Sunday, January 11, 2009

Liam Wilkinson - Three Questions

Liam Wilkinson lives in Yorkshire, England. His haiku, tanka and haiga have appeared in many online and print journals including Modern English Tanka, Ribbons, Simply Haiku and Presence. He is the founding editor and curator of the 3LIGHTS Gallery of Haiku & Tanka and co-editor of Modern Haiga. His website can be found at

1) Why do you write haiku?

I began writing haiku whilst studying at university in Scarborough on the North-east coast of England. At that time my free verse was being published here and there and I thought of haiku as a necessary relief to all that longer poetry. As time has moved on it's become apparent to me that haiku does the job better than longer poetry. I'm both fascinated and terrified by the rapidity of time and how quickly the present becomes the past. Haiku has helped me to seal the jar around particular moments in a way that no other art form could ever do.

2) What other poetic forms do you enjoy?

I'm a tanka obsessive. I keep a tanka journal and take it with me wherever I go. In early 2008, I left a tanka at the World Trade Centre memorial in New York. It's become second nature to me to write tanka.

As for the poetry of others, I'm a big fan and collector of poems by Frank O'Hara and the New York School, including Ted Berrigan, James Schuyler, Ken Koch, Bill Berkson and John Ashbery.

3) Of the many wonderful haiku you've written, what do you consider to be your top three?

this infinite morning—
a constellation of crumbs
on the carpet

(Magnapoets #1, 2008)

sea moving out
the pier legs
naked again

(Presence #29, 2006)

blowing the candle
blowing the candle
blowing the candle out

(Bottle Rockets #15, 2006)

If you've been enjoying this weekly series and have not contributed, please consider sharing your response to the three little questions that Liam answered. You must be a published poet in order to participate.

Marjorie A. Buettner will be our guest next week.


Pris said...

Thanks for this series. I enjoy reading more about good haiku/haiga/tanka creators.

Gabi Greve said...

"Haiku has helped me to seal the jar around particular moments"


Gabi from Japan