Friday, August 22, 2014

Butterfly Dream: Lights Out Haiku by Peggy Willis Lyles

English Original

lights out
... the firefly

To Hear the Rain, 2002

Peggy Willis Lyles

Chinese Translation (Traditional)

... 螢火蟲
Chinese Translation (Simplified)

... 萤火蟲

Bio Sketch

Peggy Willis Lyles was born in Summerville, South Carolina, on September 17, 1939. She died in Tucker, Georgia on September 3, 2010. A former English professor, she was a leading haiku writer for over 30 years -- helping bring many readers and writers into the haiku community.


  1. In this 5-word haiku, the first two words, L1, sets the context while the last words could be read as either an objective description of the narrator's room/house or a subjective portrayal of the narrator's existential condition/spirituality. The culturally rich "firefly" and multivalent "inside" gain metaphoric significance.

    A good example of minimalist haiku.

  2. My haiku below was written for Peggy Willis Lyles, who helped me to publish my first English language haiku, and in response to her haiku above:

    one by one
    fireflies escape my glass jar...
    starry night

    Editor's First Choice, "Insect / Bug" Haiku Thread, Sketchbook, 6:4, July/August, 2011

    You can read the Sketchbook Editor's detailed comment and my remark on the use of two kigo in my "To the Lighthouse" post, titled "Haiku with Two Kigo (or Two Season-Themed Word/Phrase)", which can be accessed at