Thursday, January 23, 2014

Parenting Haikus

You may or may not know that the Poet Laureate of the United States lives in my neighborhood. When she's not doing important things out in the world, we sometimes see her looking like a civilian as she walks her dog. Our proximity to greatness has inspired me to try my hand at poetry, and what better way to start than with some haikus. Haikus are to poetry as baking is to cooking. How's that for an analogy? I bet the College Board is going to call me any minute to write questions for the SAT. What I mean about haikus is that there is a recipe to follow; the first line has five syllables, the second line has seven syllables, and the third line has five syllables. Anyone who knows me knows that I am much better at baking than I am at cooking because I love recipes, instructions, guidelines, rules, a code, and basically anything that I can slavishly follow to lessen the possibility of screwing up. This is probably why I've always sucked at poetry. There are no rules...except in haikus! Bless the Japanese for haikus, delicious sushi, cool erasers, and Hello Kitty. Enjoy!

Laundry Day
It's not all the wash,
It's not even the folding,
It's putting away.

This is a decal that you can put on your laundry room wall to remind
yourself that you should be happy about doing laundry.
 If there's anything I hate more than laundry it's
someone telling me I should be happy to do laundry.
Stop with your platitudes and come help me match socks.

Grocery Store
Meltdown in aisle four,
Crying kid wants her Froot Loops.
Other shoppers stare.

This one wants chicken,
While the other two cry foul,
Sigh. Pizza again.

Pit Stop
First little league game.
Get a spot in the bleachers.
Small voice asks: Potty?

Child helps cook dinner,
Takes twice as long to make it,
And makes twice the mess.

Kids are not tired.
Want to read, dance, draw; not sleep.
They play, and I nap.

Road Trip
Are we there yet, Mom?
We just got in the car, son.
So, are we there yet?

Of course these kids look happy, not a one is properly secured
in their safe but uncomfortable carseats or boosters.
Does anyone else worry about what's going to happen
to the one in the middle if they wreck? I'm betting
the bandage on the little one's arm is from the last time her
parents flouted the child safety laws and let her ride without a carseat.

Urgent Care
That arm looks broken.
He jumped from bed to beanbag,
sadly missing the mark.

Judgmental Much?
Baby bottle time!
What? You are not breast feeding?
Nope! Mom needs a drink.

Screen Time
Such a good idea
This limiting of screen time
Except when there's rain.

Look out for the lamp!
Don't wipe your hands on the couch!
Ten years 'til nice things.

If I have to choose,
Between Caillou and Dora,
I would take neither.

Haikus and Parenting
Harder having kids,
Than to write a good haiku
Sounding not like Yoda.

Next time, pet haikus!


  1. Bravo! I particular like the laundry one. It spoke to me.

  2. That is some prolific haiku writing! I loved them all, but pit stop and grocery store are exceptional. I was laughing out loud in the waiting room at vision therapy. Thanks!