Between May and July 2013, a total of 335 haiku and 25 tanka were submitted by 85 authors for this selection. The deadline for entries was July 15, 2013. Each participant could submit up to 5 haiku or tanka.

These works were anonymized by Claudia Brefeld, who also had the overall coordination, before the selection began. The jury consisted of Wolfgang Beutke, Gerd Börner and Claudia Melchior. The members of the selection group did not submit their own texts.

All selected works (30 haiku and 6 tanka) are listed below alphabetically by author's name - up to max. three works per author.

“A haiku / a tanka that appeals to me in particular” - under this motto, every jury member has the opportunity to choose a work (still anonymized), present it here and comment on it.

Claudia Brefeld

A haiku that particularly appeals to me

Selected and commented by Wolfgang Beutke:

fallow land


the old games


Gerda Forester

Extremely spartan, consisting of only five words and therefore only very limitedly variable, the text stands in block form in front of me. A haiku in which it was possible to accommodate a strong verb and an adjective in addition to two nouns. There is no indication of the season by a kigo.

"Barrens", for me the key word in this haiku that has it all. From him my train of memory immediately sets in motion:

I'm back in Berlin in the 2s. Orphaned and overgrown plots of land initially only appear in shadowy form, but then I become more and more conscious. Decommissioned train stations and abandoned factories or houses that were destroyed in World War II and never rebuilt come to my mind. The scents and colors of a species-rich flora, which could develop undisturbed over the years of fallow land, are present again. I even see plants from distant lands, the seeds of which the railroad trains transported as “blind passengers”, in the old train stations in front of me ...

It becomes clear to me what a large field of association this keyword offers and with what power buried images of childhood come to light again.

With the author's subsequent inner monologue

To forget

the old games

my flow of memory is only briefly interrupted A kind of melancholy arises, perhaps even the realization that these old games are lost forever. I focus my memory seamlessly:

These mysterious, overgrown plots magically attracted children to play.

Games and rules of the game often sprang from her imagination, or what was already known was modified and adapted to the area. Playground equipment? Everything the ruins gave! Cobblestones and bricks, old tires; rusted iron girders served as a balance beam, and brittle masonry as a climbing wall, an almost inexhaustible reservoir for games and tests of courage ...

These are the first thoughts that trigger these lines in me and make them valuable for me. Although the text does not indicate a season, I am amazed that I see myself romping through this wilderness again and again in summer and midsummer as a child.

It may well be that the author had different images in mind when he wrote his lines. However, this does not detract from the whole, because if a text is scarce, as is the case here, it must be assumed that there is inevitably a broad scope for association that allows a wealth of interpretations.

Yes, I like this haiku because it is short and specific, has a restrained but effective sound and invites me to an excursion into childhood, on which long-forgotten pictures and games can be grasped again. And what I particularly appreciate is that extensive research on the "World Wide Web" is not required to enjoy the text.

Selected and commented by Claudia Melchior:

empty cocoon -

the fear, the right word

to lose


Silvia Kempen

Do I say it or don't I say it?

Do I lose a word (the singular form is selected here) and if so, is it "the right one"?

Great uncertainty, doubts and fear are raised here - also by the reader.

Fear of loss, which is made very clear here with the words "empty", "fear", "lose".

Fear is on a line with the right word (2nd line). Equivalent to. You can feel the inner conflict.

If you consider the cocoon as a shelter for growing up, as a home, where trust has been built and the right tone for development has always been found, there is now the fear of losing this natural closeness and connection from the past.

The offspring has already broken out of the protective cocoon and is now on the way to unfolding.

It is not necessarily guaranteed whether you like the direction that you are now taking independently. Do you still give him a word on the way? Even if you know: not one has the power to stop him.

Selected and commented by Gerd Börner:

Owl calls

the shade of gray

the pasture


Gabriele Hartman

Goethe's Erlkönig immediately occurred to me: "(...) The old willows seem so gray." In the ballad it is the ghostly scene in which the son, terrified, calls out to the riding father to escape the Erlkönig and his daughters. In the present haiku it is the bird of twilight and night that calls - an owl that we also like to associate with cemeteries and ruins. Owls are feared as devil birds in some areas because they supposedly herald death ...

"Lady Macbeth hears the owl in the drama Macbeth while her husband murders the rightful king:

- Quiet, listen! -

It was the owl that screamed, the sad watchman,

The horribly good night wishes."

Even those who do not have to think of the Erlkönig or Macbeth can feel the unspoken: something uncanny, plaintive in the owl's call. In the twilight, not only willow appears gray ... In three extremely concise lines and successful synesthesia, the author lets us experience the mood of fear and horror with multiple senses.

The selection

Mach's garden door zua

dr moon and dr big bear

send scho do


Johannes ancestor

morning fog

in the vanished country

looking for traces


Sylvia Bacher

In the scent of the hedge ...

his breath

when I was eighteen


Christa Beau

bright message

the silhouettes faded

in Nagasaki


Dirk Uwe Becker

Garden of stones

An old man rakes

the universe


Pure Bonack


In the fast lane

check mails


Ralf Broker

Crossword -

the fields are slowly filling up

with sun


Tony Bohle

Sculptor's workshop -

Helena is at your feet

smashed a lot of stone


Horst Oliver Buchholz

The night falls quietly

a cat ducks

- ready to jump


Horst Oliver Buchholz

After long walks

the dried up river bed

a sea of ​​flowers


Horst Oliver Buchholz

flowering linden trees -

but the wind

comes from the slaughterhouse


Gerda Forester

fallow land


the old games


Gerda Forester

Hiking rest.

The warmth of the sun

in the apple.


Volker Friebel

oval moon - night grass caresses my knees


Ruth Guggenmos-Walter

autumn afternoon

Mother has already

put to sleep


Birgit Heid

Owl calls

the shade of gray

the pasture


Gabriele Hartman

evening sun

a new path

crosses the slope


Gabriele Hartman

Rain melody.

I accompany the drops

on my drum.


Eve Marie helmet

the new pastor


he swings the scythe


Angelica Holweger

tumbling leaves

so many colors

for two eyes


Use Jacobson

empty cocoon -

the fear, the right word

to lose


Silvia Kempen


I feel my way carefully

in public


Britta Knuth

Alone in the inn -

the next chair goes again

to a group


Gerard Krebs

No mans land -

the strange fragrance

white flowers


Eva Limbach


a blue moth touches

my shadow


Ramona Left


The sound of the wind



Ramona Left

phantom pain

in the ashtray

a stub


Lydia Royen Damhave

Visited the hedgehog

naked before sunrise

back to my bed


Kerstin Rüter

the bark, the hand;

some branches of the tree

stay bald


Helga Stania

battle zone

curved across the battlefield

a rainbow


Dietmar Tauchner

So rich in light

der Sommer

in my garden

before saying goodbye

open the doors


Christa Beau

"Do you want

don't tell me something? ”

you ask -

but there is nothing i

want to tell you; not now.


Tony Bohle

when rain falls

in the cedars

and the heat wipes off ...

tinny evening bells tell

from the leap in time


Ruth Guggenmos-Walter

Weeping willow ...

their branches in the spring wind

wheat blond

like my braids back then Mother,

you combed my hair so gently.


Angelica Holweger

knock on the window

of the empty farmhouse -

yes, now you are right:

together are the questions

and their answers


Dragan J. Ristic

A falling star

flew there -

on the voice

the deep night

I listened.


Kenji Takeda

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