Comment-a-Haiku Poetry Competition! – Submit Your Poem

NEW CONTEST OPEN here!

 

We’ve announced the results for this past contest–give our winner a round of applause here!


Vita Brevis is hosting a four-day haiku competition–taking place entirely in the comment section of this post!

Here’s What You Need to Know:

How to Submit:

1. Submit one nature-themed 5-7-5 haiku as a comment on this post

2. Reblog this post on your blog or write a post announcing that you’ve entered it

3. (Optional) Give good feedback on other commenters’ work!

Theme: Nature

Reward: We’ll publish the winning poet, featuring their haiku on the front page of our online magazine with a link to their blog.

When: Starting right now (08/10), ending Monday night (08/13)

Questions: Use our Contact Us page–I’ll get back to you soon!

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563 thoughts

    1. Love ‘Dew drops on green leaves’ as it reminds me of a wonderful song that Julie Andrews did in a film.

      warm regards,

      Alan

      Alan Summers
      co-founder, Call of the Page

    1. This is excellent. The “kiru” is at the end of the first line–falling, (v); fall, (the season), but the power of the first two words is no less “cutting.” The first word, “Lazy” juxtaposed with “awakens;” the second, “leaves,” a homophone, can easily be seen/read as a noun or verb, signaling the departure of summer.

      Then the wind, “sings a lullaby…” is it just me, or does the word “lull-a-by(e)” seem rich with connotation and conflict? “To lull,” means to calm, but also has a slightly diabolical meaning, which, when used in context, also means to induce a false sense of security, and an impending abuse of trust. Maybe that’s why old fairy tales and many lullabies seem slightly frightening: (“…when the bough breaks/the cradle will fall/ then DOWN WILL COME BABY…”!?) That’s terrifying! Yet we sing this, and other songs, a “lullaby” to our children without really considering what the words mean. Sorry, digression.

      So, Monika’s “lazy leaves” are sung to complacency by the breath of Mother Earth, and the tree releases its hold on the leaf, which has become useless to her—a drain on her, in fact—so for her own survival, the leaves must “leave;” depart, fall, so the tired mother tree can rest. Autumn is then awakened, almost like a sleeping Goddess of Destruction and Death: the impartial Mother Earth, Gaia, who understands that to everything, there is a season (turn, turn, turn, nod to the Birds ;)).

      So…on first glance, yes, this poem seems so “sweet” and filled with “wa,” (harmony, peace) but in fact, like the “Rock-a-Bye Baby” lullaby, it portends a certain violence from “the Great Mother,” the Earth, the world. And if we anthropomorphize Mother Earth, on which every, living thing relies for their very survival, she is not unlike human mothers to the infant, whose mother is literally this all-powerful being–she is the infant’s whole world.

      Autumn is both the goddess’s emissary and intercessor before winter. Winter, her executioner, who destroys her creations—those who are too weak to survive.

      And when Autumn is awakened, she decides who will live, who will die, as her breath sings through the air, chilled and as sharp as shears. Her lullaby is not simply a “killing,” but a warning to those who must hide, hibernate, ready themselves; if not, they are killed, then buried in the dreary, frozen tomb of snow. Like the leaves, which have grown, become useless and complacent as they hang onto their mother-tree, whose bough has dried, and stopped giving her children nourishment.

      So the wind rocks them, lulls them to sleep, so the mother-tree can finally release her hold, whereby they “fall” to their deaths: skins depleted of verdant life, which ebbed out like an exsanguination—all color drained, aged into gold, then brown, to be reincorporated into the dark blackness of the burial-dirt of Earth–the TREE’S mother. Just as we are buried when we die, all vitality drained from us, our “wind” knocked clean out of us, then we’re returned–to the Mother of All—the Earth’s, embrace.

      Yes, the kiri, the “cutting word” of this piece is the most foreboding with the use of the word “awakens.” The Goddess of death awakens…and down fall the leaves, “…cradle and all.”

      I don’t know that I could do much better than this. I will share this fun little contest on my blog, though, but this haiku, from where I sit, is an exceptional, fantastic piece. Brava!

        1. Actually, you summarized my deconstruction before the fact. 😉 Seventeen syllables…How could I take it apart so thoroughly? Because a words means more than that one word. And how the writer and/or poet strings them together gives us glimpse into the writer’s psyche, thoughts, beliefs, in that moment, when he or she penned the words.

          Your words are made up of your life experience, just as much as your thoughts and your personality and who you are.

          That’s why storytellers and poets are immortal. We bleed on the page, but we do not die. Keep writing beautiful girl. You have much to offer this world–Peace to you!

    1. Loved the opening line:
      “Where the thicket clears”
      This can be one word: “moonlit”
      If you want to do a 5-7-5 syllabic version of a Japanese haiku, perhaps:
      Where the thicket clears
      a still pond sits shimmering
      in a moonlit night
      And ‘moon’ automatically brings in a seasonal reference for Autumn. 🙂

    2. I like that opening line as the reader enjoys the anticipation of the next line and then the next one!

      warm regards,
      Alan

      Alan Summers
      co-founder, Call of the Page

  1. Although haiku (developed during the 1890s from the hokku type poems by Basho and others) aren’t nature-based, as they came about during the big industrial revolutions of the late 19th century, there’s still a bit of nature not destroyed by us humans. so here goes….

    a hideaway sun
    the big mud of the river
    reflects a gold coin

    Alan Summers

    A 575 in English. 😉

      1. Thank you so much. I saw this one two days back on a small hill near our house, looking directly at me. When I tried to take a photo, it moved away. I got a photo but from the side.

      1. Thanks.
        I saw the coyote rhree days back at 10 AM while walking my dog. It was looking straight at me from the top of the ridge of a small hill near our home and moved away when I tried to take a photo. I got a photo but from the side.

          1. No, we have not learnt. Though the people in our neighborhood gives this pack making their home on the hill a wide berth, they are looked more as a nuisance than wild life. I miss my walk on the hill though, not afraid of the coyotes attacking me but afraid of them attacking Skooby.

            1. If the good neighbours kill off or drive away all the useful prey animals, the coyotes will attack domestic pets. There’s a simple answer, but nobody ever takes it seriously.

                1. They tend to support the ‘don’t let women decide anything for themselves’ policy, especially if what women might decide is to cut down on the number of kids.

                2. Religion, like many other things in the world, has become big business. ROI is a rules. More followers, more money flow to the coffers of the powerful.

        1. Good question. More wildlife sanctuaries and less development. But here it’s all about money, greed, power. Ah, the arrogance of certain humans! Best not get me started. 🙂 But thank you for bringing up the topic here. It’s one I’m passionate about.

          1. Those who feel for the environment must not give up.
            It’s frustrating sometimes. I had to pay through my nose because of damages done to my house by squirrels, racoons and gophers and at that moment I really felt like killing all those. But once the anger subsided, rationality returned.

  2. Oh my gosh, so much to go through, this whole reply to the post is marvelously inspiring. Just coming in now and will surely be submitting a nature haiku before the deadline. Congratulations to all who have posted haiku thus far. I hope to do you all justice with mine.

  3. The Sun scorched the land,
    sand, and the frigid humans
    walking over it.

    (Fun fact – This very well would be the first line of my first ever book.)

          1. Yes, it’s a major bugger when it comes to writing for me. I have this repression when it comes to Indian-ish thoughts, mostly because I only have known western writers, and I try to imitate them. But lately I realize how futile it is, and how better my writing can be if I write with all parts of my mind.

            1. Have you read Arundhati Roy? I’ve only read The God of Small Things and thought it was remarkable. It left a nasty taste in the mouth, but the subject matter isn’t Disney fairy story stuff. It seemed very ‘Indian’ to me, exotic and with a perspective different to our western one.

              1. I have been meaning to read that one for a while, yet couldn’t get to it yet. Also some more writers, do you know Salman Rushdie? He is famous and infamous.

                1. I have a copy of Midnight’s Children but have never read it. V P Naipaul died today, did you hear? I’ve never read his stuff either as I don’t like the sound of his ideas, and I presume they must be omnipresent in his writing.

                2. Midnight’s children is the next book I’ll read, currently I’m on a self help book, so the pace is a bit slow. I have never heard about Naipaul, Looks like he is a novel laureate!! What kinds of ideas?

                3. Oh I read! An interview of him, and his equally odd second wife. What a strange world this is, filled with people of this sort? In one part of the interview, it was mentioned that he invited his now second wife to live in the house (where he lived with his first wife) the day after the cremation of his first wife! Yet he talked during the interview about how people without sense suggested that he should get another cat (or dog?) after his previous one died. He couldn’t think of living with another pet in the same house. I mean what a strange world!!!

                4. Sounds like a guy got his head trapped inside his arse. From there, world could look like how he saw it…

                5. Don’t! Rushdie’s Grimus is very good too. The last of his I read was The Last Moor and didn’t like it so much. I don’t even remember what it was about.

                6. They won’t ever lift it, I don’t suppose. I find Islam such an antipathetic religion (not that any of them are sympathetic) that I don’t really want to read about how unattractive it is. Preaching to the converted in my case.

    1. Welcome sight, for sure. I see willows here in Missouri, but not many along the few streams where I take my kayak. Back in Western New York, some of my favorite spots to rest while kayaking along the smaller streams was beneath overhanging willows.

      Well done, Hélène.

    1. I love the image of stars softly speckling the earth – and you’ve managed to get an owl in too, Jane! It’s amazing what you can convey in seventeen syllables.

  4. Here is my entry for the haiku contest.
    desertrose.blog

    cool flowing waters

    river rocks beneath my feet

    baptist awaits my return

    © Jordan

  5. Inspired by watching my grandson playing in the garden this morning, I wrote this:

    Green hues of sunlight
    filter through the trees and hide
    a young boy dancing.

      1. His age is such that life is carefree for him now. I relish watching him discover things that make him happy, and dancing is one of those things.

        1. Isn’t there a saying “Life is wasted on the young?” If only they knew or if we can go back. Still, children are a good reminder of how life should be…

  6. Here is my entry for the competition – will reblog on writinginnorthnorfolk.com:

    tinted with harvest
    pumpkins and wind-fall apples
    the moon’s pregnant pause

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  8. Reblogged this on thoughts and entanglements and commented:
    A haiku contest in progress @ Vita Brevis. I have never seen so much action in the comments. It’s wonderful!! Come join in!!