Skip to content

Scott Wiggerman

The Haiku of the Day feature displays a new haiku each day at the top of our home page. www.thehaikufoundation.org . See also our Haiku of the Day Archive.

Haiku of the Day for April 2023 features Guest Editor Scott Wiggerman’s collection on the theme of  the LGBTQIA+ experience. This is what Scott  has to say by way of introduction to this theme:

For the month of April, National Poetry Month, I chose the subject of LGBTQIA+ haiku and senryu, a topic near and dear to me, which I’d not seen before on the Haiku of the Day site. It turned out there was a reason for that: unlike the more common nature-themed subjects or even mood-based ones, there simply aren’t a lot of haiku in the world that touch on LGBTQIA+ experiences. In fact, the majority of the haiku I was able to find was in the last decade, as such topics have become more open (though no less controversial, given the 50+ bills that conservative U.S. politicians have brought forth so far in 2023). All of these reasons indicated to me that this was a most important subject to cover in this column.

The topic was also difficult because the haiku isn’t necessarily indicative of the gender or sexuality or preferences of those who wrote it. I personally have little knowledge of the personal lives of the majority of poets represented here (and I tried to represent a broad cross-section). I had to be delicate in approaching poets for permission to use their poems under the label of the LGBTQ+ umbrella. I could only judge the haiku in how –as a gay man—read and interpreted them; and all of these haiku, in my opinion, have a strong queer sensibility, whether or not the poet has had those experiences.  I am overjoyed to report that all the poets contacted were enthusiastic about giving permission, and several carried on about the subject I chose, “a terrific topic to highlight which has been a long time coming.”

I want to add that Alan Summers, Charlie Trumbull, and Lynne Jambor were invaluable in suggesting both haiku and poets that I would not have discovered otherwise. My hope is that the next time this theme appears as the Haiku of the Day subject, the editor of that month will have an easy time finding and choosing a month’s worth of worthy and published LGBTQIA+ haiku and senryu.

—Scott Wiggerman

This Post Has 12 Comments

  1. Kudos to you!! A great attempt to showcase poems for the LGBTQIA, many hesitate, many ignore and yet many divide their opinions.
    Happy that poets contemplate on the poems and permission is granted.
    Congratulations!!

  2. Il tema è davvero molto interessante.
    Sono abbastanza nuova di qua, come si fa a partecipare, eventualmente, alla sezione “haiku del giorno”?

    Grazie

    Silvia

  3. Dear Scott,

    Thank you for choosing my poem for Haiku of the Day. It’s so cool to see it TODAY on the website’s homepage, especially since it’s National Poetry Month! This is my favorite haiku that I’ve ever written. I’ll never write a greater one, nor do I want to.

    Peg

    1. Peg, it’s with great pleasure to showcase your poem. But I suspect you will write even better ones, based on the haiku of yours I’ve been seeing!

  4. I note the complete (in my experience) lack of any social media prompt or competition theme within the haiku community related in any way to any aspect of ‘LGBTQ’. Even when themes such as ‘erotica’ slip through I have never seen any mention or encouragement of LGBTQ responses, and in my experience when such responses are offered there has been no engagement by editors to include such work if only to demonstrate diversity. I’m struggling to think of any journals other than Femku and Heterodox which include LGBTQ work. I hope I’m wrong.

    1. Being quite new to the haiku journal world I really hadn’t realized when Jerome created the first issue of Heterodox Haiku that his call for LGBTQIA+ poems was so revolutionary. I am really proud that I have two poems representing my bisexuality within it. In general, I have mostly shied away from sexual undertones in most of my haikai. Which is particularly odd since much of my spoken word (back in the day) was probably too much so.

    2. Really, Mark? We publish them at whiptail, and I’ve had my own published at Modern Haiku, The Heron’s Nest, Prune Juice, and Failed Haiku.

  5. Thank you, Alan. Sadly, that 50 bills is now over 300–and some of them are actually now law in the U.S. As legislators refuse to ban assault weapons in the wake of nearly everyday mass shootings, they instead focus on “easy targets” like drag queens, gay marriage (again), and book banning. Sad, sad, sad.

    P.S. Rest assured I saw “It’s a Sin” the week it came out! And I’ve long loved Pet Shop Boys, Gaga, and Sam Smith!

    1. I would think that this comment violates THF code of conduct guidelines by discussing political issues, which is explicitly prohibited by The Haiku Foundation policy. The comment makes a statement about gun control and the legislative priorities of U.S. lawmakers, which is clearly political in nature. This discussion could be seen as divisive and may offend readers who have different political views.

  6. Dear Scott,
    It’s alarming that there are so few haikai verses within the umbrella of the LGBTQIA+ term.

    LGBTQIA+ people are such an easy target to divide and conquer people. At one time there was nothing unusual to be LGBTQIA+ in any aspect (ancient Greece, Rome, Byzantine Empire [late Roman empire into medieval times]. So what the heck happened? It was the same for anyone who was ‘Black’, once normal now seen as some bizarre threat, and degraded.

    I guess it’s easy to make people paranoid about anyone if you can make them different somehow, visually or vocally.

    Easy visual targets are Sam Smith the singer, despite Lady Gaga’s pioneering efforts against bigotry in general.

    Let’s have some incredibly uplifting yet poignant music (and do search out the British TV series “It’s A Sin” too:

    Pet Shop Boys:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dRHetRTOD1Q

Comments are closed.

Back To Top