birthday card—
onion skins
skitter away

24 Responses

  1. mikemosall Says:

    I can see the dry onion skins skittering across the counter-top and crumbling away when you try to pick them up. Just like the years of our lives from birthday to birthday.

    Very nice, Jennifer.

  2. Jennifer Hambrick Says:

    Thank you, Mike! Ah, yes – those skittering years.

  3. Michelle Schaefer Says:

    I see business as usual. Yes, it’s a birthday but the normal chores of cooking and cleaning are still there. What says kitchen like onion skins. They are as elusive as the years of our life. I hope a fragrant pot of spagehetti was the result.

  4. Jennifer Hambrick Says:

    Interesting, Michelle. You know, this image just popped into my head as an emblem of something fragile that can be blown away with even the slightest little draft, or crushed with frighteningly little difficulty. Don't know why I thought of onion skins, because I wasn't actually doing anything with onions at the time. But now you've made me hungry!

  5. Michelle Schaefer Says:

    LOL! Perhaps it was I who was hungry when I wrote the comment. I love your writing and enjoyed the haiku. cheers!

  6. Jennifer Hambrick Says:

    Thanks so much, Michelle!

  7. janewilliams Says:

    Lovely. The onion skins reminded me of the sound of rustling paper which took me back to childhood and how much joy I had in receiving and opening birthday cards.

    birthday ecard
    in the bottom drawer
    letter opener

  8. Jennifer Hambrick Says:

    Thank you, Jane. What a sweet memory. I love your haiku. But I pity the poor, neglected letter opener! And, of course, no rustling paper with ecards. A sign of the times.

  9. Alan Summers Says:

    birthday card—
    onion skins
    skitter away


    Although the wonderfully provocative phrase <grin> is fictive, as the chief onion peeler and bottle washer, I can see our own onion skins skittering away. Just as a snake sheds its skin, so humans shrug out of or into new skins, leaving whatever is left to 'skitter away'.

    Great phrase to match your birthday! :-)

    warm regards,


  10. Jennifer Hambrick Says:

    Nice! I like your interpretation, Alan. It turns the skittering onion skins in my poem into a positive metaphor that suggests leaving the old and exhausted behind, and heading into the new and potentially fruitful. Your interpretation almost makes me like birthdays. Almost. Thank you!

  11. Alan Summers Says:

    Thanks! :-)

    Fortunately Karen always makes my birthdays so special that I'll even peel several pounds of onions for a big lentil curry to freeze and have over the next month. :-)


  12. Jennifer Hambrick Says:

    Sounds lovely! We do birthday lobsters (forgive me, if you're vegetarian/vegan). When my birthday rolled around last January, one of the lobsters found its way out of the bag in the back seat of the car. Guess it had an idea what was coming. And yes, I have haikued about it.

  13. Alan Summers Says:

    I'm vegetarian but eat meat too. Love vegetables! Rarely have lobster but love oysters and mussels: Champagne or beer with those two is heaven. :-)

    I think the Japanese might eat the lobster alive on the table. Did you eat your's in the back of the car? That is hardcore radical!


  14. Jennifer Hambrick Says:

    No, I did not eat my lobster raw in the back seat. I put it/him/her back in the bag and pretended everything was normal. This lobster had become noticeably agitated and had actually tried to climb out of the tank as we were selecting it. It had plenty of fight but, sadly, not quite enough. Cheers!

  15. Timothy Dickey Says:

    The food commentary definitely appeals, but the image of the onion skins also to my ear hints at the complex texture and ephemerality of paper products.

    Also, a poetic reply (an inferior one):

    valentine's cards
    two cloves of garlic
    twinned and warm

  16. Jennifer Hambrick Says:

    What a lovely Valentine's Day ku, Timothy! I love the image of twin garlic cloves all warm and snuggled up next to each other. And when you consider how cold these cloves get as they winter over in the earth, their warmth becomes a thing that they share.

  17. magyar Says:

    I like this.

  18. Jennifer hambrick Says:

    Thank you!

  19. magyar Says:


  20. hoa tuoi Says:

    The onion skins reminded me of the sound of rustling paper which took me back to childhood and how much joy I had in receiving and opening birthday cards. I like post

  21. seaviewwarrenpoint Says:

    This really resonated with me, Michelle and reminded me of my grandmother. I always associate a papery-skinned onion with the skin of an older person – probably since writing this kukai entry inspired by the prompt "onion"! :)


    chopping onions –
    my grandmother's
    paper-thin skin

    Monday, February 16, 2015
    Results – Indian Kukai #9 – Onion
    Marion Clarke [ Warrenpoint, Northern Ireland ] ( 6 , 3 , 4 ) = 24 pts

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