The Haiku Newton project debuted in spring 2022, bringing poems on lawn-style signs to various locations in the Garden City. Passersby were surprised and delighted to encounter the haikus in parks or along busy sidewalks.

As word spread on social media about the project, people came from around Greater Boston to see the signs for themselves. Others viewed the poems via short online video tours that were created by project co-director Grey Held (pictured, first photo in carousel at right).

Thanks to grants from Newton Community Pride, the Newton Cultural Council, and Mass Cultural Council, which also supported the project last year, Grey and co-director Elizabeth Lund were thrilled to announce the submission period for Haiku Newton 2023 in February. They were also pleased to welcome Greg Fulchino as a co-director (second photo in carousel).

Poets from various states and two foreign countries submitted work. A panel of judges selected 24 winning poems, which were printed on display panels and attached to sign frames.

The 2023 signs were installed in front of the Newton Free Library, at 330 Homer Street, and in front of the First Baptist Church in Newton, at 848 Beacon Street. The poems were displayed at those sites until late May.

The signs were then moved to three locations, where they could be viewed until late July: the Depot Coffee Shoppe in Newton Upper Falls (third photo in carousel), the Boys & Girls Club, located at 675 Watertown Street, Newtonville, and Grey's front lawn on Watertown Street.

Haiku Newton also participated in this year's Linda Plaut Festival of the Arts, at the Hyde Community Center, 90 Lincoln Street, on July 22. One set of signs were on display, and a Haiku Hut encouraged attendees to write poems of their own.

If you weren't able to see the signs this year,  you can enjoy two videos that Grey Held created of the library installation. Each video features 12 poems, so viewers can see both sides of the signs. One tour heads toward the library's parking lot; the other heads toward Walnut Street.

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