Barbara Strang

barbara-strangBarbara Strang was born in Invercargill, the eldest of a family of 10, and for many years has lived in Christchurch, apart from a short stint in Nelson. Her haiku have been published widely and placed in many competitions. They have appeared in most of the annual anthologies of the New Zealand Poetry Society. She has also been published twice in the annual Red Moon anthology (US). She has won the NZPS Haiku contest twice, and co-won the Kokako contest in 2004 and 2005. Her haiku collection the oblique moon was a finalist in the Kathleen Grattan award 2013.
Barbara edited the NZPS anthologies of 2009 and 2010, and has judged the NZPS Open Haiku Competition (2012) and the Kokako Haiku Contest (2013). She is a long-time member of the Small White Teapot Haiku Group that organised Haiku Aotearoa, 2008. She holds an MA in Creative Writing (Victoria University) and has had a chapbook of haiku printed by Puriri Press, summer heat.

“My first encounter with these petite Japanese poems was some time in the 1980s. Then quite by chance I happened to be at a book launch in 1993, and acquired The New Zealand Haiku Anthology edited by Cyril Childs. This was a revelation: haiku which were present day and composed in my own country.”

Contact Barbara.


replying to his letter
the paper cold
against my hand


West Coast holiday
a ponga frond


old pines
each one leans


walking over pebbles
her pocket
grows heavy


Sunday morning
a dog sniffs the base
of the goal-post


on a diet
she devours
recipe books


green light –
a small spider darts
across the windscreen


piercing cold –
a kea calls
through the mist


children’s voices
the ducks
swim closer


visiting my ex –
the dog licks
my face


Publication notes:

replying to his letter: Before the Sirocco (NZ Poetry Society anthology) 2008; Highly Commended, NZPS International Haiku Contest, 2008.

West Coast holiday: the infinity we swim in (NZPS anthology) 2007; HC in the 2007 contest.

old pines: learning a language (NZPS anthology) 2005; Second in the 2005 contest.

walking over pebbles: Kokako 7 (NZ), 2007.

Sunday morning: Haiku Dreaming (Australia).

on a diet: KiwiHaiku, (NZPS newsletter), March 2007.

green light: Bravado 18 (NZ) 2010.

piercing cold: KiwiHaiku, July 2010.

children’s voices: tiny gaps (NZPS anthology) 2006.

visiting my ex: something to expiate (NZPS anthology) 2003; First NZPS contest; edge of light (Red Moon Press anthology, US) 2003.