Haiku Dreaming Australia


Haiku Dreaming Australia (Dreaming) started in 2006 in response to some unwanted effects of the globalisation of haiku. I saw the problem this way:

In seeking to join in world-haiku many Australians appear to write to satisfy overseas editors, judges and readers. In doing so they risk losing some Australian identity they write less about the world they actually live in and the people they share it with, in favour of a haikuland populated by worldpersons. [See Homogenous Haiku].
To redress this trend Haiku Dreaming Australia was formed to encourage haiku that are relevant in Australia and to Australians.

About The Dreaming Collection

Dreaming's encouragement for Australians to write haiku from an authentic sense of place has taken the form of The Dreaming Collection, a topical display of the best Australian haiku.
The Dreaming Collection was started in 2006 then continuously reviewed, culled and infused with new haiku until suspended in 2011. To obtain poems for the Collection I reviewed publications, invited
submissions and, in 2009, ran an international haiku competition from which the best haiku were acquired for the Collection.

After an initial three months exposure all poems were liable to be culled from the Collection. I did this based on advice I solicited from Australian haiku judges, editors and poets. These culled poems were archived and are available for public scrutiny.

The Collection is not an anthology of haiku by Australians, in the lineage of the First Australian Haiku Anthology; that is the purview of the AHS. Nor is it an interpretation of Australia through haiku; it is not meant to be comprehensive. Subject groupings arose naturally to match the poems used. Dreaming is focused on haiku, rather than their authors.

Haiku subjects need not be exclusively Australian but they should at least be commonly experienced here. The Collection includes explanatory notes and images tp assist readers not familian with Australia.

Because The Dreaming Collection seeks to exemplify I separated haiku from senryu. At the margin the distinction may be arbitrary; I accept this in order to differentiate them when they occur as markedly different poetry.

Copyright for every haiku and picture on this site is held by the author, photographer or organisation shown, and may not be reproduced without the copyright holder's prior consent.

The Australian Haiku Society (AHS) has endorsed and supported the Dreaming endeavour but all opinions expressed and decisions taken, until this time, are my own. I have vested ownership, and copyright of Dreaming as a whole, in AHS.

The Future

I think of this as the first or the 2006-2011 Collection. I hope that AHS will, from time to time, endorse other poets as editors of Dreaming so that the Collection remains a topical display of the best of Australian haiku with an accumulation of articles about contemporary concerns.

Aside from its primary role, I have found The Dreaming Collection to be valuable when thinking about aesthetics and techniques that are, or might become, applicable to Australian haiku. I believe the Collection could emerge as a test bed and locus for such research and study. I elaborate on this prospect in Dreaming Discoveries .

I thank all who have made their material, much of it copyright, available to Dreaming, especially those named in the list of poets. I thank all who provided help and advice, particularly my talented advisers, Loren Ford and Rob Scott.

      John Bird                                This article last updated: February, 2014

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