Haiku Contest

The Garden at Filoli

With a little prodding from David, support from Chuck and Kumar, expertise from Goff, and all of my family, I entered a local haiku contest at Filoli. Mind you I am not a Haiku writer nor do I consider myself a poet although poetry, I write.

I saw the contest in an email and then with prodding from who other than my mom (my biggest cheerleader), I thought “why not”. I had zero expectations since I wasn’t even sure I knew what I was doing but that was part of the fun and took any expectation or pressure off. It was really cute because I had my family memebers vote on them and 3 even made up one of their own. Thank you all for the support.

Winter at Filoli is a time of quiet and reflection in the Garden. Submit a haiku inspired by Filoli’s winter garden to our Haiku Poetry Competition for your chance to win a Household Plus Membership and a beautiful gift basket of Filoli approved goodies. Please submit 3 haikus.

“short and dense hedgesfaded red, perfectly trimmedrun around the path”
Eli Schlanger, under 18 winner from Filoli’s 2020 Haiku Competition
Last Years Winner

My Enteries:

stroll the gifts of peace 
hearts heal strolling sacred grounds 
blooms burst hope and Joy 

respite found strolling 
pristine grounds open up hearts 
blooms burst joy and peace 

amid troubled time
gifts of peace on winter grounds
flowers burst, joy found

Enjoy moments of peace and beauty around the winter Garden while you listen to haikus from our finalists. Do you have a favorite? A winner is yet to be selected! Join our Instagram Live on the 14th to hear the announcement. Could one be me? Doubtful but now I thought “well, why not”.

Did you hear mine? Neither did I 🀣 because I didn’t win. I noticed that it wasn’t the traditional Haiku that I tried to follow in the
5, 7, 5 syllable format that I expected and this is a very formal garden. I emailed wondering about the guidelines and she said they decided to break suit from their usual traditional format. It’s ironic because I write much more free flowing as you might know if you read my work. The funny part that caught me by surprise was that I was a little bit disappointed. I knew this was a long shot and I didn’t think twice about it until I didn’t come up even placing.

I remembered back to all of the things I have ever entered and I only did so when I was so polished and every move was rehearsed in my mind and body until I knew I would win. It’s as though I dreampt it into fruition and there was no chance for failure whether it was cheerleading, pom pom girl, Miss Daly City, a job, being a dancer on broadway etc.

I did have one time I decided I didn’t want to win when I tried out for Miss San Mateo, and I didn’t win. I really did all of this for my mother and I’d had enough. My mother’s words were “it was rigged”. 🀣 Oh for a mothers love of her child. My mom asked if I won this contest and I said I did not and she said and I quote:

“Well that sucks probably the winners are long time members with clout. I thought your entry was worthy of winning” 😍

Oh for a mother’s love! Any disappointment I felt left because I won in my mothers eyes. Naive as she was, it is the heart of a mother that loves so deep and see’s her children in all of her glory (or should) and all of their disappointment, no matter what the world sees, loves you anyway and that is unconditional, skewed love.

I realized I had never let myself do anything without perfecting it, and it is ok just to try, without the pressure of having to win. That was the gift of entering this contest. I didn’t win and it was ok. The blessing of a mother’s love no matter if you win or loose, is a gift. In her eyes, I am always a winner and if I do one thing right in this world, if I can pass that down to my kids and the people I love, then I am a winner in the true sense of the word. “May all of your losses be wins of your heart”.

Copyright Β© Cindy Georgakas
All Rights Reserved 

Thank you once again to all of you who helped me in one way or another, reading and being a constant source of support in my life! I will be doing a Fri-Yay Funday here sometime in the near future and sharing it with you because it has so much rich history and is a beautiful place to write.




Website| Facebook| Instagram| YouTube

151 thoughts on “Haiku Contest

  1. amid troubled time
    gifts of peace on winter grounds
    flowers burst, joy found
    This Haiku is my favourite. If I am the judge.. you know what!? You guessed it right… You will be the winner ❀️❀️ Good try Cindy. It’s ok to not win.. and I appreciate you for taking the initiative and winning your mom’s heart. Good job Cindy. ❀️❀️❀️❀️

    1. Oh You are a dear one for reading all of that.
      Glad you liked that one and I’m going to nominate you to be the winner next time 🀣!❀️
      I am touched by your kind heart. You will be a good mother and thanks for the “Pep” talk. It is ok not to win and thanks for the appreciation and check in. My mother will be happy to read her name in print. xoxoxo β€οΈπŸ’–β€οΈπŸ˜˜

      1. Awww… You are becoming my sweetheart. ❀️❀️ Thank you Cindy and don’t forget to nominate me next time. 🀣🀣🀣
        I am sure your mother is more than happy. Keep up the great work Cindy. You always inspire me. Sending you ❣️❣️

      2. You are definitely my sweetheart!!!
        I sure will!!!!
        Yes, she’ll be happy reading this this morning!
        Thanks, your wish is my command and you me!

  2. Wonderfully wise post, Cindy! Being willing to try without the expectation of winning is a way to find personal fulfillment. After a lifetime of succeeding at the things we have a talent for, we reach a stage in life that we want to try new things just for the joy of doing. My mother would have said to me if I lost a competition, “Don’t worry about it. Those who won can’t do some of the things you do well.” And you, Cindy, are one impressive lady! By the way, I liked all three of your haiku. <3

    1. Thank you Cheyrl for those wise words and theis is soooo true and that truly sums up my new found love of writing. Your mother is so wise because therein lies the truth as we all have gifts the other doesn’t have. Oh thank you so much Cheyrl and I’m so glad you liked my Haikus coming from the incredible writer you are!!!
      That means a lot! πŸ’–β€οΈπŸ˜˜

  3. Congratulations Cindy, I ❀️ your haiku and you are a winner in my boom, because you took so many positives out of this experience! I stopped writing poems for 18 years because I didn’t win a competition when I was 20 😳 Even when I started again last year, I thought the only way to have success as a poet was to win a competition but that’s simply not true. The key is to write what’s in your ❀️

    1. AWWWWW thank you soooo much Ingrid!
      That means so much from you the great poet that you are. Wow, that’s quite a back story and I really appreciate hearing it from you and look at you now, starting the poetry contests and winning competitions and all. (Now you know secretly why I don’t enter.. and time of course.. I mean I have another life …. I think. 🀣) I do love to write and write from the heart it’s true. Totally touched by your words… thank you! πŸ’–

  4. Lovely haiku. Really loved it. By the way, as far as I could remember, I just wrote a single haiku in my life. I think I don’t have a way with them. But you really nailed it.

    1. Thank you so much Shayan! Oh you are so sweet.. I share your haiku past so that is kind of you to say. Trying new things keeps us learing and growing. You’re dear to drop in! β€οΈπŸ™πŸ™πŸ™

  5. AS a non-haiku person, I wouldn’t know a good one from a bad one. I salute your effort and attitude about it! After all, I believe you enjoyed writing them! I toast to you …. and your mom? Well, mothers are mothers – and that’s OK, too. πŸ™‚

    1. Ahhh thanks Frank, me either but I had fun and that’s my motto these days! I sure did and my mom is on the phone with the administration.. 🀣 Not. 🀣 It’s sweet actually! Have a great day and thanks for the visit!

  6. Woohoo. Mis Daly City. πŸ™‚ And a haiku to boot! Good for you Cindy. About the only thing my mom ever pushed me on was out the door. Grin. But she was always proud of the things I accomplished on my own. And that’s support. –Curt

    1. lol.. big deal there. 🀣🀣🀣
      Thanks on the Haiku.. It was fun to do.. which is my mantra these days Curt.
      LOL!!! that’s too funny! I’m sure you made her proud!πŸ’– xo that is the best support for sure.

      1. Grin. Pretty sure it was!
        Kind of always been my mantra. πŸ™‚ I recognize it isn’t always possible but when I am having less fun rather than more fun over an extended period, I figure it is time to start looking for something else to do! πŸ™‚

      2. You were a fast learner with a long rope. I had a short one so no chance of that then.. 🀣Fun and trouble seem to be your allies.. I agree with you there on look for something else when the fun well runs dry! ❀️

  7. The joy of participation, stretching past your comfort zone and creating something beautiful ❀ this us what you accomplished quite triumphantly Cindy πŸ‘ I love everything about this post and most especially Y😍U ❀ πŸ’– πŸ’—

    1. Oh Thank you my dear Maria! Yes, so true and life continues to call us to the platform so to speak and jump in the cold pool… like you do so well. Thanks soo much. I always appreciate your kind insights and you!!! πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–βŒβ­•οΈ

  8. Hi Cindy
    I agree with your mother! I love your haiku, You should have won. What do they know.
    You won by entering, by sharing with us, and by having such a supportive mother!
    Wishing you a blessed week! β™₯β™₯

    1. You are my Bright and Shinning Ana Star and I knew I liked you for good reason! πŸ€— .
      Awwww thanks a lot, I like the truth of that entering by sharing it with you all and yes for the suppost of my mother.
      Not sure you got my comments on your post but I’m going to go back and check your posts.. xoβŒβ­•οΈ

  9. Lovely haikus Cindy, all three of them, words chosen with precision and thoughts woven beautifully. ❀️❀️❀️ Your mother is right, i truly agree with herπŸ˜πŸ˜€ Such is a mother’s heart for her child, her child is a winner for her always. I am sure your disappointment would have turned into happiness and warmth by your mother’s words. ❀️ Oh, I miss my mother so much,haven’t met her since 1 year.πŸ˜• Can relate to few instances πŸ˜„
    And that’s how you are a winner already πŸ’πŸ₯° Everything happens for a reason, is what I believe, now see you weren’t writing HAIKU, now you surely will πŸ˜€πŸ€—

    1. Thank you so much Samreen for that lovely comment of confirmation. I’m so glad you liked them. Awwww mother’s know all right .. well except when they don’t which is often or in your case when she was gone way to soon. Did you mean she passed when you were 1 year old or one year ago? I am so sorry for your loss. That is really hard as you’re rigfht a mother’s love is so beautiful when they are available and love unconditionally.
      Oh you are very kind. I’m not sure how many I’ll write but It was fun to try a hand at something new. You are a dear! Thank you so much.
      I appreciate you! β€οΈπŸ™πŸ€—πŸ˜˜βŒβ­•οΈ

      1. Always a pleasure Cindy ❀️ They surely do😊 Oh no no dear, she is alive, I am in Qatar, she is in India, I haven’t been to her since past one year, may be i missed few words in that sentence, I was a bit sleepy and reading your reply I just wide opened my eyes. I am sorry dear for the confusion. I Iost my father as a child 20 yrs back.
        You will write wonders i know 😊❀️
        So are you, always πŸ˜˜β€οΈπŸ˜˜πŸ€—πŸ€—πŸ€—

      2. Oh whew. I knew you talked about your mom a lot but I was confused for a minute there. Oh that goodness. Still that has to be hard for you with your son especially. Wow, sorry your Dad hasn’t been around for such a long time. Well, I’m glad we got that settled and I asked. I almost didn’t.
        Oh you are too and big love β€οΈπŸ€—πŸ˜˜

      3. Yeah dear it was hard, for my mother especially, that now I can understand, but she never showed it to us. Strong woman she is. 😊
        Yes, dear i am glad you asked. πŸ’–β€οΈπŸ€— Love to you too always 😘πŸ₯°β€οΈπŸ’–πŸ€—πŸ€—

  10. What a lovely post, Cindy. All of your haikus are winners to us; and, the last one is especially joyous. I also love “wins of the heart.” That is beautiful, my friend. Have a wonderful week! ❀️❀️❀️

    1. Thank you so much Jeff! I’m erally glad you enjoyed them and sweet.. … winners to you all.
      Thanks for noticing that line… I really liked it when it came flowing out too!!!! tickled you did to. Have a great week as well. Didn’t see your writing today yet, maybe you’re “late”.

      1. You’re welcome, Cindy, always! I did enjoy them greatly. ❀️❀️ Ah, yes, and that last line lovely, lovely. Thank you. Ah, yes, forthcoming. Today at 6 pm. 😊😊😊

    1. Thanks so much Valerie! I know isn’t that hysterical. Well, I don’t know much and I don’t like formal but it’s kind of fun to get your brain ticking if you don’t care much about rules. but if you do… I’m not the one to ask.. lol

      Think 5-7-5 syllabals
      mom made me giggle
      over haiku poetry
      fun was had by all

      I think they usually don’t have caps or periods.
      Well, that was fun.
      Send me back one if you want to try.
      Thanks for visiting and stay happy like you are. πŸ’–

    1. Thanks so much Kritika!!!
      I did at that which is something to say.
      You are sweet.. I won’t go seeking them out as it’s not my objective but i won’t shy away either. It’s so much about the time which i know you know! ❀️

  11. Good effort! We should never doubt our creativity and art is something subjective. Poetry is basically use of language as an art, so you’re free to experiment and express yourself as you like. You do have that poetic streak in you πŸ™‚β€οΈ

    1. Ahhh thanks Maria! This is such a good reminder that indeed writing is subjective and i so appreciate your insights and kind affirmation with my poetic streak. Good to see you here, thanks for the pep talk!!! ❀️

      1. Many thanks!!!
        Me too… especially ones I can understand.. 🀣
        I’ll do another tomorrow with your kind support.. πŸ™πŸ™πŸ™πŸ™πŸ’–

    1. oh Thank you soooo much Goff!
      I appreciate that coming from you. They sure are.. 🀣🀣🀣🀣 Yeah they did a great job with that! ❀️
      Thanks for checking in!❀️


      2. uh oh, careful there.
        I would imagaine she does.
        I have’nt connected with her there. I haven’t seem her writing lately or checking in with me.
        She must be busy moving I suppose. Hmmmmm. Lmk if you hear back.
        Oh it’s always my pleasure! πŸ’–

      3. I see that… !!!! Her 2 W.P. parentals are rooting for her!!! 🀣. Sounds like lots to do. She might disown us if we bother her so we best be patient. ❀️.

      4. Oh that was kind of you.
        Do you want my address? 🀣
        You could send them to me… hahahaha kidding.
        Remember unattachment Johnnie.. β€οΈπŸ€—

      5. Unattachment is HARD! I SO WANT TO BLESS HER!!!!! I DID PASS ON YOUR GREETINGS, SAYING YOU AND I HAD SHARED OUR CONCERNS WHEN SHE WENT AWAY FOR A WHILE. Sorry–been having a hard time with the SHIFT key, I did ask if she would tell me how best to “serve and love ” her as her cyber dad. Do you think she’ll answer that? I don’t know. πŸ˜€

      6. Yes, it’s so true Johnnie. When you care about someone, you want the best for them and wish you could protect them and help them through difficult times but you know as well as I do from all of your teachings that we have to let go and that is where the blessings are. Oh, just give her my love and tell her I miss her writing and her comments but I know she’ll be back as soon as she can. No worries on the shift key. That’s nice of you and I’m sure she will when she’s ready. Energetically probobly when he doesn’t feel like she has to respond but on her own terms. Try to embrace the gift that he has gifted you.. I know it’s a tall order β€οΈπŸ€—

      7. everything you say makes sense. I can handle tall orders ’cause my Lord God is taller, but stoops down to help me. Yep, she’s in the driver’s seat and I don’t mean to forget the rest of you, either! πŸ˜€

      8. Yes, Johnnie I know you know all of that which is deeply rooted internally through your connection with source but it’s not necesarily easy to do but you ask good questions and know the answers. It’s so hard to let go of those we love but that’s when they usually come back around. So true, nor do you forget us. It’s very evident in your caring heart. πŸ’–

  12. I enjoyed your haiku and after listening to the winners I think your mom is onto something!
    It’s fine anyways, you’ve said everything there is to say to that, very nicely and it’s all true. β€οΈπŸ€—

    1. Hi Jay,
      Sooo good to hear you actually listened to all of the Haikus and liked mine. Thank you so much for the validation. It’s true, it’ more than fine and I really apprectiat your kind visit. Crazy week, but I’ll be checking in soon! πŸ’–β€οΈπŸ€—

  13. hi cindy !
    don’t even get me started on how bias and subjective the selection process can be with any “finalists”
    this is in any area but all the more when it comes to literature – short stories and poetry – etc

    so often the bias of the reviewers and what they are looking for at that time is what leads to the finalist
    – and you are solid in your thinking about the results
    -love the fact that you do not need affirmation fro that contest to validate your ability or skill
    too often folks do need that validation or want it for the wrong reasons

    and as you know – the arts can be so subjective – whether it be paintings or music or writing
    and i know an artist who had an art our entire rejected for two shows / he liked the piece and believed in it p
    and finally had if “hung” and it even one honorable mention

    anyhow – some people lose their way if they start entering their work into various “contests” or options for publication
    you will know what you need to do for you

    and while i liked you haiku –
    njce job! you know how much more i orefer your very original and fresh free form!
    in fact / i might ha e told you that some of the poetry that follows syllable requirements is my least favorite –

    and usually the only times i like haiku is when it is paired with an art piece or when it is presented in a way where we can explore and savor it
    the haiku is often one of those poetry forms that many of us can easily read fats and move on and miss its wonder and charm
    anyhow- this awesome quote
    “May all of your losses be wins of your heart”.
    reminded me that winners have more losses than losers !
    so let’s fail forward
    and let us especially put forth energy into what really leads to our need fulfillment and goals for our art endeavors

    1. You are so right about it being subjective Yvette and those are good points on all counts.
      I agree with you that we have more loses that wins in our life. We can never let others define our endevours and be bold enough to fail.
      I love your artist friends joy in his work that he hung it anyway. πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘!

      We do share the same sentiments of Haikus and pairing them with art or a story is my preference as well. I love that about you and especially that you appreciate my free flow and honest writing.
      The haikus were a perfect follow to my Cat and Dog posts and a good way to go when for practice once in awhile but not my go to for sure.

      Oh I’m so glad you liked my quote. Now that is one that just rolled off my tongue from my “fresh lens” like you say. Soooo glad you liked it and thanks for reflecting it back to me as I forgot I said it and I really like it as well.
      And I love what you said

      “Let’s fail forward and put forth energy into what really leads to our need fulfillemtn and goals for our art endeavors”

      By george, I think we have a collab here πŸ€£πŸ’–β€οΈπŸŒ·πŸ˜˜πŸ™
      Thank you always! ❀️

      1. yes – we are on the same page again with ideas and life insights!!
        and to clarify – not sure if i used the quote right – but the
        “winners have more losses than losers”
        has a very special takeaway
        it is not as if i would ever call anyone a loser A ha! it is not to over emphasize the “w” either

        to me – that old quote is about embracing the losses and bruises – because we are active and engaged in trying things
        those who play it safe have less losses or setbacks
        or those who play it safe never have a rejection letter for their work –
        and so when we take chances and dig deep for grit and do not get apathetic – the prize is ours because we are engaged and fully living

  14. Aw..that was so kind and amazing of your mother!❀️ I absolutely agree ‘our losses should be wins of our heart’. I once sent a poem about a cup to a journal once and it got rejected the next dayπŸ˜‚
    I think your haikus were wonderful!βœ¨πŸ€—

Leave a Reply