Haiku Invitational Runs Now to May 31st

2 Mar

The Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival is an annual festival that celebrates the return of spring in our communities. Every year the Festival hosts the Haiku Invitational, a contest that awards the best haiku in five different categories including: Youth, British Columbia, Canada, USA and International. Since it began in 2006, the Festival’s Haiku Invitational has attracted entries from more than 36 countries in North America, Asia, Europe, Africa and South America. This year’s invitational opens March 1 and submissions can be made online until May 31 www.vcbf.ca.

The winning haiku for this year will be judged by an’ya, a widely published and award winning poet from Oregon; past editor of “haigaonline”, “Ribbons”, and “moonset”, publications that feature Japanese poetic forms. She is currently Oregon’s Regional Coordinator for the Haiku Society of America.

The theme and challenge for this year’s competition is to capture the inspiration experienced with the blossoming of the cherry tree and to celebrate Vancouver’s heritage as it reaches its 125th anniversary. The Haiku Invitational welcomes both poems of fewer than 17 syllables and haiku that follow a 5-7-5 syllable pattern, such as the 2009 winning Haiku by Katrina Sheperd of Scotland:

cherry blossoms
no need to decorate
the birthday cake

To celebrate this milestone year for the City of Vancouver, the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival is pleased to announce the unveiling of the Haiku Installation, a textile installation celebrating festival haiku, designed and created by the local and honoured landscape artist, Jane Durante. The haiku will be in English and Japanese represented through images created by a Japanese shodo artist and a western calligrapher.

The Haiku Invitational has inspired other programs such as the Haiku Inspirations Exhibition that will be hosted at the Federation Gallery from April 12 to May 1 and an interactive Haiku Bench created by Harald Merk from Bing Thom Architects and hosted at Pacific Centre, Vancouver.

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