Haiku Shortlisted for a Touchstone Award

The Haiku Foundation and The Touchstone Award for Individual Poems Committee have announced their shortlist this morning, and I am thrilled to have a poem included. The committee received 660 nominations, which appears to be the most it’s ever received in its seven-year history, and from those chose 29 for the shortlist. Here is mine:

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

Chad Lee Robinson, originally published in Mariposa 35, 2016

Many thanks to the Touchstone Award for Individual Poems Committee and The Haiku Foundation, as well as to Cherie Hunter Day for this haiku’s original publication in Mariposa. And a big congrats to the other poets on the shortlist. The winners will be announced on April 17, International Haiku Poetry Day!

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!

Haiku in the Workplace

Jim Kacian’s weekly column Haiku in the Workplace continues over at The Haiku Foundation. I am delighted to have a brand new haiku included in this week’s column which is all about the boss’s spouse. Here is my contribution:

to hear the hired hand
talk about horses . . .
the boss’s wife

Many thanks to Jim Kacian for including my poem. If you’re looking for a fun and interesting read, check out this column every Wednesday at The Haiku Foundation.

Pop Bottles: Book of the Week

pop-bottles-cover-imagePop Bottles, my first chapbook of haiku published by True Vine Press in 2009, is the book of the week at The Haiku Foundation. You can read it online or you can download it, all for free from The Haiku Foundation’s digital library.

Pop Bottles won the 2009 True Vine Press Chapbook contest. Chapbook manuscripts were to have a summer theme. Judges were an’ya, Gary Hotham and Tony Thompson. According to my notes, the contest received more than 50 entries.  For the win, I received $20.00 plus 20 copies of the chapbook (cha-ching!). Due to an error in the opening haiku, which was corrected, I received another 25 copies. Other finalists were Michael McClintock, Sandra Simpson, Elliot Nicely and Darrell Lindsey. Original cover art by Ron Moss.

Shortly after the publication of Pop Bottles, True Vine Press ceased operations which included closing the doors to Wisteria, a haiku, senryu and tanka journal edited by Tony Thompson. I don’t know how many copies of Pop Bottles were ultimately printed, but it’s probably safe to say that there weren’t many more copies than the 45 I ended up with. Over the years I’ve either sold or given away almost all the copies I have. So, if you are one of the lucky few who owns a copy, hang on to it. Keep it in a protective sleeve like your favorite baseball card. Personally, I keep my remaining copies in a fire and water proof vault that requires both fingerprint and retinal scans to gain entry. Seriously though, I am excited that Pop Bottles is in front of a much bigger audience than its original print run. So many more people will be able to enjoy it now.

Thanks to The Haiku Foundation, Jim Kacian, and THF librarian Garry Eaton for including my chapbook in the digital library and for featuring it as book of the week.

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

Poem Featured in The Haiku Foundation’s re:Virals series

One of my haiku appears today in re:Virals (#53), a poem commentary feature on The Haiku Foundation’s Troutswirl blog. Here is the poem:

a slight shake of bells
as the harness comes off
night snow

which was originally published in The Heron’s Nest and is also included in my collection The Deep End of the Sky.

Modje Marvast, Marion Clarke, Lorin Ford, Alan Summers, and Rose Ades wrote the commentaries, and I am pleased with all of them. It’s nice to read some reader reactions to one of my poems since I don’t get that very often. It is well worth your time to read all of the commentaries, but I’d like to quote a paragraph from the winning commentary by Rose Ades:

“I found energy in the harness coming off that liberated my senses, memory and imagination, and brought me back to the bare-rumped physicality of horses. And space at the line break, to shift indoors, to thaw out from the wind and the cold to smell the hay and the stable, perhaps a wood fire, hot food, a place to rest, reflect and give thanks. A sense that all was for now well confirmed by the revelatory stillness and quiet of the final line ‘night snow’. On this night we are safe and we will sleep as the snow covers yesterday’s tracks.”

Thank you to Lynn Edge for selecting this poem for commentary, to all those who wrote commentaries, and to The Haiku Foundation.

International Haiku Poetry Day

Today is International Haiku Poetry Day, and to celebrate I have participated in The Haiku Foundation’s Earthrise Rolling Haiku Collaboration, the world’s largest collaborative poem. This year’s theme is foodcrop haiku, so I contributed this verse:

the Big Dipper–
rows of corn connect
farm to farm

Runner-up, Contemporary Category, HaikuNow! International Haiku Contest 2010 and The Deep End of the Sky (Turtle Light Press, 2015)

The following haiku of mine was shortlisted for a Touchstone Award for Individual Poems but didn’t ultimately win. I know how selective these awards are, so it’s an honor just to be shortlisted.

in a rush to reach stillness whitewater

The Heron’s Nest XVII:4, December 2015

And since the results of the Touchstone Distinguished Book Awards were announced today, that marks the end of my three-year term as a judge. The Haiku Foundation put its trust in me to use my knowledge of haiku and my experience as a haiku poet to choose the very best books, and for that I am grateful. I also had the opportunity to interact with a number of the best poets writing and thinking about haiku today, the best part of the whole process aside from reading lots of books.

If you’re interested in reading more of the haiku from the Earthrise Rolling Haiku Collaboration or watching haiku videos or reading the complete results of the Touchstone Awards, The Haiku Foundation has all you need to celebrate International Haiku Poetry Day here. Happy Haiku Poetry Day!

Haiku Shortlisted for The Touchstone Awards

The committee for The Haiku Foundation’s Touchstone Awards for Individual Poems has announced its shortlist for 2015, and I am excited to say that one of my haiku is on the list! The Touchstone Awards recognize excellence and innovation in English-language haiku and senryu. It is quite an honor, one that I don’t take lightly, to have a poem on the shortlist. Here is a link to read the announcement and all of the shortlisted poems. Many thanks to The Haiku Foundation and to the Touchstone Awards for Individual Poems committee, and to the editorial team at The Heron’s Nest for publishing this poem.

in a rush to reach stillness whitewater

haiku by Chad Lee Robinson, originally published in The Heron’s Nest XVII:4, December 2015

Featured Haiku

Take a gander at the featured haiku over at Charlotte Digregorio’s Writer’s Blog today. I guarantee you’ll like it. Many thanks to Charlotte for featuring another one of my haiku.

And just for fun, here’s a picture of the haiku carved into stone.

migrating geese Touchstone

“migrating geese” won a Touchstone Award for Individual Poems from The Haiku Foundation in 2011. And so the Foundation had the haiku carved into this rather heavy stone. It currently sits on this corner shelf in my dining room.