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Francine Porad

Francine Porad

September 3, 1929 - September 27, 2006

Francine Joy Porad was born in Seattle, and was a lifelong Washington resident. She received her BFA degree in Painting from the University of Washington in 1976. Francine was one of those rare artists who made a significant mark in two fields. As an artist (in both oils and watercolors), she exhibited in many one-woman and juried shows nationally and internationally, with awards including the Adirondacks National and the National League of American Pen Women's Washington State Art Competition. As a haiku poet, she authored many books of haiku, senryu, tanka, and linked verse; hundreds more poems were published in all the major venues. She served as President of the Haiku Society of America (1993-1994), edited the respected haiku journal Brussels Sprout (1988-1995), owned and operated Vandina Press, and both won and adjudicated scores of national and international contests. It was as a collaborative artist that she realized some of her best work, especially in the many variants of renku she espoused and practiced with a virtual who’s who of the haiku world. She was exceptional at responding to the nuances of other voices while in no way diminishing her own. In 1988, she founded Haiku Northwest, one of the first regional English-language haiku groups in the United States. That group continues to meet monthly in Bellevue, Washington. She presented workshops at the Haiku Canada Weekend in 1992 and at the Haiku North American conferences in 1993 and 1995. Francine was tireless in her dedication to the haiku community, and in 2004, the Haiku Society of American presented Francine with its highest service award, the Sora Award for Lifetime Service to Haiku.

Awards and Other Honors: [An incomplete list] Porad's book Without Haste won the Cicada Chapbook Award in 1989, and The Patchwork Quilt won a Merit Book Award from the Haiku Society of America in 1994. She also won many other awards for individual poems and was listed in Marquis Who's Who in America (1997, 1999, 2001, 2003). She provided the artwork for to find the words [the Haiku Society of America Northwest Region Members' Anthology], which was awarded First Place, Mildred Kanterman Merit Book Award (Haiku Society of America, 2001). She was featured in the public television show “Cactus Poetry Series” (Seattle), placed first in the 1993 Japan International Tanka Competition, and won awards in the 1996 and 1998 Itoen Tea International Haiku Contests, among others. In 2003, in recognition of her achievement and leadership in haiku, the Washington Poets Association established the Francine Porad Haiku Award. In 2004, she received the Haiku Society of America's Sora Award for Lifetime Service to Haiku. She served as Honorary Curator of the American Haiku Archives at the California State Library in Sacramento, 2005 - 2006.

Books Published: Connections: Haiku, Senryu, and Sketches (Seattle, WA: Vandina Press, 1986); Pen and Inklings: Haiku, Senryu, and Sketches, Volume 2 (Seattle, WA: Vandina Press, 1986); After Autumn Rain (1987); Blues on the Run (1988); Free of Clouds (1989); Without Haste (Bakersfield, CA: Amelia, 1989); Hundreds of Wishes (1990); A Mural of Leaves (1991); Joy Is My Middle Name (1993); The Patchwork Quilt (1994); Waterways (Haiku Canada Sheet Selection, 1995); All Eyes (Mercer Island, WA: Vandina Press, 1995); Extended Wings: Haiku and Tanka (Mercer Island, WA: Vandina Press, 1996); Ladles and Jellyspoons (Seattle, WA: Vandina Press, 1996); All the Games: Haiku, Tanka, Art (Seattle, WA: Vandina Press, 1997); Fog Lifting: Haiku and Tanka (Seattle, WA: Vandina Press, 1997); Moon, Moon (1997); Let’s Count the Trees (Haiku Canada Sheet Selection, 1998); Family Album (1999); When in Doubt Add Red (Seattle, WA: 1999. Broadside); The Perfect Worry-Stone (Seattle, WA: Vandina Press, 2000); Cur*rent [with Marlene Mountain] (2000); Other Rens, books 1, 2, and 3, with Marlene Mountain and Kris Kondo] (2000); Trio of Wrens [with Marlene Mountain and Kris Kondo] (2000); Second Blooming (2001); Hollyhocks Stand at Attention (2001); Probably [with Marlene Mountain] (2002); Probably II [with Marlene Mountain] (2004); Sunlight Comes and Goes: Haiku (Bellevue, WA: Vandina Press, 2004).

Selected Work
 
drone
deep in sweet alyssum
Indian summer
 
inserting a piece
in my jigsaw puzzle
the TV repairman
 
 
 
hospital vigil
the imperceptible shift
of clouds
 
     bursting free
from a box-shaped pruning
                forsythia branches
 
 
 
long night
I adjust my breathing
to his
 
clear skies
for the lunar eclipse—
white moth folds its wings
 
 
 
     gray winter day
from the compost heap
          steam
 
restless a hurricane with my name
 
 
 
hospital café
two Santas
sharing a meal
 
vacation beachfront—
tossed back into the waves
a perfect worry-stone
 
 

Credits: "drone" - New Cicada 6:1 (1989); Haiku Moment (ed. Ross, Charles Tuttle: 1993); “hospital vigil” – Porad, Patchwork Quilt (Vandina Press 1994); Frogpond 17:2 (1994); The Heron’s Nest 8:4 (2006); "long night" - Modern Haiku 31:1 (2000); Perfect Worry-Stone (Vandina Press 2000); a glimpse of red: The Red Moon Anthology of English-Language Haiku (ed. Kacian, Red Moon Press 2000); Mainichi Daily News Haiku in English (October 6, 2001); "gray winter day" - Woodnotes 12 (1992); "hospital café" - Porad, Hundreds of Wishes; Woodnotes 7 (1990); "inserting a piece" - Frogpond 27:3 (2004); Frogpond 28:1 (2005); tug of the current: The Red Moon Anthology of English-Language Haiku (ed. Kacian, Red Moon Press 2004); "bursting free" - Modern Haiku 26:2 (1995); presentation, Haiku North America (1995); Frogpond 18:3 (1995); Porad, All Eyes (1995); Porad, Ladles and Jellyspoons; Sunday at Four (1997); The Red Moon Anthology 1997 (Red Moon Press, 1998); "clear skies" - Tundra 1 (1999); "restless" - Paper Wasp (winter 1998); Electronic Poetry Network (November 20, 2001); "vacation beachfront" - Frogpond 23:1 (2000).

Sources Biography: Laurie Porad, various online tributes, imaginary (ed. Kacian, Red Moon Press postscripts series volume 5, 2008). Appreciation is also due Charles Trumbull for assistance in gathering representative haiku and publication credits.

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