sucking the coolness 
from an apricot

—Josh Wikoff

About the author: Josh lives with his wife and daughters in Northern California. Some of his poems have sllipped past the editors of Acorn, Asahi Haikuist Network, Chrysanthemum, The Heron's Nest, Lynx, Mariposa, Roadrunner, Shamrock Haiku Journal, and Tinywords.

Responses to the haiku for 3 September 2007 by Josh Wikoff

    Bill Kenney
    2007-09-03 08:09:25

    A fully and intensely realized moment, Josh.

    Angelika Wienert
    2007-09-03 11:33:52

    well done, Josh!

    2007-09-03 11:56:46

    1. a major form of Japanese verse, written in 17 syllables divided into 3 lines of 5, 7, and 5 syllables, and employing highly evocative allusions and comparisons, often on the subject of nature or one of the seasons.

    moonset (2)
    sucking the coolness (5)
    from an apricot (5)

    O_o;; You can call it what ya may even be genius art, but it's not a haiku.

    2007-09-03 12:33:27

    Lovely, Josh. And it *is* haiku. :-) I especially like the play of temperature and colours between the moon and the apricot. Good on ya!


    Angelika Wienert
    2007-09-03 12:38:56

    open your eyes, Tk!

    and then...
    you will see all these wonderful freestyle-haiku!

    2007-09-03 15:46:04

    Free-style Haiku? You can call it Free-style Poetry, but a haiku it is not. I feel sad for the lack of....can't even think of the word. I wanna say "intelligence", but perhaps that's going a bit too far. I admire freestyle poetry of all expressions, but if we're looking for Haiku's, how about not trying to re-invent what one is?

    d. f. tweney
    2007-09-03 17:00:28

    Tk, we get this comment/question about once a week. Bottom line: What your gradeschool teacher told you about haiku may not have been the whole story. Please see about haiku here. Or check wikipedia 's entry on haiku.

    2007-09-03 17:40:37

    Learn the rules, honor the rules, follow the rules... and once you've mastered them, experiment; you've done that.
    The above comments must ALL be considered complements, especially if one considers some particular segments.[One, for instance is... "Haiku's." (What are they, and what do they own?)]

    Gloria Lopez
    2007-09-03 18:10:13

    I have consulted my friend "Merriam Webster",
    but can not find the meaning of 'moonset'. Not even at Roget's Thesaurus. Why is it?

    2007-09-03 19:31:48


    I have had enough (5)
    Learn to write proper Haikus (7)
    You will have less trolls. (5)

    Your Wikipedia said only one thing in your defense, and he still didn't do it. It doesn't have to be three lines, BUT, the entire thing still must be 17 syllables. And aye, as for the above which I've written, it's not meant to 'paint a picture' as many haikus are meant, but to make a point.

    2007-09-03 19:50:02

    the funny thing is
    most five/seven/five poems
    are easy to write

    on the other hand
    what we know to be haiku
    can be much harder

    Tk, good to have your expertise and "intellect" here. You've clearly studied the masters.

    Ed Schwellenbach
    2007-09-03 20:02:07

    From MSM's Encarta:
    moon·set (plural moon·sets)

    1. moment when Moon goes down: the time of day when the Moon disappears below the horizon

    2. Moon's leaving sky: the disappearance of the Moon below the horizon

    [Mid-19th century.

    2007-09-03 21:48:24

    Lovely connections -- the moon, the apricot; the warmth, the coolness...
    Good work, Josh!

    Alan Summers
    2007-09-04 02:21:47

    Lovely haiku Josh, gets those sensations going, and not merely just visual ones.

    TK & kT, check out Area 17 for haiku links explaining about mora, on, and syllables. A haiku is often six seconds long, and the Japanese language systems don't have alphabets but do measure poetry in sounds units.

    Area 17:

    Alan from Ranweli, Sri Lanka.

    Bret Wooldridge
    2007-09-04 06:15:43

    Oh Josh, will the haiku police ever bring you to justice? I saw you on America;s Most Wanted, now this. I should have known. :)

    A most pleasant and legitimate haiku my friend. Sweet and cool.

    Josh Wikoff
    2007-09-04 08:32:33

    Thank you all for commenting. I am thrilled that just a few tiny words can stir up such lively debate.

    They'll never catch me Bret...muahahaha!

    judith ingram
    2007-09-04 21:13:15

    Is it really important whether there is such a word as "moonset"? It is discriptive of what the writer wants to say. Once there was a time when no dictionary carried the word "gosh" or "humongous". I think "moonset" would be a lovely addition to our language.

    Ed Schwellenbach
    2007-09-05 02:52:21

    Amen, judith ingram

    Josh Wikoff
    2007-09-05 09:00:47

    My exposure to "moonset" was during a failed attempt to learn celestial navigation. Most newspapers and almanacs publish moonset times. It is a commonly used word, albeit apparently not very "mainstream". Check your newspaper today.

    I think Judith poses an interesting question. Should we avoid words not found in our dictionaries, provided those words are readily understood and in common use?

    2007-09-05 09:13:20

    Tk, please check out this well worded & informative memo.

    Ed Schwellenbach
    2007-09-05 11:19:09

    JC, your link didn't work for me. KT, I would recommend the journal "Simply Haiku" found at It is a well respected journal that should be read by any serious student of haiku.

    2007-09-05 13:37:37

    ' Every front has a back. ' - Zen proverb
    Some say that 5-7-5
    is a zen zimmerframe
    for western logic.

    Origiinally the idea was to present/enter a (seasonal) 'zen moment' - at which point the words (having served their purpose) fell away?
    Godfish in a bowl
    orbiting the world for years
    in a dirty glass!

    2007-09-07 15:59:34

    Ed, thanks for the link to "Simply Haiku". I'm brand new to Haiku, so it's a great resource!

    It also so happens that David G., featured in the current issue, is also the author of the blog I stumbled across above. :) I don't know how to get to the page directly, but just click on f/k/a...>> Dagosan's Haiku Primer, to get there.

    Josh, thanks for being the impetus for such learning!

    b. m. richardson (orgbob at webtv dot net)
    2007-09-07 18:26:52

    Ha, tk, you almost had me at "1 "; exposing your thoughts was fatal. tk/kt, the fatal mistake of the unlearnt; here, the belief that only elements of the traditional(haiku) are essential.
    tk. research the masters, see how they were set upon for straying from the accepted at that time.

    josh great, "moonset" and "words readily understood"

    bashful autumn moon
    she presents a smile

    david giacalone (davidgiacalone at gmail dot com)
    2007-09-08 19:09:37

    It sure looks like haiku to me.

    These days, it's "tell-ems" that are annoying me the most. See

    Mike Farley
    2007-09-11 10:08:41

    Thank you David for the extremely informative and interesting link. Your article represents a lot of work and research, and you've managed to say in 10,000 words what I've been trying to say in only 100 - Ha! (reference: Peggy Lyles' "summer grasses" - 08/28/2007).

    Lesley Dewar
    2007-09-21 19:00:20

    David's link is invaluable and his sources are impeccable. The difference between "tell" and "show" is something not often explained nor shown. It's back to the drawing board for me!

    I depart with a favourite form

    Luggage racks empty
    Crumpled trousers, bleary eyes
    Travellers disgorge

    Eager looks for welcome home
    Void awaits lone voyager

    b. m. richardson (orgbob at webtv dot net)
    2007-09-22 19:59:20

    after so many years, there's never a shortage of those selling "i know what haiku is"; too often, their being repetitive. reminds me what some say "sex is". returning to the masters, funny, i mumble "that's not haiku." reminded of basho's "whore and monk, we sleep under one roof together, moon in a field of clover" 
    satiric, huh
    harvest moon half luminating the field--

    2007-12-23 09:23:56

    Well, "better late than never" I suppose but I have to say that is quite a good haiku Josh! I've not seen "moonset" used in too many haiku besides my own (6 syllables)and I like yours more! "moonset" is reality and yours (although not a traditional count) is haiku, no doubt about this! Take it from me . . .
    an'ya, editor of moonset LITERARY NEWSPAPER

    Alan Summers
    2009-07-23 09:39:18

    'moonset' wonderful.

    I wonder if Tk will come back? It's a shame that uptodate information isn't given on mainstream sites.

    What people forget is that not only does the Japanese language NOT contain an alphabet but they use words for their punctuation such as saying 'period/full stop' and 'comma'. If we did it would look silly. ;-)