Results of the 2nd ONLY ONE TREE Haiku Contest

Results of the 2nd ONLY ONE TREE Haiku Contest

2,020 haiku composed in the English language vied for recognition in the ONLY ONE KAGOSHIMA TREE haiku contest supported by the Asahi Shimbun and organized by the International University of Kagoshima. Kindly assisted by Mr. Hidenori Hiruta of the Akita International Haiku Network, in 2015 the Only One Tree contest was possibly the second largest English haiku contest in the world.

By comparison, the hotly contested 4th Japan- Russia haiku contest attracted 495 haiku to its English haiku section. The 4th Vladamir Devide contest received 290 entries. The 5th EU-Japan contest garnered 613 entries, and the 2nd Setouchi Matsuyama Photo Contest received 822 entries. The world’s largest English haiku contest, admirably organized and hosted by Itoen Ocha gathers over 10,000 haiku in English.

The colorful 100-page book “Only One Tree haiku music & metaphor” includes a chapter about how haiku contests can be judged and suggests ways to encourage support for the recognition of haiku as an intangible world heritage by the United Nations. Copies can be ordered (1,000 JP yen approx. $10 US plus shipping) by writing to the International University of Kagoshima by email to or FAX to 81-99-261-0227.


Donald Bobiash, a Canadian living in Jakarta, Indonesia won the top prize, for:

Solitary tree

Stretching up to the blue sky

The past, the future

Satoru Kanematsu, a retired teacher living in Nagoya, Aichi won a special prize, for:

Last glory

golden in the sun

ginkgo trees

Mina Mori a high school student on Amami Island wins a prize, for:

Natural air conditioner

Everybody gather

Shade of tree

Mina Mori is a student at Oshima High School on Amami Island.

Keiko Fujii a haikuist in Kitakyushu was given a certificate for,

Live here, still

Memory of you

Cherry tree

Patrick Sweeney, an elementary school teacher in Misawa, Aomori was awarded for:

In my other life

A pale-green sycamore

Arms wide, shimmering

Yuka Itou, a high school student in Kagoshima won a prize for,

The leaves trembled

And fell to the road

By the breeze


Fall strolling

in the beech forest

up and down

–Hidenori Hiruta (Akita Prefecture)

Pray for world peace!

A bird is singing

In the trees

–Jin Wada (Akita)

An ogre-Namahage

Playing with stardust

On a treetop

–Rumiko Wada (Akita)

cold night

a star shines on

the thrown Christmas tree

–Alexey Andreev (Moscow, Russia)

among yellow maples

a woman strolls

toward the red one

–Alexey Andreev (Moscow, Russia)

among paving stones

between the two world wars

grew a weeping willow

–Igor Damnjanovic (Belgrade, Serbia)


a concert

in the woods

–Deb Koen (Rochester, New York)

Cherry blossom trees

Scintillating in the dawn…


–Keith Simmonds (Rodez, France)

yellow whispering

among leaves…

daily spread of disinformation

–Gabriel Rosenstock (Dublin, Ireland)

Invisible crow

the lebanon tree utters

a call of three caws

–Alan Summers (Wiltshire, England)

Shadows and lights—

in the whispering poplar

the smile of Basho

–Francesco De Sabata (Pescantina, Italy)

Interpreting the dew

in the faint light of dawn

bodhi tree

–Ernesto P. Santiago (Athens, Greece)

Night sakura

lighten lanes

Kyoto maze

–Murasaki Sagano (Kyoto)

Colors glow

Looks tasty as cake

Christmas tree

–Toshifumi Shinmyouzu (Kagoshima)

Sunlight through the woods

upon the track

pleasant touch of breeze

–Takizawa, Takayasu (Kagoshima)

My son hugs his knees

At the foot of the big tree

As my dad found me.

–Yuji Hayashi (Fukuoka)

Camphor tree

Deep blue nuts glisten


–Yoriko Tashiro (Kagoshima)

A gnarled plum tree

Also waits


–Dennis Woolbright (Kitakyushu)

Big trunk

Aloha dress

Sways in autumn wind

–Yamada Maenohana (Kagoshima)

Spring is beautiful

Because I love the scent of wood

I love spring

–Rui Okazaki (Amami)

Forest of trees

swung by winds

“Let’s dance!”

–Taki Kawakami (Amami)

Like scattered petals

we drift apart

new beginnings

–Yuka Yoshitomi (Miyako, Fukuoka)

Cherry blossoms

bring with them

new friends

–Saori Saki (Yukuhashi, Fukuoka)

Golden leaves

holy gingko tree

silent shrine

–Doc Sunday (Hiroshima)


gingko leaves tremble

midnight shrine

–Doc Sunday (Hiroshima)

Silent dark branches of pine trees

October night

Before full moon

–Masato Watanabe (Matsuyama)

Touched the pine tree branch

and scattered

snow falls

—-Masato Watanabe (Matsuyama)

Children jumping up,

Leaves of an old camphor tree,

A high summer sky

–Hiromi Noma (Matsuyama)

Why are you drawing

that tree? –Because its branches

go like this! And this!

–Barbara Casterline (Nagoya)

White birch forest

Frozen sap expanding in trunks

Cracks echo

–Yuko Hirota (Osaka)

Falling and falling

yet still full of blooms

the cherry tree

–Hidehito Yasui (Osaka)

Would I rather be a tree?

And live for a thousand years?

May I find myself on another planet

–Junko Saeki (Tokyo)

Summer thunderbolt

Child’s wood train starts moving


–Juichi Masuda (Tokyo)

Ghastly pine tree…

Left lit after dark

Hangs on cliff

–Jiro Oba (Kawasaki, Kanagawa)

Olive tree

By blackbird song

Ghost wakes up

–Junko Yamada (Kamakura, Kanagawa)

Trunks of trees

Felt the growth rings


–Masaru Tsurabara (Yokohama)

The woodpecker nails

a hole in one


–Stuart Walker (Sapporo, Hokkaido)

The colorful 100-page book “Only One Tree haiku music & metaphor” can be ordered (1,000 JP yen approx. $10 US plus shipping) by writing to or to FAX 81-99-261-0227.

–  Written by David McMurray, edited by Hidenori Hiruta

One thought on “Results of the 2nd ONLY ONE TREE Haiku Contest

  1. i felt good Haiku will maybe be acknowledged by UNESCO.It will make Haiku more famous. if Haiku is acknowledged by UNESCO the children all around the world can learn Haiku, and maybe i will teach how to make Haiku for children,
    because i major in education.i will get the teacher license. sounds like fun.i wlii teach my students in japanese and english languages.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s