Saturday, March 28, 2009
Dan Schwerin - Three Questions
Dan Schwerin has been writing haiku since 1995. He lives in Greendale, a suburb of Milwaukee, with his wife Deb and their teens Rachel and Andrew. He was most recently the district superintendent of the United Methodist Church in Milwaukee, and just over a year in his appointment to the church in Waukesha.
1) Why do you write haiku?
Art changes my mind. After work I collect passing moments for perspective. If I am lucky I can sift the truthfulness or lightness from a full day while chiseling haiku. I am a United Methodist minister in a large downtown urban church in the northern midwest. Perspective is the adventure of what to do with the play of light and shadows in each day. Haiku help.
Haiku works juxtaposition—a microcosm reveals the macrocosm. Mumbling images around the mouth aids in processing my reflection on the grand scheme of nature and life. I go to haiku for epiphany, beauty, and a change of mind.
2) What other poetic forms do you enjoy?
I have written tanka, haibun, and free verse. Every week brings the art of writing a sermon structured in narrative. Haiku keep me in the essence of things.
3) Of the many wonderful haiku you've written, what do you consider to be your top three?
I have had several in the red moon anthologies, but I like what Charles Trumbull did by putting these together in the current issue of Modern Haiku, volume 40.1 (winter-spring 2009).
the swinging branch back to its level Sabbath
leaves past peak
except the devil's paintbrush,
All Saints' Day
he's back in church
with six strong men
Thank you, Curtis. This series has helped me find kindred spirits out there.
Daniel W. Schwerin
First United Methodist Church
121 Wisconsin Ave.
Waukesha, WI 53186
The next installment of the Three Questions series will be slightly different.