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tinywords issue 9.1 Fall/Winter 2009-2010

issue 9.1

Fall/Winter 2009-2010

tinywords issue 9.1

Fall/Winter 2009-2010

The poems and works within this collection are copyright © their respective authors and artists.

Haibun for Bill Higginson

I started publishing haiku in 2000, before I really even knew what it was. I found poems that I liked in a book and started sending them to a mailing list, to friends’ inboxes, to their pagers, to my phone. One haiku per day. Nothing more. The list grew and I built a simple website to go with it. From the converted gardening shed on the back of my garage — my roughly-finished office — I sent haiku winging out over digital networks around the world.

After awhile, it became clear that it was more than just a small circle of friends who were reading tinywords, so I stopped borrowing haiku from books and started publishing my own, as well


as asking people on the list to send in their own. My early efforts at writing haiku were, like those of most educated in American schools, exactly seventeen syllables. Easy enough, or so it seemed at first: But soon I found I couldn’t write or get enough haiku I liked to keep the daily pace going.

Desiring a wider audience — and needing more good poets — I sought listing in search engines. Bill Higginson responded, adding tinywords to the top of the haiku list that he curated for the Open Directory. It was like turning on an engine: The site took off, buzzing with an infusion of readers and writers who had discovered the site through Bill’s help, and who were eager to contribute haiku, or comments, or just read and share with their friends.


hum of the laptop watching a lost world flicker to life

Bill’s help didn’t stop there. He

contributed haiku, both his own as well

as his translations of the ancient

masters, and generously offered

suggestions on how I could improve my

own haiku. His books provided an

invaluable, expert and open-hearted

education in the deeper aspects of the

art. And he was a generous

correspondent, always finding time to

reply. He could be prickly: Several times

I had to adjust the design of the website

because of his complaints about how his

haiku were appearing. Of course I

resented these criticisms, but after I

steamed about them for awhile, I wound

up conceding his points and making the

changes he suggested. They always

made the site better. In time, with my


labor over PHP and MySQL code and the occasional pointed comment from Bill, tinywords evolved a clean, simple, minimalist design that kept the focus on the very brief poems that were its heart, and enabled each one to shine forward on its own terms, one per page.

The burden of maintaining tinywords grew, and as the mailing list topped 3,000 subscribers the number of submissions grew overwhelming. With work and family also weighing heavily on my time, tinywords seemed more and more like a burden. I walked away from haiku altogether in June 2008. I couldn’t even bear to look at my e-mail inbox, no longer maintained tinywords, and I even stopped reading haiku journals. So when a friend wrote in October of that year to tell me that Bill


had died, I didn’t get the message until

months later. And I didn’t have the heart

to reply when I did.

There’s little I can add to George

Swede’s elegant eulogy to a man whose

intelligence, scholarship, generosity and

poetry have touched many people’s lives.

I never even met Bill Higginson. Yet he

was a great patron of this site, and a


over the bay a jet banks into the haze

d. f. tweney


alone in the library I open to autumn

Kath Abela Wilson


Roosevelt Island the ruins of the hospital touched by graffiti

Barry Goodmann

The crumbling hospital building on Roosevelt Island used to house smallpox patients in the 19th century.


Yet Our Life Is Sweet

Sleepy after the sun the house is full of light spilt from our eyes.

Soon our eyes are empty and we see.

John Emil Vincent


california sunrise traffic in the canyon begins to stall

Mike Farley

in one breath the whole autumn

Valeria Simonova-Cecon


a thousand dreams yet, this one — ashes in the breeze

Jeffrey Winke

strip mall a wild turkey pecks at a hubcap

Barry Goodmann


fall migration the growing flock of binoculars

Deborah P Kolodji


first stars the timer turns on the X-mas lights

Bill Waters

autumn wind — looking up for a fly ball lost in falling leaves

Kathe L. Palka

doesn’t matter where I’m going — autumn wind

Israel López Balan


scattered leaves — two guitar picks on the blues man’s headstone

Charles Rossiter

watching dad struggle to remember our names december sky

C. William Hinderliter


a leaf’s skeleton tossed by the wind — those moments when laughter filled the garden

Laryalee Fraser

autumn sunlight the old dog unearths her favorite toy

Melissa Spurr

autumn sunlight the old dog unearths her favorite toy Melissa Spurr 20


christmas lights the ambulance flashing in all the windows

David Serjeant

christmas lights the ambulance flashing in all the windows David Serjeant 21


through autumn leaves a teal-trailed wake of light

John Barlow


toll booth lit for Christmas — from my hand to hers warm change

Michael Dylan Welch


old snow the streetwalker gives Santa a hug

Barry Goodmann


autumn cascade — in and out of the foam a plastic bottle

Valeria Simonova-Cecon


bow, if you will marigold’s blossoms dried brown

Jeffrey Winke

late autumn walk the many paths I could have taken

Melissa Spurr

in the air rain in the rain air

David Stark

quiet morning the continuous beeping of an auto alarm

Mike Farley

dew frost ~ the horse shivers off crystal light

Narayanan Raghunathan


with a crooked branch I knock the last leaf off the tree winter nightfall

Barry Goodmann


Evening prayer — a flickering candle, rainfall.

Jon Summers


no more bread — I’m a shovel in the hand of winter

Dana-Maria Onica


early light my dream drifts out the open window

Jeffrey Winke

silent snow

the coldness

between us

Claudette Russell












Ed Markowski

I’ll put it back in the earth, as soft as dust :: a word too much

Grant Hackett


garden Buddha knee deep in dead leaves once again plans for the year have gone astray

Joanne Morcom

whirling snow divorce papers fall from a red folder

Roberta Beary


for nothing:

job offer

Jeffrey Winke




David Stark

footprints the hollow boom of breakers in the fog

Mike Farley


He is young. He could be younger. His hands shake. Even propped on the bar.

His nights:

he stands so ready:

his face: a mark:

the close of claws. And passed:

after a pause.

John Emil Vincent


outside the bar men like broken houses

Matt Hetherington


in smoky twilight i remember how light his casket was yet i can’t pick up his toys still scattered in the yard

John Stone

low evening fog — I walk no dog

Gosia Zamorska

Midwinter snowstorm highway at a standstill I mistake the vagrant for my long-dead father his smile so vacant

Scot Siegel

winter stars without you to name them

Roberta Beary


Where are your friends? You lean over, the little boy, crumpled. — Those were my friends.

John Emil Vincent


park bench the blind man’s glasses reflect the sunlight

Artur Lewandowski


And don’t snow geese and immortality take their shadows from the sea

Grant Hackett


between the falling snow raven

peter h. pache

the light in the back of the flower shop winter moon

Garry Eaton

winter dusk

when dad

would phone

Roberta Beary

burnt toast no matter what I do the rain seeps in

Cindy Tebo

snow all night the silence thickens

Ann K. Schwader


washing up she looks at the backyard pine its old nest

karasu / Ross Clark


winter mist the scarecrow’s heart a nesting sparrow

André Surridge

the first brush-stroke black the sound of thunder

Sandra Simpson

desert morning a coyote licks ice on the tumbleweed

Barbara A Taylor


Rain overnight — the mist on Mynyddislwyn melts almost as quickly as it takes me to write about it.

Jon Summers

a spot of light from the hand mirror travels up and down her arm

shadow patterns her neck

Harold Bowes

elevator silence our shadows cross on the floor

David Stark

deep snow — I put my feet in your footsteps

Gosia Zamorska

so like bones the bone-white branches of the birch tree

Bill Waters

casino lights your bad luck ringing all their bells

Joanne Merriam


cold morning touching my breasts remembering

Genie Nakano

traffic jam — from everywhere the snow heading nowhere

Helga Härle

a stone

next to a frozen pond

I long to skip

to another time another place

don miller

Trees blossom into coral polyps and wave. Tiny bright squid in shades of pigeon-feet pink litter concrete sidewalks.

Deb Scott

3 a.m. the dog fetches yet another stick

Ray Rasmussen

haiku history lecture doodling paper lanterns

Aubrie Cox

Previous Publications

page 13 ("fall migration," by Deborah P Kolodji): First published in Mainichi Daily News, December 2007.

page 15 ("autumn wind," by Kathe L. Palka): Previously published in Spitball:

The Literary Baseball Magazine.

page 21 ("Christmas lights," by David Serjeant): This haiku previously appeared in Blithe Spirit 17:1.

page 38 ("garden Buddha," by Joanne Morcom): Previously published in the tanka journal Gusts: Contemporary Tanka and the author’s poetry book about the blue moon.

page 70 ("Trees blossom into coral," by Deb Scott): Previously published in A Handful of Stones, June 8, 2009.


tinywords 9.1: Fall/Winter 2009- 2010. Edited by d. f. tweney. Cover Art & this page

tinywords 9.1: Fall/Winter 2009-


Edited by d. f. tweney.

Cover Art & this page art by Aalix Roake.

for the latest:


About the Contributors

John Barlow co-edited The New Haiku (2002), and since 2007 has been on the editorial staff of The Red Moon Anthology. Other works he has edited have been honored by the Haiku Society of America and the Poetry Society of America. His own books include Waiting for the Seventh Wave (2006) and (with Matthew Paul) Wing Beats:

British Birds in Haiku (2008).

Roberta Beary’s book, The Unworn Necklace, won a Poetry Society of America Finalist Award.

Harold Bowes’ poems have appeared in various publications. Ravenna Press published his book If Nothing Else in 2004. Harold edits Alba, an ezine dedicated to short poems.


karasu / Ross Clark is the author of 2 chapbooks of haiku and 7 volumes of poetry, and a founding editor publisher of Australia’s only haiku journal, Paper Wasp. He is currently creatively unemployed, writing poems, haiku and folksongs during a Brisbane summer. wasp/

Aubrie Cox is an English literature and creative writing student at Millikin University. Her haiku have appeared in bottle rockets, The Heron’s Nest, Modern Haiku, and Chrysanthemum.

Natalie d’Arbeloff is an


maker/cartoonist/comic philosopher or philosophical comic living in London, UK. Evidence of all this can be found on her website:

Garry Eaton is a retired, jack-of-all- trades Canadian on the west coast of British Columbia. He has been practicing haiku since 2006. He is interested in the way the discipline is refocusing his attention on, and improving his appreciation of the gift of life.


Originally from California, Mike Farley writes from Red Lodge, Montana, where he recently retired with his wife Shirlee from their twenty years on a hay and cattle ranch. His poetry is rich with the images of the high plains, mountains, weather, wildlife, livestock, ranch work and outdoor recreation with which he is daily surrounded. Although he has contributed his work to many online haiku lists, he has never been formally published.

Laryalee Fraser lives in British Columbia, Canada. In 2006 she compiled an online haiku anthology: a procession of ripples. es.htm

Barry Goodmann (bgoodmann at is a poet, writer and editor who lives in the New York metropolitan area. He has published poetry on several websites and in various literary magazines.

Grant Hackett: I write small poems and make indexes for books in a small town in western Massachusetts. I believe passionately in the ability of the one line poem to make an infinite music. My blog


of one line poems is called Falling Off the Mountain. http://fallingoffthemountain.blogspot.c om/

Helga Härle is a Swedish poet and creative writing teacher, enjoying haiku

as a way of tracing the moment

sharing it. Some of her English haiku have been published in magazines like

the Heron’s Nest, Frogpond and Acorn to mention a few; some of her Swedish in various Swedish mags and haiku anthologies.


Matt Hetherington is a writer, musician, and non-godfather living in Melbourne. His most recent collection is I Think We Have (Small Change Press, 2007). He is also on the board of the Australian Haiku Society.

C. William Hinderliter lives in Phoenix, Arizona and is a graduate of two rival universities (Arizona State University and The University of Arizona). Despite being a registered hypnotist with degrees in psychology and history, he prefers spending his time writing poetry. This year, his work has appeared in a


variety of online and print publications, including Acorn; Ambrosia; Chrysanthemum; Prune Juice; The Heron’s Nest; The Mainichi Daily News; and white lies: the 13th volume of the Red Moon Anthology for English- Language Haiku.

Deborah P Kolodji enjoys haiku walks in her native Southern California, inspired by the beach, local mountains, and desert. A member of HSA and president of the Science Fiction Poetry Association, she moderates the Southern California Haiku Study Group at the Pacific Asia Museum. Her poems can be found in a variety of journals, both on and off the web.

Artur Lewandowski: I live in the center of Poland. I’m in my middle-ages. I learn how to write haiku among my friends who publish with me on the Polish site

Israel López Balan: I’m a mexican buddhist with a jewish name and

mayan-spanish last names, who writes

japanese haiku in english cocktailized world!

What a



Ed Markowski lives & writes in Auburn Hills, Michigan. His haiku, senryu, haibun, free verse poetry, & short fiction has appeared in print & electronic journals world wide. He has presented his work at a variety of venues including The Landmark Pub in Brooklyn, New York, The Old Miami Club in Detroit, The National Arts Club in Manhattan, & at The Chautauqua Institution in Chautauqua, New York.

Joanne Merriam is the editor of Seven by Twenty and has had poems in Alba, Amaze, The Fiddlehead, Roadrunner Haiku Journal and Scifaiku.

Originally from the Midwest, Don Miller has been living in southern New Mexico for 20+ years. Over the past 5+ years his haiku, tanka, haibun and other short poetry have been published in several on-line journals and/or print magazines.

Joanne Morcom is a writer, social worker and certified laughter yoga leader in Calgary, Alberta. Her poetry postcards are available from pooka


press, her scifaiku chapbook A Nameless Place is available from Sam’s Dot Publishing and her haiku book A Piece of Eggshell, written in collaboration with The Magpie Haiku Poets, can be ordered from the author at her website

Genie Nakano is a columnist with the local Gardena Valley News in Gardena, California, and has been featured in the Rafu Shimpoo and Daily Breeze. She is a dance and yoga teacher by trade. GenieYogini.Com

Dana-Maria Onica: 49, eye doctor. I’m "an ant that climbs up the edge of the book". (Joe Salerno)

Peter H. Pache is retired, living in rural New Mexico on a small farm.

Kathe L. Palka is the author of two chapbooks of free verse, The Grace of Light (Finishing Line Press), and Faith to See and Other Poems (Finishing Line Press), both available through Her work in Japanese forms has appeared in bottle rockets, Frogpond, Modern Haiku, paper wasp, red lights and Ribbons. She placed third in the Haiku Society of America’s 2009


Gerald Brady Memorial Senryu Contest.

Ray Rasmussen’s haiku, haiga and haibun and articles have appeared regularly in the haiku genre journals. He’s the managing editor of contemporary haibun online. He dreamed that in a previous life he was a university professor, but now spends his time feeding the dogs, doing housework, writing and doing photography.

Aalix Roake is by birth an American, artist and writer, who is now living and working in New Zealand. She has had her paintings and writings published, alone or sometimes simultaneously in a publication, (such as and previously contributed to tinywords as an haiku author

Charlie Rossiter is an NEA Fellowship recipient and 3-time Pushcart Prize nominee who has been writing and publishing haiku for a long time. He a past guest-editor of Modern Haiku. His latest book (not haiku) is All Over America: Road Poems (2009),


available at

Claudette Russell is a retired high school English teacher who lives with her husband in rural Connecticut. Her poetry has been published in various print and online journals.

Ann K. Schwader’s haiku have appeared in Modern Haiku, Frogpond, The Heron’s Nest, bottle rockets, and elsewhere. Find more about her writing on her Web site:

Deb Scott lives in Portland, Oregon. She blogs at Stoney Moss and is one of the directors at Read Write Poem ( Other places have been kind enough to publish her words, too.

David Serjeant lives in Derbyshire, UK, where he works as a local government officer. His work has been published in journals such as Blithe Spirit, Presence, Simply Haiku, Shamrock and Chrysanthemum amongst others.


Scot Siegel writes from various roadside shoulders around Oregon. His full bio can be found at

Valeria Simonova-Cecon, Russian residing now in Cividale with her husband, Italian haijin Andrea Cecon. She lives a very calm and simple life and finds her inspiration in the beautiful nature of the North-Eastern Italy.

Sandra Simpson lives in Tauranga, New Zealand, a city built around estuaries and with an ocean beach. She is secretary of the committee that looks after the Katikati Haiku Pathway and is editor of Haiku NewZ. In 2009 she was a co-winner of the Snapshots Haiku Calendar contest and placed third in the NZPS International Haiku Contest. news

Melissa Spurr is a copywriter, webmaster, poet, photographer and artist. She lives in Joshua Tree, California with her husband, two dogs and a cross-eyed cat.

David Stark is a multimedia developer living in New York City with his wife and


two cats. He is a long-time reader of tinywords and is thrilled by its return to publication.

John Stone is a musician who sometimes writes things down. He has been published in the usual places and still believes love will find a way.

Jon Summers: I live and work in South Wales, and find that my time is being rapidly filled with three young children (including 2 year old twins), a wonderful wife, and the local church, which means that tiny-words are about all I’ve got time to manage.

Born in Hull, England, André Surridge lives in the city of Hamilton, New Zealand. He is the winner of several national and international writing awards and his writing has been widely published and anthologised.

Barbara A Taylor lives in northern NSW, Australia. Her poems appear in many Japanese short form journals and ezines including Mainichi Daily News, Asahi Haikuist Column, Lynx, Presence, Ginyu, Sketchbook, Ribbons, Frogpond,


Wisteria, 3lightsgallery, Haiku News, Shamrock, tinywords, Simply Haiku, Kokako, Moonset, Magnapoets, Eucalypt, and elsewhere. Poetry with audio is at

Cindy Tebo is a long-time resident of Catawissa, MO. Her work has appeared in various publications and anthologies.

D. F. Tweney is the publisher of tinywords. He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife, two young children, dog, and house. Haiku are the only poems he has time to write.

John Vincent lives in the woods of Massachusetts and dearly wants to adopt a puppy.

Bill Waters lives in Pennington, N.J., with his wonderful wife and their three amazing cats.

Kath Abela Wilson listens poetically to science lectures as she sketches and writes her way around the world with her Caltech mathematics professor/musician husband. Kathabela, a member of HSA and Southern CA


Haiku Study Group, is creator and organizer of Poets on Site, a Pasadena, California-based multi-media poetry performance group. You can hear her and her band of poets read mostly short poems here:


Jeffrey Winke lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in a warehouse loft with an obstructed view of Lake Michigan. He writes haiku, haibun, and articles about heavy equipment moving dirt.