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THE HAIBUN GALLERY: 21st March 2024 — Alan Peat, featured poet

Updated: Mar 21

hosts: Firdaus Parvez & Kala Ramesh

A Thursday Feature.

poet of the month: Alan peat

21st March 2024

Alan Peat: ALAN PEAT is an English author and haiku poet. His haiku first appeared in ‘Blithe Spirit’ in 1997 and his tanka first appeared in the international tanka anthology, ‘In the ship’s wake’ (Iron Press 2000). After an extended pause, during which Alan wrote numerous educational and art history books, he returned to short form poetry in 2017. In 2021 he placed third in the International Golden Triangle Haiku contest; second in the New Zealand International Haiku contest, and placed both first and second (with Sherry Grant, and Pris Campbell) in the Otoroshi Rengay contest. 

In 2022 he was runner up in the British Haiku Society, Ken and Norah Jones Haibun Award; honourable mention in the Haiku Poets of North California International Haibun contest; second in the Sandford Goldstein International Tanka contest; second in the Heliosparrow semagram contest, and joint third place in the 2022 Time Haiku ekphrastic haibun contest. He was also a guest author at Cornell University’s Mann Library for October (2022). In 2023 he was long-listed for the Touchstone Award (individual poems) and won a Touchstone Award (haibun). Another of his haibun has been turned into a film for the HNA Haibun Film Festival.  He was also the joint winner of the 2023 Time Haiku ekphrastic haibun contest. A collaborative collection of surreal haibun, Barking At The Coming Rain, (Alba Publishing) written with Réka Nyitrai was also published in 2023. In 2024 he had two honourable mentions in the Rachel Sutcliffe Memorial Haibun contest as well as a first-place haiku in the same contest.

Alan has judged numerous international poetry contests including the Sharpening the Green Pencil International Haiku contest (2022), KM100NZ international haiku competition (2023) & The Haiku Poets of North California International Tanka contest (2023).

He currently resides in Biddulph, Staffordshire, United Kingdom

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Black Hole 


This morning I awoke with an ocean inside me. The faint cries of gulls gave the game away; that, and a gentle lapping at the back of my throat.  


With every breath, salt air filled the room; shoals of fish swam in my belly; sharks slept; the calls of whales boomed deep within me; kelp waved behind my eyes.  


All was well until lunch when the cramps began. By evening, I had no choice but to take a taxi to the hospital.  


The doctors ummed and ahed; the nurses frowned. I guess they’d never seen a man with an ocean inside him before. The senior doctor buzzed for a surgeon who had once saved a mermaid. Immediately upon seeing me, he plunged his arm deep into my mouth and down until I felt his bony fingers clasping inside me.  


He pulled out a child’s ball, rubbed by the sand until it was as white as an eye. He pulled out plastic bricks, a spoon, a hosepipe, credit cards, a beat-up bath duck. Then, quite suddenly, he raised his scalpel and sliced me open. A wave of water bottles spilled upon the floor. Puffins circled.  


"Now," he shouted, and with all the medical staff assisting, a net was hauled from the deepest part of me; a net so large that it stretched from my ocean to an ebbing time: before ice retreated back up mountains; before junk fell from the vacuum above; before we all ran headlong into waves. 


day moon . . . 

footprints still 

in its dust

Frogpond 44:3  Autumn 2021


Prompt: This haibun grabbed me from the first sentence. What an incredible way to bring to the fore the errant ways of us humans. The prose moves from the beautiful flora and fauna of our mighty waterbodies to the junk we've been depositing in their depths. The haiku feels ironical. "One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind": The famous quote by Neil Armstrong, as he stepped on the moon, comes to mind. We have journeyed a long way from there but not in the direction we should have taken. Sadly, it has been a downward spiral for our planet. Reaching for the stars, but back home, a pile of rubbish. Look around you, find the things you feel are not right, things we can change, then write about them. Your words will bring awareness and hopefully that will ignite change - one drop at a time.

Haibun outside this prompt can be posted as well. 


Important: Since we're swamped with submissions, and our editors are only human, mistakes can happen. Please, please, remember to put your name, followed by your country, below each poem, even after revisions. It helps our editors; they won't have to type it in, saving them from potential typos. Thanks a ton!



1. Only two haibun per poet per prompt. Please put your name and country of residence under your poem, it makes the editors' work easier. Thanks.

2. Share your best-polished pieces.

3. Please do not post something in a hurry or something you have just written.

Let it simmer for a while.

4. When poets give suggestions and if you agree to them - post your final edited version on top of your original version.

5. Don't forget to give feedback on others' poems.

We are delighted to open the comment thread for you to share your unpublished haibun (within 300 words) to be considered for inclusion in the haikuKATHA monthly journal.


290 views74 comments


27/3/24 #1 Inspired by the prompt this week and Alan's sublime haibun, but my muse took over...

Inside Out


Collecting glass bottles from the seashore, the messages of loved ones… Waiting to be discovered.


I knew as soon as our eyes met, this was a different world. My life would never be the same, yet yours remains untouched.

Finding a way to carry on...


opaque wishes

I fill the darkness with

hanging lights

C.X. Turner, UK

(feedback welcome)


Replying to

Thank you, Jennifer! :)


#2 3-26-24

Road Rage

Have you noticed that post pandemic, people drive differently? Way more people tail gate, especially on the highway, going at scary-high speeds. There is no way on earth that they will be able to brake in time. Some people are so impatient that they actually honk at me, when I'm typically going at least 5, sometimes 10, miles per hour over the speed limit. I've taken to pulling over to the side of the road to let them pass, taking their toxic anger with them. No thank you. Return to sender. Others zig in and zag out of traffic, clearly late for wherever they're headed. It's unnerving, to say the least. And please don't get me…

Replying to

It's a powerful piece that conveys a clear message about the dangers of road rage and the importance of staying calm in such situations.


Our poets in RED MOON ANTHOLOGY 2024:

       1) Susan Burch, vegetables, Issue 19

       2) Lorraine Haig, Tasmania . . . Issue 17

       3) Lakshmi Iyer,  autumn's . . . Issue 18

       4) Linda Papanicoloau, stamp . . . Issue 16

       5) Padma Rajeswari, ancestral . . . Issue 24 

Hearty congratulations! Susan and Lorraine have a haibun each from haikuKATHA.

Please share them here, in this thread.

Thank you.

Replying to

Congratulations Linda! And to the other poets whose work from haikuKATHA has been selected for the Anthology!❤️


Dear Haibuneers,

When you post a haibun, would you comment on two other haibun, please?

I am waiting to see more action here.

Both Firdaus and I are slightly caught up with family matters.

So please step in, and make THG interactive and fun.

Thank you.


Mar 25



Revision. Thank you Kala Ma'am for your feedback. The following is what I could do. Hope it's okay😊😊


I question myself, am I misanthropic? Why do I not bask in the glory that man has been conquering the unassailable, unthinkable summits? Why don't I feel proud of my race?

I see the picture of a boy of about eight to eighteen years old, taken as introverted. A man of few words. A remarkable feature in a man's hat, I must say. Yet I know he's not quiet inside. His face gives away millions of thoughts that form whirlpools in his interiors. I find him caught in a din of knowledge dished out by 21st century gadgets, yet…

Mar 27
Replying to

Thanks so much!

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