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Book of the Week – Some of the Silence by John Stevenson

John Stevenson is a former president of the Haiku Society of America, former editor of Frogpond, and currently serves as managing editor of The Heron’s Nest. He is a founding member of the Route 9 Haiku Group, which has published the semiannual anthology Upstate Dim Sum since 2001.

In the Introduction, Michael McClintock states, “Silence is a tricky subject. We are told that silence is the magic presence that makes music possible. Silence is also that worrisome thing that comes before the drop of a shoe … The poems in this book have lasted, and are lasting. You cannot walk away, having read them through, without coming into possession of a deed to some of the best real estate on earth: it is measureless, without boundaries, and the dwelling there is without walls, ceiling, or floor.”

all those haiku
about the moon in the trees,
the moon in the trees


early snowfall—
exposed, an earthworm
thins and thickens.


frosty morning
the campers hatch
from their sleeping bags


old slippers
the comfort
coming apart

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.

This Post Has 11 Comments

  1. Wonderful selection! I very much enjoyed this book and am sure that I will be returning to it time and again. It’s straightforward slice-of-life writing makes it not just accessible, but enjoyable and meaningful. Thank you, Kenneth, for bringing this to us!

  2. it doesn’t get any better than this . . .

    old slippers
    the comfort
    coming apart

    thank you, John, for your magical way with words

  3. A marvelous book from one of the haiku world’s leading lights for decades now. I consider this collection’s title poem to be the best haiku written in English so far this century.

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