International Photo-Haiku Contest
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A new culture is blossoming in Matsuyama, the city for haiku and the birthplace of Shiki Masaoka.

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■ Haiku in English on a set theme

The Photo Themes for 6th Contest

Theme 1The battleship Mikasa, Mikasa Park (Yokosuka, Kanagawa)
The theme of the park is water, light and sound. Here you can experience art and history directly. The battleship Mikasa is preserved in the park. The naval strategist Saneyuki Akiyama, who was born in Matsuyama, served on the ship. 2018 will mark the 150th anniversary of Akiyama's birth. Matsuyama and Yokosuka, have concluded agreements on tourism exchanges and mutual support during disasters.
Theme 2Zenkoku-ji Temple (Bishamon-ten) (Shinjuku, Tōkyō)
Sōseki Natsume was born, raised and ended his life in Shinjuku. Zenkoku-ji Temple is nicknamed Bishamon-sama, and the novel Botchan includes the following description"; I caught a carp about eight inches long at a festival at Bishamon on Kagurazaka. Just as I was coaxing it out of the water, it splashed back in." Matsuyama and Shinjuku have concluded an agreement on historical, cultural and tourist exchanges. Matsuyama and Tokyo University of Science have concluded an agreement on cultural exchanges and scientific cooperation, based on their links to Sōseki Natsume's novel Botchan.
Theme 3St. John's Church in the Meiji Mura Museum (Inuyama, Aichi Prefecture)
Over 60 buildings from the Meiji period have been moved for conservation and display to an outdoor museum. You can ride a steam train and Kyoto tram that operated in the Meiji period, try food and clothing from that time, and visit the locations where dramas and movies were filmed. Matsuyama and the Meiji Mura Museum have concluded an agreement to jointly promote the culture and values of the Meiji period.
Theme 4Sunset at Hōki-ji Temple (Ikaruga-chō, Nara Prefecture)
One of Shiki Masaoka's representative haiku", the temple bell rings as I eat a persimmon ‒ Hōryū-ji" was composed at Ikaruga-chō. There's a monument carved with the haiku at Hōryū-ji Temple built by Shōtoku Taishi, the 1,400-years anniversary of whose death will fall in 2021. Matsuyama and Ikaruga-chō have concluded an agreement on tourism and cultural exchanges based on their links to Shiki Masaoka and Shōtoku Taishi.
Theme 5The Japan Three-Day March (Higashimatsuyama, Saitama Prefecture)
Every November, Japan's leading walking event is held in the Hikikyūryō hills. Each year, over 80,000 participants gather from every part of Japan and the world to enjoy nature, companionship and the welcome of the volunteer staff. Matsuyama and Higashimatsuyama have concluded an agreement on tourism and cultural exchanges based on their similar names.
Theme 6Floating lanterns in front the Atomic Bomb Dome (Hiroshima City, Hiroshima Prefecture)
2016 marked the 20th anniversary of the listing of the Atomic Bomb Dome as UNESCO world heritage sites, and it was also the year when President Obama of the United States made his historic visit to the Peace Memorial Park and the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum. Matsuyama and the Hiroshima area (Hiroshima, Hatsukaichi, and Kure) are combining their tourist resources to maximize the appeal of the Seto Inland Sea as a new tourist destination.
Theme 7Night view from the keep of Matsuyama Castle ( Matsuyama, Ehime Prefecture)
Matsuyama Castle, the symbol of Matsuyama, is a huge flatland-mountain castle with its main enclosure on the summit of a 132 m hill and its two outer enclosures on the flat. It's an impregnable castle built by Yoshiaki Kato who fought in the battle of Shizugatake and became one of Hideyoshi's seven most trusted and experienced generals. The castle is one of 12 in Japan surviving from the Edo period. Said to be the pinnacle of fortress construction, it has maze-like defenses and interconnected castle towers.
Theme 8Honmyo-ji Temple lanterns (Kumamoto, Kumamoto Prefecture)
Kumamoto Castle, the symbol of the city, suffered extensive damage in the Kumamoto Earthquake in 2016. Kumamoto City and its citizens are working flat out to restore Kumamoto. Honmyo-ji Temple was the family temple of Kiyomasa Kato who built Kumamoto Castle. Each year in late March, the approach to the temple is lined with thousands of traditional paper lanterns which the citizens make by hand. In 2012, Matsuyama and Kumamoto concluded an agreement on mutual support during disasters, based on their shared links with Sōseki Natsume.

■ Application Conditions for English Haiku Contest

  1. Contestants may submit up to 1 poem per selected photo theme.
  2. Only those poems written by the applicant and not published elsewhere shall be accepted.
  3. The haiku shall be written by hand or using a computer by the applicant themselves.
  4. Please be advised that the Haiku entries will not be returned.
  5. Matsuyama Haiku Office shall hold all copyrights for the announcing and publishing of winning entries Awards will be revoked for any poems found to be plagiarized, to have been submitted in other contests, or which closely resemble other poems.

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