Acorn and Other News

I recently received the spring issue of Acorn that includes a new poem of mine. As always, I’m thrilled to be in another issue of Acorn. It’s such a fantastic haiku journal. With thanks to Susan Antolin, here is my contribution:

it’s cancer . . .
the tips of the tall grass
brush my palms

by Chad Lee Robinson, Acorn No. 38, Spring 2017

In other news, I feel kinda bad that I wasn’t able to participate in this year’s EarthRise Rolling Haiku Collaboration for International Haiku Poetry Day, but the theme of reconciliation just didn’t spark anything for me. So hopefully next year’s theme will be more inspiring.

The Touchstone Awards for Individual Poems were announced yesterday. I was honored to have a poem on the shortlist, this one which was originally published in Mariposa 35, 2016 (thanks to editor Cherie Hunter Day):

restringing fence wire–
the meadowlark’s song one post
ahead of the wind

by Chad Lee Robinson

Unfortunately, the Touchstone judges did not select my poem as a winner. Since the Touchstone Awards began, I have been fortunate enough to have had four poems shortlisted, one of which (this one) actually won:

migrating geese–
the things we thought we needed
darken the garage

by Chad Lee Robinson, first published in The Heron’s Nest Vol. XIII, Number 1: March, 2011.

This haiku can also be found in my award-winning collection from Turtle Light Press, The Deep End of the Sky.

Thanks to the Touchstone judges for shortlisting my poem.

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National Poetry Month, Publication News, and Acceptances

Today, Saturday, April 1st, kicks off National Poetry Month, 30 days dedicated to celebrating poetry. I hope you will participate at some point during the month, even if only in a small way. You can celebrate in a number of ways, such as by reading a poem a day, or by writing one, or by buying a book of poetry which you could do at your local book shop (the book could even be by a local poet), or by celebrating Poem in Your Pocket Day on April 27 when you can carry a favorite poem with you and share it with family and friends and coworkers. Head over to the website for the Academy of American Poets to read 30 ways you can celebrate National Poetry Month. But let’s not forget the most important day during National Poetry month: International Haiku Poetry Day on April 17th. Click the link to read about ways you can participate in haiku activities near you, courtesy of The Haiku Foundation.

What better way to celebrate National Poetry Month than by announcing the publication of brand new poems. I am pleased to share that I have three new tanka published in the spring/summer issue (#25) of Gusts, the official publication of Tanka Canada. This is my first appearance in Gusts. Many thanks to the editors. Here are two of those tanka:

a song from my youth . . .
on the strength
of old feelings
I bench press
a personal best

in my son’s dream
I am the monster . . .
for everyone else
the day’s darkness
is rain clouds

And if that isn’t exciting enough, I am pleased to announce that Chris Patchel, editor of Frogpond, the journal of the Haiku Society of America, recently accepted two haiku for issue 40.2, Summer 2017. Also, the spring issue of Acorn: a journal of contemporary haiku should be released in April which will include a haiku by yours truly. Many thanks to the editors of these journals.

Let’s get celebrating!

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.

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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

Rewind: Haiku Highlights from 2015

Notebooks used in 2015. The five small Moleskine's contain nothing but haiku and drafts of haiku. The six Field Notes notebooks contain some haiku and other writing.

Notebooks used in 2015. The five small Moleskine notebooks contain nothing but haiku and drafts of haiku. The six Field Notes notebooks contain some haiku and other jottings.

As each year comes to a close, I like to look back at what I accomplished with my haiku writing. This helps to settle any doubt as to what I got done over the last twelve months, and it helps me figure out where the writing is going, if anywhere, in the coming year.

I like facts and figures and lists. I like to arrange things in front of me. So I found it fun to make a list of the places I published work in 2015. But I didn’t stop there. I broke the list into more detailed lists: places where my work appeared for the very first time, places where work was reprinted. And then the figures: how many new poems did I publish this year, how many poems were reprinted, how many did I publish in this journal or that, how many poems are still awaiting publication, how many haiku and related poems have I published since I started writing them in 2002?

Information like this doesn’t really do me any good. I think it’s a mistake to try to compare one year’s figures to the next in an attempt to glean any useful information. I just find it fun to look at the numbers.

Despite the fact that 2015 is book-ended by droughts in my writing, I still managed to publish 40 new haiku. It’s been many years since I pulled off a number like that. So what does this mean to me? When I found myself writing, I was writing some good stuff, and a lot of it. I’m not sure it should mean anything more than that. As for the droughts, I can say with certainty the causes were/are busyness and laziness. I really shouldn’t call these intervals of little writing droughts because to me they’re more like a field left fallow for a season. These are intervals of renewal.

So let’s talk lists and numbers. I published 40 new haiku in 2015. I published those haiku in the following places: Acorn (1), Akitsu Quarterly (3), Beyond the Grave: Contemporary Afterlife Haiku (Middle Island Press) (4), bottle rockets (1 sequence of 5 haiku), cattails (2), The Deep End of the Sky (Turtle Light Press) (1), Frogpond (2), Frozen Butterfly (1), The Heron’s Nest (4), A Hundred Gourds (5), Mariposa (1), Modern Haiku (2), muttering thunder (2), Presence (2), Under the Basho (4), Wild Plum (1). Of these, the journals publishing my work for the very first time are: Akitsu Quarterly, cattails, Frozen Butterfly, Under the Basho, and Wild Plum.

I’m a big fan of getting my work reprinted. It’s a great way to get my writing in front of readers who may not have seen it the first time. 2015 was no exception. I had work reprinted in the following places: Charlotte Digregorio’s Writer’s Blog (6), Nest Feathers: Selected Haiku from the First Fifteen Years of The Heron’s Nest (The Heron’s Nest) (5), A Vast Sky: An Anthology of Contemporary World Haiku (Tancho Press) (1), Haiku 2015 (Modern Haiku Press) (1), big data: The Red Moon Anthology of English-Language Haiku 2014 (Red Moon Press) (1), Like the Pumpkins (The Befuddled Press) (1), A Splash of Water: Haiku Society of America Members’ Anthology (Haiku Society of America) (1), EarthRise Rolling Haiku Collaboration (The Haiku Foundation) (1), With Words Summer Haiku Competition (joint 1st place plus other highly commended and commended haiku).

On top of having 40 new poems find their way into the world (that’s the nuts and bolts of this whole operation), the most exciting publication of 2015 was The Deep End of the Sky, my third collection of haiku. With the help of Rick Black at Turtle Light Press, my third contest-winning collection was released last May and has received numerous positive reviews. Because of the publication of my book, I started this blog in January 2015 as a way to promote the book and my writing in general. I also joined Facebook with personal and writer profiles. Later in the year, I joined Twitter, but I have yet to pen my first tweet. A number of interviews with the Pierre Capital Journal resulted from the publication of The Deep End of the Sky as well as a reading I gave to the South Dakota Arts Council’s Tales on the River series in August. Yet another interview with Rick Black appeared a question or two at a time on Facebook in the fall.

And in addition to the writing and publishing, I completed my second year as a panelist for The Haiku Foundation’s Touchstone Distinguished Book Awards.

Fast Forward to 2016

In January, this blog will celebrate its first birthday. I am looking forward to my third and final year as a panelist for The Haiku Foundation’s Touchstone Distinguished Book Awards. On the publishing front, I have one new haiku awaiting publication in bottle rockets. And on Christmas Eve I received word from Jim Kacian that I will have a haiku reprinted in galaxy of dust: The Red Moon Anthology of English-Language Haiku 2015 (Red Moon Press, 2016). Also, I plan on submitting The Deep End of the Sky to the Haiku Society of America’s Merit Book Awards.

I guess the only other thing will be to WRITE MY ASS OFF. Oh, and reach that major milestone I mentioned a couple times before. I am this close . . .

Thanks

I’d like to say thanks to everyone who bought a copy or copies of The Deep End of the Sky, and also to the local shops who helped me sell copies: Korner Grocery, The Heritage Store at the South Dakota Cultural Heritage Center and Museum, and Prairie Pages Bookseller. And thanks to those who took the time to check out this blog or one of my Facebook pages. I hope you keep coming back!

A Splash of Water

A Splash of WaterToday’s mail included a copy of the Haiku Society of America’s 2015 Members’ Anthology A Splash of Water, edited by Catherine J.S. Lee. The theme for this year’s anthology is water in all its manifestations. Lots of good work, some new and some reprinted, to be found here. What I like best about the HSA member anthologies is the variety of haiku collected in each one. My contribution to A Splash of Water comes from my series of old blue car haiku. Many thanks to Catherine and to the Haiku Society of America.

old blue car
a shimmer of clouds
in the hose water

by Chad Lee Robinson, originally published in Acorn 23, 2009.

On a Roll

This morning I heard from the editor of Modern Haiku who has accepted two haiku from my recent submission. This means I have reached all my writing goals for the year, and it’s only July! This is very unusual as I tend to pace myself in order to make my goals more manageable and to not put too much pressure on myself to write more than I am able or have time for. Not only that, I also do it to try to eliminate unnecessary disappointment. Writing, and finding time for it, is hard enough as it is. I don’t need to make it harder. Anyway, this year my writing has been a bit more like it was when I I first started publishing haiku. This year I’ve written enough material to allow me to submit widely, and often. I have placed haiku in all the usual, top-notch journals plus a couple new ones. I’ve had work published in Acorn, Akitsu Quarterly, Frogpond, Mariposa, The Heron’s Nest, A Hundred Gourds, and more work is forthcoming in bottle rockets, Modern Haiku, muttering thunder and Wild Plum. All of this on top of seeing my contest-winning collection The Deep End of the Sky published by Turtle Light Press. Any new work that’s accepted now through the end of 2015 is just icing on the cake, and will bring me closer to a major milestone (for me, anyway). I won’t say what that is until it happens. I don’t want to jinx it. But for now it seems I’m on a roll.

Jackie Robinson Day

On April 15, 1947, Jackie Robinson made his Major League Baseball debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers, breaking the color barrier in the Major Leagues since its segregation in 1889. To celebrate his life and legacy, Major League Baseball has designated April 15 as Jackie Robinson Day. I’d like to take this opportunity to share a few of my best haiku about baseball. Enjoy.

 

dusk—
a ball field’s lights
shining through the trees

Frogpond XXVII:3, Fall 2004

 

long summer day—
spoke by spoke the baseball card
loses its rattle

Acorn 14, Spring 2005

 

ball field at dusk:
a boy playing alone
pretends the crowd goes wild

Frogpond XXX:3, Fall 2007

 

autumn rain
a baseball card softens
in the bicycle spokes

The Heron’s Nest IX:4, December 2007

 

Jackie Robinson Day
the give
of my glove

The Heron’s Nest XIV:3, September 2012

 

batting cage nets
catching only
the dawn wind

tinywords 12.1, 24 October 2012

 

one out away from summer’s end

Mariposa #30, Spring/Summer 2013

 

all seven of the above haiku by Chad Lee Robinson

 

If you are interested in reading more haiku about baseball, I recommend picking up a copy of Baseball Haiku: The Best Haiku Ever Written about the Game (W.W. Norton, 2007), edited by Cor van den Heuvel and Nanae Tamura. The first two haiku above are included in that anthology. You can also head over to The Haiku Foundation to read Play Ball: Baseball Haiku by Cor van den Heuvel (Red Moon Press, 1999) as well as Past Time: Baseball Haiku, edited by Jim Kacian and Cor van den Heuvel (Red Moon Press, 1999) for free in the digital library.