A Hundred Gourds 4:4 September 2015

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The Second International Haiku Conference in Krakow, Poland (May 15-17, 2015)

by J. Brian Robertson

| Introduction | page 2 | page 3 |page 4


Some of the titles of the conference’s presentations suggested that attendees would benefit most if they came prepared with some background knowledge on the subjects, but in most cases I was able to glean something useful from the talks. The theme of “real haiku” or that of traditional Japanese motifs vs. modern ones (such as culturally-specific motifs, or culturally-neutral motifs) seemed to be a thread running through most of the talks.


The view from the Manggha Museum’s patio / Rob Scott’s talk on world haiku

On Saturday morning were the following presentations:

1. Ikuyo Yoshimura (Japan) – Haiku of Kobayashi Issa;

2. Agnieszka Żuławska-Umeda (Poland) — Warsaw Haiku School - Between the original and the translation: How “Polish haiku” wanders amongst the motifs of Japanese culture;

3. Rob Scott (Sweden/Australia) — World Haiku from an Australian Viewpoint;

4. Martyna Rozesłaniec (Poland) – The shaping poetic image in translations of haiku Matsuo Basho. Problems connected with translating from Japanese to Polish;

5. Ludmila Balabanova (Bulgaria) – Dragonflies have transparent wings - a view at World Haiku as international art.

On Saturday afternoon was one more presentation by Agnieszka Żuławska-Umeda (Haiku by Milosz and the search of Japanese poetic expressions in Polish poetry - reminiscence about Ewa Tomaszewska) and then the following round-table discussions:

1.How Haiku Came to Europe and Why It Became So Popular (participants: Agnieszka Żuławska-Umeda - Poland and Max Verhart - Holland);

2. Traditional vs Modern (Gendai) Haiku in Central and Eastern Europe (participants: Robert Kania - Poland, Iliyana Stoyanova - UK/Bulgaria, and Ralf Broker - Germany);

3. Haibun and Haiga – European and American Experience (participants: Roberta Beary - USA, Lidia Rozmus – USA/Poland, and Margaret Chula - USA).


Round-table discussions (from left to right):
1. Max Verhart and Agnieszka Żuławska-Umeda
2. Ralf Broker, Iliyana Stoyanova, and Robert Kania
3. Margaret Chula, Roberta Beary, and Lidia Rozmus

On Sunday there was a general gathering at the museum where conference participants were free to chat, drink coffee, write haiku for the conference’s contest, eat from the museum’s restaurant’s menu, and enjoy the museum’s patio and view.