

Lazy meal, much talk,
Day rescued from disaster,
Sun creeps out of clouds.

Sudden platform change,
Moving people mob the stairs, 
Crowded train no seats.

Why not write a haiku yourself? Have a good weekend.


  1. Interesting haiku! I love how they're short depictions of just one or two moments in time.

  2. A happy belated birthday, Paul! :)

  3. happy, happy birthday! writing haiku sounds like a very cool way to have celebrated it.

  4. Fleetingly Bridgewater - now that will always stay with me. It's Betjemanesque. Happy Birthday and when you get there 60 is no kind of milestone believe me.

  5. Golden eagle: Thank you, I think that's why haiku's work so well.
    David: thank you, i had a lovely day.
    Aguilar: Thank you. It was a cool day.
    Oscar: Thank you. The line came before the rest of the haiku. I'm not far off it now myself.

  6. Modern haiku:

    inter-city train journey -
    a rattling window top
    shuts itself

    (Leaving Temple Meads train station, Bristol)

    train judder
    sunlight on every ripple
    of the river

    (Train from Bradford on Avon)

    winter timetable-
    the late train leaves behind
    half a school trip

    (Bradford on Avon train station)

    dark morning...
    the sushi bar opens up
    for the train station

    (Bath Spa train station/Dashi Sushi bar)

    coolness of spring rain
    waiting with the bus queue
    on newly cut hair

    (Whitetree Roundabout bus stop, Bristol Downs)
    Publication: Mainichi Shimbun, Japan

    rain clouds
    conversations shift around
    the train carriage

    Publications credits: Mainichi Shimbun (2011)
    Award Credits: Honourable Mention Best of Mainichi 2011

    Ah, rain and trains, very British, very Bristol too.

    From Alan Summers, a Bristol-bred haiku poet. :-)

    1. Hi Alan, thanks for the comment. Your Haikus are excellent.

  7. Thanks Paul for liking my haiku.

    Alan, With Words