Poets to Share Haiku

Those of you living close to Chicago may be interested in the upcoming haiku event below, sponsored by the Midwest Region of the Haiku Society of America of which I am Coordinator. People from eight Midwest states and beyond attend the five meetings we hold a year. Meetings are free and open to the public.

Incidentally, the word haiku is both singular and plural, and the Japanese pronounce it with the accent on the first syllable, HIGH-koo. Americans, of course, tend to pronounce it with the accent on the second syllable. I know that Jack Kerouac referred to haiku in the plural as “haikus.” While dictionaries say that is acceptable, we of HSA use the singular like the Japanese. Besides, “haiku” sounds more pleasing to the ear than “haikus.”

If you don’t live in the Midwest area, consult the Haiku Society of America website, http://www.hsa-haiku.org, that will give you information about haiku in your region. Contact its regional coordinator.

Haiku Society of America members will meet to share and critique participants’ poems, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 11 at Winnetka Public Library, 768 Oak St., Winnetka, IL. Free and open to the public, pre-registration is required.

Those who don’t have haiku to share may attend to listen and learn.

Haiku is short meditative poetry that originated in Japan in the 1600s. It is gaining popularity worldwide in many languages. Often three lines, it has 17 syllables or less, and captures the moment with usually a reference to nature or seasons.

HSA is a not-for-profit, all volunteer organization to promote the writing and appreciation of haiku in English. Its website is http://www.hsa-haiku.org.
HSA’s Midwest Region holds five meetings a year in the north suburbs that include speakers, readings, retreats, and festivals. It will hold its 2012 Haikufest from 2 to 3:30 p.m., Saturday, April 28 at Skokie Public Library, 5215 Oakton St., Skokie, IL. There will be a brief introduction to haiku and Japanese art (haiga) that combines haiku. There will also be haiku readings and an audience haiku contest with prizes.

To pre-register for the February meeting, contact Charlotte Digregorio, midwest regional coordinator, c-books@hotmail.com.

For more information on haiku and tanka, the latter another Japanese-style poetic form, search other posts of this blog. It’s been my experience, that people who learn haiku, learn it from reading a lot of it on a regular basis. However, as a beginner, it is helpful to attend critique sessions, too. Since other beginners attend, too, all are in good company.

Copyright 2012 by Charlotte Digregorio.

About Charlotte Digregorio

I publish books. I have marketed and/or published 55 titles. These books are sold in 46 countries to bookstores, libraries, universities, professional organizations, government agencies, and book clubs. In 2018, I was honored by the Governor of Illinois for my thirty-eight years of accomplishments in the literary arts, and my work to promote and advance the field by educating adults and students alike. I am the author of seven books including: Haiku and Senryu: A Simple Guide for All; Everything You Need to Know About Nursing Homes; You Can Be A Columnist; Beginners' Guide to Writing & Selling Quality Features; Your Original Personal Ad; and my latest, Ripples of Air: Poems of Healing. The first four books have been adopted as supplemental texts at universities throughout the U.S., Canada, India, Pakistan, and Catalonia. They are sold in 43 countries, and are displayed in major metropolitan cultural centers. These books have been reviewed, recommended, and praised by hundreds of critics, librarians, and professors worldwide. I am also the author of a poetry collection: "Shadows of Seasons: Selected Haiku and Senryu by Charlotte Digregorio." Two of my books have been Featured Selections of Writer's Digest Book Club. I am regularly interviewed by major print, radio, and television organizations throughout the U.S. I regularly sign books at libraries, chain bookstores, and university bookstores, and do poetry readings at art centers, cafes, tea houses, and galleries. I was recently nominated for two Pushcart Prizes in poetry. I have won fifty-nine poetry awards, writing fourteen poetic forms. My poetry has been translated into eight languages. I do illustrated solo poetry exhibits 365 days a year in libraries, galleries, corporate buildings, hospitals, convention centers, and other venues. My individual poems have been displayed at supermarkets, apparel and wine shops, banks, botanic gardens, restaurants, and on public transit. I have been nominated and listed in "The International Authors and Writers Who's Who" in Cambridge, England and in the "Who's Who In Writers, Editors & Poets U.S./Canada." I hosted my own radio program, "Poetry Beat," on public broadcasting. My poetry has been featured on several library web sites including those of Shreve Memorial Library in Louisiana and Cornell University's Mann Library. My background includes positions as a feature editor and columnist at daily newspapers and as a magazine editor. I have been a public relations director for a non-profit organization. I am self-employed as a public relations/marketing consultant, having served a total of 118 clients in 23 states for the past several decades . In other professional areas, I have been on university faculties, teaching French, Italian, and Writing. I regularly give lectures and workshops on publishing, journalism, publicity, poetry, and creativity to business and professional groups, and at writer's conferences, universities, literary festivals, non-profit organizations, and libraries. I have been a writer-in-residence at universities. There have been about 400 articles written about me in the media. I have served on the Boards of writers and publishers organizations. My positions have included Board Secretary of the Northwest Association of Book Publishers. I served for five years as Midwest Regional Coordinator of The Haiku Society of America, and for two years as its Second Vice President.
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