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THE SEA SHELL GAME #18
Judge: Jane Reichhold

(We will see if I can really do a quickie; without preaching. Just go for the juice and the winner. . . )


1

We drove the haul road,
saw aspen, birch in color,
winter's touch of gold.



2

two striped ribbons
hung over the trees
double rainbow


Ku #2 wins. Any ???

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3

Yellow night blotted
Laughing in the garden
The hot air quivers.


4

Dawn


Another quiet dawn,
The sun rises yet again.
Another day blooms!


Tough. Neither is a quote-unquote haiku. The title wipes out #4 so #3 wins.

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5

this and that a turn
cold within one learning room
strange faces alone


6

Teasel, dark and sere,
tribute to winter's force on
spring's pastel palette.


Though #5 looks like a haiku it is stuffed so full of nonessentials that #6 gets the match for clearly presenting a scene.

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7

hovering in awareness
between asleep and awake
the poem dreams



8

Luna rises, silver star
Your kiss, thin and sharp like pain
How can love kill me?


Anyone think #8 is a haiku? Full of abstract images, however, #7 wins.

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9

the calm singing brook
hides itself under the rock.
its song turns quiet



10

Our tears flow daily:
Salt rivers slowing feeding
Oceans of despair.


Two water poems yet one is clearly in haiku territory and one not. Ku #9 wins.

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11

Red flower wilting
Under the hot summer sun
All too soon falling



12

Sea salt breezes flow
Lightly caressing sand dunes
Sunlight runs away


Two very similar ku, but one is positive and one negative. Haiku sides with the up-beat - #12 .

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13

chopping carrots
slicing crinkly cabbage
rainbow soup


14

Rain in silver suits,
tap-dancing on the tin roof:
a spring performance.


I've warned you about personification of nature. Ku #13 wins.

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15

Adorned with doves
old Monterey Pine
sheds all excess



16

loves' petals full bloom
suddenly thorns prick my heart
tears of blood flow deep


Poem #16 is the kind of poetry that makes haiku so interesting. Thus, #15 wins this match.

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ROUND TWO


2

two striped ribbons
hung over the trees
double rainbow


3

Yellow night blotted
Laughing in the garden
The hot air quivers.


The many verbs in #3 give a very choppy feeling to the ku. At least two of the lines should be hooked together by syntax - not thumbtacks. So, #2 wins here.

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6

Teasel, dark and sere,
tribute to winter's force on
spring's pastel palette.


7

hovering in awareness
between asleep and awake
the poem dreams


Good match here between the concrete and abstract poem. No contest, #6 wins.

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9

the calm singing brook
hides itself under the rock.
its song turns quiet


12

Sea salt breezes flow
Lightly caressing sand dunes
Sunlight runs away


Very similar degree of personification in these two. Both paint pictures of imagination yet #9 has a whiff more of reality.

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13

chopping carrots
slicing crinkly cabbage
rainbow soup


15

Adorned with doves
old Monterey Pine
sheds all excess


Though the poet in me is greatly attracted to the line "sheds all excess", the haiku writer in me is making a raspberry noise. In this way, #13 wins.

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ROUND THREE


2

two striped ribbons
hung over the trees
double rainbow


6

Teasel, dark and sere,
tribute to winter's force on
spring's pastel palette.


Ku #2 with its simple, direct haiku riddle technique wins over the over-complicated #6.

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9

the calm singing brook
hides itself under the rock.
its song turns quiet


13

chopping carrots
slicing crinkly cabbage
rainbow soup


Though #13 looks like a very good haiku, it has those darned choppy lines. Also its focus is on the actor/author. In #9 the author describes something touched only with the mind. Proper haiku behavior. Thus, #9 goes to the final round.

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ROUND FOUR


2

two striped ribbons
hung over the trees
double rainbow


9

the calm singing brook
hides itself under the rock.
its song turns quiet


The simplicity of #2 is closer to haiku than #9. I love the idea in #9 and wish it had been expressed more succinctly. Following the old 5-7-5 rule makes #9 lose by a nose. The winner is:


2

two striped ribbons
hung over the trees
double rainbow


R.S.


Poems copyright © by authors 1999.
Comments copyright © Jane Reichhold 1999.
Feature copyright © AHA Books 1999.

Show me that form, I want to send my haiku to the contest .

I think I need to know more about haiku .

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