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Lew Watts

Lew Watts

Born: February 15 1953 in Cardiff Wales, United Kingdom
Resides: Chicago, Illinois, USA
E-mail: lew (at) lewwatts (dot) com

Lew holds a PhD in geology from the University of Reading and an honorary doctorate from Bristol University, both in the UK. After a career in the energy industry, he chaired the World Bank's external panel on climate change in 2009, and is a past board member of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. His first long-form poems (both formal and free-verse) were published over 20 years ago and have been nominated for Best of the Web and a Pushcart Prize—he has also been runner up for the (UK) Ledbury Poetry Prize, and was recently anthologized in The Best of the Raintown Review 2009-2015. Lew came to haiku in 2009 through an eye-opening coffee with Charles Trumbull in Santa Fe. At the time, Charlie was editor of Modern Haiku and, with great patience, helped Lew tear up, revise, and finally publish his first haiku in 2010. Since then, Lew’s haiku, haibun, and rengay have appeared in Acorn, A Hundred Gourds, bottle rockets, Contemporary Haibun Online, Failed Haiku, Frogpond, Haiku Canada Review, Modern Haiku, Presence, Prune Juice, The Heron's Nest, tinywords, and Wales Haiku Journal among others. Besides poetry and writing, his great passion is fly fishing, anywhere, any time.

Awards and Other Honors:

Nomination, Touchstone Award (The Haiku Foundation, 2014); Honorable Mention, Harold G. Henderson Memorial Haiku Award (Haiku Society of America, 2017). His haiku (and haibun) have appeared in the following anthologies: The Red Moon Anthology of English-Language Haiku (2013, 2014 and 2018); Every Chicken, Cow, Fish and Frog: Animal Rights Haiku (Robert Epstein and Miriam Wald, eds, 2016); Haiku 2016 (Modern Haiku Press); The Wonder Code (Scott Mason, ed., 2017). In 2019, Lew joined 16 other poets in New Resonance 11: Emerging Voices in English-Language Haiku.

Books Published:

Poetry: Lessons for Tangueros (AuthorHouse, Bloomington IN, 2011); Novel: Marcel Malone (Red Mountain Press, Santa Fe NM, 2016); Haibun: Tick-Tock (Snapshot Press, Ormskirk, UK, 2019).

Selected Work
dust motes
in a shaft of sunlight
we’re losing her
locavore market
notes of diesel
in the chilled cherries
this ‘primal’ urge
to overpunctuate
home from war
we ease out
the champagne corks
Venus rising . . .
I linger a little longer
in the hot tub
trial separation
another inch of snow
on the gin bottles


“dust motes” – Presence 63 (2019); “locavore market” – Presence 61 (2018); also, a hole in the light: The Red Moon Anthology of English-Language Haiku (2018); post-vasectomy – Modern Haiku 48.2 (2017); "home from war" - The Heron's Nest XVI: 2 (2014); Touchstone Award nomination (The Haiku Foundation, 2014); "Venus rising" - The Heron's Nest XVII:2 (2015); The Wonder Code (Scott Mason, ed., 2017); "trial separation" - Honorable Mention, Harold G. Henderson Memorial Haiku Award (Haiku Society of America, 2017).

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