The Haiku Habit

First published in Woodnotes #31, Autumn 1997, page 46. +

The Haiku Habit by Jeanne Emrich. Lone Egret Press, 1996, 48 pages, 5¾ by 4¾ inches. $13.00 postpaid from the author at P.O. Box 39644, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55439-0644 [address no longer correct]. This book is one of the purest haiku delights to come my way in several years. Everything about this book is a treat. It comes in a tidy box. Inside you’ll find a small hand-sewn book wrapped with rich hand-made paper. Open it up and you’ll be met by exquisite colour paintings of blossoms, sparrows, and a sunset over mountains. In between, you’ll enjoy the author’s invitation to get into the “haiku habit,” an invitation that is laudable for its concision and carefully considered discussion, including a few dozen of Jeanne’s clean and clear haiku. For its exquisite production values alone, this book is a bargain at $13.00. Here’s a sample poem:

first snow . . .

lined up against the window

red peppers