Recent success

News of my First place in the New Zealand Poetry Society International Haiku Contest came while I was away, so exciting. Unfortunately, I can’t share the haiku with you just yet as NZPS has first publication rights and the anthology won’t be out until November. I also received one Highly Commended and one Commended. Big thanks to judge Katherine Raine and contest organiser Laurice Gilbert.

Katherine has written a Haiku Checklist for those new to haiku or teaching themselves. It’s well worth a read.

Waiting for me at home was Presence 61, another fine edition out of the UK.

coming to rest
on a nameless headstone
a slice of sun

– Patricia Prime

summer heat
the snap and crackle
of broom seeds

– Owen Bullock

genocide museum –
a pair of swallows
hunt for a way out

– Sandra Simpson

And Kokako 29 arrived in the letterbox yesterday – Pat Prime is co-editor of the journal, along with Margaret Beverland. The cover photo of two laughing kimono-clad Japanese women was taken by me at the teahouse in Hama Rikyu gardens, Tokyo (the back cover information is correct, that on P2 not so much!).

kokako Hamarikyu teahouse - Copy

It was one of those moments when our eyes connected and it all fell into place. Photo: Sandra Simpson

a photo reveals
what they didn’t notice then
ash on his face

– Celia Hope

speedwell by the path losing herself in blueness

– Barbara Strang

deepening cyclone –
the beekeeper’s
flowery language

– Sandra Simpson

Yes, these are all New Zealand poets. Not bad, eh?


Y & Z of Haiku

If you’re inspired to make your own haiku alphabet – and there are so many other poems I could have used, please share the link in the Comments section.


canyon dawn:
a bat folding dark
into a crevice

Ruth Yarrow, Lit from Within (Red Moon Press, 2016)



the tube of cadmium yellow
squeezed flat

D Claire Gallagher, Second place HPNC Contest, 2004




zinnias . . .
why yes my favourite
was Harpo

Scott Mason, The Heron’s Nest 11.3, 2009


never younger
than now
i zest a lemon

Marilyn Appl Walker, The Heron’s Nest 16.1, 2014


The End!

V, W, X of Haiku


Valentine’s Day —
she reminds me
to fasten my seatbelt

Michael Dylan Welch, Haiku Society of America Newsletter 15.4 , 2000


     the bullet-proof vest:
          the heat

Nick Virgilio (1928-89), Modern Haiku 14.3, 1983



that one kid
with the plastic whistle —
evening heat

Cherie Hunter Day, Modern Haiku 45.3, 2014



the weight of our grunts
breaks an axle

Chad Lee Robinson, The Deep End of the Sky (Turtle Light Press, 2015)



I send a fax
protesting the bombing
pages come out hot

Ruth Yarrow, from The Haiku Apprentice by Abigail Friedman (Stone Bridge Press, 2006)


          Listening …
After a while,
     I take up my axe again

Rod Willmot, Haiku (1969)

S, T, U of Haiku

If you feel inspired to make your own alphabet, please share the link in the Comments section.


shooting the rapids
even the back of his head
looks suprised

HF Noyes, Haiku Ancient & Modern (MQP, 2002)


choosing a swimsuit
when did I start seeing
through his eyes?

Mayuzumi Madoka, Haiku Love (The British Museum, 2013, tr Alan Cummings)



trail’s end
the taste of wild onion
still sharp on my tongue

Billie Wilson, The Heron’s Nest 6.3, 2005


tackle shop for sale –
a tide-chart on the wall
two years out of date

Rodney Williams, Windfall 5, 2017


in the rains of spring
an umbrella and a raincoat
pass by, conversing

Buson (tr Kenneth Yasuda)



Cherry Blossoms in Ueno Park, Tokyo by Hasui Kawase (1883 – 1957).


southern humpback –
     miles of ocean
     pushing back

Scott Terrill, A Hundred Gourds 2.1, 2012

P, Q, R of haiku

If you feel inspired to make your own alphabet, please share the link in the Comments section.


platelets —
the trip we were planning
to plan

Roberta Beary, Modern Haiku 41.2, 2010


unplanned pregnancy
the hum of a beehive       
beneath the porch

John McManus, Acorn 35, 2015


into the silence
of a Quaker meeting
the scent of roses

Jo Pacsoo, Presence 47, 2013


Queen Anne’s lace —
a childhood spent
in second-hand clothes

Mary Kendall, The Heron’s Nest 19.1, 2017


Roman road
I carry the dust
further north

Matt Morden, Martin Lucas Haiku Award 2017



prairie storm
the darkness disperses
as buffalo

Chad Lee Robinson, The Heron’s Nest 19.3, 2017

M, N, O of haiku

If you feel inspired to make your own alphabet, please share the link in the Comments section.


morning meditation
the white cockatoo
just doesn’t get it

Glenys Ferguson, Windfall 6, 2018


autumn moon
eclipsed for a moment
migrating geese

Tracy Davidson, Katikati Haiku Contest winner, 2016



hotel laundry
the weight the maid carries
down to the Nile

Ingrid Baluch, The Mamba #5, 2018


distant wren song …
the brown river
slowed to green

John Barlow, The Heron’s Nest 7.4, 2005



Okavango delta —
dawn climbs slowly
from rhino to rhino

Lysa Collins, Under the Basho, 2017



swallow loops
a farmer clambers onto
his old tractor

John Barlow, paper wasp 13.3, 2007

J, K, L of haiku

If you feel inspired to make your own alphabet, please share the link in the Comments section.


joint custody
a child on each end
of the see-saw

Susan Constable, Haiku Canada Review 7.2, 2013



thunder-filled clouds –   
over the bridge come
jingling-jangling horses

Cyril Childs, Beyond the Paper Lanterns, 2000



dry summer –                                                                  
the kale field shimmering
with white butterflies

Catherine Bullock, scattered feathers (New Zealand Poetry Society, 2015)


broken whelk
the silky touch
of inside

Jenny Fraser, The Heron’s Nest 19.1, 2017



the long night
festive lights blinking
at the gun shop

Roland Packer, Haiku Canada Review 10.1, 2016


a last year’s lambskin where mushrooms gather dusk

Lorin Ford, Katikati Haiku Contest winner, 2014