Breaking the Ice: From Winter Into Spring

Celebrate the first hints of spring and kick off National Haiku Writing Month with a social evening of poetry, music, and refreshments.

Where: Historic Joy Kogawa House
When: Saturday, February 4, 7:00 to 9:00pm.

Local children’s book author and poet Jacqueline Pearce, along with members of the Vancouver Haiku Group, will will read a selection of poetry (including winning haiku from the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival haiku contest).

Jacqueline Pearce

Haiku Secrets: beyond the basics of writing haiku with author Jacquie Pearce

When: Saturday, February 25, 1–2:30pm
Where: at Historic Joy Kogawa House, 1450 West 64th Ave (2 blocks east of Granville Street)

Haiku is one of the shortest and simplest forms of poetry, yet the best haiku can express a moment of awe or insight and contain a surprising depth of implied story. This workshop will explore some of the characteristics and techniques that give these tiny poems their big impact. We’ll look at examples of modern haiku from around the world, including wining haiku from the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival international haiku contest. We’ll talk about how to write for the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival contest, and also discuss how some of the techniques for writing good haiku can inform our general writing practice.

Participants will have the opportunity to write haiku of their own and receive feedback in a relaxed and supportive small group. Suitable for both new and experienced haiku writers.

Haiku Koinobori Painting workshop

When: Saturday, February 25, 3–4:30pm
Cost: Admission by donation. RSVP to

Decorate a giant koinobori scale for the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival’s Sakura Days public art installation

This is your opportunity to be part of a giant koinobori public art installation that will be displayed during the Sakura Days Japan Fair at Vancouver’s VanDusen Garden, April 8–9. During cherry blossom season in Japan, koinobori (koi-shaped wind socks) are displayed to celebrate Children’s Day. Here in Vancouver, the giant koinobori public art installation, which was originally created for the Powell Street Festival, will be reconstructed at VanDusen Garden and covered with scales decorated with haiku and colourful spring images. Attend today’s haiku workshop and stay to add your haiku to a giant koinobori  scale, or join us just for the scale decorating.

Participants are invited to use paint and fabric markers to decorate a koi scale (art supplies and fabric koi scales will be provided). Share a haiku of your own creation, copy a winning haiku from the Vancouver Cherry Blossom haiku contest, or decorate with your favourite spring images. This will be the first of several community scale-decorating workshops helping to ready the giant koinobori for Sakura Days.

Note: The haiku workshop is for adults only, but the scale-decorating activity might also be open to children accompanied by an adult.

Admission by donation.

Space is limited. Please RSVP to let us know you plan to attend at

Thanks to the B.C. Arts Council for funding to support this partnership between Historic Joy Kogawa House and author Jacqueline Pearce.