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1st EUROPEAN HAIKU CONGRESS, BAD NAUHEIM, GERMANY, 2005

Bad Nauheim is a small town, less than half an hour north of Frankfurt by slow train; the village of Steinfurth is situated about one kilometer north of the town center. Here on Pentecost weekend, May 14–15, 2005, in the Rose Room (Rosensaal), the 1st European Haiku Congress took place. The gathering was organized by the German Haiku Society. Around 60 poets from more than a dozen European countries and Japan were in attendance. The main portion of the congress consisted of lectures from the various haiku societies; summaries are presented here. After the congress a number of the participating poets composed a renku by email; that text is also reproduced here.


David Cobb (England) delivered the opening speech. His presentation was followed by reports by representatives of 11 participating countries who described, in English or German, the status of haiku in their homelands, usually accompanied by illustrative haiku examples.

During the breaks, congress participants had the opportunity to get to know each other. A tour of Bad Nauheim’s spa facilities was arranged, as was a visit to the Rose Museum (Rosenmuseum) and the haiku stone by Fuyuo Usaki (Japan) at the Steinfurth conference venue. Usaki himself was present and gave each congress participant a book about his haiku and renku trips through Europe. Other events involved a variety of senses, such as an ikebana demonstration by Erika Schwalm of Frankfurt School, a lecture by Kai Falkman on “Images in Haiku and Manga”, a concert of music for haiku and glass trumpet by Peter Knodt, and Ingo Cesaro‘s mobile printing press and “Poems to give away” campaign.

GREETINGS

In his welcoming address, Japanese Consul General Jun’ichi Kosuge expressed his joy at hosting the 1st European Haiku Congress. He paid his respects to the city of Bad Nauheim, its mayor Bernd Rohde, and the president of the German Haiku Society (Deutsche Haiku Gesellschaft, DHG) Martin Berner for the realization of this important haiku event. Consul General Kosuge pointed out that the Rosendorf (Rose Town) Steinfurth and Bad Nauheim have a long haiku tradition. Haiku helps deepen mutual understanding among the peoples of this world, our partners in happy as well as troubled times.

     Even on the smallest islands,
they are tilling the fields,
     skylarks singing.
.
.
Kobayashi Issa1

DHG President Martin Berner thanked the city of Bad Nauheim and its mayor for their generous support, and applauded the members of the Frankfurt Haiku Circle (Frankfurter Haiku-Kreis), especially Erika Schwalm, for organizing the congress. In his welcoming speech Berner explained the focus of the event: representatives of the participating nations would make presentations about the development and current status of haiku, get to know each other, and initiate joint activities.

Heller Rosensaal
Zweige wachsen aus Rosen
Haiku schlägt Brücken
Bright Rosensaal
Branches grow from roses
Haiku builds bridges

Bernd Rohde, Mayor of Bad Nauheim

OPENING LECTURE

In his opening speech David Cobb pointed out the distinction between process and product in haiku poetry: For some authors, the process, the fellowship with other haiku writers, is all that matters. But it is important to find the right balance between the joy of poetry and the quality of the literary result. As a good example, Cobb cited Matsuo Bashō, who traveled all around Japan composing renga with his fellow poets, but would then “close the gates” to work on the haiku.

For the product, the haiku itself, Cobb drew on an analysis by Welsh haiku poet Ken Jones that distinguishes among four categories:

1. The existentially liberating haiku that shows us a moment with a new insight into the meaning of our existence, a moment that lets us feel our being alive. The haiku that lets us accept all things as they are.

2. The simple picture that shows us things as they are, but does not penetrate through the surface of the phenomena to a deeper truth. This is known as shasei, but Masaoka Shiki, who is considered to be the great pioneer of shasei, only recommended it as a temporary goal for newcomers to haiku.

3. The cleverly constructed haiku with a closed metaphor, in which the reader can admire spirit and wit, but which has no real depth.

4. Symbolic haiku that depict a relationship through a picture, but also remain closed and do not break through anywhere.

If haiku is to be accepted as literature, according to Cobb, haiku with depth, the existentially liberating haiku, need to be emphasized more. But such haiku are rarely found in publications. Deep haiku also finds itself in opposition to what Cobb characterizes as the process of haiku poetry.

In exchanges with other haiku poets and in group discussions there is great danger in settling for mediocrity, relying on received methods of haiku composition, welcoming the praise of others and being satisfied with it. That has a leveling effect. Evaluation is too hasty, and especially inspired and inspiring haiku are often neglected because to be effective they need time for processing. So the quality falls by the wayside or good texts are overlooked. Cobb identified two European approaches to a respectable evaluation of haiku texts: Martin Lucas’s clamshell game and the Haiku website, but Cobb’s criticism should always be borne in mind because it basically applies everywhere.

Cobb’s second point was the importance of establishing haiku in the several countries and languages, even if that means temporarily ignoring the international dimension of haiku. Every country and every language should integrate the haiku into its own culture and make it feel at home there—and why should one country’s haiku not be different from the haiku of other countries?

PRESENTATIONS FROM PARTICIPATING COUNTRIES

The main portion of the congress consisted of lectures from the various haiku societies. We have summarized them briefly and added one, two, or three haiku from each country, some of which were read during the presentation and some of which were selected later.

The Netherlands (and Flanders)

Max Verhart presented the situation in the Dutch-speaking area. The first published haiku by a Dutchman was by Hendrik Doeff (1777–1835), who worked in Nagasaki. It was not until around 1980, however, that haiku began to become at home in Dutch. In that year the Haiku Kring Nederland (HKN; Netherlands Haiku Circle) was founded; today it boasts about 200 members. In Belgium, the Haikoe Centrum Vlaanderen (HCV; Flanders Haiku Center) has 90 members. There are also haiku circles on the regional level.

Vuursteen, the quarterly publication of HKN and HCF, was founded in 1981, making it the oldest haiku magazine still in existence in Europe. There are also anthologies and individual publications from small publishers. Verhart urged calmness in the face of ignorance and hostility to the haiku on the part of the literary press. We shouldn’t vie for literary recognition, Verhart said, but rather concentrate on writing excellent haiku, even if recognition by the national literary establishment would be beneficial.

ze glijdt het bad in
het zacht voelende water
lijkt op zijn adem

she slides into the bath
the gentle water
is like his breath


stille zondag
de schaduw van de iep
doet zijn ronde

quiet Sunday
the elm’s shadow
makes its rounds


kijk, die olifant—
langzaam wordt hij twee hondjes
wolken in de wind

look, that elephant
slowly turns into two dogs
clouds in the wind
sie gleitet ins Bad
das sanfte Wasser
gleicht seinem Atem



Paul Mercken2


stiller Sonntag
der Ulmenschatten
macht seine Runde



Max Verhart


schau, der Elefant—
allmählich werden es zwei Hunde
Wolken im Wind



Marianne Kiauta

France

Jean Antonini and Georges Friedenkraft observed that haiku have been written in France since 1903. There was a high point in publications between the world wars, then a creative hiatus from 1945 to 1975. In the two decades, 1980–2000, poets took inspiration from the American Beat poets, such as Jack Kerouac, a new beginning that led to a powerful literary movement beginning in 2000. French poets seek to bring ”a French touch” to their haiku by emphasizing semantics. The social commitment of French poetry can also be found in haiku. The French Haiku Association (Association Française de Haiku) was founded in 2003, but haiku is still marginalized in French literature.

Qu’était ce poème?
Mots? Jambes? Petite pierre? Oubli?
Mon corps d’automne
 
What was that poem?
Words? Legs? Pebble? Forgotten?
My autumn body

 

 
Nous dégraferons
le soutiens-gorge de l’aube
à perpétuité
 
We’ll unhook
dawn’s bra
once and for all
Was war dieses Gedicht?
Wörter? Beine? Kiesel? Vergessen?
Mein herbstlicher Körper



Jean Antonini




Wir werden den Büstenhalter
der Morgendämmerung aufhaken
für immer



Georges Friedenkraft

Germany (and Austria)

Martin Berner explained that the haiku came to Germany via French translations in the 1920s and 1930s. Some well-known poets such as Rainer Maria Rilke experimented with this form of poetry. Haiku, a 1962 publication by the Austrian Imma von Bodmershof, was the first known book of haiku in the German-speaking world. Many German-language haiku follow the tradition of interpretation, mostly to their disadvantage. For a long time, too much emphasis was placed on form, specifically the 17-syllable scheme. Haiku still has a literary outsider in German-speaking countries. The German Haiku Society attaches great importance to the activities of the regional groups and haiku circles.

ein Krähenflügelschatten
und alles
fällt wieder ins Dunkel




Ein Fenster geht auf
im oberen Stock
niemand zu sehen

shadow of a crow’s wing
and everything
falls into darkness again
 
Martin Berner (Germany)
 

A window opens
upstairs
there’s no one to see
 
Dietmar Tauchner (Austria)

Serbia and Montenegro

Dragan J. Ristić referred to 1927 as the date of the first translation of Japanese haiku from other European languages into Serbian. But it wasn’t until the 1950s and 1960s that the first haiku were written in Serbia itself. The first Serbo-Croatian magazine (Haiku) appeared between 1977 and 1981 in what is now Croatia. The difficult period of the war in the 1990s saw a dawn in Serbian haiku literature, in which many haiku clubs and magazines were founded, though often with short lifetimes. There is no all-Serbian association, but there are many haiku authors, books, anthologies, and competitions. The haiku is quite popular in Serbia, but is still not appreciated enough by the literary establishment.

ein Falter folgt mir
und flattert ein Stück mit
auf dem Sonnenweg
a moth follows me
and flutters just a little
along the sun’s path
 
Dragan J. Ristić

Slovenia

Alenka Zorman spoke about the situation in Slovenia. It was not until the 1970s that the first translations of Japanese haiku appeared. The Haiku Club of Slovenia (Haiku Društvo Slovenije) founded in 1997, today around 40 members. The HCS publishes a magazine Letni časi (The Seasons) with two double issues per year, with a circulation of 200 copies. The literary club Apokalipsa also deals with haiku and organizes an international haiku competition every year and publishes haiku from time to time in his journal Apokalipsa. Haiku is also taught in Slovenian elementary and secondary schools, and there is an annual haiku competition for young people. Haiku is not universally recognized as a literary form, but the country’s major newspapers publish articles about haiku and reviews of books.

počitek v senci—
v ritmu mojega diha
skarabej
 
resting in the shade—
in the rhythm of my breath
a scarab beetle
Rast im Schatten—
im Rhythmus meines Atems
ein Mistkäfer



Alenka Zorman3

Romania

Mihaela Popescu read Radu Patrichi’s report, which she had translated. Haiku reached Romania via France before World War II. The first Romanian haiku were probably written during World War II, but it wasn’t until 1990 that the number of publications began to grow. The Haiku Society of Constanța, founded in 1992, meets once a month and once or twice a year publishes the journal Albatros, with articles in Romanian and English. Haiku meetings and anthologies are organized. Other haiku associations also exist and publish magazines, such as the Romanian Haiku Society (Societatea Română de Haiku, SRH) in Bucharest, dating from 1991 which publishes its journal, Haiku, every six months. Haiku poets also arrange programs in schools. “The Romanian was born for poetry,” wrote Patrichi at the end of his presentation.

O scrisoare de dragoste
in buzunarul de lângă inimă …
floarea de trandafir
 
The love letter
in the pocket next to his heart—
a rose
 
 
Tunete și ploaie
acorduri de pian
îmi potolesc nelinistea
 
Thunder and rain
chords from the piano
calm my anxiety
 
 
vorbind cu melcul
ajuns pe gardul verde
privire mirata
 
talking to the snail
on the green fence—
a surprised look
Der Liebesbrief
in der Tasche, nah am Herz—
eine Rosenblume



Vasile Moldovan


Donner und Regen
Klavierakkorde stillen
meine Erregung



Mihaela Popescu


mit der Schnecke sprechen
auf dem grünen Zaun –
ein überraschter Blick



Radu Patrichi

Hungary

Judit Vihar explained that haiku had already come to Hungary in English and French translations at the beginning of the 20th century. Haiku composition had been taken up by impressionist writers, sometimes in free form, sometimes rhymed, sometimes closer to the Japanese form. The popularity of haiku grew in Hungary around the early 1980s, again in different manifestations. The Hungarian Haiku Club was founded in 2000 and currently has about 60–70 members.

Fáradt hajnalon
kényelmesen feküszünk
bombarobbanás
 

Early in the morning
we are comfortable in bed—
a bomb blast
Am frühen Morgen
wir sind gemütlich im Bett—
Bombenterror




Judit Vihar

Estonia

Andres Ehin spoke about the situation in this Baltic country. About 100 Estonians write haiku, but none of them have dedicated themselves exclusively to this genre. There is no haiku society. The first haiku in Estonian were known to have been written before World War I but they have not survived. An anthology of Estonian haiku was published in 1980. A connection between haiku and ancient Estonian folk poems and between the Estonian and Japanese languages ​​emphasizes that there are also similarities between Shintoism and the pre-Christian Estonian religion.

Der Flug der Schwäne
die Wolkenwatte
noch weißer
The flight of the swans
the fluff of clouds
even whiter
 
Andres Ehin

Denmark

Hanne Hansen reported on the development of haiku in Denmark. Some authors poets in Denmark had already experimented with haiku when in 1963, at the time of the Vietnam War, when political activism was much in evidence, Hans-Jørgen Nielsen introduced the genre to wider circles. Since then, many authors have included haiku in their own poetic repertoire, and beginning in about 2000 there has been an increasing number of activities such as essays, anthologies, and participation in renku. The Danish language is very similar to German, so the difficulties in composing haiku in Danish are similar to those in German, for example when reconciling Japanese onji with Danish syllables.

En smal gul stribe
Havens første rosenknop
åbnes mod solen
 
Narrow yellow stripe
The garden’s first rosebud 
opens to the sun
 
 
Orange roser
Klatrende op ad muren
Kun halvvejs endnu
 
Orange roses
Climbing up the walls
still only halfway
 
 
Over lilla lyng
Sensommerens månelys
Fasanen skriger
 
Late summer moonlight
Falls over purple heather
Call of a pheasant
Schmaler gelber Streifen
Die allererste Rosenknospe
In meinem Garten



Sys Matthiesen


Orange Rosen
Die Mauer
erst halb erklettert



Hanne Hansen


Die lila Heide
Das Mondlicht des Spätsommers
Der Schrei des Fasanes



Kate Larsen

Sweden

According to Helga Härle, a review in 1933 of Asatarō Miyamori’s English-language anthology of Japanese haiku was probably the first mention of the genre in Swedish. In 1959 the first translations of Japanese haiku appeared in Swedish and in 1961 the first collection of haiku by a Swedish poet was published. In 1963, a diary-like collection of notes, observations, and haiku was published from the estate of the UN Secretary General Dag Hammarskjöld, who died in 1961. Many classroom materials at all school levels have included haiku since the 1970s, but the haiku studied are mostly identified by their syllable count and possibly a season word. But some well-known poets publish haiku, for example, Tomas Tranströmer in an idiosyncratic way. The Swedish Haiku Society (Svenska Haiku Sällskapet) dates from 1999, publishing anthologies and the journal Haiku and organizing haiku competitions and workshops. The society currently has around 150 members.

en liten hand
genom dagisstaketet—
plockar maskrosbukett
 
a little hand
through the kindergarten fence—
dandelion bouquet
 
 
På dörrhandtaget
möts deras händer
på väg ut
 
On the door handle
their hands meet
on the way out
eine kleine Hand
langt durch den Kita-Zaun—
nach Pusteblumen



Helga Härle



Auf dem Türgriff
ihre Hände treffen sich
auf dem Weg



Kai Falkman

Great Britain

Annie Bachini introduced the British Haiku Society, which was founded in 1990 and has around 300 members, 100 of them living outside the U.K. In addition to the quarterly publication Blithe Spirit, an internal newsletter is also published. In particular, the society organizes events such as readings, workshops, and haiku walks, sponsors conferences and competitions, makes available for rent a haiku poster exhibition, and offers a haiku study kit for schools and training courses. Many anthologies and solo publications have been published in the U.K., mostly by small publishers.

under the sea
a fish becomes human
in an air pocket           
 

 
evening by the river,
red-painted toenails
sinking into silt           
Im Meer
ein Fisch wird menschlich
in einer Luftblase

Annie Bachini

Abend am Fluß—
rote Zehennägel
versinken im Schlick
 
David Cobb

Written reports were received by the congress organizers from representatives of two other countries that did not make formal presentations:

Belgium

Serge Tomé provided information about a rather tragic situation in French-speaking Belgium in that haiku is virtually unknown there. While people in Flanders (the Flemish/Dutch-speaking north) are more culturally drawn to the Netherlands, there is a close cultural bond between the people of French-speaking Wallonia and France. There are barely 20 haiku poets, no haiku society, no haiku circles, no joint meetings of haiku activists, no haiku magazine, and hardly any publications of the genre.

demain la pluie           
la couleur dorée du vin           
dans mon verre 


rain tomorrow
the golden color of wine
in my glass
Morgen Regen
die goldene Farbe des Weins
in meinem Glas
 



Serge Tomé

Bulgaria

A first book with classic Japanese haiku was published in Bulgaria in 1985. In 2000, a haiku club was founded in Sofia, which has around 40 members and meets twice a month. There are also haiku competitions and quite a number of published books. Press coverage of public readings and other haiku activities is is good.

Geruch nach Regen
Ameisen rennen schnell:
„heim, heim, heim!“
Smell of rain
Ants run fast:
“Home, home, home!”
 
Ginka Biliarska

Conclusions

An overall picture emerges from the individual reports. Haiku arrived in Europe in the first third of the 20th century, and attempts at composition in the respective national languages followed shortly thereafter—all of which has been more or less ignored by the official literary establishment from the beginning till today. From 1980 to around 1990 there was a strong surge in the number of publications and in the formation of haiku clubs and societies. Several speakers said that the first attempts in their countries were quite clumsy, but that in the meantime not only had a good understanding of Japanese haiku developed, but also a separate haiku culture, a feeling of being at home with haiku in one’s own language. The fact that haiku is still not given enough attention by mainstream authors and publishers is a source of frustration, sometimes more sometimes less, almost everywhere.

Where does the German-language haiku stand today? Located in the middle of Europe, we ask our questions about haiku, its design and function, and efforts to promote it in our culture, in a similar way everywhere. We can learn from each other, but our answers have to be our own lest we simply repeat ideas that have validity elsewhere under different circumstances but would be unsuitable for us. The answers have to be specific to our own culture in order to facilitate the accession of haiku in our lives.

Syllable count, which was fiercely contested in German-speaking countries until a few years ago, does not seem to be a problem any longer because most haiku poets are composing with fewer than 17 syllables. In some countries, especially in France, there seems to be a closer relationship between haiku and “normal” poetry. It remains to be seen whether this leads to an enrichment of the genre or to a questioning of whether haiku is truly an independent form of literature.

It is interesting that for haiku, unlike other types of poetry, authors’ groups play such an important role; the importance of the individual societies for the promotion of haiku is quite evident. The individual reports suggest that in many European countries, haiku is awarded more attention by the media, the public, and by poets working in other forms of literature than is the case in German-speaking areas.

We view the Congress as a confirmation of the broader path that haiku has tried to follow in the German-speaking area in recent years. The struggle over the text, measured not against an external form received from a foreign culture, but by questioning the inner truth of the text, its depth, its power, and its relevance for other people, is simply indispensable—for each and every author working alone and for poets collaborating in workshops, regional groups, or on the Web.

We have to become less sensitive if our work fails to resonate with other people in the same way it does with ourselves; we have to work more on our poems. It is probably better to be even more critical when it comes to including texts in selection of our work. Perhaps we have to find new forms of criticism and criteria for selection. The potential of haiku for the enrichment of any European culture is obvious: Its pictorial quality and its relevance to the present with the fascination of the moment are unique in European literature. Perhaps the time is slowly coming not only to deal with the internal problems of haiku and its poetic community, but also to address expressly the status of haiku in literature and face other forms of literature more aggressively.

Poetry takes place in silence. The creative process happens in secret, in solitude, so it was very interesting at the meeting to see that conversations with other authors and joint activity to disseminate poetry can also be enriching. That is not a matter of course, but it seemed to us that the Haiku Congress with its productive interactions offered an enormous boost in motivation for all who took part.

REGISTERED PARTICIPANTS

Albania

  • Kujtim Agalliu (canceled)
  • Milianov Kallupi (canceled)
  • Ahmet Mehmeti (canceled)

Austria

  • Dietmar Tauchner

Belgium

  • Serge Tomé

Denmark

  • Hanne Hansen
  • Kate Larsen
  • Sys Matthiesen
  • Dick Pettit

England

  • Annie Bachini
  • David Cobb
  • Kate Hall
  • Graham High
  • Martin Lucas

Estonia 

  • Andres Ehin

France

  • Jean Antonini
  • Georges Friedenkraft

Germany

  • Martin Baumann
  • Christa Beau
  • Winfried Benkel
  • Martin Berner
  • Gerd Börner
  • Inge Börner
  • Ingo Cesaro
  • Jutta Czech
  • Roswitha Erler
  • Volker Friebel
  • Jochen Hahn-Klimroth
  • Georges Hartmann
  • Hubert Jünger
  • Krisztina Kern
  • Marion Klotz
  • Anna-Helene Kurz
  • Ramona Linke
  • Petra Lueken
  • Carola Mathiesen
  • Angelika Muhr
  • Magda Nell
  • Maria Pohlmann
  • Christina Rekittke
  • Waltraud Schallehn
  • Mieko Schroeder
  • Erika Schwalm
  • Ruth Wellbrack
  • Klaus-Dieter Wirth
  • Stefan Wolfschütz
  • Erika Wübbena

Hungary

  • Judit Vihar

Japan

  • Kyoko Nagaki
  • Fuyuo Usaki

Macedonia 

  • Aleksandar Prokopiev (canceled)

Netherlands

  • Marianne Kiauta
  • Paul Mercken
  • Max Verhart

Romania

  • Vasile Moldovan
  • Mihaela Popescu
  • Laura Văceanu

Serbia

  • Dragan J. Ristić

Slovenia

  • Edin Saračević
  • Alenka Zorman

Sweden

  • Kai Falkman
  • Helga Härle

Authors: Volker Friebel and Gerd Börner

Adapted from: Friebel and Börner, “1. Europäische Haikukongress, Teil 1”; freely translated and edited and with English versions of the haiku by the Haikupedia editors

AFTERMATH: “EINE FRÜHE ROSE / AN EARLY ROSE,” THE POST-CONGRESS RENKU

The 1st European Haiku Congress had a poetic aftermath: Dick Pettit from Denmark led the collaboration on a 20-stanza renku (nijūin). The renku was written by email from May 21 through July 15, 2005. Twenty-three participants in the Haiku Congress took part in the composition and contributed their ideas; links by 14 poets were included in the final version, which was titled “Eine frühe Rose / An Early Rose” in tribute to “Rosendorf,” and its hospitality in hosting the congress. Participants were kept up to date via email and were able to follow the growth of the renku, suggest changes, and discuss the translation, which was coordinated by Gerd Börner.

“Eine frühe Rose / An Early Rose” was published on the Deutsche Haiku-Gesellschaft website. Like the congress, this collaborative effort gives hope for closer cooperation between haiku poets in Europe in the future.

Eine frühe RoseAn Early Rose
1Kongreßhalle
zwischen Feder und Papier
eine frühe Rose
mkthe conference room
between pencils and paper
an early rose
mk
2so viele lange Reden
kein Fenster zum Rapsfeld hin
jh-kso many endless speeches
no window to the rape field
jh-k
3die Kelten
verbrannten diesen Wald
für Salz
pm/gbancient Celts
burnt miles of this forest
to make salt
pm/gb
4die Suppe am Mittag
verführt zum Schlemmen …
hh/gba nourishing soup for lunch
I fear I shall eat too much
hh/gb
5Zimtkerzen
für drei lachende Mädchen—
draußen der Mond
escinnamon candles
for three laughing girls—
outside, the moon
es
6am Morgen nach dem Schneefall
die Autos der Nachbarn einfarbig
dta morning after snow
my neighbours’ cars one colour
dt
————————————————————
7Kommt raus, Leute
Elvis hören
auf der Straße rocken
pm/gbCome all you rockers
hear the songs of Elvis
echo in the streets
pm
8der Stadtpark kaum verständlich
ohne Gebrauchsanweisung
rwthe town park hard to fathom
without a book of maps
rw
9Glockengeläut
lauter die Stimme und Scherze
des munteren Stadtführers
mka peal of bells
our wide-awake guide
lifts his voice and jokes
mk
10mit deinem Flüstern werden
Nachtwolken zum sternhellen Traum
az/gbwith your whisper cloudy nights
become a starlit dream
az
11Haiku-Narren
entdecken einander
durch den Rosenstrauch
kfhaiku fools
discover each other
through the rosebush
kf
12bedecke du nur Haar und Augen
ich schau’ durch deine Burkah
pm/gbcover your hair and eyes
I see through your burqa
pm
13Markt in Amman
eine alte Frau ohne Beine
verkauft Streichhölzer
esthe Amman souq
an old women without legs
sells matches
es
14ein vergessener Bunker
vom Herbstwald überwachsen
jh-ka dilapidated bunker
hidden by the autumn wood
jh-k
15Halloween-Mond—
das Murmeln der Seelen
von den Gräbern her
ab/gbHallowe’en moon
the murmurs of souls
from their tombs
ab/gb
16Dichter vor dem Rosenhaus
und der Stein lebt
vm/gbin front of the Rose Museum
poets give life to a stone
vm
————————————————————
17begeisterte Schüler
setzen in Blei und drucken
uns’re tiefsten Gedanken
mkeager pupils
set in type and print
our inmost thoughts
mk
18geübte Hände kritzeln
Männchen auf’s Blatt
mv/jh-kpractised hands make doodles
on the programme notes
mv
19im hellen Saal
Zweige wachsen aus Rosen
Haiku schlägt Brücken
brin the bright hall
straight shoots grow from roses
bridges from haiku
br
20Menschen und Sommerdüfte
ziehen gemeinsam weiter
vm/jh-kpeople leave together
with the summer fragrances
vm

Players (renjuin)

Dick Pettit, coordinator (sabaki)Denmark
mkMarianne Kiauta (3)Netherlands
jh-kJochen Hahn-Klimroth (2)Germany
pmPaul Mercken (3)  Netherlands
hhHanne Hansen  Denmark
esErika Schwalm (2)  Germany
dtDietmar Tauchner  Austria
rwRuth WellbrockGermany
azAlenka ZormanSlovenia
kfKai Falkman    Sweden
abAnnie Bachini England
vmVasile Moldovan (2)      Romania
mvMax Verhart  Netherlands
brBernd RohdeGermany
gbGerd Börner, translatorGermany

The following poets sent in verses for the renku which do not appear here, or were active observers of the proceedings:

Jean Antonini (France), Martin Berner (Germany), Ingo Cesaro (Germany), Georges Friedenkraft (France), Graham High (England), Ramona Linke (Germany), Sys Matthiesen (Denmark), and Laura Văceanu (Romania).

SOURCES / FURTHER READING

2nd European Haiku Conference, Vadstena, Sweden

NOTES

  1. trans. Robert Hass, The Essential Haiku (1994). []
  2. English versions here and following are by C. Trumbull []
  3. Zorman's haiku had appeared in English as rest in the shadow / in the rhythm of my breath / a scarab on the HASEE website as a verse in a sequence titled “seaside haiku.” []
Updated on October 20, 2020