Unless stated otherwise, all poetry on Swimming in Lines of Haiku is Copyright Kirsten Cliff and may not be reprinted in any form without written permission from the author. kirsten(DOT)cliff(AT)gmail(DOT)com

Monday, December 3, 2012

A Happy Haiku Holiday Season . . .

December 2012 - Kirsten's Calendar of Haiku & Photography

The end of the year is upon us and it's time for me to look back and see if my ideas for 2012 came to fruition. My poetic leanings for this year were to:
  • Make haiku and tanka a part of my everyday life -- I've certainly done this with having my own haiku calendar on my kitchen wall this year, the December page of which you see above. (See the pages for each month of 2012 at my side-bar link Kirsten's 2012 Calendar of Haiku & Photography.) I've created a second calendar for 2013 with all new photos and haiku, which I look forward to my family seeing for the first time come Christmas; and of course, having it on my own wall for the year. I also wrote haiku in cards this year, and made cards with haiku on them, giving them to family and friends. And I added haiku to the odd email or other message here and there, when I felt it might be appreciated. You can also read the post I did for New Zealand's National Poetry Day here about how I get my daily dose of haiku.
  • Write more linked haiku and tanka verse -- Yes! All up this year I wrote 13 rengay with Cara Holman, all of which have been published, and three of which have been submitted to the rengay anthology. I had never written rengay before this and have found it very inspiring and enjoyable. I also wrote one rengay with Aubrie Cox, which was published in Kokako, and has been submitted to the rengay anthology as well. Mid-year I was part of a group that wrote a junicho; most of us for the first time. This was quite a different process to writing rengay, and a steep learning curve, but definitely something I would try again. The result of our efforts "Cold Sun" is in the December issue of A Hundred Gourds. Last, but not least, I wrote a tanka sequence with Margaret Dornaus, which was published in LYNX. This was another rewarding experience, and another first for me. We hope to write more together in the future.
  • Write more haibun and tanka prose -- I wrote the most of these forms in a year than I ever had, and read a lot too! I decided that two of my haibun were worthy of polishing up and presenting to editors, and gratefully both were accepted; one in Kokako and one in Contemporary Haibun Online. Tanka prose I found a bit trickier and only in the last few weeks have I finalised two that I think are of a publishable standard. The first has been accepted to Haibun Today, and I'm waiting on news for the second. Needless to say I'm super pleased with my efforts and definitely want to keep writing more. I'm still interested in writing a poetic memoir in this fashion, although I'm keen to write it about a different time in my life than I'd originally conceived. Watch this space!

I did lots of other things in haiku-land for the first time, too, this year, like participating in kukai, judging a competition, and collaborating on photo-haiga. It's all made for a well rounded year of fun and challenges and learning and friendships. I'm looking forward to more! :)

There is a lot I'm interested in pursuing next year: collaborations of all kinds, finalising putting my first collection together, and entering the most haiku and tanka competitions I ever have in 12 months!

What will actually happen?

I don't know, because what I do know is that I can't do it all. I'm actually only a few submissions away this year from having done, what would work out as, one submission a week (which I did as a minimum in 2011). My coffers are running low. So it's a big period of concentrated writing that is needed right now. See you soon...

Here's to a happy haiku holiday season to all my readers!

May you eat, drink, write and be merry. :)


  1. What an industrious year you've been having, Kirsten! I would definitely say you've made haiku and tanka part of your daily life. :)

    I have enjoyed all our collaborations immensely-- the rengay (did we really write that many?!) and the photo haiga, which was something completely new to me. Looking forward to many more in 2013. I hope I get fired up by your illustrious example to attempt a year in review post too! It's always a good thing to periodically access where you've come from and where you're heading, and I'm pretty sure I let that drop last year.

  2. Yes, we really wrote that many! :)
    And we're already planning more! hehe

    Would love to read your end of year post, Cara. I'm sure you've been blitzing the competitions again this year, but I've lost track!