COMMENTS ON MODERN HAIKU
A personal favorite. My first haiku published here.
The best, editor is thoughtful and replies quickly!! A first-rate publication -- both in its wide variety of haiku but also in the essays and book reviews. This is the cutting edge, I think.
Modern Haiku is the dowager empress of the haiku world, still in first place probably but tottering and threatening to topple over from its own unstylish dignity.
Like everyone else, I guess, I have chafed under the quirky editorship and had my haiku gems polished or even recut (though almost always for the better). Bob Spiess is a true editor and deserves the undying respect and affection of all American haiku poets for his devotion to English haiku and his willingness to help out beginning poets.
Robert Spiess of Modern Haiku is often insulting in his rejections with such comments a "not up to MH standards." That, plus his damned dollar bills and predilection for using many pages on long chunks of such things as parts of doctoral dissertations, finally prompted me to drop his magazine and stop submitting. (He only accepted 4 or 5 of mine.) If his editorial ear were better and if a larger number of the haiku he published were less ho-hum, I probably would have continued after being a subscriber/reader for many years.
Like Frogpond, contains some of just about everything, but more so. MH is most certainly the establishment, and has the longest history of being a premier place to publish and learn about haiku. I feel that the production is often somewhat shoddy lately -- jumbled, lots of typos, quite a few poems that I feel are not very good. used to be very good in response time, but, from what I've been told, that's no longer so. Still, this is one of the major places to publish and to get a feel for who's who.
A broad selection of haiku, senryu, and haibun. The essays range from informative to scholarly to lengthy. The format is often crowded, with not-so-appealing "typewriter" fonts. Book reviews and announcements keep readers up-to-date.
Modern Haiku: Articles, essays, reviews, and the like are usually excellent and helpful. Haiku, however, are very much a mixed bag -- with whole pages often devoted to a single poet of unexceptional merit. Haiku presentation is poor -- higher quality, fewer to a page, please?
I still think, after decades, that Modern Haiku does the best selection.
I do not always like the choices of material, but it remains the chief haiku publication.
Interesting articles as well as long poems.
Modern Haiku excels in the prose department but is probably too stuffed with haiku for its own good. In terms of academic interest, I would rate Modern Haiku as the best, with Frogpond approaching it. However, in each of those journals there are really only a handful of haiku that I think are worthwhile. Sometimes I think that poets and editors are trying too hard, to make something, to contrive something -- i.e. a poem.
Grossly overrated. Does anyone have the guts to tell Bob and Lee that Krishnamurti was not a poet or a haiku poet and therefore quoting him at length in every issue is an embarrassment to everyone? Even more crowded than Frogpond and Raw NerVZ.
I've always thought that Modern Haiku was the most authoritative, professionally produced, and educationally helpful journal. With Lee Gurga on board, however, there have been changes that seem to be controlling a "style" trend in haiku which lack a creativity that I felt Bob always supported.
Without a doubt Modern Haiku is the journal of record for American haiku. Still, I am bothered by so many haiku crowded on a page. I find this ironic for a journal dedicated to "wordless poems" that savor silence, or in visual terms, space. The haiku themselves seem to be moving in a more formalized direction, making the range less interesting. I find the essays of excellent quality, though I have long since lost interest in the running saga of Buson. By contrast I never fail to find gems in Robert Spiess's Speculations.
The premier journal in the world with superior editors and fair judgment -- my first choice.
Modern Haiku is more traditional in its approach to haiku and has high standards. It rates ahead of the other, more traditional journals due to the strength of its essays.
Modern Haiku is a fantastic magazine because of its reviews, essays etc... where at least the haiku are more spread out.
I respect Modern Haiku, but 80% of haiku printed there are very boring.
Large, important, and, for the most part, dull.
"Eccentric" would be an apt word to describe their editorial policy. I also think they lean toward the jocular -- but in fairness I haven't sent them anything in years.
Frogpond and Modern Haiku separate haiku and senryu (perhaps I should say try to differentiate between them), which I dislike. Some editorial placements seem arbitrary to me.
Modern Haiku is really the "magazine of record" for haiku.
What magazine do I usually first send my haiku to? Other than for contests, it's usually always Modern Haiku, which has its own problems, but is still my first choice.
The practice of printing long sections of mediocre haiku by favorite poets seems to be diminishing, blessedly. I have heard complaints that Modern Haiku is encouraging the homogenization of haiku, and I think there is some justification. The essays and reviews are a strong plus and seem to be getting even better (although I hope no more book serializations are in store for us); I usually read the issue back-to-front.
Layout is so uninviting. Can't tell where one thing stops and the next begins. Editors have a tendency to want to wring the life out of submitted poems before agreeing to publish them. Essays sometimes interesting.
The layout and graphics actually seem to be growing worse
with time (take a look at some issues from the 1980s) and Modern Haiku
has not jumped on the computer publishing bandwagon, such that it is downright
dowdy looking. Randy Brooks, who transformed his own Mayfly into
a beautiful eye-catching journal is now in charge of these aspects, so maybe
improvements are in the works.