skip to Main Content

THF Monthly Kukai Voting Ballot

This month’s theme:

Voting for The Haiku Foundation Monthly Kukai

Shortly after the conclusion of the submission period, an anonymous ballot comprising all submitted poems on that month’s theme will be posted to Troutswirl (The Haiku Foundation blog) on the THF site. Any reader of this ballot is eligible to vote for their favorites poems at this time. All votes must be sent via The Haiku Foundation’s dedicated kukai email address using the subject line KUKAI VOTING. No other votes will be recognized or honored. All votes must be signed (that is, no “anonymous” votes will be accepted), and no poet may vote for his or her own work. No commentary upon the poems will be accepted or published. Votes will be accepted from the appearance of the ballot for one full week. Readers may vote only once per ballot. Administrators of the kukai are ineligible to vote.

A voter may vote for up to three (3) poems per theme. A top vote will receive 3 points, a second-place vote 2 points, and a third-place vote 1 point. Your voting email to us should look something like this:

First Choice (3 points): [your selection number here] Second Choice (2 points): [your selection number here] Third Choice (1 point): [your selection number here]


The Ballot

1 11-
She turns a cartwheel
off of her two hands
2        a backyard Jedi
on the hunt for Darth Virus
with his lightsaber
3        A blackbird chirps
Auspicious song of hope
Time to restart
4 a gazelle
hidden by the wall –
hope, hope

a glimmer of light
gray colors
in the silence

6        a long winter ends – –
   under my Harley’s seat
      young sparrow’s peeping
7 a mask imprint
on her tired face
spring breeze
8        a microscope
   reveals the
      bug’s Achilles’ heel
9        a reward
one tutti frutti
mischief no more
10 a robin’s song
the half-withered branch
gleaming again
11 a safe place
the spring
in my hand
12 a swallowtail –
hovering until swept back
by the sea-breeze
13        a treasured button
four small windows into
a child’s hopes and dreams
14 a tulip larger
than the sky and mountain range
my niece’s painting
15 after everything predawn light
16        after fire
every gum
    plays green sleeves
17        after lockdown…
green shoots from
charred trees
18        after the firestorm
a rescued koala bear
in the firefighters arms
19 after the storm
the sky brighter
than before
20        after the tsunami
  waiting for next year’s blossoms
21        after the tsunami butterflies
22 aftertaste
of ripe pear- – –
my apology
23        almond flowers
changing the colour
of my pregnancy test
24 almost Summer –
a child is pedaling
without wheels
25 always the same
window pane …  the moon
it’ s crescent now
26        always there
the sun
behind the cloud
27 an empty village
of lego bricks …
contagions’ descent
28        an open road …
  the butterfly resting on
     a long-lost glove
29 another spring
the widower grows
a mustache
30        apple blossoms
a ladder
from his hands
31        april fool
the eagle sighting
kept to myself
32        April puddles
the flash
of tiny rainboots
33 autumn melancholy –
the comforting touching
of the fallen leaves
34        autumn windfall
even now she hopes to find
an unbruised apple
35        bare limbs
   in the wind
36        beach plums
the wings of a butterfly
changing everything
37        bedridden—
floating in the magic
of the dawn chorus
38 before I say it
you know
chestnut tree in bloom
39 better after death.
the myna whistles
at her like he used to
40        blind date
  a sliver more of moonlight
    as the clouds shift
41        blooming camellia —
I hope my son will receive
a full scholarship
42 blooming tulip—
another day
another day
43 bluewater sailing
a bell among the
outermost skerries
44        border crossing
the sunlit edges
of dark cloud
45                                                                                   boundary talk
                                                              two dogs across the fence
                                                                                           wag tails
46 breath by breath
my child holds up her world…
soap bubbles
47        brightening sky
a chickadee lands closer
to my open palm
48 broken-winged butterfly
I get overwhelmed with
49 ceasefire agreement
a mourning dove brings to nest
an olive twig
50        cemetery walk-
so much faith
chiselled into stone
51        chemotherapy
  with the last few strands
    I braid hope
52        cherished dreams
all the more reason
to try again
53 cherry blossoms
on the cut branch
spring lullaby
54 cherry bough
I wait
for my turn
55        children’s ward
paper angel wings
on the barbie doll
56        chrysalis
trusting itself
to transformation
57        cicada corpses
  my dreams
    of another life
58        cloudless sky
the dawn warbling
of magpies
59 clouds traveling-
each window
has its dawn
60 coffee in hand she
flings herself out the front door
into the new day
61        cold drizzle
the yellowest green
of early spring
62        coliseum
the Christians’ agoreuphoria
quickly fades
63 Colonoscopy
his  hope   after removal
of   malignant growth
64 coming over
the barbed wire
spring birdsong
65 corona virus-
from a peach flower
the day starts
66 corona virus. . .
neighbor’s car won’t
leave the house
67 coronavirus
strangers in this strange new land
reach out to help each other
68        crocuses
the winter ends
69 daffodil bulbs
left in an empty bucket
bloom anyway
70 daffodils
behind the back
will he kneel down
71 dandelion tea –
a little bit bitter taste
of this spring
72 dark april sky –
each drop
a rainbow
73        dark dusty corner
  shivering spider hiding
    spring cleaning
74 dawn
sparrows chattering
among the rubble
75 dawn Lights
in every fold
of the flag
76        Dawn quietly slips
through the slats of my window shade
A new beginning.
77 day after Easter
my son lifts an earthworm
from the wet pavement
78 day five
a garden snail peeks
into the rain
79 deep in the forest
the silent chorus
of trillium
80 deep winter
a stray dog
follows me home
81        don’t lose your nerve
because the hope dies the last
but revives the first
82        Down in my street
Feeling the crackle of leaves
New day ahead
83        drifting clouds
  still two rocking chairs
    in the veranda
84        during covid-19
   first signs of well-being
      in the garden
85        during quarantine
in free-flowing water
spring moon
86 each one hoping
for different outcome –
pregnancy test
87 each spring
filling in the blank spaces
cherry blossoms
88 eagle eyes-
sharpened the sector of distancing  
89 earthquake
among the bricks
a dragonfly
90 Easter morning
a half empty bowl
by the bird bath
91 empty shelves
after the storm
the full rainbow
92 Falls forgotten leaves –
the daffodils blooming through
93 faulty traffic lights
a girl on the other side. . .
a foggy morning
94 flood over…
the rainbow links
a broken bridge
95        fog lifts
the road home
96 foregoing family,
doctor on-call waits and prays –
may there be fewer
97        forest bathing
under a canopy
     of birdsong
98        four in the morning
  miserable song of a lonely bird
    waiting in its nest
99 Fukushima
animals thriving
in no man’s land
100 full moon laughter
my lock-down neighbours
two meters apart
101 full pink moon
      slowly opens
102 full rainbow—
a four-leaf clover
in the fairy ring
103        gently to the door of rainbow picnic less rain
104 giant sequoias
“There’s something you need to hear.”
I stand very still
105        glowing sun
daffodils raising their heads
after the snow
106 good man
    I’ll never find a mile away
        metre more
107        grandma’s rocker
the comfort
of rosary beads
108 green tinge covers
the fire ravaged forest…
a bluebird’s song
109 growing sky –
the echo of the first beat
in the ultrasound
110 harvest moon above
not a chance of writing
mind slips its moorings
111        holding my breath
the last little whelp
makes a sound
112 home all day
my castles in the air
113        home library
wiping down my copy of
The Journal of the Plague Year
114        home lockdown
  still following the sun
    from one room to another
115 homebound still
the sound of a letter
through the slot
116 hope flying through the storm finding rainbows
117        hope is watering dead grass
118 hope kick starts migration
119        hope takes a look at me
I remove my dark sunglasses
It’s time to try again
120 hope with which the meadow greets crocuses
121        hope, flicking your
life’s savings
into a wishing well
122        hope, I feel you now
a bright light in the dark sky
better days are coming
123        hopefully hungry
the dry fly lands
in a troutswirl
124 how they rush
to greet me…
aquarium fish
125 icebreaker —
we share more
than coffee

if only
a painted rainbow
would suffice
…pink moon

127        ill in bed
blooming tree in the window,
keep on, keep on
128 imagining
the scent of roses
through my mask
129        in anticipation
    of the first snowfall …
              the nacked mountains
130 in the bushes
just enough morning
to see the rose
131 in the eye
of the storm
mother’s arms
132 in the middle
of it all
133 in the tree’s scar a bud
134        in these dark days
yet I see the light at the end
of the tunnel
135 incoming mail –
on gate the song
of a swallow
136        inheriting hope…
I adopt the language
from my grandpa
137 isolation
my troubled dream ends
with a mockingbird
138        isolation –
spring wind
crawling on my body
139        isolation —
   on the house’s fence
      morning glory
140        isolation—
the rising sun
freshens my face
141 lake
the crane returns
to the same spot
142              late spring morning
I risk a walk outside- –
crocus venture their brave purples
143 left over hope…
the stony grey eyes
of a toy soldier
144        lest we forget
a little boy
washed up on foreign shores
145        life on hold, local hairdresser… takes up floral arrangement
146        life support
ivy tendrils around
the bruised twig
147        life support
the sunlight moves
from bed to bed
148 light shade
of the birch-
149 lilac days
what scent can do
gets done
150 lingering hope…
noticing the flavour
of the breeze
151 lockdown
  on the crane’s wings
      a spirit of hope
152 lockdown
in spite of it all:
153        lockdown
my daughter’s first
origami crane
154        lockdown
we now listen out
for the neighbour’s Eminem
155 lockdown –
a kite above
flies higher and higher
156        lockdown days
  ninety sleeps
    to normal…
157        Lockdown or not the sun shines
158 Long awaited fecal flight of bees >>>>>>>>>>>>>
159 longing
to find you
a daisy field
160 maybe this time first trimester
161        melting snow
the hallelujah chorus
of white crocuses
162 melting snow
the road I do not
have to make
163        messenger –
a ladybug landing
on my sleeve
164        milkweed in bloom
the monarch caterpillar
eating its way
165 millions of midges
whirlwind down the slough––
overcome we will
166 months of yearning pass,
finally her belly swells –
she hopes for a girl
167 moon cools the sigh of relief
168 morning
the lift
of the great blue
169 morning breeze
the butterfly
170        morning coffee
the chickadees
171        morning stillness
on my window box
a butterfly
172        morning walk
a ripple of gold
in every puddle
173        mother’s voice
  the gospel air
    I breathe
174        moving apart
we still hope to share
long silences
175        My throat constricts
Breath caught between words
The final proclamation uttered
176 nature overtakes
the highest hillside castle
bramble by bramble
177        nestled
between crooked branches
a robin’s nest
178 new dawn dew
in every tiny drop- –
179 new grandma
shaking hands crochet
baby booties
180 new mown field…
the killdeer rebuilds her nest
for a saved egg
181        nightmare or earthquake
there’s ten seconds of hope
until waking up
182 no sundresses, no Stetson hats
on country roads
yet… bluebonnets bloom
183 no words
like your words
fruit basket
184 noticing
the buds
are not stopping
185 nurse log
  you hold me close
      on the forest path
186        nurseries closed
  nation in lockdown
    seeds, saved and sowed
187        oh to dance again new moon
188 old pond
we share haiku
via zoom
189 on the dunes
now lilies are blooming…
condominium court
190        on the seventh day
of self-isolation…
cherry blossom
191        Once there was a way back home
Everything has changed
but you still hold me.
192        only the sound
of distant bird song
I sit and wait
193 opening the memory
of the lime-green
194        outside temple
in the name of god
stretched hands
195 pandemic graph’s
growing curve
new branch of my bonsai
196 pandemic resuscitating the catatonic collective conscience of we
197 Pandora’s Box
the last gift to leave –
also contagious
198        panning perhaps some paydirt for her ring
199        parting clouds
the field of wild flowers
a rainbow
200 (((Passover moon  any old satellite  moon)))
201 paying off my loan
all at once
daffodils bloom
202 Peekaboo pollution
Mother thinks about
shedding her mask
203        pensive way
between shadow and reflection
cherry blossoms
204        Performed act of Hope
Bought flower seeds for planting
When plague is over
205        pewter sky
   the sudden accent
      of a yellow finch
206 pink moon
my hand opens
to your voice
207 planting the tree
a powerful great oak
I hope again
208        playful smile
from a stranger
first cherry blossom
209        prayer flag harvest
fields of winter wind
temple bells call the priest
210 puzzle pieces
in a plain cardboard box––
inset hope here
211 quarantined spring..
pondering the next puzzle tile
of my life
212        rain dance
drought makes me become
a shaman
213 rains over…
ants patch their hills
in morning light
214 recovery – –
in the window box
first tulip
215        regardless the river wren song flowing
216   remnant
scraping vessel to core- his
hope of survival
217 resurrection…
an empty cathedral
fills with a blind man’s song
218        retirement village
rec-creating till the wee hours
of the afternoon
219        rope bed,
waking up to her smile —
  spring bud
220        rotten leaves
the rising  grass
221        saint valentine’s day
  faded rose at the florist’s
    hoping to be picked
222 sandscaping nationalities into world citizenry viral gaze
223 scented memo
    unspoken love of a woman
224        searching the
doctor’s kind eyes
second opinion
225        second crush…
   as if these cherry blossoms
      will never fall
226               sequestered spring
less noise in the city
more birdsong
227        shattering
the night, a pinhole
of light
228        she changes
her lucky number
tenth IVF
229 she walks around her lake
the morning after
that leaf still hanging on
230 sheltered in place
every day a new challenge
231 sidewalk chalk
a heart in the middle
of each slab
232        silent prayers
the steady glow
of her votive candle
233        Silent wait
Stay together to dream
The city inside
234 sleepless
at four in the morning
a song thrush starts singing
235        small boy petting
for-sale puppy
four hopeful eyes
236 snow melt
the wait
for new buds
237        so many people died
but not the hope
not yet
238 social distancing
the spaces between us
draw us together
239 social distancing . . .
but just above her face mask
a wink
240        some early some late
the dusk falls around us
as stars
241 song thrush chicks
singing the new world
a prima vista
242 sowing garlic –
head turned
to the moon
243 spring breeze—
Granny’s hope chest
produces a frisbee
244        spring clouds
continuing the massage
to his heart
245 spring garden
I know I am not
246 spring morning
peeling the price tag off
a new book
247 spring thaw
the sound of birds
warming up
248 spring time pandemic
just me and my fiancé. . .
on the altar
249 Springtime’s hidey-holes
in the tattle of songbirds
all will be revealed
250        sprouts in the silence resound life
251        starry sky
her words
in future tense
252 starting over
the new moon rises
with me
253 statewide quarantine—
my neighbor finally
says hello
254        step by step
forget me nots on the path …
blue breath
255 summer brook –
tiny fish swim against
the slow stream
256 summer morning –
the coffee flavour
greeting the first rays
257 sunlight on water enough hope for everyone
258 sunrise
a duck preens darkness
from its feathers
259 sunrise
opens into
260        sunrise colors all over
a butterfly lands on my shoulder
blooming red roses-hope
261        sunshine
again today
switch to shoes
262 suspension bridge
vanishes into the fog —
the passers-bye too
263 talks of hope…
the ambiguous shape
of an unspoken wish
264        teen bride
   the reassurance
      of summer evening

the absence of wind
huddled frogspawn

266 the babble of  … a child  this stream    my mind
267 the growing up she did
before we met
New York skyline

the latest metrics
a skylark
ever higher

269 The moorings
dotting the harbor –
summer’s silent oath
270 the poet within
not inspired by prompts, yet
there’s hope
271        the power within
cricket chants
twilight always comes
272        the scent
of pine needles
mountain breeze
273 the unceasing
of buds
274 the way
he wags his tail—
three-legged dog
275 the weathervane shifts
and changes as it has to
always with the wind
276 travel ban
the finches
ignore us
277 two little smiles
above his mask
the old man’s eyes
278        under the cherry blossoms daydreaming
279 Understanding now,
but longing for change.
Is that hope?
280 video call
grandma knits a scarf
for next christmas
281        virgin waters
from the Trevi fountain
a glassful of hope
282   wait listed ticket
eagle eyes  round the clock
hope still scrolls
283 waking
    hopefully for sunrise
        sans corona
284        walking
in the hope of shelter – – –

evening rain
285 walking though the woods
will always belong to her
my fourth grade teacher
286        waxing crescent
hung up on the last button
of her blouse
287        we retreat
into our homes
nature starts to speak
288 we visit
a window between
the warblers return
289 wearing a mask
for the first time
we talk face to face
290        wedding day
two cormorants dive
into unseen wonder
291 white blossoms in the night recovery
292 winding road
with each new curve
another anticipation
293              winter’s end—
a green balloon drifts over
the subway platform
294 wisteria sprawls
over the guardrail
curbside pick-up
295        withering wind—
a lightened candle
between palms
296 words spill off the pages
from my isolated window
new leaves on the tree
297        wounded spirit
… I plant cherries
and wait
298 your book comforts me
its gentle weight
on my chest
299        zero gravity
the four-year-old
laughing at a fart


Kukai Results

On the first day of the following month, results of the tally of the kukai will be announced. The top vote-getters as voted by readers will be posted, along with the number of points each poem tallied, and each poem’s authorship will be revealed at this time. A poet may appear only once on the list of winners each month, so only a poet’s highest point total will be given. Winners will be invited to select from a list of prizes provided by The Haiku Foundation. The theme for the new month will be announced at the same time, and the process repeated. Poems remain the copyrighted property of their authors, but The Haiku Foundation reserves the right to publish, display and archive all submitted poems for this and other purposes at its discretion.

Congratulations to all our participants!


This Post Has 24 Comments

    1. Once a few more people have commented this instruction will be overlooked as lots of people quickly scroll down to the bottom of the replies, so may I suggest that instead of the email address being lost in the first paragraph, that it is printed larger right underneath the voting instructions and maybe after the last submission.

  1. I agree with reducing the number of poems allowed. This was a slog. Even allowing just one poem less would be better. It might also increase the selectiveness of the poets, thus increasing the quality of submissions.

  2. I didn’t see a notification that the vote was open either. I also agree that one entry would be a much more effective rule.

  3. Somehow I missed seeing this when it opened. I’ll give it a try next time. Some interesting haiku here!

  4. I enjoyed the process of narrowing down the list, but the number of haiku makes me wonder if it should be one haiku per entrant next time…

    1. The instruction says to post your choices via email link above. Telling people creates a potential bias to the result.

  5. @ Sanela Pliško
    The voting period started yesterday 18.4.20. It runs for one week.
    If you are referring to participating in the Kukai, then yes you have missed this one and will need to wait until the 1st of May.
    Best wishes.

    1. Hi Sanela, it says ‘Votes will be accepted from the appearance of the ballot for one full week.’

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back To Top