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THE HAIBUN GALLERY: 7th March 2024 — Alan Peat, featured poet

Updated: Mar 7

hosts: Firdaus Parvez & Kala Ramesh

A Thursday Feature.

poet of the month: Alan peat

7th 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 Internatiinal 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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Hypnic Jerk

I am running through Rousseau’s jungle; through three-storey flowers; through symmetrical foliage; through imagined birds of paradise. A tiger stops me briefly with his rictus grin. He tells me he has no choice but to stay that way; he fears if he stops, he’ll be nothing but a blur in an art journal photograph.

There’s a clarinettist playing somewhere among the Lotus flowers. I pay him scant attention though the snakes are clearly charmed. Leaves cut my skin as the greenery thickens; biting insects come and go in swarms.

Suddenly, a naked lady surprises me. She’s comfortably recumbent on a buttoned divan. I suspect she’s about to light a cigarette or start a symposium. I’m in the mood for neither so I rush off once more through a chorus of exotic birdsong.

The jungle is so lush, so dense, that I fail to see the cliff till I’m falling. 

croissant moon  —

a sugar in my tea

shakes the stars



Why do you think this haibun was chosen for the HNA Film Festival? What makes certain poems and certain image-laden writing suitable for filmmaking?

Think about this point.

Pay attention to the way Alan has brought rich narratives and unexpected characters into his haibun. Was this the reason the director thought he could make a good film out of it?

Your prompt this week is to give us a graphic haibun with a strong story running through it.

Try to draw out each scene, the way directors do. It seems Satyajit Ray used to follow this method — everything would be meticulously sketched in his book before he entered the studio.

I have never tried that, but maybe I should!

This thought just came to me as I began to search for a prompt!

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.


454 views87 comments



190 Possibilities

Another daily migraine patient did the food sensitivity test, stopped those sensitive foods, and didn’t have a migraine for 6 days. I’m trying not to get my hopes up, but what if it works for me too?

a dew bubble expanding my life

Susan Burch, USA

Comments welcome


backgroundrevised with Susan’s feedback in mind (text unchanged, original version removed for space/bandwidth sake):

Because the prompt mentioned “graphic,” I thought to post one of my “graphic haibun”— a mixed media form I occasionally do using an app called Comic Life. The name I gave the form refers to

graphic novels, which are a more “serious” form of comic book. Over the years I’ve published in including Haigaonline, Haibun Today, and recently Failed Haiku and Contemporary Haibun. This is a new one, images mine.

Replying to

Nice presentation!!


Mar 12



Thanks Kala Ma'am. Corrected the typo in the ku.


I can see the bifurcation from quite a distance. It immediately reminds me of that much read poem of Robert Frost. The only difference is that the woods are not yet yellow. The bright green of the leaves, of short and tall trees, gives me the perfect colour I wanted on my long awaited forest walk, alone. I don't mind the puddles on the road. The fresh smell emanating from the ground is icing on the cake.

Frost's dilemma meets me at the fork. Which way to take? I don't have a direction to follow. So I take the one on my right. I can hear the sound…

Mar 13
Replying to

Yes Ma'am. There's a typo. Correcting it. Thank you.


#1 3-11-24

I sit in the Starbucks, waiting for your arrival. I'm early, so the wait is long to begin with. It feels longer because it's our first in-person meeting. And you are my first date after my 24-year-long marriage ended. So I'm rusty, to say the least. Each time the door chimes, I wonder if it's you. My heart races, anticipating that the next person walking in the door could be you. I already like you a lot. More than is logical, when I haven't even met you yet. But our texting conversation over the last few days has been like talking with an old friend. But with an edge or flirtation that is nice for the ego as…

Replying to

I agree.



Rookie Mistake

Breathe in through the nose, breathe out through the mouth. Breathe in... I spit a mosquito out. I must have breathed in through the mouth. I struggle to keep my eyes closed, I begin to sense itches and discomforts all over me. A buzz of another mosquito that hasn't yet learnt of the recent passing of its fellow irritates my ear. The whirring fan is worthless in its purpose. Maybe I should open the window. But I have to keep my eyes closed. Am I feeling thirsty?

golden hour...

the crow on the parapet

without a caw

Sankara Jayanth Sudanagunta, India

(Feedback appreciated - I'm doubting the title. Does 'Meditation Practice' work better?)

Replying to

Liked the story.

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