Whole Life Soaps

2018 Soap Haiku Contest

Bill McConnell

Once again, Whole Life Soaps is a proud sponsor of the Wrightwood Literary Festival, which is held every September. This years literary festival will be held September 29th and 30th. Registration for the literary festival can be found here. https://www.wrightwoodlitfest.com/

Entry is simple.  If you plan on attending the literary festival, you can submit a poem at the event, or you can stop by in person and submit a poem at our storefront in downtown Wrighwtood, CA. We are located at 6013 Park Dr. across the street from The Village Grind and Pacific Crest Zip Line.

If you are unable to attend the festival, you may email your haiku submission to wholelifesoaps@gmail.com

Please write Haiku Contest 2018 in the subject line. Please submit only one entry per person. Entry is free, although we do encourage you to buy some soap as a way to support this fun contest.

Entries must include the following:

  • Name
  • a valid email address
  • a valid mailing address
  • a valid phone number
  • one haiku poem

Past winners are ineligible.  Winners will be notified by October 31, 2018, but all participants will be notified regardless of whether they win.

Winners will receive a $50 prize and publication on one of our lines of soap. In the past, we stamped poems on every bar we make, but as we continue grow and expand, this becomes logistically difficult, so we will create a special line just for your poem that we will carry  throughout the six months between January and June of 2019.

I just want to say how I view a haiku and what I look for in submissions. According to poet Ken Jones, “Many of the best haiku present unexpected and contrasting images. These can arouse profound and subtle emotions and can convey layers of subtle meaning. The Western convention is to write haiku in three lines, but haiku of one, two or four lines are acceptable where that makes the best “fit”. Often the first line sets the scene, within which the second line makes an observation. The third line then presents an image contrasting with the second line, throwing our normal expectations out of gear, as it were, and opening up a wider perspective which may be both allusive and elusive.”

I look for that elusiveness, that contrast between joy and grief. When I started this contest, I made it a point to look for those layers of meaning. I also look for Haiku’s that aren’t simply about my soap, but use natural elements to express an emotional contrast.

Good luck, and I look forward to reading your submissions.