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Beach Adventures And Falling In Love: Summer In A Haiku

Scott Bakal for NPR

People love summer.
We heard they love haiku too.
Put those together ...

Last month, to help mark the official start of summer, we asked our listeners to share their thoughts, feelings and memories of the season in the form of a haiku. We were overwhelmed with the responses — in all, more than 4,000 listeners wrote in.

The haiku you sent us evoked all kinds of summer memories. Some said summer reminds them of ice cream or trips to the beach. Others shared precious memories of young love.

Our own staff got in the mix too. Morning Edition's Rachel Martin said summer reminds her of catching lightning bugs. NPR's resident poet, Kwame Alexander, said summer reminds him of playing stickball.

Taken together, the submissions we received were a collection of unique memories with relatable feelings. Here are some of our favorites.

Tasty Summer Treats

Cotton candy smiles
and merry go round horses
in soft sudden rain
—Cindy Guentherman, Loves Park, Ill.

Child of immigrants
Ripe tomato, fresh basil
Old flavors, new world
—Sam Fiorello, St. Louis

The sweetness of dates
Allah at your fingertips
Ramadan Kareem
—Amalia Clark, St. Paul, Minn.

Captain calls "Fish on!"
Wrestle the rod. Grab the net.
Fresh salmon tonight!
—Thom Gillis, Livonia, Mich.

Iced tea on the porch
Cicadas sing a sweet song
Welcoming sunset
—Grayson Tung, Austin, Texas

Tanned moms lounge poolside
Children laugh, splash, jump, dive, shout,
Eat plastic wrapped treats
—Linda McDonald, Minnesota

Hearts Bursting, Summer Loving

Too hot to cuddle
Fan on high near my pillow
Only touching toes
Julia Robinson-Rosendorff, Boston

Me gusta salir
para caminar solo
pensando en ti
—Espiridion, Mundelein, Ill.

Running late for Pride
crowded subway with brother
a crowd that I loved.
Samuel Keene, Middletown, N.J.

Embers are our light,
Lost in the smoke dancing close,
Warmth surrounds our heart
Megan Hiatt, Richmond, Ind.

Fireflies dancing,
Newborn smiles of heart's delight,
Oh! Look! It's pure joy.
—Katya Evanhoe, California

I Love the Ocean
I like making sand castles
I like jumping waves
—Ruth Hale Thom, Falls Church, Va.

But mom, it's light out
Honey it's time to sleep now
Daylight savings sucks
—Todd Hudson, Brighton, Mich.

Wild Adventures

Bare feet to the beach
we race, chasing wild roses,
to the cheering seas
—Sally A. Lloyd-Jones, New York

Finally — green grass
For acrobats and laughter
Somersaulting glee.
—Mary Soufi, California

Up early to walk
Along the murmuring brook
Where green leaves whisper.
—Kathy Quimby Johnson, Vermont

Neighborhood hydrant
sprinkling water in the air
cools my child's warm skin
—Lisa Manting, New York

First dive into chilly sea
—Mary Loftus, Cape Cod, Mass.

Late night adventures
In the ocean looking up
Constantly dreaming
—Jessica Tran, Massachusetts

Independence Day
I struggle to free myself
from a wet swimsuit
—Susan Antolin, Walnut Creek, Calif.

Cooked by leather seats
Thick air like a wool sweater
Night brings no relief
—Tobi Gardner, Cincinnati

The smell of hot Earth
Permeates the wooded shores
As mosquitoes binge
—Josselyn Ryder, London

Never have I felt
Closer to insanity
Than covered in bugs
—Josselyn Ryder, London

Set a reading goal
Library trips twice a week
How much can I read?
—Jancee Tabacnic, Richmond, Ky.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Casey Noenickx
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