Friday, October 7, 2022

Butterfly Dream: Fragrance Haiku by Ellen Compton

English Original

whispers of a fragrance
my sister loved
evening in spring

First Prize, 2010 Betty Drevniok Award 

Ellen Compton

Chinese Translation (Traditional)


Chinese Translation (Simplified)


Bio Sketch

Ellen Compton was an award-winning haiku poet with a background in visual and theatre arts. Her haiku  collection, Gathering Dusk, received a Snapshot Press Book Award. And she was an editor emerita of The Red Moon Anthology series and a founding member of Towpath. Ellen credited her childhood in the Ohio River Valley for her deep love of the natural world and for her awareness of its fragility. 

1 comment:

  1. Judge's comment: The winning haiku. The 1st prize haiku, with an element of synaesthesia, achieved with muted personification, invokes as many as four senses with the phrase “whispers of a fragrance” while the nature of the scent itself is left an enigma. This, with the past tense in the second line, creates an air of nostalgia, without being maudlin. Added to this, the line “evening in spring” is the title of the last of Richard Strauss’s “Four Last Songs”, a personal favourite, and among the greatest of German lieder. (Noote: four senses? I don't think so. synaesthesia, transference of the senses, is more about "the transfer of qualities from one sensory domain to another, to the translation of texture to tone or of tone to color, smell or taste ..."/ interaction between different sensory images than merely the juxtaposition of them. See Steve Odin's comment on Basho's "bell tone" haiku).