by Ray McNiece. 80 pages. 2004. ISBN 0-9742054-9-4. $12.95. Deep Cleveland Press, PO Box 435 Berea, Ohio 44017. deepcleveland.com
Book Review by Michael Basinski
Haiku has plenty of history ’ Japan ’ the Beats and 17 syllables and not and the discussion goes on and on and haiku me imagines has really become the adopted poem of American poets.
Is 21st like sonnet used to be for the old goats, so to speak now ’ our form as American poets - Haiku (which is not to rob haiku from Japanese or purists ’ Haiku can handle it all and the space is vast and lots of room for arguments and frogs to plop in empty foods and sounds of one foot in the refrigerator counting angel wing toenails milk). McNiece has won this and that ( check the website ) and written this and that. And am happy to read his work and get to know him and I think as I eat mashed potatoes that he is really: a) poet and b) writer c) serious of American wish he show up in any town to be people’s poet d) smart and not hustler ego poet but e) poet again I write ’ praise the McNiece for this book of haiku that he plants in Cleveland! Yes this is where it belongs as is his self planets, plants and planted pants! Whitman of poetry person listening to poetry of Cleveland and allows unafraid the art to flow in from all the around world into his imagination and he makes these molecules of poetry with bonds so tight as to reveal that poetry is the our glue shoe to our places in the all so big and sky universe earth one eye ball looking into the soul McNiece:
first time lovers lulled by erie's last waves of summer her sleeping breathing