Haiku Happenings

December 2022: Well, what kind of a start to spring was that? In Tauranga we’ve had prolonged periods of heavy rain, cold winds, sunshine, heavy and sudden showers, cold winds, some sun, and more rain! Not what I’ve come to expect from November at all. As December bears down on us with all its demands, I hope that you’re able to find some quiet moments, perhaps to just sit and be, and to keep an even keel through the commercial and familial pressures. I’m intending to be back here next year for some more fun in haiku-land so hope you are too.

This month’s article is perfect for summer and the upcoming holidays as Michael Dylan Welch examines the benefits of forest bathing or shinrin-yoku, something that originated in Japan but which we kind of all knew anyway – that being out in nature is good for our physical, mental and emotional wellbeing. Michael’s piece will remain in place for December and January. Contest listings have been updated to the beginning of March 2023 and don’t forget to check the Publications page as another source of outlets for your work.

If you’re looking for some reading material or would like to spend some time with articles previously published here, please go to the index of Archived Articles; or try out the index for Websites & Resources, which includes links to Youtube videos.

Thanks, as always, to the New Zealand Poetry Society for giving us space on its site – free of charge. If you’d consider joining the NZPS, it would be a small repayment for the hosting and support that we receive out of kindness. For those within New Zealand, your membership fees are tax deductible, as is any donation you make over the top of the annual sub. Read more about joining and membership benefits here, including how to join if you live outside New Zealand.

If you’d like to recommend an article, offer to write something for these pages, or generally have something to say about haiku and its related forms, please feel free to get in touch with me.  If you find any broken links within an article please let me know. Time passes and websites disappear but clicking on a broken link is always frustrating so I’d like to keep them up to date if I can.

– Sandra

NZPS 2022 Anthology

Copies of alarm & longing are available to buy. Ordering details available here. Orders after December 16 will arrive in 2023.

Short-form Readings Online

International Page & Stage, in association with the NZ Poetry Society, ran a live session with haiku poets and haibun writers from around the world on November 27. The readings/film screenings were recorded and may be viewed here. Poets featured were Marion Clarke (Northern Ireland), Alan Summers (England), Roberta Beary (Ireland/US), John Stevenson (US), Jim Kacian (US), Kit Nagamura (Japan) and Sandra Simpson (NZ), who was in the odd position of being in ‘tomorrow’ while all the others were still in ‘yesterday’!

Publication & Contest News

1: If you live outside North America but plan to attend HNA23, you qualify to submit to the selection process for creating a permanent Haiku Walk near Cincanatti, Ohio. Poets who reside in North America may submit whether they attend or not. Limit 2 haiku.
Submit: By February 15. Full details from the website.

2: The European Kukai is coming to an end after 5 years as an annual event (previously quarterly). Limit 1 haiku. If you submit, you must be prepared to also vote.
Submit: By February 19. Full details from the website.

3: Humana Obscura journal is seeking poems, including haiku and tanka, and artwork for its next issue. See the journal here (click on Issues).
Submit: By February 28. Full details from the Submittable page.

4: Tia Haynes has stepped down as editor of Prune Juice and, as a result, the journal is on a hiatus until the northern summer (July-ish)

5: Human is a new anthology of 75 Bulgarian haiku, edited by Dimitar Anakiev. One presumes an English-language component, but Amazon isn’t much help on that.


To Peter Free who has received an Honourable Mention in the Basho Memorial Haiku Contest (Japan) competition with

autumn swallows
mum holds our hands and
slips away

Read all the winning haiku here.

Contest results

Polish Haiku Contest (Poland, 318 poets entered)

Kusamakura Haiku Contest (Japan)

Morioka Haiku Contest (Japan, English starts on p12, click on the upper left corner of the page)

Autumn Moon Haiku Contest (US)

Porad Haiku Award (US)

Samurai Haibun Contest (US)

Harold G Henderson Haiku Award (US)

Gerald Brady Senryu Contest (US)

HSA Haibun Award (US)

2023 Events

June 28-July 3 Haiku North America, Hilton Netherland Plaza hotel in Cincinnati, Ohio. Includes Tanka Day on July 3.

Free e-Books

Sci-Ku: Explorations into the Poetry of Science by Jay Friedenberg, published in 2020, is now free to read online.

Prune Juice Book of Senryu, published in 2019, celebrates 10 years of publishing English senryu from around the world by 85 of the online journal’s contributors. The ebook features 337 poems.

echoes 2, published in 2018, celebrates 20 years of the Red Moon Press series, New Resonances, which introduces up-and-coming haiku poets. The 10th biennial volume was published in 2017, bringing the total number of poets featured across the 20 years to 170. echoes 2 includes work from all 10 volumes.

Snapshot Press has a number of e-books for free download and regularly adds new titles. Visit the website to choose a title.