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Alexis K. Rotella

Alexis K. Rotella

Born: January 16 1947 in Johnstown Pennsylvania, USA
Resides: Arnold, Maryland, USA
E-mail: akrotella (at) gmail (dot) com

Dr. Alexis K. Rotella, a widely-published poet and recipient of many literary awards, was raised in Southwestern Pennsylvania. She earned a Master of Acupuncture degree from The Academy for Five Element Acupuncture in Florida and is certified in Quantum Reflex Analysis. Her undergraduate work was at Drew University where she graduated with honors. She earned a Certificate in Spiritual Counselling from The New Seminary in Manhattan, holds a doctorate in clinical hypnotherapy, and many additional certifications. She has made outstanding contributions to English-language haiku, as poet and as editor, and has been called "a superstar in the field of Japanese forms written in English." She served as President of the Haiku Society of America in 1984 and as editor of Frogpond, Brussels Sprout, The Persimmon Tree, and Prune Juice. Rotella won the prestigious Kusamakura Haiku Award in 2007 and travelled to Kumamoto, Japan, to receive that award. Her book Elvis In Black Leather was nominated for The Pushcart Prize in 2009. Many of her haiku were selected for inclusion in van den Heuval's The Haiku Anthology (1986 and 1999 editions). Her work has appeared in hundreds of journals and magazines including The New York Times (Metropolitan Diary), Christian Science Monitor, Family Circle, Glamour, New Letters, The Paterson Literary Review, Chiron Review, Blue Mesa Review, The Madison Review, Lynx, Frogpond, Modern Haiku, Simply Haiku, Red Light, and Bottle Rockets. Rotella is the author of the well-known poem "Purple" which has appeared in numerous publications including Chicken Soup for the Soul and Love, Magic and Mudpies by Bernie Siegel, M.D. (Rodale Press). Six of her readings are available on YouTube.

Awards and Other Honors:

Some of her awards and other honors include: President, The Haiku Society of America (1984); Editor, Frogpond (1983-1984), Brussels Sprout, Persimmon Tree, and Prune Juice; member of the editorial board for Take Five (2009). Her book, Elvis In Black Leather (Modern English Tanka Press, 2009) was nominated for The Pushcart Prize. Round Faces and Nesting Dolls, an epic tanka renga written with an’ya, won a 2008 Tanka Splendor award and appears in Atlas Poetica (Modern English Tanka Press, 2008). Her work appears in numerous anthologies including Global Haiku: Twenty-five Poets World-wide (ed. George Swede and Randy Brooks, Mosaic Press/Iron Press, 2000); How to Haiku, Haiku Moment [both by Bruce Ross, Tuttle); Beneath a Single Moon: Buddhism in Contemporary American Poetry (Johnson and Paulenich, Shambhala); The Haiku Anthology (ed. Cor van den Heuvel, 1986 and 1999 editions); Haiku I: Poesies Anciennes et Modernes (Jackie Hardy, Editions Vega); Haiku for Lovers (Manu Bazzano (MQP); Czeslaw Milosz/HAIKU (Krakow, Poland); Synesthesia in Haiku and Other Essays (Toshimi Horiuchi, University of Philippines Press) and Haiku in English, Hiroaki Sato (Simul Press, Japan).

Books Published:

Alexis Rotella has published more than 40 books, including: Eavesdropping (earliest haiku, written 30 years ago); Ash Moon Anthology (an anthology on aging co-edited with Denis M. Garrison); Mirror Mirror (a large collection of haiga in color featuring photographs, soul drawings and collages including collaborative haiga sequences with other poets); Musical Chairs: A haiku journey through childhood; Beards and Wings (longer metaphysical poems); Yes [A dozen linked poems with Florence Miller]; Moonflowers [dream poems]; The Lace Curtain; Antiphony of Bells [a haiku journey through Italy]; Eleven Renga [linked poems with Florence Miller]; A String of Monarchs [linked poems with Florence Miller]; Clouds in My Teacup (1982); After an Affair [psychological haiku/senryu] (Westfield, NJ: Merging Media, 1984); On a White Bud [psychological haiku/senryu] (Merging Media, 1983); Voice of the Mourning Dove [haiku collection]; Looking for a Prince [senryu collection]; Middle City [longer poems and haiku about growing up in S.W. Pennsylvania]; Camembert Comes from the Sea [longer poems]; Drizzle of Stars [illustrated renga with Bob Boldman]; Harvesting Stars: Sequences on Li Po and Ch’in Kuan (Mountain Lakes, NJ: Jade Mountain Press, 1983); Editor: Butterfly Breezes (Mountain Lakes, NJ: 1981); Rearranging Light (Passaic, NJ: Muse Pie Press, 1985); Editor: The Rise and Fall of Sparrows: A Collection of North American Haiku (San Diego, CA: Los Hombres Press, 1990); Tuning the Lily (Battle Ground, IN: High/Coo Press, 1983); An Unknown Weed (Pointe Claire, Quebec: King’s Road Press, 1991); Lip Prints [a tanka collection with an introduction by scholar/poet Michael McClintock]; A Sprinkle of Glitter [one-liners] (Rosenberry Books, 2008); ASK! [aphorisms and zen drawings] (Rosenberry Books, 2008); Purple (Rosenberry Books); Ouch (Senryu that Bite; Elvis In Black Leather (Modern English Tanka Press, 2009).
Non-poetry: How Words and Thoughts Affect Your Body; The Essence of Flowers.

Selected Work
Late August:
I bring him the garden
in my skirt.
today’s role dangles
from a metal hanger
Near dusk:
sound of the last
fishing boat.
Winter morning―
the sound of eggs boiling
in an enamel pot.
autumn sky
the wind folds and unfolds
a flock of sparrows
Sinking deep
into winter
the blues singer's voice.


"Late August" - Wind Chimes 2 (1981); Rotella, On a White Bud (Merging Media, 1983); van den Heuvel, The Haiku Anthology(Simon and Schuster, 1986); Frogpond 22:3 (1999); van den Heuvel, The Haiku Anthology (W.W. Norton & Co., 1999); Swede and Brooks, ed., Global Haiku: Twenty-five Poets World-wide (ed., George Swede and Randy Brooks, Mosaic Press/Iron Press, 2000); "Near dusk" - Grand Prize in the Kusamakura Haiku Competition (2007); "autumn sky" - Frogpond 7:2 (1984); Museum of Haiku Literature Award (1984); Ross, ed., Haiku Moment: An Anthology of Contemporary North American Haiku(Charles E. Tuttle, 1993); A Haiku Path: The Haiku Society of America 1968-1988 (Haiku Society of America, Inc., 1994); "Undressed" - Rotella, Clouds in My Teacup (1982); van den Heuvel, The Haiku Anthology (Simon and Schuster, 1986); Frogpond 19:3 (1996); Blithe Spirit 8:4 (1998); Frogpond 22:3 (1999); van den Heuvel, The Haiku Anthology (W.W. Norton & Co., 1999); Swede and Brooks, ed., Global Haiku: Twenty-five Poets World-wide (ed., George Swede and Randy Brooks, Mosaic Press/Iron Press, 2000); Hardy, Haiku (2002), 186); Shreve Memorial Library (Shreveport, La.) Electronic Poetry Network (April 17, 2003); "Winter morning" - Rotella, Voice of the Mourning Dove; van den Heuvel, The Haiku Anthology (W.W. Norton & Co., 1999); Shreve Memorial Library (Shreveport, La.) Electronic Poetry Network (January 4, 2007); "Sinking deep" - Third Place, the Prof. Richard Gilbert Award, Kusamakura International Haiku Contest (2007).

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