Brocade of Leaves

Michael Dylan Welch and Yu Chang, editors. Press Here, Sammamish, Washington, 2003, 32 pages, 85 poets (one poem each), ISBN 1-878798-27-8.


The Haiku North America conference took place at the Dalton School in New York City in 2003. From the introduction: “We know from experience—or at least from a dictionary—that a brocade is a rich silk fabric, often Oriental, with gold and silver patterns. In this book, we are presented with a vibrant brocade of voices, haiku and senryu serving as the gold and silver. These poems spring not just from the Orient, where haiku began, but from poetry weavers from across the United States and Canada, as well as other countries. And this brocade . . . is not just a brocade of silk, but a brocade of leaves, reminding us that nature is central to haiku and related genres of poetry.” The following are sixteen sample poems from the book.



circling Ground Zero

a ring of sequoias

but then I wake up


                Brenda J. Gannam

                Brooklyn, New York



late for work . . .

the cat’s muddy paw print

on my collar


                Brian Tasker

                Frome, Somerset, England



heavy snowfall

the Brooklyn Bridge



                Bruce Kennedy

                Brooklyn, New York



another autumn

the tailor shop I wrote about

is gone


                Cor van den Heuvel

                New York, New York



above the park wall

the flags of a parade

going past


                Doris Heitmeyer

                New York, New York



apple pie

what more needs to be said

about my childhood


                Jerry Kilbride

                Sacramento, California



late      to watch the deciding game

   the full moon


                Marshall Hryciuk

                Toronto, Ontario



spring thaw—

the old scarecrow

a little taller


                Michael Dylan Welch

                Sammamish, Washington



brocade of leaves . . .

a monk sweeps a path

for the guests


                Pamela A. Babusci

                Rochester, New York



the wee hours

a quartered apple



                Pamela Miller Ness

                New York, New York



old punk song . . .

I pump my fist

in the gardening glove


                Paul Pfleuger, Jr.

                Brooklyn, New York



The cliff’s dirt edge

       An eroded

sense of self


                Regina Weinreich

                New York, New York



old jazz record—

a scratch



                Stanford M. Forrester

                Wethersfield, Connecticut




       the old-timer’s

       rapt attention


                Tom Painting

                Rochester, New York



spring rain

rereading my own book

I fall asleep


                William J. Higginson

                Summit, New Jersey




a marsh reed sways

with a blackbird


                Yu Chang

                Schenectady, New York