While the government shutdown may or may not have been inevitable, you probably knew I’d find some way to attach a haiku contest to it, especially after the 2012 Republican Primary Haiku Contest and the 2012 National Political Conventions Haiku Contest both did so well.
Here’s a little refresher on what constitutes a haiku: It’s a very short poem whose origins are primarily Japanese, whose three lines are measured in syllables numbering 5-7-5, and which (as we often learn in elementary school) traditionally has something to do with nature. There are a couple of other considerations here, too, for the poetic purists. A good haiku will entertain a play between pure description and commentary on the subject matter.
So here we go! Enter as many haiku as you like, in the comments section below. Contest is open for as long as the government isn’t. (And who knows how long that will be? Better get your entries in soon!)
The prize is a book of poems: TimeSlice. This anthology of poets who live in or are connected to Houston, some through their teaching in The University of Houston’s Creative Writing Program, was published by Mutabilis Press and contains a wide array of gorgeous verse from both the “literary” and “underground” poetry scenes in 21st-century Houston. A few of the poets featured include Edward Hirsch, Carolyn Adams, Tony Hoagland, Varsha Shah, Adam Zagajewski, Robert Phillips, Iris Rozencwajg, and Ken Jones*. (Click on the above link to MP’s site to see a list of all the poets included. It’s quite a list. It’s quite a book.)
Ready? Get set… Haiku!
* Full disclosure: I’m in the book, too.