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open sky :: SAMVAAD | 17th March

hosts : Sanjuktaa Asopa & Aparna Pathak

hot sand

my son asks me

about sin


- Joshua St. Claire

( The Heron’s Nest Volume XXV, Number 3: September 2023 )

92 views9 comments


Now listen to the poet's backstory.

This haiku was created using the shasei technique and captures an actual event. My family was on a beach vacation and one of my sons started asking me some deeply philosophical and religious questions. Perhaps he was inspired by the greatness of the sea. One of the topics that came up, specifically, was sin. We had a good father-son chat about it. The kigo “hot sand” resonates well with the concept of sin. For me, beyond a range of potential settings (a sandbox, the beach, a desert…), it also resonates with the concept of Hell, which was part of our conversation that day.

Replying to

I didn't understand hot sand until I read the commentary.

Very good one and it's a good choice.



So innocent and striking too!!


Replying to

Yes, innocence! You're right, Lakshmi. Probably the fact that it was based on an actual experience imparts that innocence to this poem.


The first line is wonderful in bringing out the difficulty in answering the question that comes up in the next two lines.

Nice selection by the team.




This is in the same vein as Peggy Willis Lyle's famous:

traffic jam my small son asks who made God

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