Illawong Haiku Group – Winter 2020

Illawong Haiku Group held their Winter meeting on Tuesday, 16th June. With the ever changing rules relating to Covid 19 we gladly accepted the invitation from Margaret Mahony to hold our meeting at her home. Six ladies attended.

Internet exercises were held during the ‘lockdown’ period which included a commentary on a selected haiku, a haiku string with the very apt theme of Covid followed by haibun. Instructive information about each form accompanied the exercises. We attempted haiga but decided this would be easier face to face.

Our meeting began with a Q&A session relating to our on line exercises and everyone agreed it worked so well we will continue to extend our learning in this way between meetings.

As we are celebrating the Australian Haiku Society’s 20th year of promoting haiku in Australia, Carol read a prepared précis of Australia’s haiku history and referred to the original documents available on the Australian Haiku Society website for further reading.


There was a great deal of excitement when Ros produced a loaned copy of A Net of Fireflies: Japanese Haiku and Haiku Paintings. The relevance of this book would not have been known had we not read about it in A History of Haiku in Australia by Beverley George and Lyn Reeves. The book had a Japanese fan embossed into the cover and a dedicated protective sleeve. The condition of this book from 1969 made us realise what a treasured possession it was to the owner – we passed it around very carefully. In fact the person who loaned it to her said, ‘if your house burns down, make sure you take it with you’. Unfortunately there was insufficient time to fully absorb its content but it was a privilege to see it and we will remain ever envious of its owner.

We then moved on to our haiga exercise. Some had taken photos on their iPhones which were passed around and their haiku read out. Ros put a lot of effort into her haiga and had prepared a copy for everyone. It was a very creditable first effort.


 . . misty morn
lone pony endures
 . . . winter

Ros Pitt


To extend the exercise Carol brought along a selection of saved greeting cards with a variety of visual images to inspire. Each member chose a card and spent about 15 minutes creating haiku to link with the images.

As usual we all contributed to the haiku bowl which was passed around during lunch. Margaret spoiled us with cakes for morning tea and sandwiches for lunch.
Report by Carol Reynolds
Convenor IHG

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