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Frogpond 34.3 • 2011

Museum of Haiku
Literature Award

Haiku & Senryu

Revelations Unedited

Essay - Rees

Haibun

Rengay

Renku

Book Review

From the Editors

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Editors’ Note: The renga is an older form of Japanese linked poetry than the renku. For the HSA definition of the renku, go to the HSA Web. site <http://www.hsa-haiku.org/archives/HSA_Definitions_2004.html>. For a scholarly, but clear, discussion of how the renku evolved from the renga, read the chapter “Distinctive Features of Linked Poetry” in Miner, E., Japanese Linked Poetry, Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1979, pp. 140-159. As can be seen in this section, both forms are practiced today.

Twelfth Night

A Nijuin Renku by

Diana Webb, Leatherhead, England
Frank Williams, London, England

1.

twelfth night
glitter returned
to the frosted trees

Diana

2.

from the torn refuse bag
remains of a goose

Frank

3.

nursery rhyme tunes
again and again
weave through his work

Diana

4.

ringing through the pub
'one hundred and eighty'

Frank

5.

full moon circle dance
half the way round
and then the other

Diana

6.

clusters of toadstools
line the low bank

Frank

7.

halloween
phantom boats
glide down the stream

Diana

8.

in the chamber of horrors
you propose we live in sin

Frank
9.

a bridal gown
from the charity shop
you're joking

Diana
10.

for uncle's birthday
an exploding cigar

Frank
11.

dad and the kids
spend the afternoon
combing the beach

Diana
12.

moon viewing obscured
by a sudden storm

Frank
13.

an unknown noise
sends a rabbit dashing
across the meadow

Diana

14.

who owns a stopwatch
for the race against time?

Frank

15.

your name
on the gravestone
now worn away

Diana

16.

christening mugs
along the mantelpiece

Frank
17.

her brand new
designer umbrella
patterned with drops

Diana
18.

frog spawn covers
our little pond

Frank
19.

white gleam
among the wood chips
cherry petal

Diana
20.

the dawn chorus
starts whilst dreaming

Frank

First prize in the Bernard Lionel Einbond Renku Competition 2011.

A Note From the Judges Merrill Ann Gonzales and Paul Miller:

Judging renku is different from judging other kinds of poetry. The judges must take into consideration not only the poetic value of each link, but also, and often more importantly, how the members of the group interact with each other across links, in addition to how they do or don't (usually with good reason) follow the format's many traditions and rules. This year's submissions were interesting and exciting in all those ways, and included both traditional and contemporary formats that included many delightful links. We would like to thank all the participants for the opportunity to read their work. While the winning renku is a fairly traditional Nijuin, that was not the reason we chose it. We felt a strong, playful rapport between the poets, started nicely in the hokku and wakiku, and then carried throughout the remainder of the verses. There were a good variety of voices and tones, some nice seasonal runs, and a pleasant expanse of topics. After careful examination and discussion of all the submissions we have decided to award the First Prize to Twelfth Night by Frank Williams and Diana Webb. Our congratulations to the winners!

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