Sometimes, The Wheel is on Fire

Sometimes, The Wheel is on Fire

Friday, May 1, 2020

Together: A Haiku Contest for Charity

*** The contest has ended. Check out the winners! ***

We, as a people, are too divided. We were already split along economical, ideological, and political lines (among others), and then the Virus That Shall Not Be Named came along and split us apart physically.

Enough is enough. Let's write some haiku about togetherness.

You may think a haiku contest won't accomplish much. And you'd be right. But at least this one will result in $300 for charity. It isn't much, but it's a start.

Simply follow standard haiku structure (5 syllables, then 7, then 5), and write a poem inspired by the word "together." However you interpret the theme is up to you.

I will select the best haiku in the following three categories:
  • Humorous/Creative
  • Traditional (i.e. eloquent, evocative, etc.)
  • Judge's Choice
As in past years,* each winner will receive a $25 gift card. But then I will also donate $100 each to charities of their choosing.

The deadline to submit haiku is Thursday, May 7 at 5:00pm (Eastern Time). Official "rules" are below.

Submit some haiku.
For you, or for charity.
Or for all of us.

Official "Rules":
  1. To enter, post haiku inspired by the word "together" in the comments section below. Multiple submissions are allowed, up to a maximum of five (5) entries. If you submit more than five, it will smack of selfishness in a time of need. It's not a good look for you. And you will not win.
  2. Standard haiku rules apply. To qualify, each entry must be a three-line poem, the first line containing exactly 5 syllables, the second line 7 syllables, and the third line 5 syllables. These rules are in place to keep the poetic form safe. If you ignore them, I'll wash my hands of you, and your entry won't win.
  3. The contest is open until Thursday, May 7, 2020 at 5:00pm, Eastern Time. If you arrive late, the contest will already be at capacity, and you'll be left out in the cold. No prize for you.
  4. If your entry is not in English, you must also provide its English translation. If I don't know what you're saying, it'll feel like you're keeping me at a distance. (Note: Translations don't need to adhere to the 17-syllable structure.)
  5. Anonymous entries will not win. You can't foster a feeling of togetherness if all you do is keep secrets.
  6. Prizes will be awarded in each of three (3) categories: Humorous/Creative, Traditional, and Judge's Choice, which is basically a catch-all category because I couldn't think of a proper third one.
    • Each first place winner will each receive a $25 gift card, and I will donate $100 to a charity of their choice.
    • An indeterminate number of Honorable Mentions will receive mention. Also honor.
  7. I will act as sole judge, and select the winning haiku based on the aforementioned criteria, as well as other criteria I make up as I go along. All decisions are final, and will not be changed under any circumstances, unless I decide I was just being sarcastic the first time around.

* For reference, previous themes were: ninja, pirates, robots, space, the ocean, heroes & villains, science, the wild west, and magic.


  1. Nate, that is really awesome! I'm going to let a couple blogger friends know. They are much better at poetry than I am.

    1. Thank you, Alex and Nate. I like this. I doubt I have better poetic chops than Alex, but I shall think on it.
      Love, peace, unity and togetherness.

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    2. Oy vey, I can't count. I kept messing up. Third try. Sorry!

      We aren't wearing pants
      Let us zoom together now

  3. Fun! I haven't attempted writing a haiku since early college, so here goes:

    Too many cats near
    Eyeing my keyboard and cords
    The mouse is afraid

  4. Social distancing?
    For humans, not for kitties.
    Never poop alone.

  5. Alex, let me know about this so I will have to ponder. Haiku is not one of my best forms.

  6. Grab that big blanket.
    Everyone, quick, get under.
    Now tickle someone!

  7. Cat and Cow in love.
    Crazy, together, but true.
    Both! Meow and Moo.

  8. You are my desire!
    Rushing home to you, sometimes...
    my wheels, they on fire!

  9. The Captain once said,
    Love will keep us together.
    He's dead... whatever.

  10. Our hair together
    in ravaged combs, rusted shears...
    sliced my bloody ears!

  11. Why do I see you
    Whenever I turn around?
    Oh, right! Conjoined twins.

    Two fine hydrogens
    Met an oxygen atom.
    They made a real splash.

    To get her own home--
    To have everything--have to
    home-own together

  12. I see cute penguins.
    Huddled up with each other.
    Humans don’t do that.

    A good book series
    Can bring people together.
    Unlike big bullies.

    These times are so tough.
    But people can talk by text.
    And other good apps.

    A tiny atom.
    Has very very small quarks.
    All stuck together.

  13. You are my husband
    He is our curly headed boy
    We are together

  14. This solo must end
    Let's hear all voices again
    Tutti, on my cue...

    I am not afraid
    There's nothing that I can't do
    With you by my side

    Starsky. Rosencrantz.
    Hansel. Abbott. Yin. Green eggs.
    Better together.

    You can't split us up;
    We're too close. ... Wait! Put down the
    Brick separator!

    One person is small.
    But with our powers combined,
    We're still kind of small.

    They all move as one
    As if, somehow, connected

    Yeah, I'm a puppet.
    Still, get your hand out of me!
    My body, my choice.

    Here's an idea:
    I start a haiku, and then

  15. Fellow WordsmithMay 7, 2020 at 5:21 PM

    Dude, you missed a line.

  16. My Entry is late
    Not good for togetherness
    I am filled with shame