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Read the 2020 winning selections (click here) and commentary (click here) for inspiration. You can also read about our winners!(click here)

Top Winners of 2020 Haiku Invitational


cherry blossoms fall—
the gentle quake
of baby kicks

Genevieve Wynand
Coquitlam, BC

United States

mixing concrete
a few petals
don’t hurt

Jeffrey Ferrara
Worcester, Massachusetts

British Columbia

cherry blossom
after cherry blossom
dawn’s slow light

Ulrike E. Narwani
North Saanich, BC


petals in the wind
my girlfriend is never
where I expect her

Marcellin Dallaire-Beaumont
Brussels, Belgium


blossom wind
my sick wife holds my hand

Chen-ou Liu
Ajax, Ontario


cherry petals
renewing the scarecrow’s
shabby coat

Andreea Buzuc, age 12
Botosani, Romania

The top poems in six main categories (Vancouver, BC, Canada, United States, International and Youth) will receive celebrity readings and be featured in creative ways during the 2020 festival some which include: publication in The Bulletin magazine, Haiku Canada newsletter, an online publication in the newsletter of the Haiku Society of America, and publication on the VCBF website. Winning poems will be read by Christopher Gaze at the VSO’s Tea & Trumpets Concert, at our media-kickoff event, Cherry Jam Downtown concert by media celebrity emcee and celebrated at Sakura Days Japan Fair  Leith Wheeler Haiku House, click here to see how else we celebrate our winning haiku.

For inspiration to write your own cherry blossom haiku, see Past Haiku

For more information, please visit our About Haiku and Teaching Haiku and Jump into Haiku, and  Some suggestions for writing haiku pages. Click here for additional notes on capitalization and punctuation.

2020 Haiku Invitational Judge Bios:

Gary Hotham has been writing haiku for more than fifty years and his work has appeared in many journals, anthologies, and books. His latest chapbook is Rightsizing the Universe: Haiku Theory in 2019 and his last major collection of haiku was Stone’s Throw: Promises of Mere Words in 2016. He has judged many haiku contests and selected haiku for anthologies. He lives in Scaggsville, Maryland, and currently serves as the first vice president of the Haiku Society of America.

Agnes Eva Savich is a Haiku Society of America member and author of The Watcher: Poems (Cedar Leaf Press). She leads the Austin Haiku Study Group in Texas.
Her haiku have been published in AcornBonesBottle RocketsFrogpondHeliosparrowMayflyModern HaikuPresenceThe Heron’s NestTinywords, and elsewhere. She has won awards in previous VCBF Haiku Invitational contests, and mentions in international contests such as Yamadera, Bashō, Golden Triangle, Betty Drevniok, Ito En, and Revista. Her work has been included in Wishbone Moon: Women’s Haiku Anthology as well as Haiku 21: An Anthology of Contemporary English-Language Haiku.
Beth Skala holds a degree in Far Eastern studies. Her memoir unSUPERvised: Growing Up in the 1950s is in haibun style. Other publications include: My Mary Bennet: Poems, Letters and MiscellaneaNot for Sissies: Poems on Aging; and Puttin’ On the Glam: Poems for Caregivers. Beth has won top British Columbia haiku four times in VCBF’s Haiku Invitational. She received recognition in the IAFOR Vladimir Devidé Haiku Award, Genjuan International Haibun Contest, Drummond Poetry Contest, and the League of Canadian Poets National Haiku Contest. Beth is a member of Haiku Canada, the Federation of BC Writers, and Pens Ultimate Nanaimo

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