Volume 39.3
Autumn 2008


Robert Spiess Memorial
2009Haiku Award Competition

Modern Haiku is pleased to announce the Robert Spiess Memorial Haiku Award Competition for 2009. The purpose of this competition is to honor the life and work of Bob Spiess, editor of Modern Haiku from 1978 to his death on March 13, 2002.

Theme: Haiku are to be written in the spirit of the following “Speculation”
(Robert Spiess, A Year’s Speculations on Haiku, Modern Haiku Press, 1995):

In haiku the juxtaposition or “confrontation” of entities produces
a tension charged with energy that generates an insight, intuition
or felt-depth of an aspect of reality; it is a movement, a birth, that
leads to a new level of awareness [Prompted in part by a passage
of C.G. Jung’s].

Deadline: In hand no later than March 13, 2009.

Rules: The competition is open to everyone but the staff of Modern Haiku, the competition coordinator, and the judges. Entries must be in English. Each entry must be the original, unpublished work of the author, and should not be under consideration in a contest or for publication elsewhere. For purposes of this competition, appearance of a haiku in an Internet journal, a Web site, or a blog is considered publication, but sharing haiku on a private e-mail list is not. Of course, entries should not appear in an Internet journal, Web site, blog, or haiku list during the term of the competition.

Submission guidelines: Poets may submit a maximum of five haiku written in the spirit of the above Speculation. Entries should be typed or printed legibly. Submit three copies of each haiku on plain white 3 x 5 cards or paper. The haiku (one haiku per card) should appear on the face of each card. The poet’s name, mailing address, telephone number, and e-mail address (if any) should appear on one of the three cards, in the upper left-hand corner above the haiku; the other two copies should contain only the haiku. Please keep a copy of your submission; entries will not be returned. Please follow the instructions carefully: entries that are incomplete or that do not comply with the instructions will be discarded.

Entry fee: $1 per haiku, cash or check (U.S. funds); make checks payable to Modern Haiku.

Send submissions to: Billie Wilson, 1170 Fritz Cove Road, Juneau, AK 99801-8501 USA.

Adjudication: Two judges will be selected by Modern Haiku; their names will be announced at the time of the awards. Judging will be double-blind, and the judges will not know the identity of the entrants. Judges’ decisions are final.

Selection criteria: The judges will look for entries that hew to Western norms for haiku as published in Modern Haiku and other leading English-language haiku journals and that best capture the spirit of the theme Speculation above. There are no rules as to syllable or line count.

Awards: First Prize: $100 plus a signed, previously-loved copy of The Turtle’s Ears (1971, out of print; has the previous owner’s initials, a bit of water or coffee damage, slight creasing to the covers, and a small break in the hand-sewn binding). Second Prize: $50 plus a copy of Bob’s The Shape of Water (1982); Third Prize: $25 plus a copy of Bob’s Some Sticks and Pebbles (2001). Up to five poets will be awarded Honorable Mentions and each will receive a copy of Bob’s A Year’s Speculations on Haiku (1995). Notification: Winners will be notified by e-mail or phone before the general announcement. Winning entries will be published in the summer 2009 issue of Modern Haiku and posted on the Modern Haiku Web site, https://www.modernhaiku.org/, on or before July 1, 2009. If you would like a list of the winners, please enclose a stamped, self-addressed envelope (SASE) with your entries. Overseas entrants should provide one IRC with a self-addressed envelope. These will be mailed when the summer issue of Modern Haiku is released.


© 2008 Modern Haiku • PO Box 1570 • Santa Rosa Beach, FL 32459