International Photo-Haiku Contest

The 10th Setouchi-Matsuyama International Photo-Haiku Contest of Your photo-haiku in English

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  2. The 10th Setouchi-Matsuyama International Photo-Haiku Contest of Your photo-haiku in English

Contest Comments by David McMurray

This contest attracted 4,113 entries, of which 1,587 were photo-haiku composed in English. From 401 your photo-haiku submissions about the sea, the preliminary judge short-listed extraordinarily beautiful photos and/or well-crafted haiku text. The final judge culled previously published photos and text copied from haiku books and awarded qualifiers a grand-prix, 2 awards for excellence, and 7 honorable mentions. Photo-haiku from Canada, Croatia, USA, Italy, Japan, India, and Australia rose to the top of the competition which attracted photo-haikuists living in 36 countries.

Grand Prix

CanadaDebbie Strange

rippling waves
you teach me how
to film the wind

Comment from the Judge: David McMurray

The haiku text speaks to the brilliantly colored photo. Together they resonate superbly as a narrative photo-haiku. A teacher could have been standing alongside when the photo-haikuist narrated action caught in the picture. The camera faced sunlight at a low angle. Deciduous tree branches in the foreground are bare and conifers on the island don’t move in the winter scene. Located possibly at a lake near to where the poet lives, rather than the sea, the water’s reflective surface seems to be close to freezing but for the rippling wind. It was an “aha, I understand now” photo-haiku moment that is deserving of the highest prize in the contest.

Award for Excellence

CroatiaDjurdja Vukelic Rozic

fish pond
a poor boy’s

Comment from the Judge: David McMurray

The photo-haikuist reminds us that not everyone can go to the sea. But we are all free to dream of the sea. Living near a forested hilly area rather than the clear Adriatic Sea, the author nonetheless skillfully combined a six-word story with a close-up shot of a railed wooden bridge by a waterhole. The synergy helped us to youthfully imagine what it could be like to sail on the bridge of a tall ship on the open seas.

Award for Excellence

USAPat Geyer

ocean waves
the slow time
in between

Comment from the Judge: David McMurray

This is a pensive, carefully paced photo-haiku. The ellipsis at the end of the first line suggests a pause, the passing of the crest of a wave. It is noteworthy for its pithy text of 3 syllables on 3 lines matched to an intriguing photo of an amazing wave. The swell conjures all sorts of imaginative thoughts about what might be rising up from beneath it. Even though we want to rush to see the next roller, the author keeps us in a meditative trough.

Honorable Mentions

  • ItalyAntonio Sacco

    winter beach -
    the fisherman's rod
    as sundial

  • JapanKazuo Horinouchi

    occasionally drizzling rain
    a cargo ship
    as a peace carrier

  • CanadaLuminita Suse

    treasure hunting
    a crab discovers
    our flip-flops

  • IndiaVandana Parashar

    ebbing tide
    more and more
    of me revealed

  • JapanJiro Oba

    to mourn
    autumn passing by--
    Dutch ship’s staysail

  • CroatiaMihovila Ceperic-Biljan

    deserted shore
    in a folded fishing net
    the shells of summer

  • AustraliaMarietta McGregor

    the way we grasp
    treasured memories
    sounding whale