May 2024, Poetry

5th Annual Mukai Haiku Festival Winners

Hosted by the Mukai Farm & Garden, the Mukai Haiku Festival 2024 received over a hundred haiku from 12 countries around the world. We are delighted to present the prize winners and their haiku, below.

Category, Heritage

First place:
On Vashon Island
where our ancestors made home—
the strawberries’ scent!
~ Geoffrey Philp (Jamaica)

Second place:
Spring at Mukai Farm
Cherry trees toss confetti
Offering their peace
~ Grace McRae (US)

Third place:
we who imagine
place in past & future tense
are weaving the world
~ Brit Myers (US)

Category, Nature

First place:
smell of fresh-cut grass
all the carousel horses
run in slow motion
~ Cezar Ciobica (Romania)

Second place:
winter evening…
a blade of green grass
in a sparrow’s beak
~ Shiva Bhusal (Nepal)

Third place:
the ongoing foot
of the slug – leaving me
glistening thoughts
~ Rick Clark (US)

Category, Reflections

First place:
border checkpoint
I leave my past and shadow
behind the red line
 ~ Chen-ou Liu (Canada)

Second place:
snow falling outside
gnocchi is drying inside
Mom’s big heart glowing
 ~ Renée Roman (US)

Third place:
recall from afar
fragrance of cherry blossoms –
facets of freedom
~ Monica Kakkar (India / USA)

Category, Social Justice

First place:
countless haiku now
written about sunflowers . . .
a war rages on
~ Valentina Ranaldi-Adams (US)

Second place:
begging refugee
in her plastic cup
so many drops
~ Beata Czeszejko (Poland)

Third place:

Banned library books
censorship wearing sheepskin
save rainbow pages
~ Melinda Dubbs (US)

Category, Young Poets (ages 1-12)

First place:
The birds are singing
By the water in the woods
Playing hide and seek
~ Cedar Olson (US)

Second place:
The birds are chirping
The leaves are green and shiny
Shapes between the trees
~ Griffin Davies-Harkins (US)

Third place:
Skates swerve across ice
Crisp snow blankets piny trees
Winter has arrived
~ Ashley Schloss (US)

Category, Young Poets (ages 13-18)

First place:
strawberry season
I’m trying for the first time
my mom’s red lipstick
~ Teo Contac (France)

Second place:
The water is blue
The blue is as still as stone
The stone all scattered
~ Axel Codd (US)

Third place:
patiently waiting
for the moment to tell her
my unsaid feelings
~ Eljohn Roque Santosildes (Philippines)

May 9, 2024

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