Haiku Society of America Merit Book Awards for 1988

Haiku Society of America

Merit Book Awards for 1988

for books published in 1987

Jerry Kilbride, Geraldine Clinton Little, and Charles D. Nethaway, Jr.

Due to the increased volume of quality haiku publications produced every year, the HSA Merit Book Awards became an annual rather than biennial event, starting in 1987.


First Place

Adele Kenny. Migrating Geese. Muse-Pie Press, Passaic, New Jersey, 1987.

turning in bed
our backs

on the face of the pond
in my eyes


Second Place

Donald McLeod. Small Town, Big City. All Night Press, Sherman Oaks, California, 1987.

old photo curling
on the dresser . . .
grandfather touches his toes

L. A. stargazing —
half of them come down
and land


Third Place

Edward J. Rielly. Family Portrait. Advance Press, Carmel, California, 1987.

family portrait
under an apple tree,
only the mother missing

among the photographs
yellowed clippings of marriages,
of deaths


Honorable Mention

John Wills. Reed Shadows. Burnt Lake Press, Windsor, Ontario, Canada, and Black Moss Press, Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada, in association with Chant Press, New York, New York, 1987.

walking along
with the cows to drink
at the river

laurel in bloom
she lingers awhile
at the mirror


Honorable Mention

Vincent Tripi. Haiku Pond: A trace of the trail . . . and Thoreau. Vide Press, San Francisco, California, 1987.

     Drop of water
In my navel—
     Leaving Walden Pond.

     A bird, just one,
A stone, just one—
     Under the snow.



The purpose of the Haiku Society of America's Merit Book Awards is to recognize the best haiku and related books published in a given year in the English language. Every year sees a fresh crop of fine individual collections, anthologies, translations, critical studies and innovative forms.

In the past, the HSA Merit Book awards were partially supported by a memorial gift. Leroy Kanterman, cofounder of the Haiku Society of America, made a gift to support the first place award in memory of his wife Mildred Kanterman. See the archives of Merit Book Awards.

The Merit Book Awards competition is open to the public. Books must have been published in the previous year and must clearly contain a printed previous year copyright. A member, author, or publisher may submit or nominate more than one title. At least 50 percent of the book must be haiku, senryu, or haibun, or prose about these subjects (books mostly of tanka, for example, are not eligible). HSA will also consider collections that have only appeared in an e-book/digital book format. Two print copies of the digital book may be sent by the publisher. Books published by HSA officers are eligible for this award. Books published by the national HSA organization, however, are not eligible.

Winners by Year (with judges' comments):

2023 | 2022 | 2021 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002 | 2001 | 2000 | 1999 | 1998 | 1997 | 1996 | 1995 | 1994 | 1993 | 1992 | 1991 | 1990 | 1989 | 1988 | 1987 | 1985 | 1983 | 1981 | 1978 | 1975 |

See the contest rules for entering the next Haiku Society of America Merit Book Awards competition.