Report on the
ukiaHaiku Festival 2008
Transliteration of the German Introduction to Cyberpoesie, 2007
Report on the
ukiaHaiku Festival 2008
The Sixth Annual ukiaHaiku Festival Celebration and Awards Ceremony was again held in the Ukiah Conference Center at 200 School Street on April 27 from 2 – 4 p.m. The event was opened with remarks from John McCowen, Council Member, in which he reinforced the concept of making Ukiah the haiku capitol by sprinkling his comments with his own apt and well-made haiku.
David Smith-Ferri, the Poet Laureate of Ukiah, was chosen on the basis of his newest book, Battleground Without Borders: The Iraq Poems of his encounters with the people of Iraq before and now during the Occupation. The book's website.
As Poet Laureate it is his job to coordinate the whole festival and with the help of his wife, Sherrie Smith, he welcomed the crowd of over 300 of all ages. From him we learned this festival was dedicated to Dori Anderson, the retired librarian of the Ukiah branch who had died in last fall. It was her idea to encourage the spread of the poetry genre haiku and connect it with Ukiah and from her enthusiasm and encouragement; the Poet Laureate Committee took on the job. Nearly 1500 haiku for the various contests were received from nine states, Canada, New Zealand, and Romania generating the thought that maybe the name should be changed to the “ukiaHaiku Festival International.”
David Smith-Ferri then introduced the keynote speaker, Donna Kerr, the Willets-based Mendocino County librarian by asking her to first recount her memories of working with Dori Anderson. Kerr gave a warm and glowing account of the way Dori Anderson worked and got others to work. It was very inspiring.
Donna Kerr began her talk by comparing the writing of haiku for a contest to an “extreme sport” because of the many rules to be learned and observed and the high quality the winning poems were expected to have. Briefly, in her warm chatty way, she covered all the important points of haiku reading and writing.
The musical entertainment was by the Chinese Orchestra from the Developing Virtue School led by Agis Gan who remarked “Ukiah is as small as haiku itself.” The composition the 25-piece orchestra performed was a traditional Chinese melody played on authentic instruments.
Fran Resendez, read her engaging and instructive poem, “After The Contest, I Console My Non-Winning Haiku” to warm applause.
Sherrie Smith-Ferri then introduced the members of the Poet Laureate Committee and judges of this year’s contest: Michael Riedell, Dan Barth, David Smith-Ferri, Armand Brint, Eliza Wingate, Kate Marianchild, Donna Kerr, and Jane Reichhold.
Then came the moment all the wiggly children were waiting for. For each contest, beginning with the K – 3 Grade all topics, the present winners came to the front and read or spoke their haiku into the lowered microphone. In each category books were awarded for first place and, certificates given for the second and third places and three honorable mentions. Then Dan Barth introduced the winners of the 4 – 6 Grade all topics and the 10 – 12 Grade. Each of these sections then had another set of winners whose poems were about Ukiah.
The adult winners were in three categories: Haiku about Ukiah, traditional form and contemporary. To quote from Zack Sempsel’s article in the Ukiah Daily Journal: “While presenting the winner of the adult contemporary haiku category, Jane Reichhold, overcome with emotion, had to pause while reading aloud the creation of Sylvia Forges-Ryan – a tribute to fallen soldiers:
A soldier’s headstone –
between one date and another
so short a line”
The other contemporary haiku winners were: Second Place – Earnest Berry, New Zealand; Third Place – Barbara Snow, Eugene OR; First and Third Honorable Mention – Kirsty Karkow and Second Honorable Mention – Garry Gay. The winners in the Adult, Traditional may be known to Lynx readers. First Place – Timothy Russell, Toronto, Ohio; Second Place Barbara Mackay, Fort Bragg; Third Place - Eduard Tara, Iasi, Romania; Honorable Mentions – Mickey Chalfin, Albion; Sherry Weaver-Smith, San Ramon; Catherine J.S. Lee, Eastport, ME.
Afterwards everyone gathered around the refreshments table and then began reading all the entries submitted to the contest which had been mounted on large sheets and pinned to the wall. There was a book table and a display of origami by Louise Yale, from the Ukiah Folding Organization (UFO). The Poet Laureate Committee had copies of booklets of all the winning poems and their authors available for $5 which goes to finance next year’s event.
rows of folding chairs
scattering of young poets
sitting on their hands
coolest young winners
enjoying their big moment
her hat magically appears
a folded program
trooping up to stage
reliving winning moment
many knees knocking
Transliteration of the German Introduction to Cyberpoesie, 2007
Werner Reichhold – www.wernerreichhold.com
The two works presented as online books on the website, are titled Cyberpoetry for the English text, and Cyberpoesie for the works in German. They went online on September 11, 2007, and contain the poems from the years 1989-2007.
Many of the well-known poetic genres appear here in a new way put together as inter-genre poetry. Arranged in sequences, the genres meet in a mysterious order with and against each other, lift themselves up, fall upon each other, drift out of balance, change their paradigm and return loaded with new perspectives. They seem to dissolve until surprisingly help is at hand to get them back on their feet. In Cyberpoetry, we follow a mixture of verbal forms blending into each other just as if to build a new home. Here every single genre can prove itself to become a valuable member of a team that all together constitutes a different poetic installation. Time-tested line orders are at one location preserved, at other occasions destroyed. When a single integrated genre survived it was because it made it through a successful passage as part of a poetic strategy in which it defended its right and place according to a number of so far untested sensibilities.
The genres want to give their best even if it will be the end of them. If they don’t love each other anymore then they may express hate as a part of many promising tongued pleasures. The remains of older customs, former agreements, and superstition are bashfully hiding because of fear that a progressive line above could chop them down like an axe. The end of the genres will be steered against by the resurrection of this inter-genre poetry. Whether it will serve our conception of the oneness of all appearances in nature – that must be proven.
In Cyberpoetry, verse forms from the Middle East and Far East see themselves being integrated. They trust themselves to be ordered by their neighbors’ behavior, feel protected where they alone had been threatened with isolation. From that position, where they now care for the movement inside an enlarged textual concept, they stand for the greater poetic architecture in the smallest space.
Fairy tales and fables, free verse, ghazal, haiku, tanka, and renga, even reports, lessons and sketches blend themselves to work simultaneously by making us forget their secretive past.
Throughout the years of expanding insights into foreign cultures and languages, the author’s decision to use either English or German happened without intent, without a controlled voting process. The chosen language or the written form followed an inner concept that is almost identical to processes in Werner Reichhold’s oeuvre of drawings and three-dimensional steel installations created and exhibited in the years of 1958-1990.
When the works of a single author appear in two languages they obviously toss around questions as such:
Does one language retreat back in order to leave the other one advance to a more promising effect?
Related things could be said in both languages, in English or in German. However the construction of our eyes, ears and tongues up to the conversions in the delta of our nerve bundles wish to differentiate. Therefore a poem composed in English works to a different effect than a text arranged in German.
Where is stumbling and falling over a text more painful and therefore more helpful?
In which configuration of language does the speech serve erotic excitement undeniably, urgent?
Greetings to surprises: leaps, inconsistencies and paradoxes, as they accompany us in everyday life, wiggle through the fields of the texts, similar to the way an untold number of bacteria and virus do their job in our circulation systems. How to bring them into play?
Attempt to show why the silence in one language incites wordiness in the other.
What happens when a German writer invents word play in English?
Whereto does it lead the reader when, for example, a text from Virginia Woolf or James Joyce (in Cyberpoetry) relates to a later living author who pulls them into a symbiotic work? Does inspiration gets another kick forward when the living author not only exchanges in a common work but advances to construct an artistic variation of symbiotic poetry?
Which ringing over the spoken word above the original happens when the vocal voice would be symbiotically extended, for example in the German Sequence # 2?
What would come to light by filming the English sequence #1?
Today, whoever thinks about his/her own work in the fields of literature loves to borrow the computer as a tool and welcomes its innate potential. Fossil forests / their oil, coal and uranium - they are the sources of energy that now come into play; we bow down before them. It is in the computer where light becomes a medium; it permits on the screen a display of script. In a smoothly steered manner the vertical column of the script can be scrolled out of the stored cache. Who wishes to lead our thinking and business in a new way, can productively interfere with ready-made material. In the offer lies the possibility that texts and pictures can be rearranged after one’s own intentions and immediately printed out. Whoever has an archive of photo or video material is invited into the work areas of symbiotically enlarged poetry.