The St. Johns Cultural Council has announced the winners of the second annual Haiku Contest conducted during the month-long celebration of National Poetry Month in April.
Contest categories included students age 12 and younger, students ages 13 to 17 and adults ages 18 and older. The theme of this year’s contest was spring, and awards were presented at St. Augustine Poet Fest at Flagler College on April 9.
In the 12 and younger category, Aika Matsuda won the contest for her poem, “Caterpillar.” She attends R.B. Hunt Elementary School and lives in St. Augustine.
In the 13 to 17 category, Ella Belknap won the contest for her poem, “Perfect Spring.” She attends Alice B. Landrum Middle School and lives in Ponte Vedra.
In the adult category, Pat Konover from St. Augustine won the contest for her poem, “Branches.”
Honorable mentions were awarded in the 12 and younger category to Easton Crews, who attends Otis A. Mason Elementary School and lives in St. Augustine, for his poem, “Spring Fun” and to Anna Graves for her poem, “Blossom Breath.” She attends Alice B. Landrum Middle School and lives in Ponte Vedra.
In the 13 to 17 category, honorable mentions were awarded to Charlotte Garcia, who attends Valley Ridge Academy and lives in Ponte Vedra, for her poem, “Outside and Perfect” and to Addison Rennie for her poem, “The Old Oak Tree.” She attends Palm Valley Academy and lives in Ponte Vedra.
Suki Litchfield from St. Augustine won an honorable mention in the adult category for her poem, “Reward,” as did Shutta Crum from St. Augustine for her poem, “Freedom.”
Judges included Michael Henry Lee and Antoinette Libro, as well as Lenny Foster, Christina Parrish Stone and Chris Bodor.
Lee is an internationally published, award-winning Japanese poetry stylist, residing in St. Augustine. His work regularly appears in numerous anthologies, as well as highly respected print and online journals.
Lee serves as Southeast regional coordinator for the Haiku Society of America and is a founding member of The Ancient City Poets and the Coquina Haiku Circle.
Libro is the former dean of the College of Communication and Creative Arts at Rowan University in Glassboro, New Jersey. She is a prize-winning poet and published author. Her haiku has appeared in “An Anthology of Haiku by People of the United States and Canada,” sponsored by the Haiku Society of America and Japan Air Lines. She resides in St. Augustine.
Three winners received a $100 prize, and their haikus will be published on the website stjohnsculture.com, in the Cultural Council’s electronic newsletter and in the AC PAPA literary journal produced by St. Augustine’s Ancient City Poets, Authors, Photographers and Artists group.
Additionally, the honorable mentions will also be published on the website and newsletter. Each honorable mention received a $25 gift certificate to a local bookstore.
For more information and results, go to stjohnsculture.com/news/st-johns-cultural-councils-2nd-annual-haiku-contest.
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