Write a haiku for Pima County Public Library's poetry challenge. 

It turns out that coronavirus can't cancel everything. 

A Sonoran Desert spring is still beautiful. Books are still magical. And our furry friends are still comical. 

Oh, and April is still National Poetry Month. 

To celebrate, the Pima County Public Library has organized a digital haiku challenge to keep us connected from afar. 

"I love the simplicity of haiku, and how accessible it is to people of all ages," says social media librarian Lisa Bunker. "It's just sort of a low-pressure way of helping people talk about their feelings and what they're seeing around them. It's perfect for that."

A haiku, by the way, is a three-line poem that doesn't rhyme. The first line is five syllables, the second line is seven syllables and the third line is five syllables. 

The first part of the library's four-part challenge was, appropriately, about the new normal and life in quarantine. Last week, people submitted haiku about superhero healthcare professionals, teaching kids at home, dry hands and ... is that a reference to the Netflix show "Tiger King: Murder, Mayhem and Madness"?

Bunker calls the challenge an "emotional outlet" and a bit of "collective self-care," as we all process the stress and anxiety of the last month. 

For last week's challenge, the library received around 60 haiku submissions mostly written by members of the community. Bunker says already, she has received more than 40 for the current challenge about spring in the Sonoran Desert. 

Although there are no prizes for the challenge, submitted poems will be published on the library's website. You can send in only three haiku for each of the four parts. To submit, post your haiku in the comments of this Facebook post or send it to Virtual.Library@pima.gov. You can also post it on Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #PCPLhaikuchallenge. 

Here are the upcoming themes and submission dates. 

April 11-19: Spring in the Sonoran Desert

April 19-25: Books and reading and libraries (this is National Library Week) 

April 26-30: Your furry or feathered friends.

To learn more, visit the Pima County Public Library's website


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