Mini Haiku Walk


Kenya Saijiki Mini Ginko

11 February 2012

Report by
Patrick Wafula, Andrew Otinga and Caleb Mutua

On Saturday 11 February 2012, the haiku clubs of two schools, Bahati Secondary School (the “Bambochas”) and St. Mathew Secondary School (the “Peacocks”) converged for a mini ginkoo at St. Mathew Secondary School’s Soweto campus.

The interaction was in the afternoon, after the student haijin had finished their Saturday tuition. The Patrons of the haiku clubs (Patrick sensei, Otinga san and Caleb san) were there to provide guidance and to allow the student haijin to interact freely and write haiku together.

Ø Brief talks from club Patrons
Ø Brief talks from the clubs’ representatives
Ø Five senses of observation
Ø February Shiki Kukai competition
Ø Message from Kenya Saijiki Moderator

Caleb san, assisted by Peacock club representatives, helped arrange the venue and led the introduction part as the students waited for Patrick sensei and Otinga san. When the two patrons arrived at the venue, Caleb san invited Patrick sensei, who was running late for another meeting, to officially start the first Mini Kukai of this year.

Patrick sensei expressed his satisfaction with the performance of the students in the Kenya Saijiki Forum. He also thanked the Moderator of the forum and Gabi sensei for their continued participation in the Saijiki. He then proceeded to share with the students the programme and activities the Patrons had outlined for this term. Among other things were two meetings each month between the two schools and continuous discussions on the progress of the students.

Five senses of observation

Patrick sensei explained how to use the five senses of observation when observing and writing haiku -- this was after Otinga san had asked him to help his students because he had observed that most Peacocks wrote most of their haiku based on their sense of sight.

Each haijin was asked to write down each of the five senses and descriptive words that go with each sense. The haijin were then asked to bring the list with them to the outdoor activity fieldwork scheduled later in afternoon. He elaborated this by writing two desk haiku on the sense of hearing and the sense of taste.

Mr. Otinga was next. As the host, he began by welcoming the audience to St. Mathew Secondary School and asking them to feel at home. He then thanked the students for beginning the year with fervour and zest. He said he was impressed with the improvements the students had made and thanked the Moderator for her comments on the haijin’s haiku. He stressed that these comments had helped the students a lot. He also thanked Patrick sensei for taking it upon himself to give detailed responses on questions about the five senses. He hoped the haijin would make a habit of using the other senses as well as the sense of sight.

He thanked sensei for his devotion and asked to be excused from teaching haiku because he believed he still had a lot to learn. However, he asked both Patrick sensei and Caleb san to allow him accompany them every time they alternatingly went for haiku discussions. He finished by inviting remarks from all club representatives from both schools.

Club representatives were brief with their congratulatory presentations thanking their patrons and club members for the support they have been receiving.

Caleb was the last to speak. His presentation was based on a message from the Moderator of Kenya Saijiki, Ms. Isabelle Prondzynski. He read to the audience some of the latest comments from the Moderator. He underscored to the students the need to keep the words that “belong” together in the same line (together).

He wrote on the blackboard some of the haiku which the moderator had suggested that their author of those haiku rewrite by putting words that “belong” together in the same line. The meeting was closed and students proceeded to Soweto Stage where there is a market for groceries and fruit.


Mini Ginkoo

Haijin converged at Soweto Stage Market a few minutes past 2pm. Caleb and Mr. Andrew Otinga reminded the haijin to take a keen interest in plums and mangos, being the current kigo.

Late lunch
After the ginkoo, the haijin went to a famous café called Babylon Kitchen where they brushed up their poems over a late lunch.

On behalf of the clubs, Mr. Otinga sincerely thanked Patrick sensei for offering to buy all the haijin present at the ginkoo some snacks. He termed him a cheerful giver.

After the lunch, he patrons closed the kukai and thanked all the haijin who had given their time to make the event a success.

Recommendations and Conclusions
1. Patrons and club representatives concluded that haijin had started the year well.

2. Club representatives from Bahati acknowledged that some of their haijin had not been serious haiku poets and promised a change for the better.

3. Both patrons and haijin concluded that smell of urine is a kigo for the hot dry season because even though the smell of urine is there all year round, during the hot dry season the stench is increased because of the heat.

4. Club patrons concluded that the next ginkoo will involve haijin from St. Mathew Secondary School (Kangundo Road branch).


Patrick sensei also submitted his own poems :

morning sunrays —
our hen pecks at itself
in the mirror

shouts of goal —
a trail of dust follows
the polythene ball

Compiled by Caleb Mutua
© Kenya Saijiki

© Photos : Isabelle Prondzynski

Related words

***** The Haiku Clubs of Nairobi


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