Broadsided . Words on the Streets

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2013 HYIR

2012 HYIR

2011 HYIR

2010 HYIR


It's a writing contest, it's a collaborative grab-bag, it's a panoply of voices and visions.... it's the annual Haiku Year-In-Review (henceforth referred to as HYIR).

The purpose: to celebrate, examine, and honor the past year in poetry and art.

The specifics shift slightly from year to year, as we try different approaches. Click the images to the right for previous years' HYIR.


We're doing things a little differently than years past, so pay attention.

This year, Twitter will be the primary mode of submission. Why? HYIR haikus, like Twitter itself, revolve around concise language and public events. With its 140-character limit, visibility, and share-ability, Twitter is just the right platform to collect these nuggets of pithy, public verse.

When it comes time to submit, you'll simply tweet your haiku to us @broadsidedpress and tag it #HYIR #X (“X” being the season to which your haiku responds).

What to tweet? Read on...

1) Think about this past year and the events that have dominated a given season. Write a haiku that captures a moment that illuminates such an event. Below are some suggestions to get you thinking. Your haiku should embrace the tradition of the form and be evocative, not didactic.

Winter (Jan, Feb, March):

  • Disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370
  • 30 people killed by a mudslide in Oso, Washington
  • LGBT protests of the Olympic Winter Games in Sochi due to homophobic laws in Russia
  • Sunflower Student Movement in Taiwan
  • Ebola epidemic begins

Spring (March, April, May):

  • Psy's "Gangnam Style" becomes the first video to reach 2 billion views on YouTube
  • Hundreds of Nigerian schoolgirls abducted
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez dies
  • Climbers killed by avalanche on Mt Everest

Summer (June, July, August):

  • Michael Brown shot in Ferguson, MO
  • ALS "Ice Bucket Challenge" results in $115 million in donations
  • Robin Williams dies
  • FIFA World Cup in Brazil

Fall (September, October, November):

  • "Umbrella Revolution" pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong
  • Nobel Peace Prize awarded to Malala Yousafzai and Kailash Satyarthi
  • #BlackLivesMatter march in Washington DC and around the US

2.) As previously noted, this year, rather than emailing your entry* to us, you will enter the contest via twitter, which is better. Tweet your haiku @broadsidedpress #HYIR #X (X being the season to which you are responding). It's that easy.

* Don't Tweet? Don't fret. You can still email your entry to us ( if you really, really want to. But be warned—you will still be held to Twitter's 140-character limit. If you choose to email your entry, please write "HYIR” and the season to which you are responding in the subject line.

5.) Please limit yourself and send your best work—only one entry per person, per season.

6.) Deadline for haiku submissions: January 10, 2015.

We will choose the winners, and in January, 2015, the final Haiku Year-In-Review will be published on the Broadsided site and posted around the world.


In early America, from about 1720 to the early 1900s, newspaper carriers would present their subscribers with a poem on New Year's Day. These broadsides (ahem) were called Carriers' Addresses. Illustrated with engravings, they would chronicle the year's events. See images and information at Brown University's special collection.

The origins of haiku have a tie to the annual through their traditional seasonality. A mention of the moment is a critical element to classic haiku. For those unfamiliar with Haiku, here's a link to a site that discusses traditional formats.

Broadsided Press's commitment to street-worthy art and writing leads us to combine these forms into a modern incarnation that borrows a bit, too, from the graphic spirit of the comic book.


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