Haiku Society of America Merit Book Awards for 1993

Haiku Society of America

Merit Book Awards for 1993

for books published in 1992

Francine Porad and Robert Major

Thank you to all who sent books to be considered for the 1993 Merit Book Awards. We are pleased to have them as a part of the permanent Library Collection of the Haiku Society of America.

The judges had a most difficult time deciding on this year’s Awards, finding each entry worthy of recommendation. Originality, high quality writing and handsome presentation were found throughout. It seemed impossible to compare twenty entries of such diversity!

In addition to the awards listed above, we must mention David Priebe’s calendar, Timepieces Haiku Week-At-A-Glance 1993 (to paraphrase, a haiku a day keeps the doctor away); Pat Shelley’s excellent and penetrating The Rice Papers; Tom Lynch’s sensitive Rain Drips from the Trees; Sanford Goldstein’s remarkable At the Hut of the Small Mind; the unusual novel by D.S. Lliteras, In the Heart of Things; and the meaty San Francisco Anthology, edited by Gay, Kilbride and Tico.


First Place

Geraldine Clinton Little. More Light, Larger Vision. AHA Books, Gualala, California, 1992.

An outstanding collection of tanka. The pattern (established by the Japanese poet Jien in 1190) is sensitively adapted to our age and culture and is a mind-enriching delight to read.


Second Place

Randy Brooks and Lee Gurga, Editors. Midwest Haiku Anthology. Decatur, IL: High/Coo Press, 1992.

A quality haiku collection. The poets’ own words, providing insight into their thinking and the creative process, added another dimension to the work and to our enjoyment of it.


Third Place

Jane Reichhhold. A Dictionary of Haiku. AHA Books, Gualala, California, 1992.

A unique volume which not only presents a fine collection of haiku, but provides inspiration and generates ideas for poets everywhere.


Honorable Mention

David Samuel Block. The Essence of This. 1992.

A distinct voice blending haiku, humor, blockprints and calligraphy.


Honorable Mention

David Cobb. Mounting Shadows. Shalford, England: Equinox Press, 1992.

An original, fresh haiku mind.


Honorable Mention

Ion Codrescu. Drawings Among Haiku. Constanta, Romania, 1992.

The multi-lingual translations broaden the haiku audience that can be reached.


Honorable Mention

Marian Olson. Songs of the Chicken Yard. Rexburg, ID: Honeybrook Press, 1992.

A tour-de-force ringing many changes on the same theme, chickens; a unified whole.



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.