Harbour Beacon

Dick Pettit, from Denmark, contacted me last year asking whether I would like to collaborate with him in writing a haiku shuffle. We subsequently wrote a poem titled Harbour Beacon which was published earlier this year in the New Zealand journal, Kokako, #34.

As you can see in my previous posts about the haiku shuffle (eg, here), my original aim was to use the strengths of haiku to create a form that resembles a contemporary poem. The aim wasn’t necessarily to create something that suited collaborative writing.

Having said that, Dick and I found we could quite readily write a shuffle co-operatively, in much the same way poets come together to write a rengay.

We chose to write a shuffle based on a total of four haiku as the resulting poem would still be short enough to fit on a single page for publication. Obviously, it would be possible to write a longer shuffle if you wished.

In summary, the steps for producing a collaborative haiku shuffle are:

1. the poets agree on a broad topic or theme for the poem

2. each poet works independently to write their own haiku relating to that theme

3. the poets then co-operate in ‘shuffling’ the lines from the haiku to create the final poem (using the techniques described here)

Harbour Beacon

before dawn

on the open sea
white horses

stiffening breeze
white horses
on the open sea

a path of moonlight

harbour beacon
we slide into port
before dawn

across the cove
a path of moonlight

we slide into port

three blasts on the horn
a tanker turning round

cloudy sunrise
out in the bay
a tanker turning round

Gregory Piko and Dick Pettit

Given that the lines from the individual haiku are ‘shuffled’, it is not really convenient to attribute particular lines to each poet – which is a point of difference from a rengay where attribution does generally occur. Otherwise, though, it would seem it is quite possible for poets to collaborate in writing a haiku shuffle.

Please refer to the links below for more background and information on how to write a haiku shuffle.

The Haiku Shuffle

In late 2017, the Canberra-based Haiku @ The Oaks writing group was discussing various ways to present haiku in a live situation. Inspired by the ideas from this meeting, I applied a variation of these thoughts to writing a haiku style poem – a form I now like to call the haiku shuffle. Back in 2017,… Read More The Haiku Shuffle

How To Haiku Shuffle

There’s been some interest in the poems I’ve published using the haiku shuffle format, so I thought I’d take the opportunity to explain my thinking about this format a little more clearly. I’ve written on this topic in two previous posts (see links below). The first of these explained how the idea grew out of… Read More How To Haiku Shuffle

Kokako #32: Night Sky

The widely-read New Zealand journal, Kokako, publishes haiku, tanka, haibun and related forms. As usual, the most recent issue (#32) includes writing from New Zealand and around the world.     This issue of Kokako includes a poem of mine titled, Night Sky, which is written in the form of a haiku shuffle. In an… Read More Kokako #32: Night Sky