During March and April 2021, the Mukai Farm & Garden on Vashon Island will sponsor its first Haiku Festival, a juried competition for people of all ages to submit their haiku poems to compete in the following categories:
• Heritage Award: Most eloquent portrayal of the history or some other aspect of the Mukai Farm & Garden
• Nature: Most elegant and poignant depiction of some aspect of nature
• Social Justice Award: Shedding unique insight on social equity
• The Young Poet Awards: Best haiku for 1)children (grades K-6) and 2)young adult (grades 7-12)
• People’s Choice: Most popular haiku
• Other categories that may occur to the jurors
Haiku is a poem of three lines, with the pattern of 5-7-5 sounds, or syllables. Matsuo Basho, Japan’s most famous poet described haiku as, “Simply what is happening in this place at this moment.”
“Last year’s Haiku Festival drew 250 entries from all over the world, from people aged five to ninety-five,” said Rita Brogan, President of the Mukai Farm & Garden Board. “This year we look forward to an equally delightful burst of creativity from poets from Vashon and beyond.”
Vashon’s Mukai Farm & Garden is a place that nurtures awareness of Asian-Pacific culture and history. The former strawberry farm has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places as one of the few surviving Japanese farmsteads in the US. “In many ways, the Mukai property embodies the Japanese experience in America, “said Ms. Brogan. “The Haiku Festival and Contest, gives us a way to channel the power of poetry to express our appreciation of Japanese culture, our shared life on the island as well as to invite people to visit our lovely gardens in April—all while practicing ‘social distancing!’” she added.
The deadline for entries is April 24th. There will be a limit of three entries per person. Entries must be submitted electronically on the form posted on Mukai’s website at www.mukaifarmandgarden.org . Entries will be displayed (with appropriate distancing) throughout the Mukai Farm & Garden throughout the month of May.
Between April 24 and April 30, we encourage visitors to vote for their favorite haiku for the People’s Choice awards online or at the Mukai Farm & Garden kiosk.
According to context rules, all entries must follow the haiku convention of 17 syllables. Please include the name, contact information and age (optional) of author. Haiku participants are encouraged to become a member of Friends of Mukai.