Off To the Festival

Red dragonfly door knocker

o-matsuri no akai dedachi no tombo kana

The dragonfly,
dressed in red,
off to the festival

— Issa, translated by Robert Hass

Yes, that is my front door. Yes, that is a red dragonfly door knocker next to it. Yes, I do have a perfectly functional doorbell. And a door to knock on. But if you ever come to my house you must use the red dragonfly door knocker that my sister gave me for my birthday, because otherwise how will I know that there is a haiku enthusiast standing outside?

I’m leaving my house and my door knocker today to go to Seattle for Haiku North America. Will try to report back at intervals. Stay tuned.

8 thoughts on “Off To the Festival

    • I can hear it. But frankly, it’s mostly for decoration…for one thing, no one but salesmen ever comes to our front door (we use the side door) and I don’t think it would occur to them to use anything but the doorbell. It just seemed like a shame to hide the dragonfly behind the screen on the side door…However, I do still expect all my haiku friends to use it when they come to call. Which they never do because they all live too far away. But whatever. It makes me happy anyway.

      Can’t wait for HNA. I will keep you posted.

  1. Bwahahahaha. You know I’ll use that red dragonfly door knocker endlessly when I come visiting.

    knock knock
    is red dragonfly home?

    No wait.

    knock knock
    can red dragonfly come out
    to haiku?

    Really it’s just that my net connection is rare here…

    Have fun in Seattle at Haiku North America.

    • Yeah, it’ll probably be the middle of the night because you’ll show up in early evening Hawaii time…I’ll hear the knocking and say to myself, “oh god, must be Daddario…”

      I’ll send you a postcard if you tell me where.

      • You’d know it was me day or night because I’d knock 19 times and then pause. And knock nineteen more times. And then pause for 19 seconds again and then knock. and then…

        A postcard. How can I pass that up? Will it have ku all over it?

        rain stops
        the sound of lawn mowers
        beneath summer clouds

        • You have your own secret knock? Of course you do.

          I can’t promise more than one ku, but it would be a pretty pitiful postcard from a haiku conference that didn’t have at least one…

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