EPPS Student Captures the Essence of Hope and Promise in Haiku Contest


During this unprecedented time, many are longing for beautiful words that bring hope, connection and security. Junior International Political Economy major Becky Pulford wrote these beautiful words in her haiku that earned her the award for this year’s Eugene McDermott Library Haiku Contest, an annual competition that features a library-themed poem celebrating National Poetry Month.

Becky Pulford, 2020 Haiku Contest Winner

Becky Pulford
Junior, International Political Economics

Becky Pulford’s winning entry:

Wander in wonder
Explore novel thoughts and worlds
Greatness yet to come

“The inspiration behind my haiku is that I am always studying for a new subject or research topic at the library. Then I thought about the diversity of resources available to use and the massive building the resources are contained in. I once joked with friends that I could wander and get lost inside the building when I first transferred. Taking those thoughts, I started to play on words and phrases that depict these emotions,” Pulford said.

Pulford, 24, transferred to UT Dallas from the University of Arkansas in 2019. “I love the diversity of the UT Dallas community and variety of events on campus. It is as busy as a major campus but feels like the community of a smaller college. The campus is focused on the overall learning of its students,” Pulford said.

Pulford has participated in the School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences PEP Talk Podcasts and just completed an internship for credit at Big Brothers Big Sisters.

EPPS Pep Talk Podcast

Pep Talk: Policy, Economics, and Politics

Although there were many wonderful entries, Pulford’s poem won over the hearts of the McDermott librarians on the committee that judged the 2020 Haiku Contest entries.

“We are ‘away’ from each other, but how lovely and wonderful to think of the library as ‘greatness yet to come.’ Books ARE magical, but we, as librarians, miss the day-to-day contact we experience with the campus community,” said Loreen Henry, Head of Information Literacy.

“I liked the interplay of homophones in Wander to Wonder. It captured to me the sense of possibility that comes with an open research question, as each discovery leads you to the next. It’s the best part of being in a ‘flow state,’” said Chris Edwards, Assistant Head of Information Literacy.

A native of Coppell, Pulford plans to work in the marketing field after graduation. While in high school at New Tech High in Coppell, she discovered the joy of writing through Poetry Slam. Now, she enjoys writing in her spare time for her blog, Culture Adventurer, under the pseudonym Rosie Greens. Some of her favorite hobbies include baking, dog training and volunteering.

Pulford has never entered the library’s Haiku contest before, but this year she thought it would be fun to try it. Once she finished her poem, she felt proud of her work and thought it perfectly depicted the feelings she was trying to represent. “It had the positive feelings along with the playful wording that is an artistic choice.”

And one of the most positive feelings of all for her is the fact that she has struggled with dyslexia throughout her life, which has made reading and writing difficult.

“I feel proud as someone who struggles with this to be recognized for writing. I hope to continue to show that dyslexia should not stop the love of literature and writing,” Pulford said.

A haiku is a short form of Japanese poetry that consists of three lines. The 17-styllable poem consists of two lines (line one and three) of five syllables and the second line of seven.

This is the 10th year the library has hosted the Haiku Contest in April to coincide with National Poetry Month. Winners’ haikus are preserved in Treasures@UTDallas, the library’s online repository.

Page Last Updated: May 12, 2020