Icebox Guidelines


Anyone can leave a comment by clicking on the orange ‘leave a comment’ or ‘comment(s)’ link at the bottom of a post. Just type in the reply box and publish it. You don’t even need to enter your email address. Comments in English and/or Japanese are OK.

Just saying that you liked something is encouraging for an author. Short, kindly critical or educational comments are also welcome. Or comments about a phrase you did not understand? Please take the trouble to say something! Serious comments will be appreciated as much as funny ones.

Comments are mainly for current postings on the top page. If you leave a comment on another page (e.g. Publications, Events, Contributors, etc.), your comment should relate to that page. If you leave a comment on an Archive page, it may never be read!

General comments about the site should be published at the foot of the Submissions page. If you wish to return to the top page, click on the ICEBOX header panel.


Only contributors can post. Tell Stephen, Gerald or Hisashi if you wish to be invited.

If you don’t know how to contact the editors directly, you can submit a posting as a comment on the Submissions page. If it is thought to be postable, one of them will do that for you and put your name beside it.

Posting is through the Dashboard. To get the Dashboard (top strip), you may have to log in through the link under Meta (orange, on the right). You can also log in through the link on the blogroll. Type in your username and password, and the Dashboard will appear. Choose ‘Write’.

Please give your post a title, as it helps archiving and search. If you don’t, an editor will identify it with a Roman numeral.

Posts should be, as far as possible, in ‘haiku style’ – concise, poetic, resonant, often seasonal. Haiku/haiqua/tanka should feature, but not too many, please!

If you paste in text from a file, please ensure it is in Arial 14 font first. We wish to maintain ‘house style’, and changing fonts once posted is almost impossible! For haiku or tanka, which are short, please type them in, not paste them in; then you are guaranteed the right style.

If necessary, downsize any photos before posting. 1000 x 700 pixels is best. As a general rule, no more than two illustrations/photos per piece, please. On the Write Post screen, there’s a little icon above the writing space that says ‘Add Media’. Click it, and a window will open. Click ‘Add an image’, then ‘Choose files to upload’. Select your already downsized photo. Then choose alignment and ‘Insert into post’. It will go in wherever you have left the cursor on the Write screen. You can always click and drag the photo little by little up or down the page if you need to. You can also change the size of the photo by clicking on it and dragging the cursor from one of the corners.

English is the main language, but a little Japanese, Chinese, French, German, Spanish, etc. is fine.

Before publishing, please tick the category(ies) of your posting (‘haiku’, ‘haibun’, ‘haipho’, etc.). Be sure to indicate a season. If a posting is non-seasonal, please click the ‘all/no season’ category. Max. three categories per posting.

Please use a recognizable, if not authentic, display name, so that Circle members know who wrote what. You can change your display name anytime at ‘Users’ – ‘My Profile’ on the Dashboard, provided that the name(s) you want to display are already entered into either ‘first name’ or ‘last name’ or ‘nickname’ boxes. Whatever you type into these boxes will become available as your display name next time you visit My Profile.

Contributors are largely responsible for the liveliness of the Icebox, and therefore are requested to make at least one posting per quarter and one comment per month.


The editors reserve the right to cut comments and postings – either partially or wholly – to correct obvious mistakes, and to re-present a contribution if it sprawls. They may also decide to translate a part of it.

Typically, they will leave things exactly as they were submitted. Occasionally, they might suggest revisions to poems or translations via email. If requested, they might attempt a little rewriting.

Contributors can change their own postings and comments themselves at any time through the Dashboard (‘Postings’ – ‘Edit’).


If you would like to receive other people’s technical comments about the expression of a poem, put a tick in the ‘Workshopping’ category before posting. Hopefully, you will receive suggestions for improvement.

If you want to use this facility for your own haiku, you must first become a contributor.

7 responses to “Icebox Guidelines

  1. what’s the difference between making short critical comments when commenting in general, and suggestions made on pieces marked “workshopping” ??

  2. Good question. The difference is: if a contributor posts something with the category ‘workshopping’ indicated, he/she is actively soliciting rewriting/polishing of the haiku. If ‘workshopping’ is not indicated, but you feel there’s a blemish on the haiku that might be remarked upon, you should tread lightly with your comment (you have nice light little feet, G, anyway). We can all put our boots on for ‘workshopping’!

  3. Hello my name is Emile.
    I was wondering if you or some of your members would be willing to contribute some of their haiku to my project?
    I am building a fun / free iphone haiku application.

    Please forward to all haiku lovers. They can respond to me with a couple of their own haiku if they would like to
    participate. Please organize by season. I will list/give credit the author of each haiku of course.

    Emile du Toit

    • ‘Guidelines’ is not the correct place to leave your message. Please re-post on the ‘Other’s Contests/Promotions’ page. Thanks.

  4. It is very sad to hear about Martin.I met him at the World Haiku Festival in London in 2000,a sensitive, gentle soul…may he rest in peace the river/once so turbulent/silenced forever angelee

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s