Nine Steps: A Japanese Garden in the Fog

First published in Woodnotes #23, Winter 1994, page 50.

Nine Steps: A Japanese Garden in the Fog by Wilma M. Erwin and Brad J. Wolthers. Mountain Gate Press, 1994, 28 pages, paperback, 5½ by 8½ inches. $7.00 postpaid from either Wilma Erwin at 6123 N. Commercial Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97217 or Brad J. Wolthers at 220 SE 12th #2, Hillsboro, Oregon 97123 [addresses no longer correct]. A collection of 82 poems written on a walk through the Japanese garden in Portland, Oregon, Nine Steps begins with the intriguing and egoless premise that its poems are equally the work of both authors. Nevertheless, the authorship of some verses will often be clear to anyone who knows either poet. The book is cleanly designed, sharply printed on fine paper in a numbered edition limited to 200 signed copies, and includes a cover illustration by Brad. Two examples:

lowering fog

we stray from one path

and find another

windless day

the duck and its reflection

drift toward shore