Friday, February 25, 2011

Friday updates 02/25/2011

Cathy Drinkwater Better sent this:

HIBIKI, by Cathy Drinkwater Better and Geert Verbeke. Empty Sky, Flanders, Belgium; December 2010. HIBIKI is the first collaborative book of haiku by Cathy Drinkwater Better (Maryland, USA) and Geert Verbeke (Flanders, Belgium). This 40-page, side-stapled, digest-size book—“…a unique blend of fine and touching feelings…as the finely knitted thought of a reverberating emotion…” wrote New Delhi, India, reviewer Jasvinder Singh—contains two individual sections of 72 haiku each, one devoted to each poet’s work and a brief biographical note. This limited-edition collection is available exclusively through the poets at the present time. To order in the U.S. and elsewhere, write to: Cathy Drinkwater Better, 613 Okemo Drive, Eldersburg, MD 21784 USA; the cost is $10, postage paid. For more information, e-mail Cathy at or visit her Web site at For information on ordering a copy from Geert, visit his Web site at:, and click on CYBERWIT INDIA at the top; or write to him at Leo Baekelandlaan14, B-8500, Kortrijk, Flanders, Belgium.

From Charlotte Digregorio:

Haikufest To Inspire Poets To Publish

Beginning and advanced poets will learn to appreciate, write, and enhance their haiku skills, from 1 to 5:30 p.m., Saturday, May 7 at the Evanston Public Library, 1703 Orrington Ave., Evanston, IL. The event with lecture, discussion, and exhibition of poetry and art, is free and open to the public. It is co-sponsored by the Midwest Region of the Haiku Society of America and the Evanston Public library. Pre-registration is required.

Haiku is short, meditative poetry that originated in Japan in the 1600s, and is currently gaining popularity worldwide in many languages. It is often three lines, has seventeen syllables or less, and captures the moment, with usually a reference to nature or the seasons.

The first presentation, "Haiku: A Path Leading to Conservation Thought," will integrate a lecture on haiku style, form, and history with a discussion of the underlying thought of reverence for nature. Charlotte Digregorio, HSA Midwest Regional Coordinator, will speak. She is an award-winning author, poet, and educator, recently nominated for a Pushcart Prize in Poetry. Her poetry has been translated into several languages, and is often exhibited in public venues.

"A Writing Life in Seventeen Syllables or Less," will follow by award-winning Iowa Poet Francine Banwarth. She will discuss what inspires her to write haiku, and her methods of writing with multi-layers of meaning.

Banwarth, who is regularly published worldwide in haiku journals and anthologies, and who has served as a haiku leader, educator, and poetry competition judge for organizations including HSA, says: "Haiku for me is not so much a way of thinking a moment, as it is a way of feeling a moment. I think that is where intuition enters in, as if there is a hermit inside me, or as if I am in a quiet place, breathing under water."

Subsequently, Randy Brooks, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Millikin University and Professor of English, will speak on "The Role of Kukai in The Haiku Tradition." Kukai is a haiku contest in which participating poets are judges. Preceding Haikufest, attendees may submit from three to five haiku by April 23 to Brooks at These haiku will be exhibited at Haikufest and judged.

Brooks and his wife, Shirley, are co-editors and poetry publishers of Brooks Books. They also edit "Mayfly," a haiku magazine. An award-winning poet who teaches haiku at Millikin, Brooks is the author of "School's Out," his haiku collection, and is co-editor of anthologies including the "Global Haiku Anthology." He is co-chair of the American Haiku Archives at California State Library in Sacramento.

The last presentation will be "Haiga: History and Technique." Poet and artist Lidia Rozmus will reveal the art of haiku accompanied by an ink painting. She will exhibit and discuss her work.

Rozmus has authored and designed several portfolios and books on Japanese-style poetry and haiga that have won HSA awards, including,"A Dandelion's Flight Haiku and Sumi-e"; "Twenty Views from Mole Hill: My Journey"; and "Hailstones, Haiku by Taneda Santoka." Rozmus' art has been exhibited throughout the U.S., Japan, and Poland.

HSA is a not-for-profit organization to promote the writing and appreciation of haiku in English. Its website is

For more information on Haikufest, and to pre-register, contact Charlotte Digregorio, 847-881-2664 or the Evanston Public Library, 847-448-8600.

Marie Kasprzak sent this:

'A beautiful job!' (Elisavietta Ritchie), 'I see wonderful haiku ...' (Neal Whitman), 'Your first issue was a strong one, with great production values. An impressive start' (William Hart).

Dear Poet,

These are only some of the comments we have received following the publication of the inaugural issue if Haiku Pix Review #1, Winter 2011. True to its name, HRP aims to publish haiku that use juxtaposition of images to produce emotion:

spring apple tree
on the old gnarled trunk
its own shadow

-- Bruce Ross

on a lotus leaf ...

-- Chen-ou Liu

The deadline for Haiku Pix Review #2, Spring 2011 is February 28, 2011. Offer us your honest best!

Also consider entering our Haiku Pix Chapbook Contest. The new deadline is April 1, 2011. Electronic submissions accepted. Visit:

Best regards,

Marie Kasprzak and Tad Wojnicki

Colin Stewart Jones reports that the new issue of Notes from the Gean will be available online on March 1st. He writes:

"enjoy folks it should be a good one!"


Scott Owens sent this:

Hi, Curtis,

I have a new book of poems coming out in August, and it is available for discounted advance order right now. The cover price will be $14, but by ordering it online from the publisher's website, you can get it for $9 plus shipping.

The book can be ordered from the Coming Soon page of the MSR Online Bookstore. Here is a link that will take you directly there:

The book is called Something Knows the Moment. I'm including comments about it from Fred Chappell, Joseph Bathanti, and a couple of other early readers below. The sooner we meet the publisher's advance sales goal, the sooner the book will be released, so you can help me out by ordering yours now. I'll be giving readings all over NC in the fall, so you should still have a chance to get your copy signed if you like.

Something Knows the Moment may also be ordered by check or credit card directly from the publisher; however, the discount is not as much if ordered this way ($12/book--postage included). Send to: Main Street Rag, PO BOX 690100, Charlotte, NC 28227-7001. Credit card orders, call 704-573-2516 (M-F 9am-5pm EST).

Something Knows the Moment by Scott Owens

Published by: Main Street Rag Publishing Company

ISBN: 9781599483023, ~114 pages, $14 (cover price)

“Why ask where none can answer?” Scott Owens’ collection, Something Knows the Moment, poses this question and accompanies it with a hundred others about the nature of God, the nature of faith, of doubt, of trust and distrust, disillusion and resignation. The answer is, We ask because we cannot help but ask. --These poems are necessary.
---- Fred Chappell, NC Poet Laureate

By turns these poems are terrifying and glorious, always luminous, informed by an abiding faith that the liturgy of poetry will leave us burnished and restored.
--Joseph Bathanti, author of Restoring Sacred Art

Scott Owens has the audacity to reimagine The Good Book. It is a resurrection not to be missed: haunted, funny, and outrageous, by turns, fiercely imagined, wonderfully accessible, Scott Owens’ latest shows him to be one of the most engaging and readable poets currently working in the South.
--David Rigsbee, author of The Red Tower

Scott Owens stares steadfastly into the “unrelenting zero.” Owens’ motives shed new light on some of the oldest ideas ever, forcing the reader to immediately ponder his own nature and humanity. Good poetry does precisely this. At the root of these poems is a deep and palpable compassion. There is a tenderness in this book that might shame you.
-- Joe Milford, The Joe Milford Poetry Show

All my best,

Scott Owens

Sasa Vazic and Robert D. Wilson has informed me that Professor Michael Marra passed away.

Robert D. Wilson interviewed Michael a few years ago:

My sincere condolences to the friends and family of  Professor Marra.

1 comment:

Terri L. French said...

Oh so wish I could be at the Evanston Conference!! Alas, I will be in France on May 7. ; )