2018 Porad Award Winners
Francine Banwarth, Judge
First Place ($100)
I find the juxtaposition, enhanced by the echo of sound values in lines one and three, surprising and compelling. A ballast provides stability for a ship or vessel. As the tempest blows around us, we are held steady by the thrust of the baby’s foot against our palm. Throughout the challenges of parenthood and life in general it is our children, after all, who teach us how to love.
Second Place ($50)
We are called back into the twilight evenings of our childhood. The tug, with such an effective surprise in line three, is palpable. Can you feel it? I do. It is an invisible tether, a lifeline that connects us to Mom whether she is near or far. It most likely began with the umbilical cord in the womb. My mother is 92; she’s been a part of my life for 71 years, and I still feel that tug.
Third Place ($25)
I am drawn to haiku in which we have to piece the parts together, those with layers and possibility for suggestion. Winter begins, we batten down the hatches, prepare ourselves mentally and physically for the long, cold, dark months ahead. What is this handle attached to? A pump? A faucet? A commode? Or to that voice inside that reminds us we are entering the season of persistence?
high winds off Alki
Alki Beach is located in West Seattle on Puget Sound, where nonnative settlers spent their first winter in the mid 1800s. A number of native tribes arrived thousands of years earlier and their ancestors still struggle today for “survival, respect, and renewal.” There may be other interpretations, but for me, this sea star clinging against the high winds is a symbol of that struggle.
rocky shoreline . . .
It’s a hard life, suggested by the rocky shoreline where nets have been set for the catch of the day. The problem is, other species become entangled in them and perish, like this hungry seagull who found his catch of the day in the wrong place at the wrong time. The repetition of “remains” adds a sad weight to this ecological dilemma.
The first line drew me in immediately, a whimsical setup where pelicans perch, tilting their heads from side to side at the sound of the horn while tourists peer out from the deck, anticipating arrival at yet another port. A delightful combination but one with its own ecological undertones.
We have a single rocker and the story of one life, the joys and sorrows, the hardships and celebrations. But this haiku also speaks to me in the age of social media. It harkens back to a time when lives were shared face to face, when rockers were the seat of social interaction at the end of a long workday.