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Book of the Week – Listening to the Sky by Marilyn Appl Walker

From the author: “This kaleidoscope of poems reflects life growing up on my family’s farm in Kansas during the 1940s and 1950s. It is a tribute and celebration of the agrarian lifestyle of that era, portraying a blend of personal experiences in farming, weather, home life and family activities including close relationships with members of my extended family, in a period of time at the threshold of unimaginable change.

Kansas is named after the Kansa Native American tribe which inhabited the area. The tribe’s name is often said to mean ‘people of the south wind.'”

Marilyn Appl Walker (born Marilyn Jay Appl, June 13, 1940, Garden City, Kansas, U.S.A.), American primary school teacher, real estate sales professional, and poet actively writing and publishing haiku since 2002. She has received awards in contests including Genkissu Spirits Up (Hekinan, Japan), the Haiku Society of America’s Gerald Brady senryu and Harold Henderson haiku competitions, the Kaji Aso Studio International Contest, the Penumbra Poetry & Haiku Contest of the Tallahassee Writers’ Association, the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival, Yuki Teikei Haiku Society contests, the Snapshots Haiku Calendar Competition, and the Pumpkin Festival Contest (Croatia), and in publications such as Modern HaikuThe Heron’s Nest, and Sonic Boom. Her haiku have been anthologized frequently, including in ten of the best-of-year Red Moon anthologies. Walker cofounded the Madison, Georgia, haiku group and has served as mentor and facilitator for the group from 2016–2021. She is the author of the haiku collection Listening to the Sky (2015) and resides in Madison, Georgia.

Listening to the Sky was published in 2015.

Following are a few selected poems from the book:

the corner hay bale
props up the sun

sunshine after rain
a pot of geraniums
scents the morning breeze

harsh sun
the complicated eyes
of a grasshopper

hide and seek
among the hollyhocks
august moon

You can read the entire book in the THF Digital Library and please share your favorite poem from the book with us.

Do you have a chapbook published in 2018 or earlier that you would like featured as a Book of the Week? Contact us for details. Haiku featured in the Book of the Week Archive are selected by the THF Digital Librarian Kenneth Pearson and are used with permission.

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