On behalf of the Foundation and panel members, I hope everyone is staying safe in this uncertain and frightening time. I am reminded of the classic children’s book Frederick, by Leo Lionni. While the other field mice are busy gathering grain and nuts for winter, Frederick sits on a sunny rock. “I gather sun rays for the cold winter days,” he tells them. One day he gathers “colors” and another day, “words”. When the food is depleted, Frederick, the poet, warms the hearts and spirit of his fellow mice during the dark winter days. Sharing haiku is one way we can connect, cope and heal in this dangerous time.
In this spirit we present the Touchstone Distinguished Books Award Shortlist for books published in 2019.
The fifty-nine books nominated for this year’s award represent a rich variety of English-language books from many nations and haiku traditions.
Each panel member read all nominated books, and in the first round of voting, selected their top fifteen books. After further discussions and votes, the panel arrived at these nineteen books for the Shortlist. I think I speak for the panel when I write that there were many worthy books beyond the nineteen which comprise this list. I wish to thank the Distinguished Books Award Committee: Patricia J. Machmiller, Beverly Acuff Momoi, Scott Mason, Michael Rehling and Don Wentworth.
On April 17, the Foundation will post the final awards for 2019. We extend our congratulations to the following authors and publishers (books are arranged by alphabetical order by author):
The Touchstone Distinguished Books Award 2019 Shortlist
- Balabanova, Ludmila. Sunflower Field. (Plovdiv Bulgaria: Zhanet, 2019)
- Bartow, Stuart. one branch. (Winchester VA: Red Moon Press, 2019)
- Bennett, Brad. a turn in the river. (Winchester VA: Red Moon Press, 2019)
- Chula, Margaret. One Leaf Detaches. (Uxbridge UK: Alba Publishing, 2019)
- Cooper, Bill. moon music. (Winchester VA: Red Moon Press, 2019)
- Crocket, Elizabeth. Happy Haiku. (Pilot Knob MO: Crimson Cloak Publishing, 2019)
- Elliot, Kirsten Cliff. Patient Property: a journey through leukaemia. (North Highlands CA: velvet dusk publishing, 2019)
- Fontana, Lucia. Sunflower Moon. (Winchester VA: Red Moon Press, 2019)
- Frampton, Alice. from here. (Winchester VA: Red Moon Press, 2019)
- Gilbert, Richard, Yuki Ito, David Ostman, Masahiro Hori, Koun Franz, Tracy Franz, Takeyoshi Kanamitsu. Haiku as Life: A Kaneko Tohta Omnibus (Winchester, VA: Red Moon Press, 2019)
- Haynes, Tia. leftover ribbon. (North Highlands CA: velvet dusk publishing, 2019)
- Hotham, Gary. Rightsizing the Universe: Haiku Theory. (Scaggsville MD: Yiqralo Press, 2019)
- Machmiller, Patricia J. (editor). Ferry Crossing. (San Francisco CA: Two Autumns Press, 2019)
- Martin, Jeannie, with 31 haiku by vincent tripi. touch of light. (Winchester, VA: Red Moon Press, 2019)
- McKeon, Joe. Oars Up. (Winchester, VA: Red Moon Press, 2019)
- Moss, Ron C. Broken Starfish. (Lesley Vale Australia: Walleah Press, 2019)
- Rotella, Alexis. Scratches on the Moon. (Arnold MD: Jade Mountain Press, 2019)
- Trumbull, Charles. A History of Modern Haiku. (Lincoln IL: Modern Haiku Press, 2019)
- Wilkinson, Geoffrey. Going to the Pine: Four Essays on Basho. (Powys Wales: Geoffrey Wilkinson, 2019)
Bruce H. Feingold
Chair, Touchstone Awards Committee
The Haiku Foundation