Autumn 2007

cover image, Autumn 2007 issue
Central Park, Schenectady, NY by Yu Chang

Guest Poet: Carolyn Hall

This issue’s guest poet, Carolyn Hall, has been having a great year. Her first full-length collection of poetry, Water Lines was published late last year by the UK’s Snapshot Press. The critical response has been uniformly positive, culminating in the recent announcement of a Kanterman Merit Book Award from the Haiku Society of America. We are not surprised. We’ve enjoyed Carolyn’s haiku and senryu for many years. We’re pleased for her and also very happy to be able to add to the celebration of her work by sharing some of it with you in this issue of Upstate Dim Sum.

It’s been a busy spring and summer for members of the Route 9 Haiku Group. April 1 saw the publication by W. W. Norton and Company of Baseball Haiku (edited by autumn 2004 guest poet Cor van den Heuvel), which included poems by Tom Clausen and me. We both attended a reading at the National Arts Club in New York to celebrate this anthology and you will note one poem in this issue that features a baseball theme and image. In early June I spoke briefly at the United Nations, having served as judge for the English-language section of a student haiku contest sponsored by the United Nations International School. Hilary, Yu, and I went to Maine in July for our annual renku retreat. And Yu and I attended the Haiku North America conference in Winston-Salem, NC from August 15 to 19.

We have been trying something new for the past couple of issues by introducing haiga in these pages. A further innovation along these lines, which we hope will become a permanent feature, is the addition of a second haiga in this issue by Ion Codrescu; this time featuring his own poetry. Ion was our guest poet in the autumn 2003 issue and is one of the few of our guests to have actually shared a meal with us at Tai Pan (along with his wife, Mihaela). Perhaps this is one of the reasons he has always seemed like a member of our group. There is, of course, a more self-serving motive for our wanting to find an additional way of sharing his haiga with you and that is the fact that his work is generally acknowledged to be among the best contemporary examples of the genre.


Sample Poems

the dream continues
after I wake
morning glories
Carolyn Hall 

Christmas evening
the snow
doesn’t stick

first light
dewdrops at each point
of the grape leaf

late day sun—
on the edge of the party
everyone aglow

new black top
the water still pools
after the rain