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Sherry Chayat
Poet
It was the fall of 2015, and I was walking with my beloved dog, Nikita, who passed away at the end of November 2018. As we meandered along Onondaga Creek, bordering the center of Syracuse, she sniffed assiduously at various animals’ scents, learning all about the creatures who had been burrowing, running, or grazing there. It was a dramatic day; each new gust of wind, golden leaves completely surrounded us. We went back so I could get ready for meditation, and I quickly jotted these words down.

Haiku often come to me while walking outdoors. Over the years, the basic principles of haiku-writing, numbers of syllables per line, season words, sharpness of encounter, each line’s integrity, have become second nature to me. I find joy in adhering to the discipline and experiencing the freedom within the form.

Hurled from their branches
Golden leaves swirl everywhere
Onondaga wind

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