The Touchstone Awards for Individual Poems are bestowed annually on haiku and senryu that represent noteworthy additions to English-language haiku in the estimation of a distinguished panel of haiku poets, editors and scholars. The Awards are open to any English-language haiku or senryu published in the current calendar year. For current and past award recipients, please see the Touchstone Archive.
What Poems Are Eligible?
Any individual who had at least one haiku or senryu published during the award year may nominate two haiku or senryu, one of which may be his or her own. For the purposes of this award, publication is constituted by, but not limited to, first appearance in a juried public venue such as a book, journal, online site or contest. The Awards Committee reserves the right to determine whether a poem meets this criterion. Awards for Individual Poems panelists, Committee members and THF Board members are not eligible.
How to Submit
Entries for 2020 are OPEN through the end of the year. You may nominate no more than two poems, only one of which may be your own work. Nominated poems must be submitted with our entry form.
Entry Form: Touchstone Awards for Individual Poems
The Panel for Award Year 2019
A native San Franciscan, Chuck Brickley lived in rural British Columbia for 35 years. He was Associate Editor of Modern Haiku under the editorship of Robert Spiess from 1980-1985. In addition to haiku magazines, his work has appeared in numerous anthologies, including Canadian Haiku Anthology, The Haiku Anthology, and Haiku In English: The First Hundred Years. His first book of haiku, earthshine, won a THF Touchstone Award for Distinguished Books 2017, and an HSA Merit Book Award 2017 Honorable Mention. His haibun “Is Where The Car Is” was nominated for a Pushcart Prize.
Susan Constable’s haiku have appeared in eight Red Moon Anthologies, New Resonance 6, Montage the Book, Haiku in English: The First 100 Years, and The Wonder Code, as well as in numerous other anthologies. Her haiku were featured in Modern Haiku’s “Spotlight” 43:3 and her haiku have appeared twice on The Haiku Foundation’s Touchstone Awards shortlist. Her tanka have also been published in numerous journals and anthologies, and her The Eternity of Waves was one of seven winners in the 2012 eChapbook Awards (Snapshot Press). She was tanka editor for A Hundred Gourds from 2012-2016. She judged the Francine Porad Haiku Contest (2011), and was a co-judge for the Gerald Brady Senryu Contest (2012), the Tanka Society of America’s Contest (2016), and the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Haiku Contest (2019). She lives with her husband on Canada’s west coast.
Anna Maris writes haiku in Swedish and English. She is the chair of the literary section of the Swedish Author’s Union and a board member of the Swedish Haiku Society. She teaches haiku in schools and has a haiku circle at the temple of Yangtorp in the South of Sweden. Anna has won many awards for haiku, senryu and renku. Her bilingual single collection Lifedeathetc (2016) is published by Red Moon Press. She has two earlier haiku books, published in Swedish. Her work has been included in numerous anthologies, including A New Resonance 11. She is currently employed as a journalist and media trainer in Sweden and Ukraine.
Christopher Patchel’s haikai has appeared in leading journals, contests, and anthologies over the past twenty years. His collection, Turn Turn, was a Touchstone Distinguished Book Award finalist. From 2016 to 2018 he was editor of Frogpond, the journal of the Haiku Society of America. Apropos of his profession as a graphic designer, he created the cover art for Frogpond from 2012 to 2018.
Wally Swist was the Book Review Editor of Modern Haiku, both unofficially and officially serving under Editor Robert Spiess, from 1986 through 1995. He is also an author who practices in various genres. His books of poets include Huang Po and the Dimensions of Love (Southern Illinois University Press, 2012) and The Daodejing: A New Interpretation, with David Breeden and Steven Schroeder (Lamar University Literary Press, 2015). Forthcoming books include A Bird Who Seems to Know Me: Poems Regarding Birds & Nature (2019), the winner of the 2018 Ex Ophidia Press Poetry Prize, which combines longer lyric and short narrative poems, as well as haiku; The Bees of the Invisible (2019); and Evanescence: Selected and New Poems (2020), both from Shanti Arts. He is also the author of two recent nonfiction books, On Beauty: Essays, Reviews, Fiction, and Plays (Adelaide Books, 2018), and Singing for Nothing: Selected Nonfiction as Literary Memoir (The Operating System, 2018). His book, The Windbreak Pine: New and Uncollected Haiku, 1985-2015 (Snapshot Press) was awarded a Touchstone Distinguished Book Award from The Haiku Foundation for 2016.
Michelle Tennison has been writing haiku and publishing in the leading journals for 20 years, and murmuration, her first collection, was published by Red Moon Press in 2016. Her work has been featured in several editions of The Red Moon Anthology as well as Haiku 21 by Modern Haiku Press, and Haiku 14, Haiku 15, and Haiku 16, the three annual compilations in the Modern Haiku Press series of “100 Notable Haiku.” Her poem “whale song” was shortlisted for a Touchstone Individual Poem Award in 2014. Michelle teaches haiku online. She has long been interested in literary experimentation, and some of the results from the surrealist Q&A sessions she had conducted with friends and fellow poets can be found on her blog A Lit Jellyfish.