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A new collection of haiku from poet and artist John Brandi.
John Brandi’s haiku practice spans four decades—a steadfast companion to his life as a poet, visual artist, and author of numerous books of poetry, travel essays, and haibun. The haiku collected in THE RAIN SWEEPS THROUGH are culled from wherever they first landed: pocket pad, a paper napkin, a daily journal, penned on the palm of the hand, or in notes accompanying field sketches. As the author writes in a moving afterword, “[the haiku] world is timeless within one’s given time. There is always the vastness, that upside-down raven at play between the dust devils spinning across the mesa. There is always intimacy, that bead of sun moving on the back of the housefly on the windowsill. The haiku mind is tuned to both worlds, alert to what either might deliver.”
“Over several books John Brandi has shown himself to a master of the tricky and insightful form of haiku. These poems carry the immediacy and freshness of original experience, but they are rooted in a long, honed practice of attentiveness. Brandi’s antennae are always up, and he captures momentary revelations with spontaneity, wit, and a deep sense of compassion.” —Tim McNulty, author of Ascendance
“John Brandi’s haiku are among the most powerful ones written in English. Vivid, insightful, and unique—they have both freshness and wisdom. The humorous senryu spirit mixes effortlessly with perceptions of the natural world. Brandi’s work reflects the influence of the Beats yet also draws from the lineage of the Japanese masters. What a pleasure to experience mountains and rain, as well as human life, through this book.” —Miram Sagan, author of the haiku collection Borderline (Cholla Needles, 2023)
John Brandi has been an active walker, writer and visual artist since boyhood rambles in the Sierra Nevada. After graduating from California State University, Northridge, he joined the Peace Corps and worked with Andean serfs who were uniting to regain their land rights. His many books of poetry, prose, haiku, and haibun have earned him a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, poetry-in-the- schools residencies in Yupik, Navajo, and Pueblo communities, a White Pine Press World of Voices Poetry Award, six Witter Bynner Foundation teaching grants, and a Touchstone Distinguished Books Award for A House By Itself: Selected Haiku of Masaoka Shiki. In 1979 he traveled to India to retrace his father's WW II journey as an army private in the India-Burma Theater. It was the first of many visits that led to the Himalayas of Nepal, Ladakh and Sikkim. He recently authored The Great Unrest (White Pine Press), a collection of poems, and Planet Pilgrim (Palace Press), his paean to Japanese poet, Nanao Sakaki.Author City: EL RITO, NM USA