April 27, 2008

Haiku Aotearoa 18 – 20 April, 2008 Christchurch: brief report

A year after attending the stimulating 3rd Haiku Pacific Rim International Conference in Matsuyama, Japan, I was delighted to be a delegate at a New Zealand national haiku conference in Christchurch, New Zealand, convened by The Small White Teapot Haiku Group. Organisers Barbara Strang, Judith Walsh and Anne Edmunds are to be warmly congratulated.

Thirty-one delegates attended with twenty-nine flying or driving in from various parts of New Zealand, including Invercargill, Dunedin, Hamilton, Wellington, Otago and Auckland. Australian Haiku Society Queensland Regional Representative, Jeffrey Harpeng, a founder of The Small White Teapot Club and instrumental in its naming, flew in from Brisbane, and I arrived from Pearl Beach, via Sydney.

The congenial but explorative tone of the conference was established on Friday night in the keynote address by Cyril Childs and led to lively, open-minded discussion throughout the conference. It was interesting to learn Cyril first became intrigued by haiku while working in Matsuyama, Japan, in 1989. Matsuyama is the birthplace of the poet Shiki and there is a wonderful museum there, the Shiki-Kinen, dedicated to haiku.

If I had one disappointment about the conference it was that because of the necessary stranding of workshops, I was unable to attend every session. Those I did attend were enjoyable and rewarding, and included a haiku session led by Nola Borrell and Karen Peterson Butterworth, a tanka session led by Owen Bullock and a haibun session led by Joanna Preston. The latter inspired me to write three haibun immediately on my return. I would have liked to have attended Barbara Strang’s session on New Zealand keywords and was intrigued by the very full whiteboard of suggestions that ensued. I was sorry to miss out on Jeffrey Harpeng’s renga session, which I heard those attending greatly enjoyed. Sessions for all delegates on getting your work published and a plenary discussion on directions for haiku in New Zealand were also informative. For more details visit Haiku NewZ, edited by Sandra Simpson for the New Zealand Poetry Society (NZPS).

A highlight of the conference was the launching by Laurice Gilbert, National Coordinator and current President of the NZPS of the anthology: the taste of nashi : New Zealand Haiku. Edited by Nola Borrell and Karen P Butterworth, and published by Windrift, the taste of nashi is a carefully selected and tastefully produced publication. Design and layout are enhanced by calligraphy from Japan organised specifically for this anthology. It was pleasing to see that so many poets whose work was included were able to attend the event.
To find out more about this book and to order a copy please visit
The launch was followed by an innovative presentation of image and haiku by filmmaker and poet, Richard von Sturmer.

A large park adjacent to the conference proved the ideal setting for an autumn ginko. The first observation was made by Jeffrey Harpeng who spotted a $10 note floating in the dark stream. At some peril this was retrieved – and relinquished – by Owen Bullock, though I did hear mutterings of a book trade. After that everyone spread out and got down to the serious business of observation and recording.

Haiku Aotearoa was an inspiring and successful event. Personally, it was an especial delight to meet so many people whose work I have published over time in Yellow Moon and in Eucalypt. They included: Nola Borrell, Andre Surridge, Helen Yong, Karen Butterworth, Barbara Strang, Elaine Riddell, Joanna Preston, Owen Bullock, Shirley May, Jeff Harpeng. Although they are no longer with us, I am pleased to be able to say I also published the work of Bernard Gadd, Jeannette Stace and Veronica Haughey. Veronica particularly, stayed in regular contact over nearly eight years with the help of a good friend. A tanka of Bernard Gadd’s is included in Eucalypt 2, a number of copies of which I donated to the conference for this reason.

Beverley George
Australian Haiku Society (HaikuOz)

April 25, 2008

Harold G. Henderson Awards

The Annual Harold G. Henderson Awards for best unpublished haiku
These awards were originally made possible by Mrs. Harold G. Henderson in memory of Harold G. Henderson, cofounder the Haiku Society of America.

Deadline: Inhand by July 31, 2008. Entries received after that date will not be accepted.

Eligibility: The contest is open to the public. HSA officers who are members of the executive committee are not eligible, but regional coordinators may enter.

Regulations: Up to 10 unpublished haiku, not submitted for publication or to any other contest. Publication is defined as an appearance in a printed book, magazine, or journal (sold or given away), or in any online journal that presents edited periodic content. The appearance of poems in online discussion lists or personal Web sites is not considered publication. Judges will be asked to disqualify any haiku that they have seen before.

Submissions: Submit each haiku on three separate 3" x 5" cards, two with the haiku only (for anonymous judging), the third with the haiku and the author’s name, address, phone number and/or e-mail address in the upper left-hand corner. Please designate as "haiku." Haiku not submitted on 3" x 5" cards will not be accepted. Please type or write each haiku legibly in ink. Failure to follow this format may result in disqualification without notice.

Entry fee: $1 per haiku, U.S. funds only. Please make checks/money orders payable to "Haiku Society of America."

Submit entries and fees to:

Henderson Haiku Contest,
c/o Francine Banwarth,
985 So. Grandview
Dubuque, IA 52003 USA.

Adjudication: The names of the judge(s) will be announced after the contest.

Awards: First Prize, $150; Second Prize, $100; Third Prize, $50. Winning haiku will be published in Frogpond and on the HSA Web site.

Rights: All rights revert to the authors after publication.

Correspondence: Sorry, entries cannot be returned. Please send an SASE (No. 10 size envelope only) for a list of the winning entries. Please note that SASEs with insufficient postage will not be mailed. One envelope per contest.

Prestigious award for book of haiku

The Williams Carlos Williams Award for a book published by a small press, a not for profit body or a university press is administered by the Poetry Society of America and carries great kudos.

The Australian Haiku Society warmly congratulates American haiku poet Roberta Beary and publisher Snapshot Press [UK].

Roberta Beary's collection of haiku and senryu The Unworn Necklace was one of two finalists in the Society's 2008 poetry awards, an outstanding achievement.

April 19, 2008

Members Book Launch - Dawn Bruce

'Sketching Light', is a collection of free verse, haiku, tanka and haibun by Dawn Bruce, published by Ginninderra Press. It will be launched by Beverley George at Gleebooks, Glebe Point Rd, Glebe, Sydney on 31st May at 2.30. All welcome to come along.

April 14, 2008

Haiku, Zen and the Eternal Now

Understanding or embracing Zen is not a prerequisite for writing wonderful haiku but even a little contact can expand horizons and help writers take haiku beyond simple commentaries on nature. Sometimes it is useful in any art form to look back to what came before and to look at beginnings for fresh inspiration. That was the workshop’s objective. Not to provide a guided tour of Zen Buddhism. Rather, the objective was to take participants on a journey to extend and stretch minds and our approaches to writing haiku.

To read the complete article by Jacqui Murray click on the following link to download it in Adobe Acrobat PDF format.
Download file

April 10, 2008

Haiku and the Seasons: an exploration

Haiku Oz President, Beverley George has an essay titled Haiku and the Seasons: an exploration published in the latest edition of the NSW Poets Union magazine Five Bells. The magazine also features a review of Eucalypt: a tanka journal issue 3. For information on how to get a copy of the magazine or to join the NSW Poets Union visit:

April 09, 2008

True Vine Press - Chapbook Competition


Theme: Autumn kigo haiku

Amount: Must be 8 poems. Any submissions with more or less poems will be discarded.

How: Submit 2 copies on typed or Word document (8/1/2 x 11) paper. One copy with manuscript title, author's name, address, and email address in upper right corner; one copy with the poems only. No SASE needed. Please try to include all information on one sheet! If poems have been previously published, please include the proper publication credits.

Deadline: July 4th, 2008

Entry Fee: None.

Winner: Will be chosen by judge(s) to be announced at a later time. The winning author receives a honorarium of $20.00 and 20 copies of the chapbook.

Book Description: A 12 page mini-chapbook approximately 4 1/4 x 5 1/2 inches, with card stock cover, cover photo, and saddle stapled.

Publication Date: Will be published in late September to coincide with the beginning of Autumn.

How To Enter: All entries must be sent via postal mail to:
True Vine Press
Autumn Kigo 08
P.O. Box 150932
Lufkin, Texas 75915-0932

April 03, 2008

the Katikati haiku path, New Zealand

To see a new post about the Katikati haiku path on the north island of New Zealand

Gerald England
New Hope International; Haiku Talk
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