1999 Winter Running Haiku Contest submissions


NoWDead member Guy Oekerman came up with a great idea late in the fall of 1999. He decided to host a winter running Haiku contest and invite submissions from the NoWDeads. To all of our surprise he quickly got lots of submissions, some of which were actually pretty good. The NoWDeads all voted on their favorite submissions and the winner recieved (in addition to fame and glory) a nifty prize of coffee and coffee travel mugs courtesy of WB32tv in Portland, Oregon (where Guy just happens to work) Here are the Deads that contributed:

Dennis Koho
Michelle Kendrick
Jen Surowiecki
David Hays
Teri Carilli
Ron Markwardt
Cheri Gillis
Vida Morkunas
Donna Rode
Chris Kruel
Barb Bauman
Mike Arau
Marc Frommer
Tom Rhoads
Clay Hathorn
Tony Covarrubias
Kim in Gainesville
Mike Van Meter
Jeff Westhead
Peter Fish
Linda Rhoads
Dan Fraiser
Mika LaVaque-Manty
Bruce White
Terry Watson Rashid
Ellen Schaefer
Mike Daly


The Winners

The votes are counted and the winners are known. Go here to read the winning entries.


Dennis Koho: Kaiser, Oregon.

It's red, black and blue.
My big butt; also my thighs.
I slipped on ice.


A huge dark puddle.
Rancid smelling and quite cold.
Oh shit, my foot's there.


He is much faster
So it is Marc I follow
Hope he is not lost.


Michelle Kendrick: Portland, Oregon

animal breathing
as red brown leaves snap underfoot
stung alive by wind


Jen Surowiecki: Seattle, Washington

oh my muscles ache
not from use, no, the lack of
I can't wait to run


David Hays: University Place, Washington

Alarm jolts awake
Turn it off quick, don't wake spouse
Hit the wet pavement


Stars clear, breath cloudy
Shoes tapping morning's rhythm
Cold, dark solitude


Rain slashing streetlights
Shoulder's hunched, caps pulled down tight
Running partners wait


Blissful, warm blankets
Spose'd to run five at Tempo
Maybe tomorrow....


Fluid and flowing
Cold and ceaselessly running
Not me, just my nose


Teri Carilli: Seattle, Washington

Black clouds approaching
I am too slow, they catch me
Thank God for Gortex


Gray skies, drizzle, rain
Puddles form on the sidewalk
My sneaker goes squish


Ron Markwardt:

Lounging on the couch
It's coming down in buckets
I'll run tomorrow


Cheri Gillis:

clouds ripen fat drops
rivulets spill, splash the trail
I lace up my shoes


Vida Morkunas: Vancouver, British Columbia

foot strikes on soft ground
tall green trees all around me
peace wakes with the morn'


fog dances with rain
runner alone, miles float away
wet strength of fitness


teeth clenched, eyes just slits
finish line ahead of me
clock ticks, I'm finished


loud cheers, crowd goes wild
winner surges and takes the prize
second one too late


Donna Rode: Bellingham, Washington

While so dark outside,
I run with inner lightness.
Each step brightens day.


Chris Kruel: Portland, Oregon

ice cream cookies cake
bum knee tight calf growing waist
god i want to run


breathing in and out
chasing immortality
don't we live to run?


Barb Bauman: Spokane, Washington

The cold is a shock
Snowflakes on my eyelashes
Silent footsteps land


Wet feet and cold hands
The wind takes my breath away
Night flees before me.


Line up at the start
Butterflies in my stomach
Boston, here I come!


Mike Arau: Suquamish, Washington

Heaven draws in black
Mauve, indigo horizon
Running wakes the dawn.


Marc Frommer: Portland, Oregon

One step at a time
Oops, was that the correct turn?
It's fun to explore


Trail running in fall
What am I doing out here?
Mud up to my knees


Tom Rhoads:Vergennes, Vermont

My good friend, Dennis.
I hope he wins the candy.
He's a funny guy.


Clay Hathorn: Portland, Oregon

Cold inside, wet out
On go jacket, tights and gloves
Now I am sweating


Cold and dark, bad mood
Long run changes attitude
Smile and eat big food


Tony Covarrubias: Tacoma, Washington

Dare I run today amiss
yet in The Creator shall I abide
The road, what better venue


Kim in Gainesville:

"Hi...cooo" said the dove
"You, too, coo?" high tree replied
Nature's poetry


Mike Van Meter:

sparkling lace flakes
black tights sensuous lycra
stretching legs in snow


trail flecked white bright sun
surprising black lab owner
playing on the run


count gloved syllables
flying runner poet lets
mind go on the trail


Jeff Westhead:

morning mist rises
clouds of breathe shroud me in white
run I love to run


Peter Fish:

Wind blows down the road
Huff a puff pant gasp wheeze breeze
Dead runner passing


Linda Rhoads: Vergennes, Vermont

The trails hibernate
Not to be seen until Spring
Time for my snowshoes


The mountains are white
And my Asics are white, too.
I blend with nature.


I miss the NowDeads
I miss mostly my good friends
Come to Vermont soon.


Dan Fraiser:

rain - fresh feeds the wild
wet world. splash and smile I run
with green abandon


Mika LaVaque-Manty: Seattle, Washington

Gorgeous Saturday
Office walls keep it outside.
At least I ran here


Lake Union sunrise,
guy pissing under the bridge.
A run through Fremont


Shi Haiku (A morbid play with words: 'shi' is 'four,' but also homophonic with the character for 'death')

'Death month' in Finnish
thank God November is gone.
Time to start training.


Running on treadmill
Systematic, efficient
Please give me some mud!


Zen koan: What is
the sound of one foot clapping?
You too have PF?


Seven hundred miles
and now this ITBS.
My shoes bite the dust


Bruce White:

One shoe slaps puddle. Cold water flies everywhere. Other foot gets wet.


Terry Watson Rashid:

Visions of winter
Text brings alive the trails' dream
Tales told in triplets


From ice, fiery speed
Race the cold, feel the heart pound
Struggle to get warm


Wind and cold reign here
Winter warriors remain
Running in the rain


Baby's piercing cries
No run tomorrow, too tired
Sleepless night again


Ellen Schaefer:

Polypropylene
Polar Fleece, gloves, scarf, toque
We bundle up to run


Forty below. Ice
Fall: Bursitis on the knee
Frozen flesh turns black


Snowshoes, skinny skis.
Diamonds on the golf course, trees
Such a gift of peace


Influenza, cough,
Sinus, sore throat, ear ache, too
Running goes on hold


Christmas in the air
Celebrate Christ's birth, I run
Carols mark my steps


Dead friends in my head
Send me out to run and rhyme
Thank God for the 'Net


Where's the snow out here?
December is so bare now
Must get out and run!


Marathons in Spring
Measure long runs and train hard
Book your room and pray!


Mike Daly:

cold rain, cold wind, rain
could have stayed in bed today
ten more miles to go


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David S. Hays, O.D.,dhays@davidhays.net