The above photo haiku was selected for Haiku Master of the Month by judges on award-winning Japanese TV NHK World for the month of January, 2018.

The January 2021 issue of Seedpods (e-journal of the United Haiku and Tanka Society) featured this year’s judge Jim Kacian’s report of the 2020 Samurai Haibun Contest in which my haibun ‘Source’ was awarded second place.

Inspired by the Edwardian bandstand in the municipal park here in Warrenpoint…

International Sakura Award – Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival 2020

park concert
blossoms hover over
the wind section

Runner Up in the Irish Haiku Society International Haiku Competition 2020

heavy mist
the mountain appears
pine by pine

In 2019 I was delighted to have received an honourable mention in the Sanford Goldstein contest. 
Runner up in the IAFOR Vladimar Devidé Haiku Contest “History, Story, Narrative” Section, 2017.
Commended in Croatian Institute for Transfusion Medicine Haiku Contest June 2016.
Longlisted in the inaugural Seamus Heaney Awards for New Writing 2015.
Presented with award by Belfast poet Michael Longley for poetry facilitation services to schools in inaugural Seamus Heaney Awards for Achievement, 2015.
Winner of Financial Times ‘Poet in the City’ Workplace Haiku/Senryu Competition 2015.
Runner Up in Irish Haiku Society Journal (Shamrock) Readers’ Choice Awards 2015, third in 2014 and highly commended 2019.
Finalist (one of seven) in the international haiku section of the RedLeaf Poetry Awards, India, 2014.
Selected poet in foreign language category of the Associazione Italiana Haiku Matsuo Basho Award; haiku published in awards anthology 2014.
Third prize winner in Croatia’s Ivanić Grad Pumpkin Festival Haiku Competition 2014.
Shortlisted in the International Touchstone Awards for best individual poem 2013.
Runner up in the GKBCinc short story competition, 2013.
Longlisted in the Desmond O’Grady Poetry Competition, 2013.
Sakura Award winner in the Vancouver International Cherry Blossom Festival Haiku Competition, 2012 & Honourable Mention International Section 2019.
Winner of A Vogel Short Story Competition, 2012.
Winner of Southern Education & Library Board Short Story Competition, 2009.

Hi, my name is Marion Clarke and I am a writer and artist living in Warrenpoint, County Down, on the east coast of Northern Ireland. As well as writing free form poetry, short fiction and non-fiction, I have been studying and writing short form poetry such as haiku, senryu, tanka, haibun and haiga for over a decade. In these “micro poems” the writer conveys a particular moment in time through the use of concrete imagery and employment of the five senses. By applying their own unique life experience when reading the words presented, the reader finishes each poem and makes it unique to them.

Haiku typically consist of three lines—although there are also one, three and four line haiku.  Haiku are often nature-inspired and although some still follow a 5-7-5 syllable format, this is not necessary and even discouraged in many circles. In Japanese, haiku are written in sound units (mora) that follow this pattern, but because these are longer than English syllables, using 5-7-5 syllables can make the poem sound overly long or ‘padded out.’ The senryu is a poem focussing on human nature, rather than the natural world, is of a similar length. Senryu depict some aspect of the poet’s experiences in the world and with his or her fellowman and are often ironic or poignant. The haibun is a a beautiful poetry form featuring a combination of prose and haiku and haiga incorporates art or photography with the haiku (the latter being know as a shahai, or photo haiku)
I am a member of the Irish Haiku Society and have had work published in international haiku journals and anthologies. I have work featured by invitation in ‘Bamboo Dreams’, and ‘Between the Leaves’, the first and second collections of haiku from poets from or living on the island of Ireland. Much of my work, both writing and painting, is inspired by my location on the shores of Carlingford Lough, close to the Mountains of Mourne. I returned here in 2000 after spending many years studying then working elsewhere. 

Here is a sample of my haiku, monoku and senryu:

Published in tinywords

on the mend . . .
this long afternoon
stitched by swallows

—Marion Clarke
Issue 17.1 | 31 May 2017

Published in tinywords, 2 January 2017

final prognosis different clouds on the horizon

first encounter
a glasswing enters
our renku

Published in the Asahi Shimbun, Japan in the Asahi Haikuist Network by David McMurray, 21 October, 2016

little sister …
Mum places Dad’s rosary
around your fingers

Petrova 3, Zagreb, Croatia 2016
Marion Clarke, Northern Ireland/Sjeverna Irska

blood transfusion                     ransfuzija krvi
the millionaire can’t afford        ni milijarder ne može
to be fussy                               cjepidlačiti

Tinywords – 8 December 2015

after the ceremony gossiping jackdaws

shrieking gull falling from a cliff this fear of flying

Published in the Financial Times, London, 8 May, 2015 – winner of the FT Poet in the City Workplace Haiku/Senryu Competition

missed targets
suddely he regrets
Sunday night darts

Published in Frozen Butterfly, Issue 2, April 2015

rasp of stubble . . .
a fieldmouse climbs
the scarecrow’s cheek

petals lifted by the breeze suddenly the weight of my heart

Featured in HaikuLife Film Festival 2015

icy twilight warmed by the lights from home

From Making Memories, Poetry in Motion Anthology published by Community Arts Partnership, Belfast 2015

through generations . . .
Gran’s button box

From Chen-ou Liu’s NeverEnding Story, November 29th, 2014

damp morning
a gray yard
before the robin

Chinese Translation (Traditional)


Chinese Translation (Simplified)


Published in the Financial Times, London, 29th October 2014

new office space
the hermit crab checks out
a larger shell

Joint third in Croatia’s Ivanić-Grad Pumpkin Festival Haiku Competition 2014

toothless . . .
an old lady smiles back
at the pumpkin

starica se smiješi

Winner of the Carousel Creates Haiku Competition 2014
Published in Under the Basho – The Living Haiku Anthology

sunlight on the lough
this desire to walk
on water

Modern Haiku, Issue 45.2 Summer 2014

Carlingford Lough
a heron crosses
the moon


Frogpond, Summer Issue, 2014

first thaw
our spades remove
the end of winter

Published in the Associazione Italiana Haiku Anthology, 2014
First published in the French version in an article by Jessica Tremblay in Gong – Revue Francophone de Haiku, 2013.

the mast of a sailboat
nudges the moon

point du jour . . .

le mât dun volier donne un petit coup
à la lune

Burning Bush II, literary journal, Issue 5, June 2013

holiday break up . . .
her cheeks bruised
by the breeze

Shortlisted for The Haiku Foundation’s Touchstone Award, 2013
First published in Shamrock, Journal of the Irish Haiku Society, Issue 25

cold snap—
a sparrow flicks its tail
of snowflakes

Shot Glass Journal, January 2013

morning after –
my empty glass
full of dawn

early opening –
I catch the yawns
of mall staff

The Heron’s Nest, March, 2012

turning tide…
a barnacle waits
on a limpet

Frogpond, Journal of the American Haiku Society, Autumn Issue, 2012

grandma’s kitchen . . .
a star-covered teacup
for the gypsy lady

The following monostich were published in these issues of Tinywords:

chasing shadows we wait on news of her scan

9 April 2015

familiar tune my children’s voices above the mountain stream

13 May 2013

riptide unable to help myself

21 March 2013

midday heat still ticking abandoned bicycle

4 September 2013

disused road roots resurfacing

20 September 2013

Winner of the Every Day Poets ‘Great Big Little Poems Competition’

skinny dipping –
one small step to land
on the moon

Sakura Award winner in 2012 Vancouver Cherry Blossom Haiku Competition – International Category

canal bank …
each cherry tree touching
its neighbour


Highly commended in the Irish Haiku Society 2011 international Haiku Competition

jardin d’hiver
la balancelle de mon père
toujours grinçante

Highly commended in the Irish Haiku Society 2011 international Haiku Competition and published in the anthology of haiku poetry from Ireland Bamboo Dreams

storm on the lough
streetlamps on Seaview
lit by sunrise


Published in haiku journal, A Hundred Gourds

another winter . . .
my father’s garden seat
still creaking 

early dusk . . .
my children’s footsteps
fill the stillnes 

Published in haiku journal, Notes from the Gean

Donegal summer—
sleet ticks off the window pane
then slaps it       

low winter sun
warming up a row
of chimney pots                                                                                                    

snipping lavender
she works alongside
the bee

Published in UK literary journal, ‘the view from here’

looking out to sea
she longs to iron out
the wrinkles

Published in Irish literary journal, The Linnet’s Wings 

shifting sand …
the hermit crab inspects
a larger shell

coffee and Danish –
the Mournes dusted
with snow

Published in Shamrock, Journal of the Irish Haiku Society

Monday blues –
the thrush stops to sing
between pecks

descending mist . . .
the Mournes unavailable
for photos     



6 Responses to About

  1. daniled says:

    En te lisant, Marion, je vois que nous avons des points communs, toutes deux aussi influencées par le bord de mer. A la différence près que je ne peinds pas, ou du moins très peu. Merci pour la traduction ! Félicitaions pour ton blog et ton talent.

  2. katiemariemetcalfe says:

    Hi Marion, it’s Katie Metcalfe, (the Fires in the North lady). I have a massive favour to ask. Would you please be able to send your bio to me again, but this time to katiemariemetcalfe@hotmail.co.uk I’m unable to access my FITN account. Hope to hear from you soon! All the best, and lovely blog by the way. (:

  3. my, you have some beautiful haiku here, Marion

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