Pure Haiku – FAQS

22 February, 2021

Pure Haiku is open for submissions of haiku on the theme of UNFURLING until 28th February 2021 at midnight, UK time.

Here’s a heads up on why some haiku are rejected whilst others are selected. Hopefully this’ll help as you compose and submit your haiku here!

Why were my haiku rejected?

I receive so many haiku whenever Pure Haiku is open to submissions that I am unfortunately no longer able to comment individually on each poem. Here is a list of the most common reasons why a haiku is rejected: –

1 – the haiku was not constructed with the correct number of syllables.

2 – the use of the English language is awkward, forcing the words to fit into the 17 syllable structure.

3 – each line is not an entire line in its own right.

4 – the haiku does not conjure up a vivid or original image.

5 – the haiku does not fit in with the advertised theme.

6 – the haiku was not in plain text in the body of the email, thus I was unable to cut and paste it with ease.

7 – you sent links to your haiku instead of pasting the haiku into the body of your email.

8 – you did not send all the requested information (eg first name, last name, email address, blog address, one sentence bio etc)

9 – your haiku relies on an image for the “aha” moment.

10 – you published your haiku before the final selection had taken place.

Please read how to and what I am looking for to ensure your haiku are considered for publication here at Pure Haiku.

I didn’t hear back from Pure Haiku at all – why?

1 – if you sent me an email then you should have received an auto reply. if you have not received an auto reply within 24 hours, please feel free to chase by email again.

2 – if you submitted your haiku as an attachment, your email will automatically be sent to the Spam folder and I will not see it at all.

3 – if you send more than 5 haiku your submission is automatically rejected

4 – if you submitted haiku through the comments form, they will automatically be rejected.

5 – if you submitted haiku via a Facebook message or twitter or other social media message, they will automatically be rejected.

6 – if you attached an image/s or embedded an image/s in your email, your submission will automatically be rejected.

Please read submit to ensure your haiku are considered for publication here at Pure Haiku. The current task is to write 5 haiku inspired by this painting by Elisa Ang.

This is a scheduled post. Comments will be read and approved when I next have access to the internet.

About Pure Haiku

15 February, 2021

Pure Haiku is currently open to submissions of traditional haiku on the theme of UNFURLING until 28th February 2021 at midnight, UK time.

In case you’re new to Pure Haiku or don’t know much about this site, here’s a heads up on what it’s all about!

I originally set up this blog so I had somewhere to publish my traditional haiku. In 2010 I was having my haiku rejected from so many places simply because they were traditional and apparently too difficult to write. Really?

Well, 5000+ followers later, I think I’ve made my point!

This blog is now a way of sharing my own and other peoples’ traditional haiku. This is me giving something back to the writing community. I know how difficult it is when you start to write. So I have made Pure Haiku a haven for those who enjoy writing and reading traditional haiku in the English language.

All the haiku published on this site are structured classically with 5-7-5 syllables per line. Please take this into account if you wish to Submit your own haiku and feature as a guest writer. I am aware that my haiku cannot be truly classical because I do not write in the old style of Japanese. Yet, this is how I was taught to write them many years ago and I find haiku such as these very pleasing to read.

Featured Haiku Writers

For each theme, I feature haiku by one guest writer. This is by invitation only. The best way to receive an invitation is to submit 4-5 haiku on the current theme whenever Pure Haiku is OPEN to submissions.

General Information

To be informed when the next submission window opens, simply sign up to follow this blog and receive notifications. (Enter your email address in the box at the top right hand corner of the page!)

Please note – the plural of haiku is haiku

If you wish to leave comments for other haiku writers, please do so in prose. Please note that any comments left in haiku form from January 2020 won’t be approved. If you wish your haiku to appear on this site, please follow the guidelines and submit haiku during submission periods.

SUBMIT your haiku inspired by this picture painted by Elisa Ang.

Pure Haiku – how it works

8 February, 2021

Pure Haiku is OPEN to traditional haiku on the theme of UNFURLING (see below) until 28th February 2021 at midnight, UK time!

So, you’ve found Pure Haiku, a site that publishes classical haiku.

But, how does it work?

As of 2021 and into the future, I will be running either one or two themes each year.

The submission periods from now on will last a maximum of 28 days, usually from the 1st – 28th of the selected month.

A post will appear on the 1st of the submission month announcing the new theme, and the same details will also be made available on the SUBMIT page.

During the submission month people can submit up to a maximum of 5 haiku on the current theme by email.

At the end of the submission period a post will appear on this site announcing that submissions are now closed and the same message will appear on the SUBMIT page.

I then have 2 months to read through all the haiku submitted and to choose which ones I want to appear on Pure Haiku.

If two or more writers are short-listed for the Featured Haiku Writer slot, I will usually ask the artist who produced the image for the theme to choose the Featured Haiku Writer.

Once that’s all confirmed, I then start scheduling haiku to appear every other day over a period of 3 months. Once everything’s scheduled, I contact everyone who has submitted their haiku for the theme and let them know that either their haiku has been accepted and when their haiku will appear, or let them know their haiku have been rejected and encourage them to submit again when the next theme is announced.

For instance, the current theme is UNFURLING and the deadline is 28th February. I will choose selected haiku in March and schedule the posts in April to appear between 1st May and 31st July. All contributors will be notified by 30th April whether or not they’ve been successful.

This is a free site and I don’t earn any money from it, so I can’t pay haiku writers anything. However, I do know from personal experience how valuable free exposure is to writers, and this is my way of offering something back to the writing community.

Pure Haiku OPEN to submissions!

1 February, 2021

Welcome back to Pure Haiku!

Our new theme is UNFURLING.

Please use this beautiful painting, Unfurling, by Elisa Ang to inspire you to write 5 haiku to submit by email before 28th February 2021 at midnight, UK time.

Take a really good look at the picture. I mean, a REALLY good look. Don’t just write about what’s there, write about what’s beneath the painting. What emotion or image or memory does it awake in you? Tell me something different about this picture. Don’t just rattle off 5 haiku with the 5-7-5 syllabic line structure. Really let Elisa’s painting speak to you. Then tell me about it, in your own words. Be different. Be aware. Be inventive! Use this image as a starting point for your creative flow…

You are NOT allowed to use the words LEAF, UNFURLING, UNFURLED OR UNFURL/S in either your haiku or the titles, should you wish to title your haiku.


Once you’ve written your haiku and are happy with them, please send a maximum of 5 classical haiku in the body of the email to

purehaiku (at) gmail (dot) com

with SUBMISSIONS, the THEME and your NAME in the subject line.

Please also include the following in the body of the email: –

Your first name
Your last name
Your email address
Your haiku (all 5 in one email please) (they do not have to be titled)
The full address of your blog or website if you have one or the full address of one of your social media outlets (only one site per submission please)
The name you want to appear on the copyright
One sentence introducing yourself. Be quirky and interesting – you want people to find you, don’t you?!

Even if you have had haiku published on this site before, please still include all this information as I do not keep any details of previous submissions. By including all the required details it makes my life easier when scheduling haiku. Thank you.

The full guidelines can be found at SUBMIT and I encourage everyone, new and regular contributors to read them and the links before submitting your work as I’m constantly updating how I choose haiku…

Please remember to send no more than 5 haiku with the details requested above in the body of your email.

Please DON’T send either the haiku or the information required as an attachment – I won’t receive your email as it will automatically go into my spam folder!

I look forward to reading your work!

Dancing Goddess

1 July, 2020

Today we start our explorations of Elisa Choi Ang’s beautiful Dancing Goddess painting.

Painting by Elisa Choi Ang

Thank you to the 20 people who submitted their haiku back in February. I had great enjoyment reading through all 89 haiku! Only 4 entries were rejected outright, mainly because the basic guidelines hadn’t been adhered to. Of the remaining 16 contributors, 8 were short listed for the Featured Haiku Writer slot, but, as usual, only one was chosen!

We welcome back Jan Beekman, Merril D Smith, Claudia Messelodi, Von Smith, Sarah Connor, JulesPaige, Tina Stewart Brakebill, Susi Bocks, Bill Engleson and Goff James.

And we extend a warm welcome to 6 new contributors to Pure Haiku: V. Vaidehi, Dinesh Silva, Ave Jeanne Ventresca, San Lin Tun, Lissa Kelly and Radhika Puttige.

Haiku inspired by the beautiful painting above will appear every 2 days over the next few weeks. Each post will contain a haiku, a brief one line bio about the writer as well as a link to their blog/web site – simply click on their name in the copyright notice underneath the haiku.

The haiku writers have expressed themselves in the seasons, in love, in colour, in dance and in deities. Enjoy!

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