Delighted to be part of Liz Brownlee’s National Poetry Day (U.K.) Thank you!

Poetry Roundabout

Haiku are poems written with a limited number of syllables (not necessarily 5-7-5, fewer is often better), in the present tense, comparing sensory images of nature. There are no opinions or judgements from the author – limited adjectives, and mostly no adverbs, similes, metaphors or personification. They do not rhyme.

They can capture your heart, transporting you to the reality of that moment for the poet. The haiku is not complete, until it is read and understood by the reader.

Alan Summers is a Japanese poetry expert, a widely published and translated haiku poet, and a tutor & workshop leader. I have done workshops with Alan – he has a quietly extraordinary way of inspiring the ability to write haiku! (Which, in my case, mostly disappears a few hours later!)

Alan and his talented wife, Karen Hoy, have kindly sent some young people-accessible haiku.

painting fences

a wish to be…

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I am realising more and more how the poet Ted Hughes is influencing me, from school to beyond.

word pond

The House on the Hill

Alan Summers- house on the hill

Alan Summers

Ekphrastic haibun inspired by:
‘House on the Hill’ by Helen Garrett
Oil on board (80cm x 70cm)
Victoria Art Gallery exhibition: Towards the Unknown
(24 November – 13 January 2008)

Source: The House On The Hill – the other bunny

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“A trace” or “Trace” is one of a number of collective noun for a group of rabbits.

the other bunny

Alan Summers- house on the hill

Alan Summers

Ekphrastic haibun inspired by:
‘House on the Hill’ by Helen Garrett
Oil on board (80cm x 70cm)
Victoria Art Gallery exhibition: Towards the Unknown
(24 November – 13 January 2008)

www.artrabbit.com/events/towards-the-unknown

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ekphrastic haibun

the other bunny

1956 saw my birth
and the devil’s rope gain ground.

I have yet learnt to fly
or succeed
where the movie star failed
to jump the wire
by motorcycle
in the Great Escape movie.

I did not leave a country by force only umbilically in a Chelsea hospital.

You left your motherland that year,
as I left my own,
and we returned together decades later to rust in old blood.

the scent of colour
in every crime scene
becoming chimera
Alan Summers
Ekphrastic haibun inspired by:
‘1956’ by Magdolna Ban
1988, oil on canvas,
Bridgeman Art Library, Private Collection
https://silverandexact.com/2010/09/27/1956-magdolna-ban-1988/
devil’s rope:
One company (in Wales U.K.) has made, and sold, in excess of one million rolls of barbed wire a.k.a. devil’s rope – enough to go 5 times around the world.

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house clearance
room by room by room
my mother disappears

Alan Summers
Publication Credit: Blithe Spirit 26.1 (March 2016) Journal of the British Haiku Society

Touchstone Award Winner, 2016
The Haiku Foundation

Touchstone Award judges:
Gary Hotham, Ron Moss, Renee Owen, Michele Root-Bernstein, Dietmar Tauchner and Diane Wakoski.

Judges commentary:

“When I read haiku, I’m looking for an unexpected view on the well-known. I’m curious to learn about an open secret (after Robert Spiess). I’m looking for a simple (but not banal) and lucid language that expresses something extraordinary within the ordinary, something which I never read before in that way as well as something that is of beauty beyond time. ‘house clearance’ represents the pure power of haiku. Layers of meaning ascending from deeper layers of the mind (‘room by room by room’) in relation to existential truth (‘my mother disappears’). Perhaps one finds a human contradiction: memories can only get preserved vividly after “clearance.”

“An emotional and vivid image that brings sadness at first reading while effectively pointing out that taking away the physical doesn’t remove the memory.”

Charlotte Digregorio's Writer's Blog

house clearance
room by room by room
my mother disappears

by Alan Summers
Touchstone Award Winner, 2016
The Haiku Foundation

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This haiku has gained popularity since it was first read out one very hot Summer in London. It continues to be topical for one reason or another too.

David McMurray of the Asahi Shimbun called it a “brilliant haiku.”

Asahi Shimbun (Japan 2015)
the blood moon issue, Oct 2 for the eclipse of 9/28

Some of the other credits:

Anthology Credit: Heart Breaths: Book of Contemporary Haiku ed. Jean LeBlanc ISBN: 9789385945038

Publication Credit: Prune Juice : Journal of Senryu, Kyoka, Haibun & Haiga Scifaiku feature Issue 21: March, 2017 ed. Steve Hodge
from the “Nova Normandy 3044” haibun
http://area17.blogspot.co.uk/2017/04/nova-normandy-3044-science-fiction.html

Charlotte Digregorio's Writer's Blog

war moon
the flickering of humans
at birdsong

by Alan Summers
Asahi Shimbun,  Japan, 2015
Blood Moon Issue for the Eclipse of 9/28

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At a time when proof often stares us in the face, we ignore the warning dangers of change. Ah, sunlit horses, I remember, as a teenager, the wondrous ancient breed of horses indigenous to the Camargue area in southern France.

Charlotte Digregorio's Writer's Blog

is it treason
to put the planet first?
sunlit horses

by Alan Summers
Hedgerow,
#111, May 2017

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