December Haiku Share- Day 12

December Haiku Share

the waiter asks
if I’m alone –
winter clouds
Cara Holman

1st place, Sketchbook Kukai, Nov/Dec 2010 

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sun going down-
a lonely boy asking
if I got a son
— Lech Szeglowski

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the long white apron
of a barman–
the day menu unscrews
— Alan Summers

Snapshots 9 (2001)

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inside dewdrops
the only time I am
the size I feel
— S.M. Abeles

Shamrock Haiku Journal Vol. 22

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clouds lie cradled
near the sun
dark december days
~isabelle loverro

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sudden chill . .
the stillness of a mountain
knee deep in clouds
— Sandi Pray

see haiga here

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cloud hands
the cat observes
my tai chi moves
— Lauren Mayhew

bottlerockets, 13:1, summer 2011

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riverbank-
dipping my toes
in winter clouds
— sanjuktaa

2nd place, Sketchbook kukai, Nov-Dec 2010

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stratus clouds
his slow
recovery
— Polona Oblak

A Hundred Gourds 1:2 (March 2012)

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writing your name
on a napkin
& kissing it…
the waiter asks
if i desire anything
— Pamela A. Babusci

Eucalypt Issue 3 2007

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winter silence…
the phone rings
only in my head
— Christine L. Villa

Notes From the Gean (Fall 2011: Vol. 3, Issue 2)
See haiga here 

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each day continues
a journey of loneliness
crows screech overhead
— Marie Shimane

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winter afternoon
one empty space
in the library carpark
— Kirsten Cliff

Honorable Mention, Haiku International Association 2009 Haiku Contest

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cumulus
I realise I’ve lived
all my life on islands
— Alison Williams

Presence #45 January 2012

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falling snow
and suddenly we stop
for deer
— angie werren

pay attention: a river of stones (April, 2011)

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winter morning
the stillness
of your face
— Seánan Forbes

Daily Haiku, Cycle 13

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nimbus clouds
one candle lit
at the confluence
Jone MacCulloch

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equinox my glass half-full again
Margaret Dornaus

Modern Haiku, 43.2, Summer 2012

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winter constellations
we listen to music
in the dark
Dawn Apanius

wind in the reeds

Thanks to Kirsten Cliff for letting me know that the July/ August 2012 Sketchbook Kukai results are out. They were delayed for so long, that I guess it fell off my radar to keep checking for them. Anyway, I’m pleased to have received a 2nd place finish for one of my haiku, and a 7th and 8th place for the other two. This was a prompt that really spoke to me. I had an especially hard time deciding how to cast my votes this time, because there were so many haiku that I admired and wanted to give points to.

the stories
that vanished with her
wind in the reeds

(2nd place)

alone
with my thoughts
wind in the reeds
(7th place tie)

my mother’s voice
again in my dreams
wind in the reeds
(8th place tie)

billowing clouds

It’s always a delight when a new issue of Sketchbook is released. Sketchbook was one of the first journals I successfully submitted to, way back in Spring 2010, and I’ve had haiku appear in every issue since. The kigo for May/June was “cloud peaks” / “billowing clouds” . Here are my three:

billowing clouds
the wind shifts
a flock of swallows

a fire-breathing dragon
morphs into a sheep…
billowing clouds

billowing clouds
the first raindrops
hit the pavement

April Poet Showcase

For three years now, I have participated in at least one daily poetry writing challenge in April, in honor of National Poetry Month. It was a great way to kick start my writing, and make new friends in the process. As this April approached however, I was feeling a bit overwhelmed with the idea of taking on yet another daily writing challenge. In the first place, I have been doing this for three consecutive months now, and am ready for a break! And in addition, now that I am regularly writing and submitting haiku, tanka, haibun, and rengay to journals, I feel like trying to write to daily prompts can sometimes become a distraction. So I sat back and gave some thought to what I could do this April. And the answer came to me at once.

I have met so many creative poets over the last few years. Why not showcase them, and in the process, learn a bit more about my poetry friends, many of whom I have not yet met in person. So I sent out a short list of questions, one of which is how they met me. I have been involved in many online poetry writing communities, including the Four and Twenty journal– the first place my poetry was published– Poetic Asides, Read Write Poem, Big Tent Poetry, Shiki Kukai, Sketchbook Kukai, Caribbean Kigo Kukai, NaHaiWriMoand most recently, I Doodle, You ‘KuAgain and again I see many of the same names popping up in various poetry publications and communities, and new ones being added all the time. So this April, I will be showcasing many of my poetry friends in guest blog posts, and hope you will follow along.

Just to whet your appetite, here is the line up, for the first two weeks, in order of appearance. (And if you haven’t sent in your answer to my questions yet, please do!)

Week 1: Kirsten Cliff, Cassie Premo Steele, Laurie Kolp, Terri L. French, Margaret Chula, Michael Dylan Welch, and Curtis Dunlap

Week 2: Aubrie Cox, Margaret Dornaus, Alegria Imperial, Gillena Cox, Angie Werren, Christina Nguyen, and Johannes S.H. Bjerg

So with no further ado…

A Haiku Evolution

When I first began writing haiku, in 2010, I discovered kukai contests, a wonderful no-fail way for a beginner to get their feet wet, and did a blog post on Kirsten Cliff’s Swimming in Lines of Haiku about them. Kukai are still one of my favorite ways to immerse myself in haiku.

For a long time though, that was my only connection to the greater haiku community. While I found an outlet for some of my haiku, I still didn’t know very many people in the haiku community. I  submitted to a handful of journals and contests, that first year, and had my first contest Honorable Mention, in World Haiku Review, and my first journal publication, in Riverwind 30, but I still felt like I was on the outside looking in. I wasn’t sure what journals and contests were looking for, and it didn’t feel very satisfying to get far more rejections than acceptances. And then I began participating in NaHaiWriMo, on Facebook.

Writing haiku daily since February 1st of last year, and receiving positive feedback, encouragement, and support, from like-minded others, has not only been rewarding and helped me improve my craft, but has really built a sense of community. Attending two haiku conferences and a haiku retreat this year enabled me to meet many of my Facebook friends “in real life”, an added treat. And all this gave me the confidence to once again try my hand at getting my haiku published, and entering contests. It’s been a good year!

Starting in January, I’ve had two 2nd place finishes in the Shiki Kukai, and two 1st place finishes in the Sketchbook Kukai. I’ve had haiku published in Frogpond, The Heron’s Nest, Notes from the Gean, and A Hundred Gourds. And I placed well in a number of contests: an Honorable Mention in the Haiku North America 2011 Conference Kukai contest, a Sakura Award in the Vancouver’s Cherry Blossom Festival Haiku Invitational 2011 , Third Prize in the International “Kusamakura” Haiku Competition, First Prize in the 2011 Porad Award, October 2011, an Honorable Mention in the 13th HIA Haiku Contest, 1st place in Writer’s Digest Poetic Form Challenge: Haiku, 3rd Place, 2011 Thom Williams Memorial contest: The 7s, and 2nd place in the 2011 San Francisco International Competition for Haiku, Senryu, Tanka and Rengay, for my first tanka.

Yesterday I learned that I also received an Honorable Mention in the 15th Mainichi Haiku Contest: International Section for one of my haiku. All this has only whet my appetite, and I’m looking forward to lots more haiku, haibun, tanka, and rengay writing in 2012.

Old Calendar

The kigo for the Sketchbook November/ December 2011 kukai was “old calendar”. I don’t know if other people also save their old calendars like I do, but I love having a record of the past, for what it’s worth. Those little minutiae of life are all duly recorded for posterity,  in the little white squares.

winter deepens –
old calendar pages
completely filled

taking down
my old calendar…
reflected moonlight

fallen blossoms
of the Christmas cactus
old calendar