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A Writer On Writing: Haiku And Haibun

Have you ever heard of the haibun?

Sally Jenkins brings news of two competitions organised by the British Haiku Society.

Most of us a probably familiar with the Haiku poetic form (even if, like me, you can never remember exactly how many syllables there should be) but have you heard of the Haibun?

According to the leaflet for the British Haiku Awards 2011 http://britishhaikusociety.org.uk/2011/07/the-british-haiku-awards-2011/, a Haibun must contain at least 100 words of prose plus at least one haiku, and must not exceed 2,500 words in length. The haibun should be given a title. Examples of Haibun can be found here. http://britishhaikusociety.org.uk/2011/03/results-of-the-british-haiku-awards-2010-haibun-section/
It looks a pretty challenging form of poetry (and prose).

There is £125 first prize in both the Haiku and Haibun sections of the awards. The Haiku section also has two runners-up prizes of £50 and the leaflet states ‘as the number of entries for the haibun category increases it is hoped eventually to bring this into line with the haiku category and award runner-up prizes as well’. I take it that this means there are fewer entries for the haibun – so it may well be worth having a go! Closing date is 31 January 2012 and full details are on the website.


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