Bending with the Wind

First published in Woodnotes #20, Spring 1994, page 36.

Bending with the Wind by Nick Avis. Breakwater/Newfoundland Poetry Series, 1993,64 pages, paperback, 5 by 8 inches. Write for price to: Breakwater, 100 Water Street, P.O. Box 2188, St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada, A1C 6E6. A comprehensive collection of haiku by Nick Avis is tremendous news. It has arrived in the form of Bending with the Wind, a sumptuous collection of 104 of Nick’s vibrant haiku and visual poems. The poems are arranged in excellent groupings or sequences, among the finest of which is “The Birthday Cake.” More than most haiku poets, Nick takes special care in arranging his words spatially, adding a new dimension to the printed page and asserting a dynamic visual syntax in the process. The dozen or so strictly visual poems are fresh and inventive, and the more conventional poems are prime examples of how haiku should be written; hardly one misses. This professionally printed book is highly recommended as one of the very best individual haiku collections in years. Two haiku from this essential book:

the telephone

rings only once

autumn rain

freshly fallen snow

opening a new package

of typing paper