Haiku Contest 2016


This year we recived 307 entries from participants from 43 countries. Thank you to all who participated and congratulations to the winners!


First Place

loneliness knitted
into a scarf

Terri L. French
Huntsville, AL, USA

For First Place I have selected this haiku for it’s simplicity, as well as it’s complexity. Where I live, to me there is a definite “cold” sensation. However, we really don’t know where this scarf is being knitted, therefore it could be in summer or in winter depending on where this author lives. Either way this is a world class haiku that applies differently in opposing same-time latitudes. The author did not include “self”directly in this moment so we don’t know who is knitting the scarf, nor did he/she mention who the scarf is for, just the fact that the loneliness they felt is being knitted into it.

an’ya, principal editor of UHTS cattails

Second Place

drifts of leaves
we listen to the colours
of grandma’s tales

Jan Dobb
Canberra, Australia

This Second Place moment nicely combines nature-nature and human-nature. The only thing I would have suggested to its author, is to say “drifting leaves” in line 1 in order to eliminate the use of 2 of(s) in one haiku. Other than this small fine-tuning point, the rhythm is good and I enjoyed the concept of this one very much. Its indirect visuals of coloured leaves juxtaposed with the sound of grandma’s voice telling her colourful tales is well-written into this memorable moment.

an’ya, principal editor of UHTS cattails


Third Place

black clouds rumble
our cotton candies stick
to one another

Lavana kray
Iasi, Romania

As my Third Place Choice, a haiku with striking color contrast via black clouds and pink cotton candies (at least that’s the color I perceive), although nowadays I believe cotton candy can be just about any color. Having said this, another reason for choosing this one is because of its 3 “l” sounds in line one, carried over to its double “c” sounds in line two, which lets it roll off the tongue nicely. I also can easily visualize the cotton candies sticking to one another, and looking like puffy clouds.

an’ya, principal editor of UHTS cattails



First Honourable Mention

crackle of twigs
everywhere the smoke
gathering the sky

Jayashree Maniyil
Melbourne, Australia

Quite a First Honorable Mention, although I would have suggested dropping the second “the” in line three which isn’t entirely necessary. However, anything I point out in any of these haiku are in no way a negative, rather just a judge’s humble observation. Overall quite a captivating haiku that skilfully made a common subject—uncommon, yet still can be easily understood and therefore enjoyed by all readers.

an’ya, principal editor of UHTS cattails


Second Honourable Mention

flaccid breeze
so many leaves
hang in the balance

Don Baird
Palmdale, USA

For Second HM, I love the way this haiku captures that dangling moment right before leaves may part from the branches. For rhythm, placing the verb “hang” on line 2 would have been my personal preference for a line break, albeit the concept of this haiku is valid and the moment so poignant. The word “flaccid” is a fine choice, although it refers to the breeze in line 1, it also cleverly carries over and extends that feeling to those leaves that hang in the balance.

an’ya, principal editor of UHTS cattails

Third Honourable Mention

Summer barbecue
Everybody could make it
Even this shower

Viviane Leite
Mauá, Brazil

Last but not least, is this clever haiku with its touch of wit which made me smile. Written in a 5,7,5 format, although it does not appear “padded”, so I commend this author. It‘s obvious that every word was carefully chosen and each word is imperative to the overall success of this write. Thank you to all who entered this contest, I have enjoyed being a judge and reading many fine haiku.

an’ya, principal editor of UHTS cattails