Sunday, July 28, 2013

Modern Haiku and Simply Haiku, paradise for lovers of Japanese short form poetry

by Gary LeBel, Modern Haiku, Summer 2007
Modern Haiku is a journal of haiku and haiku studies published three times a year out of Portsmouth, Rhode Island. For haiku lovers, Modern Haiku is pure paradise.
Before you submit, Modern Haiku urges you  to familiarize yourself with the journal, especially with regard to what constitutes a haiku (see below).

Material submitted to Modern Haiku is to be the author’s original work, previously unpublished and not under consideration by any other publication, including Web-based journals, personal Web sites, blogs, and social networking sites.

Editors read submissions year-round—but not continuously. Please do not be alarmed if 6–8 weeks pass before an editor makes a decision on your work. Please send 5–15 haiku, senryu, and/or up to 3 haibun per submission. No more than one submission per issue, please. So send your best work. (Note: If you’ve ever wondered what haiku is all about, see the definitions of haiku, senryu, and haibun below).

Email your submission to Paul Miller, Editor, Modern Haiku:
Work may either be pasted in the message text or included as an attachment in MS Word or PDF. Your message must be identified as “MH SUBMISSION” (this text only) in the Subject line. Be sure to include your full postal address and indicate how you wish your materials to be signed.

Juxtapositions is the section of the journal devoted to reader feedback and discussion of important issues in modern haiku. Postal or e-mail letters are avidly sought and will be printed (and edited for fit) at the editors’ discretion.

Definitions—what we’re looking for

Haiku is a brief verse that epitomizes a single moment. It uses the juxtaposition of two concrete images, often a universal condition of nature and a particular aspect of human experience, in a way that prompts the reader to make an insightful connection between the two. The best haiku allude to the appropriate season of the year. Good haiku avoid subjectivity; intrusions of the poet’s ego, views, or values; and displays of intellect, wit, and facility with words.
The above is a normative definition, and haiku of various kinds not squaring with this definition can be easily found, even in the pages of our journal.

Senryu is a verse in the haiku form that focuses on human nature. Although Modern Haiku has a best-senryu-of-issue award, separate sections for haiku and senryu have been discontinued because we find it is impossible to draw a sharp line between the two in English-language verse.
The editors of Modern Haiku use the term "haiku" inclusively (and loosely) for both haiku and senyru and consider both for publication on an equal footing.

Haibun is a prose poem that uses embedded haiku to enhance the composition’s overall resonance and effect. Modern Haiku publishes several haibun in each issue. The following principles guide the editors in choosing among haibun submissions: (1) Each verse should be able to stand on it own as a haiku, without reference to the prose; (2) The prose should be composed in haikai style—that is, with an eye to brevity, objectivity, and non-intellectualization; (3) The haiku and the prose should stand in the same relationship to one another as do the two parts of the haiku—that is, one part should not repeat, explain, or continue the other, rather the juxtaposition of the two should lead the reader to experience added insight or resonance. Haibun are generally, but not necessarily, titled.

Simply Haiku, Summer 2007
Haiga is a work combining a graphic image (originally sumi-e, brush painting with black ink) with a haiku in the same relationship as the two parts of a haibun (see above); in particular, the graphic should not merely be an illustration of the haiku, nor the haiku a caption for the image. 

The best haiga use the same medium for the haiku and the graphic. Photo haiga are very popular these days, but not with our editors. Haiga generally do not need a title. Modern Haiku typically publishes four haiga in each issue in the Poetry Gallery section.
Modern Haiku publication policies 

Syllable and line count are not vital in contemporary English-language haiku—in particular in our journal. We find, in fact, that few poets are able to write effective haiku in the "traditional" 5–7–5–syllable format.

Titles, notes. English-language haiku generally do not need titles or head notes. If you wish to label your haiku, you should be sure there is a very good reason for doing so and that the title is more than merely a cheat, an extra "fourth line." The same is true of explanatory notes or footnotes: if your verse contains material that needs explanation, it is safe to assume that it is inadequately communicating to its intended audience—i.e., it is a failed haiku.

Dedications. Modern Haiku tries to avoid including a dedication with a haiku on the grounds that it tends to divert attention and sap energy from the haiku.

Locations & dates. Similarly, we try to avoid including a location or date (e.g., a line reading "Aunt Jenny’s backyard, May 1978") with haiku for the same reasons we are suspicious of titles, notes, and dedications.

Foreign languagesModern Haiku is keen to publish haiku in languages other than English provided that the work was originally composed in the foreign language and that it is accompanied by an English translation (our editors can often help with the translations). Back translations (that is, an author’s original English-language work translated into another language) and translations into third languages are generally not of interest.

Full submission guidelines here.

Poem: Janet L Davis. Image: Christine Klocek-Lim,
Simply Haiku, Winter 2006
Simply Haiku

Simply Haiku is a showcase for Japanese short form poetry written in the English language.

Simply Haiku publishes all forms of Japanese short form poetry, as well as all forms of traditional and modern haiga (works combining an image and a haiku. See definition above). In addition we publish essays, articles and reviews relating to haiku poetry and associated genres. Please read the introduction to each section for more detailed information.

Policy on Publication Elsewhere: Simply Haiku does not consider submissions of previously published works unless invited; however, we do not consider postings on Internet forums, personal webpages and the like as publications.

How to Submit Poetry: All poems must be submitted by email to the editor of the appropriate section: Haiku (10-25); Tanka (5-20); Senryu (any number); Haibun (1-3). Work may be submitted in any language, so long as it is accompanied by an English language translation. Any quoted work must be attributed both to the original author and to the translator(s), if any.

How to Submit Artwork: Simply Haiku has a continuous open submissions period for haiga. Submissions will be scheduled by the haiga editor to meet quarterly deadlines. Previously published work is by invitation only. You may submit up to a dozen works at one time. You may submit up to a dozen works at one time and no less than five. We may publish between 4 and 8 haiga for each presentation. Please be mindful of the season (a snow scene will not be chosen for a summer issue). We are interested in combined art and prose of high quality. Judgments will be made at the sole discretion of the editor. All haiku-related art forms (e.g., ink drawing, brush painting, woodblock painting, photo, digital) will be considered.

Also, check out Shamrock, an Irish haiku quarterly that accepts submissions from around the world. See here.

See Brian Henry's schedule here, including writing workshops and creative writing courses in Kingston, Peterborough, Toronto, Mississauga, Brampton, Georgetown, Milton, Oakville, Burlington, St. Catharines, Hamilton, Dundas, Kitchener, Guelph, London, Woodstock, Orangeville, Newmarket, Barrie, Orillia, Bracebridge, Sudbury, Muskoka, Peel, Halton, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.

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