Kasen at THF

For anyone feeling renku withdrawal symptoms, a kasen has started at The Haiku Foundation. The Pilgrims’ Stride is being led by John Stevenson.

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John Carley, RIP

Dear Friend

I am very sorry to have to tell you that John died yesterday [January 1]. As you probably know he had been very very ill for four years. He dealt with his pain with tremendous courage and dignity. He survived through grim determination and the desire to make sure that his family would be able to support one another after he had gone.

He was able to attend the wedding of our son Alex to his beautiful wife, Catherine, on 21 December and to celebrate Christmas Day at home with Edith, our daughter, Alex and Catherine.

He faced death with the same courage and dignity that he dealt with his illness. He died with Alex and Catherine, Edith and her partner Connell, his brother Michael and myself, present to comfort and reassure him.

We miss him terribly but are proud to have shared our lives with him.

Best wishes


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Einbond win for Snail team

Very pleased to share that a nuijin linked verse – Early Morning Heat – written on the Issa’s Snail website has been placed First in the 2013 Einbond competition run by the Haiku Society of America.

The 20-verse poem was led by John Carley of England as sabaki, with the writing team being Lorin Ford (Australia), Cynthia Rowe (Australia), Sandra Simpson (New Zealand) and William Sorlien (US). Early Morning Heat will appear in the next issue of Frogpond, as well as on the HSA website.

Well done to all involved.

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A ‘New Junicho’ at Another Lost Shark – Open Now

Greetings Snailers and wanderers alike!

Just letting you know that Graham Nunn is hosting a ‘New Junicho’ at his blog, Another Lost Shark, and has opened submissions – all are welcome – so jump over and submit a verse! (There you’ll also find more detailed guidelines, a schema and a link giving some background on the New Junicho too.)

I was lucky enough to contribute the hokku, here is is:

between thistles
the crane’s
Egyptian walk

You’re next 🙂

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Breath by Sandra Simpson

I recently received some fantastic news – Sandra Simpson’s collection of haiku breath has just been released! For details other then the hints I’ve taken from Sandra’s site below, just click on the link above

breath is the realisation of a project that has been rolling on and off my desk for about 2 years and I am pleased to record that it was home from the printer in November 2011. There’s something about the death of loved friends that tends to focus the mind and I realised that I just needed to get on and do it and not look back later and be regretful.

breath has been arranged in the traditional way – by grouping poems under seasonal headings – with my own photographs of the seasons of the tree acting as separator illustrations.

summer rain –
finding chocolate frogs
at the back of the shop

first published Daily Haiku, Cycle 11, 2011

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Year of the Rabbit – A Winter Junicho

Our Winter Junicho is finally complete! (or very damn close)

Have a look here

A new Renku will open up in the near year. Check out the Schedule page to see who’s already signed up and add your name!

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2011’s Fourth Renku is Up Soon!

Keep an eye on the site, a new renku is about to begin.

Led by the wonderful NZ poet Sandra Simpson (many of you will know her and her work from haiku and renku circles) it’s going to be a fast one!


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Cities of Green Leaves Ginko no Kukai

Poetry Park – Phalen Lake

As a blogger inspired initiative to honor
the spirit and sacrifices of the people
in Japan’s stricken Tohoku region,
we are pleased to announce

Cities of Green Leaves Ginko-no-Kukai May 14 and 15, 2011

We encourage everyone
to join in an international nature walk
to be held May 14 and 15
followed by an international haiku contest.

We invite you to walk with us on those days, collaborating with like-minded poets and bloggers in combining their skills and talents, enter your haiku in a peer judged contest, and take the opportunity to offer aid and support to our friends in Japan in a consensus of thought, well wishes and kinetic energies to occur simultaneously around the globe.

It’s no surprise the kukai’s topic will take its cue from Sendai, Japan’s annual Aoba Matsuri Festival, an event held originally to honor the city’s founder, Date Masamune. The date has now become an annual celebration with thousands of visitors, a parade, sparrow dance, taiko drums and tree lined streets as part of the festival each year to rejoice in the arrival of spring’s new greenery and rebirth.

You may choose any place to hold your ginko walk in your vicinity, as long as it holds the attributes to inspire many to compassionate action in the beauty of poetry, and the celebration of the renewing power of nature’s seasons.

The address to submit your poems will be posted here this third weekend of May. Please return often until then for further updates and poetry. We look forward to walking with you!

Charitable Donations

Architecture for Humanity

Japanese Red Cross Society

Ngo Jen Official Website

Salvation Army in Japan

Participating Blogs

Area 17

Charlotte D’s Writer’s Blog

Green Tea and Bird Song

Haiku Bandit Society

Hailstone Haiku Circle Icebox

Red Dragonfly

Word Pond

please join us!

(click on highlighted text for more info)


For anyone interested in joining in, it’s a great idea and might be the perfect way to support Japan in a time of crisis and to give your local haiku or writing community a real dose of inspiration.

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A New Style of Junicho

At the link provided is information on a new style of Junicho that I have been working on with John Carley. Thanks to his most excellent input, it’s ready to trial and we’d love to do so here. John will lead, and I will participate, so we’re only calling for 4 more participants for the time-being.

Before any one does put their hand up by posting at the site, please have a look at background text at the link below, it should help explain how this style aims to be ‘new’ and what traditions we’ve relied on to develop it from, and what it should look like.

According to my records we have 11 names waiting to join a renku at the Snail, and I’d like to ask any of them to jump in here now, and as always, we’ll take the first 4. Because this renku is kind of a bonus to the other two Junicho I’d already taken names for, I’m happy for any combination of the waiting 11 to join us, then retain the original line-ups for the remaining two renku.

Andrew, Vasile, Alan, Lorin, Willie  #2
Melissa, Mary, Sandra, Bill, Matt, #3


If you’re part of the group 1 list currently working on the Winter Junicho and want to join, I’ll put you on the back up list, or even a list for a second ‘new’ Junicho, should the form prove enjoyable to compose and read!


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Ocean Hearted Flood Relief Project

Hi Snailers.

Things are so far beyond tough in Queensland (Australia) at the moment that it’s terrifying, but I wanted to alert your attention to something Queensland poet and fellow Snailer Graham Nunn is doing at his site, the Ocean Hearted Flood Relief Project.

Basically, Graham is donating his book sales and and matching each sale with a personal donation. It’s one of the best collections of Australian poetry around too, so have a look at the link above and see if you can help.

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