Monday, July 14, 2014

The With Words Summer Competition 2014: Haiku Section

The With Words Summer Competition 2014
Haiku Section

We invite you to submit haiku poetry on the theme of Summer and anything that says Summer to you.  

All approaches to haiku are accepted for submission. 

For links to more information, please see the links to the competition further below.
Previously published haiku, and unpublished haiku, are both accepted for this competition.
Haiku Prizes:
1st prize £75
2nd prize £50
Additional Prize:
The With Words Summer Haiku Prize for Unpublished Work     £25
NOTE: If an unpublished haiku wins 1st Place or 2nd Place an additional £25 is added to the £75 or £50 prize.

There will also be Highly Commended and Commended haiku.
Deadline:                     February 15th 2015
Results:                       By end of April 2015

US$2   2 haiku
US$9 12 haiku
US$18  50 haiku

£1 2 haiku
£5 12 haiku
£10 50 haiku

Email your entries to:
Please add ‘Summer Haiku' in the subject line, and include your Paypal Transaction ID number with your haiku entries.

We accept multiple submissions of entries during the competition.

Links to further posts for the competition:
Click here for details we’d like you to add with your haiku only entries.

Click here for the competition rules and legalities.

Extra prize-winning Feature:
   Writer’s Notes Click here 
Each entrant to the competition may also submit personal notes on the theme of summer.  Twelve chosen extracts from writers’ notes will each receive a prize.  

Click here to learn a little more aboutTHE BOOKS

"Capturing the essence of Summer worldwide"


ENTRY DETAILS THAT WE’D LIKE for haiku only entries

a swirl of clouds and red kite©Alan Summers
ENTRY DETAILS THAT WE’D LIKE for haiku only entries:

Along with your haiku entry please include in your email:
  1. Your Name
  2. Your place of residence: village or town or city plus county/region/state/Country.
  3. Publication credits of haiku if previously published.

Please also note that we are also very interested to read summer anecdotes and observations from participating poets as part of the competition. 

The twelve selected extracts will each win a small prize. 

If you are sending "Writer's Notes" they should be included in the same email as your haiku entries. (see weblink: Writer's Notes)
"Capturing the essence of Summer worldwide"

Back to the main competition page:
JUDGE: ALAN SUMMERS is a Japan Times award-winning writer. He is Director/Lead Tutor of With Words, an international provider of literature, education and literacy projects, and With Words online workshops based around the Japanese genres.   He is a founding editor for Bones Journal (contemporary haiku):, and was Special Feature Editor, Haiku/Haibun, Lakeview International Journal of Literature and Arts:
Alan has been: 
•    General Secretary of the British Haiku Society (1998-2000)
•    Panel of Judges: The Biennial Sasakawa Prize for Original Contributions in the Field of Haikai (Sasakawa Foundation U.K. and British Haiku Society)
•    Embassy of Japan, (2009) Roving “Japan-UK 150 Haiku & Renga Poet-in-Residence”
•    Co-ordinator of The 1000 Verse Renga Project in partnership with Bath Libraries (U.K.) and supported by the BBC Poetry Season website
•    Bath Spa University undergraduate development project Haiku poet-in-residence (Autumn 2006 - Summer 2007)
•    Panel of Editors for the award-winning annual Red Moon Anthologies for best haikai literature (2000-2005): 
•    Foundation Member of the Australian Haiku Society
•    a founding editor with Haijinx, showcasing humor in haiku
•    Renga/Renku/Linked Forms Editor, Notes from the Gean
•    moderator of the Shiki-temp list for Matsuyama University, Japan
•    currently co-moderator on the British Haiku Society Members Forum

Anthologies include various leading haiku anthologies include: ‘Haiku World: An International Poetry Almanac’  Kodansha International, Japan, ed. William Higginson ISBN 4770020902 (1996); and a new Norton poetry anthology on haiku: Haiku in English: The First Hundred Years ed. Jim Kacian, Allan Burns & Philip Rowland with an Introduction by Billy Collins (W. W. Norton & Company 2013) 
Alan was co-founder/co-organizer, and Literature Director, of the 2010 Bath Japanese Festival.

Published in over 75 haiku anthologies; appearing in over fifteen languages including Japanese, and British Sign Language.

Japanese newspaper publications:
Yomiuri Shimbun; Asahi Shimbun; Mainichi Shimbun; The Japan Times; and The Mie Times.

"Astonishingly moving haiku" 
YOMIURI SHIMBUN (Japan) January 2005

"Widely known haiku dry as vintage champagne"
YOMIURI SHIMBUN (14 million readers in Japan) September 2002

Alan has presented haiku at the Royal Festival Hall, London, (September 2008 & 2009) with Thames Festival and Japan-UK 150. He was the first poet-in-residence, as haiku poet, at the U.K.'s largest and first Natural History festival: Bristol Festival of Nature (October-November 2004) including a residency at Bristol Zoo, plus a sold out ginko (haiku writing walk) with The Avon Gorge and Downs Wildlife Project in association with Bristol Zoo.

He has been a haiku poet-in-residence for Cornell University, Mann Library: and invited to give a talk at Haiku News: 

Alan is also Teaching Artist at the USA-based Rooster Moans Poetry Cooperative for Haiku and Tanka (course just concluded) and Haibun (later in 2013):

You can catch me talking about haiku:
Amazement of the Ordinary: Life through a haiku lens

Co-Editor of five Haiku-based Anthologies:
•    Parade of Life: Poems inspired by Japanese Prints ISBN: 09539234-2-8 (Poetry Can/Bristol Museum and Art Gallery/Japan21/Embassy of Japan 2002)
•    The Poetic Image - Haiku and Photography (Birmingham Words/National Academy of Writing Pamphlet 2006)
•    Fifty-Seven Damn Good Haiku by a Bunch of Our Friends (Press Here 2010 USA) ISBN 978-1-878798-31-2 
•    Four Virtual Haiku Poets (YTBN Press 2012) ISBN-10: 1478307544 ISBN-13: 978-1478307549
•    c.2.2. an anthology of short-verse poetry and haiku (YTBN Press 2013) ISBN-10: 1479304565 ISBN-13: 978-1479304561

Back to the main competition page:


Writer’s Notes for The With Words Summer Competition

two red kites over grass being mowed for hay©Alan Summers 2014

Haiku Fieldbook notebook©Alan Summers
Writer’s Notes:

Each entrant to the competition may also submit freeform writer’s notes on the theme of summer.  

These may include notes specific to the poems submitted, or about summer in general.  

We will select twelve extracts from writers’ notes for special mention and a prize.

For ideas about what to include in writer’s notes, please consider:
  • Season: what season, or part of the season, festival, special day etc are you writing about … 
  • Seasonal Location: immediate area of your poem[s] plus other geographical details
  • Full Date (time am or pm, day, month, year) of observation 
  • Comments: anecdotes; observations; notes; fieldnotes; asides; or an account of why you personally associate the topic of your haiku with summer.
  • Nature notes including nicknames and common names of species; local, regional and national names for animal; bird; plant; flower; tree; insect and various natural or human made phenomena.
  • Non-nature: name of festival; special days; birthdays; religious or spiritual observances etc…
"Capturing the essence of Summer worldwide"
Weblink back to the main competition details:

With Words Competition rules and legalities

rainbow cloud and red kite©Alan Summers

Competition rules and legalities

1. Haiku entries must be your own work in English and you must be the sole copyright owner of the work.

2.  Entry implies permission for With Words to non-exclusively publish the prize-winning poems, and extracts from Writers' notes, online and in other With Words publications.  

3. Previously unpublished haiku placed in the Commended or Highly Commended categories will not be published by With Words without the author's separate permission.  

4. We will not use your email address for any other purpose except correspondence relating to this competition, or pass it on to any third parties.

5.  The competition judge is With Words founder Alan Summers.  The judge's decisions are final.

6.  Alan Summers' current and former students may enter the competition.  The rigorousness of the judging process will ensure that their entries are neither at an advantage or disadvantage in this competition. 

7.  With Words will be producing two books of Summer writing.  Entries to this competition will automatically be considered for inclusion.

"Capturing the essence of Summer worldwide"

Back to the main competition page:



THE BOOKS: The With Words Book of Summer & The With Words Haiku Book of Summer

Buckinghamshire skies with red kite©Alan Summers
We plan to produce a book entitled The With Words Book of Summer (combining poetry, and prose, haibun, tanka prose, and some haiku) and The With Words Haiku Book of Summer.  

The With Words Haiku Book of Summer is planned to be launched on the Summer Solstice of 2015 and The With Words Book of Summer around May 2016.

The With Words Haiku Book of Summer will contain a number of anecdotes or observations from various participating poets as part of the competition, so we can gain an understanding of what Summer means to individual haiku writers around the world.

More about anecdotes, observations etc... at Writer's Notes:

"Capturing the essence of Summer worldwide"
Back to the main competition page:

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Clouds and Rain: A couple of haiku by Alan Summers translated into German by VerSuch ... das projekt gendai haiku


VerSuch ... das projekt gendai haiku ist ein deutschsprachiges blog von dietmar tauchner und ralf bröker. das ziel: den stand und die entwicklung des modernen haiku in deutscher sprache zu zeigen.

fliehende Wolken
mein Zackenmann trägt
einen Albatross

Haiku by Alan Summers
trans. Ralf Bröker
Publication Credit: VerSuch ... das projekt gendai haiku 01.07.2014 Wartende wir 

starker Dauerregen mein Kompass dein geographischer Norden

One-line haiku by Alan Summers
trans. Ralf Bröker
Publications credits: Frogpond 36.1 • 2013; VerSuch ... das projekt gendai haiku (1st July 2013)

Alan Summers leitet With Words (Mit Worten) und unterstützt Menschen, die sich für Haiku, Tanka und andere Lyrik interessieren. Er ist dabei, einen weiteren Teil des The Kigo Lab Project zu veröffentlichen: ein Experiment mit westlichen Jahreszeitenwörtern als vollwertige Kigo für ökologisch-kritisches Schreiben. Alan hat sowohl Freude an Haiku, die mancher als traditionell ansieht, als auch jenen, die aus dem Rahmen fallen.

Translator: Ralf Bröker

... geht es um Haiku, der kompaktesten Form von Lyrik. Das Haiku hat seinen Ursprung im alten Japan. Heute wollen Autoren weltweit kurz und knapp einen bemerkenswerten Moment vergegenwärtigen – und im Leser das entstehen lassen, was Worte nicht sagen. 

image©Alan Summers

With Words run both live and online 
With Words runs popular online courses in haiku, tanka, haibun, and other related poetry.
Please don't hesitate to contact Karen for further information:

Monday, June 23, 2014

A selection of haiku poems by Alan Summers in American magazine Modern Haiku

                     An Independent Journal of Haiku and Haiku Studies
"you ain't serious about haiku if you don't subscribe to Modern Haiku"
Small Press Review, December 2004

One haiku just published this Summer in Modern Haiku, and a selection of others from last year, plus a couple of oldies or mor from the 1990s.

night of small colour
a part of the underworld
becomes one heron

Alan Summers
Publication Credit: Modern Haiku Vol. 45.2  Summer 2014

this small ache and all the rain too robinsong

Alan Summers
Publications credits: Modern Haiku vol. 44.1 winter/spring 2013

ants following invisible trials the children

Alan Summers
Publication Credits: Modern Haiku  issue 44:3 (2013)

mist and dark I hold onto Little Bear

Alan Summers
Publication Credits: Modern Haiku  issue 44:3 (2013)

flickering in the silence
corralled horses

Alan Summers
Publications credits: Modern Haiku vol. xxvi  no. 3 (1995); Moonlighting  (Intimations Pamphlet Series British Haiku Society publication, 1996); sundog haiku journal: an australian year  (sunfast press 1997 reprinted 1998); California State Library - 1997; First Australian Haiku online Anthology (1999); First Australian Anthology (Paper Wasp 2000); haiku dreaming australia the best haiku & senryu relevant in and to Australia (2006); The Crow Walk haibun (HAIKU HIKE, World Walks, Crossover UK 'Renewability' project 2006)); Stepping Stones:  a way into haiku  (British Haiku Society 2007); Mann Library, Cornell University Daily Haiku (March 2013)

Far North Queensland
a dingo’s call picked up-
the moonless night 

Alan Summers
Publications credits: Modern Haiku (199-)

web link:
Far North Queensland

cool morning
    light on a distant cloud

Alan Summers
Publications credits: 
Modern Haiku, (1999); Azami Haiku in English Commemorative Issue  (2000); Birmingham Words Magazine Issue 3 (Autumn 2004); Haiku Friends Vol. 3 ed. Masaharu Hirata (Japan 2009)

Modern Haiku Summer 2014 backcover.JPG

Friday, June 13, 2014

Asahi Shimbun (Japanese newspaper) publication of forgotten rain haiku by Alan Summers

Image from Asahi Shimbun (Illustration by Mitsuaki Kojima)

Forgotten rain
the wedding ring left
in a doll’s house

Alan Summers
Publication Credit: ASAHI HAIKUIST NETWORK (Japan 2014)


Saturday, May 24, 2014

Bath Fringe Festival 2014 "Writing Haiku" Workshop free mini-workshop run by Alan Summers and Karen Hoy of With Words

Bath Fringe Festival Writing Haiku Workshop
Writing Haiku
a free mini-workshop within an art exhibition
with Alan Summers and Karen Hoy

Saturday June 7th, 11am-12pm

Free Event to the public

Stall St
City of Bath
Bath and North East Somerset BA1 1QG


Photograph of Karen and Alan at the Bath Japanese Festival by Dru Marland
Still Points : Moving World  A Performance Writing Exhibition  Fringe Arts Bath, Friday 23rd May to Sunday 8th June 2014

About the gallery:

Events including the haiku mini-workshop:

Writing Haiku
Saturday June 7th, 11am-12pm

A free event and open to everyone.

Haiku are very short poems – generally just three lines long – and are written in simple language, but can be powerfully evocative.

This event is a writing mini-workshop with Alan Summers, who will talk about the history and contemporary practice of combining haiku and art. The workshop includes time for you to write your own haiku inspired by the art work in the exhibition.

Alan Summers is a Japan Times award-winning and Pushcart Prize nominated poet, who has been studying and writing haiku for over twenty years, and has been published internationally and translated into more than a dozen languages. He loves to teach and run workshops, bringing people to the Asian writing forms, and through his organisation With Words has students all over the English-speaking world.

Karen has been published in a number of hai­ku-based publications, including anthologies The Humours of Haiku, edited by David Cobb (Iron Press); and as one of Wales’s haiku pioneers in Another Country: Haiku Poetry from Wales (Gomer Press) edited by Nigel Jen­kins, Ken Jones and Lynne Rees. She also appears in Mslexia; and Sixfold; My Mother Threw Knives (Second Light Publications 2006); Highly Commended in the BBC Wildlife Magazine’s Nature Writer of the Year competition (2009); as well as Lakeview International Journal of Literature and Arts.

Karen is the Course Director for With Words, and a Teaching Artist for Rooster Moans:

If you are unable to attend, live elsewhere, or even in a different country, With Words run regular online events:

With Words runs popular online courses in haiku, tanka and other related poetry.
Please don't hesitate to contact Karen for further information:


Saturday, May 17, 2014

A selection of haiku, by Alan Summers, published by Asahi Shimbun, Japan, between 2010 and 2013


The Asahi Shimbun literally Morning Sun Newspaper, is one of the five national newspapers in Japan. Its circulation, which was 7.96 million for its morning edition and 3.1 million for its evening edition as of June 2010, was second behind that of Yomiuri Shimbun.

Monet's Haystacks At Chailly 1865

Monet's Haystacks
a group of crows tug
at twilight

rook chatter
tracking each snowflake
to the end

first quarter moon
dancing pinheads burst
into new angel DNA

Also published in Does Fish-God Know (YTBN Press 2012)

river festival  
just a birdsong afternoon  
and talk of hedgehogs

Fraser Island
the pre-sunset whine
of mosquitoes

Upolu Cay
my own skeletons

About Michaelmas and Upolu

green clouds
the scarecrow worries
a loose thread

Maple moon
Grandmother’s recipe
settles in the pan

This was also published by the Hailstone Haiku Group, Japan

Early morning rain
the sound between
the sound

Night clouds
a spider shows me
the harvest moon

Cloud kigo
a light rain patters across
your nightingale floors

"In search of the ultimate season word to associate with clouds, Alan Summers observes how “rain writes its own story across floorboards that sing like a bird. I like the idea of the cloud kigo. Readers will too. It is always my pleasure to work with you on haiku.”  David McMurray, Asahi Shimbun

David McMurray has been writing the Asahi Haikuist Network column since April 1995, first for the Asahi Evening News. He is also the editor of OUTREACH, a bi-monthly column featuring international teachers in The Language Teacher of the Japan Association for Language Teacher (JALT).

He is professor of intercultural studies at The International University of Kagoshima where he lectures on international haiku. At the Graduate School he supervises students who research haiku. He is a correspondent school teacher of Haiku in English for the Asahi Culture Center in Tokyo.

With Words runs popular online courses in haiku, tanka and other related poetry.
Please don't hesitate to contact Karen for further information: