Rewind: Haiku Highlights from 2016

I’ve been having a hard time saying what I want to say about 2016. I accomplished some great things with my haiku writing, but the echo of certain failures from year to year are starting to get to me. So I will do my best to keep any negative feelings I’m holding right now out of this highlight reel and keep this as straight forward as I can.

I published 38 new poems (37 haiku and senryu, and 1 tanka) in the following places: Acorn, Akitsu Quarterly, bottle rockets, Failed Haiku, Frogpond, Haikuniverse, hedgerow, The Heron’s Nest, A Hundred Gourds, Mariposa, Otata, Sonic Boom, Under the Basho, and Upstate Dim Sum.  Six of these places I published in for the first time in 2016: Failed Haiku, Haikuniverse, hedgerow, Otata, Sonic Boom, and Upstate Dim Sum.

I republished some poems this year in the following places: galaxy of dust: The Red Moon Anthology of English-Language Haiku 2015 (Red Moon Press, 2016); naad anunaad: an anthology of contemporary world haiku (Vishwakarma Publications, 2016); Full of Moonlight: Haiku Society of America Members’ Anthology 2016 (Haiku Society of America, 2016), The Haiku Calendar 2017 (Snapshot Press, 2016); Charlotte Digregorio’s Writers’ Blog; and in two columns at The Haiku Foundation: Haiku in the Workplace and reVirals.

I did receive some awards in 2016. I had one winner and one runner-up in Snapshot Press’s Haiku Calendar Competition. It’s always an honor to be included in that one. Also I was one of the “other popular poets” in The Heron’s Nest Readers’ Choice Awards, and I had a poem in the “other popular poems” part of those same awards. And this one-liner of mine

in a rush to reach stillness whitewater

was shortlisted for a Touchstone Award for Individual Poems from The Haiku Foundation.

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000032_00006]


On top of that, my book The Deep End of the Sky (Turtle Light Press, 2015) received second place in the Haiku Society of America Merit Book Awards for 2016. Not too shabby.



Placing in the Merit Book Awards is definitely one I can cross off the haiku bucket list. But so is being the Route 9 Haiku Group’s guest poet in Upstate Dim Sum. When I scan the list of previous guest poets, I don’t really feel like I should be among such an outstanding group of haiku poets, but I am honored and grateful and excited to be there.

Looking forward to 2017, I have one haiku accepted for publication in Modern Haiku. And I have yet to find out if any of my work has been voted into the next Red Moon Anthology, so fingers crossed I will have work voted in.

I am grateful to (still) be writing and publishing. I appreciate every opportunity I had in 2016, and hope 2017 will bring many more haiku moments to share.

Happy New Year


6 thoughts on “Rewind: Haiku Highlights from 2016

  1. What an incredible year you have had! Of course as craftspeople we see the faults more than the successes, that’s just us. It should drive us on, all those real and imagined imperfections.

    It’s a running joke with Jim that I’m unlikely to get into the Red Moon Anthologies, especially when I was on the panel of editors for five years. 🙂

    You have two award winning collections, don’t forget your ebook collection which I regularly recommend, as well as your print book above.

    And Upstate Dim Sum is an amazing honour and thoroughly deserved. They just wouldn’t ask if you did not have the calibre.

    Each year has its challenges. Don’t forget to work on another collection, no rush, make it as awesome as the others. And also don’t forget I will want to include you in my book Writing Poetry: the haiku way. I am making progress on the book and you will be contacted about that.

    Anyone who writes authentic sense of place is an important writer and someone to look to when wanting to write the very best haiku.

    This year will be different, it will have its pitfalls and disappointments, and its successes, but it will be a year that you continue to mature into one of the finest poetry, not just haiku, writers of your generation. That’s no mean feat.

    warmest regards,


    Alan Summers
    President, United Haiku and Tanka Society

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Chad, Congratulations on your many achievements. And I like what Alan said: “Anyone who writes authentic sense of place is an important writer and someone to look to when wanting to write the very best haiku.”


      • Hi Ellen,

        Thank you. I agree with you about what Alan said. Many of the haiku poets whose work I admire the most have infused their haiku with a strong sense of place. I am happy to be carrying on that tradition.

        Thanks for stopping by, and Happy New Year!

        Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Alan,

      You always have such kind and encouraging words. Thanks for that. All I can say is that I am my own worst critic. 2016 was a great year for my writing, and I hope for more of that in 2017. I’ve got a plan in place!

      Happy New Year!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Looking at the above and what they wrote you can tell they are very good at putting things into words. All I can add is after 50 years of lifting I had good years and not so good years. I have always been my own worst critic as you will be yours. I lift for the love of lifting and the sport. You write for the love of writing. The people in your writing field say great things about you and you are young you have many years of writing to go. We are all waiting for that second book. Your family is and always will be very proud of you.

    Liked by 1 person

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