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.

Looking Ahead

Originally I started this post by looking back over my writing activity for 2015, but decided that that post will be better suited for the end of the year. So I’m looking ahead at what the rest of 2015 may bring.

I recently submitted new haiku to two of the best haiku journals around, and am optimistic that I will have some of that work accepted for publication. I am also currently waiting to hear back about yet another submission that’s been floating around my submissions folder for three and a half months! I typically don’t submit to publications or contests that take so long to respond as I don’t like waiting such a long time for a decision. I like quicker turnaround. If the work is good I want it published or at least accepted for publication as soon as possible. Anyway, I am hoping to hear back on that one by the end of this week. Of course, all of this is leading up to a major milestone, at least for me. The milestone won’t mean much to anyone else but me. I’ll explain what I mean when it happens.

Aside from hearing the results of recent submissions, I will have work in a couple forthcoming anthologies: Nest Feathers (from The Heron’s Nest, scheduled for release in October) and an anthology of haiku about the afterlife (edited by Robert Epstein, no release info available yet). As for journals, I have haiku forthcoming in Modern Haiku, muttering thunder, Presence, and Frozen Butterfly.  I will probably put together one or two more submissions which will go out in October and/or November. I get busy at work for the holidays, so the writing slows down. December is usually too busy to worry about submissions.

I’m also looking forward to The Haiku Foundation’s Touchstone Distinguished Book Awards. I have been on the panel of judges for two years, so this year will be my last. I am looking forward to reading many haiku books I may not otherwise get to read.

Since summer is almost at an end, I’d like to leave you with this:

old blue car—
the ease
of summer’s last days

The Heron’s Nest Volume X, Number 4: December, 2008

haiku by Chad Lee Robinson

Farm Lights

This is the third in a four-part series exploring the seasonal sections of my forthcoming haiku collection The Deep End of the Sky.

“Farm Lights” is the title of the autumn section of The Deep End of the Sky, my forthcoming collection of haiku from Turtle Light Press. “Farm Lights” contains 11 haiku and takes the reader into the work of harvest and chores before the onset of winter.

apple scent . . .
flecks of harvest dust
float in the wine

farm lights
halo the horizon
autumn dusk

“Farm Lights” also includes haiku about hunting. The opening of pheasant season in October in South Dakota is a huge attraction for hunters of all kinds from all over the world.

pink sky
a pheasant falls through
the gunshot’s echo

sunset clouds
the decoy’s touch-ups
in a different hue

This section also boasts the inclusion of one of my most recognized haiku:

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

Some of this haiku’s awards and honors include The Heron’s Nest Award, a Touchstone Award for Individual Haiku from The Haiku Foundation, and inclusion in Haiku in English: The First Hundred Years (W.W. Norton, 2013).

As in previous sections, there are a few haiku about family but not as many. There is one that I would like to end with that was not part of the original manuscript, but was later added in place of another haiku.

trail of leaves
the child’s plastic rake
missing teeth

If you have enjoyed the haiku in this post, and in my previous posts “The Tractor’s Radio” and “Rows of Corn”, then you should think about getting a copy of my forthcoming collection The Deep End of the Sky. You can pre-order it from Turtle Light Press for $12.50 with free shipping in the US. It is scheduled for release in late spring/summer 2015.