Before my actual post, I'd like to convey fervent thoughts and prayers for those here in the Southeast who have suffered unspeakable losses because of the recent fires and tornadoes. I was born in Knoxville, and though I only lived there as a baby, my childhood was laced up with treasured family excursions to Gatlinburg ("the Burg" as my grandmother would call it), and Pigeon Forge, and the greater area. We took our own kids there for family vacation time and a birthday weekend or two. The Gatlinburg Chamber of Commerce Foundation has a donation button at Gatlingburg.com to benefit those affected by the fires.
In more cheerful news, I know it's not even officially winter yet, but if you have fallen under the spell of haiku, I invite you to think about spring... . Specifically, April 21-23, when I'll be coordinating a Haiku Society of America meeting and Earth Day celebration weekend here in the Southeast Region.
Here, it will be easiest just to share all the details I have so far:
HONORING THE EARTH – HSA Meeting and Earth Day Celebration
Friday, April 21 – Sunday, April 23, 2017
Epworth by the Sea (a Methodist Conference Center – meals included from Friday dinner through Sunday lunch.)
St. Simon’s Island, Georgia
TENTATIVE Schedule (subject to fine-tuning!)
Friday – Check-in at Epworth by the Sea begins at 4 p.m.
Welcome by HSA SE Regional Coordinator Robyn Hood Black, introductions, mingling. Robyn will kick off our Earth Day theme with a brief look at Robert Epstein’s new animal rights collection and anthology. Kukai/contest introduction by Dennis Gobou.
Those so inclined might visit a local watering hole on the island for continued socialization.
Pack your walking shoes – workshop and a birding ginko with Tom Painting!
Bird is the Word – Tom Painting
“We will explore the magic of birds in memory, imagination and the here-and now,” says Tom. “Participants will call upon some the many fine haiku written in English about birds to act as models and inspiration. A discussion of how birds are linked to seasonal awareness will further enhance our understanding.
“With spring migration at its peak, participants will be invited to go on a bird-walk. We will identify birds in a wide range of breeding plumages and especially through their vocalizations, which make every species that much more unique.
Those interested in the walk should bring binoculars. I will have a number of pairs to lend out for those not owning them.”
ALSO, Tom would like everyone to bring a bird haiku (written by someone else).
HSA Business Meeting– HSA President Fay Aoyagi
Imaginary Creatures in Haiku – We’ll follow Fay Aoyagi straight from the business world into a fanciful one.
Write Like Issa Workshop– HSA Past President David G. Lanoue
David will lead us in the ninth workshop in this series. He says: “Explore Issa's poetic style to see what he has to teach us about writing haiku in 2017.”
Late afternoon break – Enjoy the natural surroundings, polish those haiku drafts, or finish a conversation with a new friend over a cup of tea.
More socialization – informal visiting at the conference center or carpooling to a local spot for grown-up beverages.
Breakfast (Eat your Wheaties – Some high-level thinking ahead….)
Issa and Being Human: a Discussion– David G. Lanoue
Based on examples from Issa, a sharing of ideas about what it means to be human on this planet. Here's a question from David to ponder: "What does it mean to be alive, and how can haiku help answer this question?"
Sidewalk Daisies: Haiku in the Context of Social Ecology (tentative title) – Laurence Stacey
A discussion of contemporary haiku poetry within the context of Social Ecology. This lecture will examine the ways that haiku allows us to enter ecological "contact zones."
Lodging and meals (2 nights + 6 meals) plus $50 contribution to slightly offset speaker travel and cover coffee/snack breaks:
Single Occupancy: $372 total per person for weekend
Double Occupancy: $272 total per person for weekend (Please let me know name of person you’ll be sharing a room with.)
Contact me if you will be coming during the day only; I'll need to collect money in advance for meals, workshop contribution, and a small Epworth fee.
TO RESERVE A SPOT: Please send a $40 non-refundable per-person deposit, made out to Robyn, as soon as possible:
Robyn Hood Black
PO Box 1022
Beaufort, SC 29901
Balance will be due (to Robyn) in early March. (After the holidays, I’ll make a registration form available for balance/full payment and to collect dietary needs info, etc. I can email or post on the haiku page of my author website for download.)
Spaces will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis as long as the conference center can accommodate our numbers.
Epworth's cancellation policies:
Any individual cancellation after March 24 will result in a forfeiture of $20 per person. Any individual cancellation within 72 hours of arrival will result in forfeiture of entire per-person charge.
Birds of a haiku feather flock together!
I didn't realize until I went looking that a large percentage of my own published haiku are about birds! Here's one to leave you with:
the ebb and flow
©Robyn Hood Black
This World - Haiku Society of America 2013 Members' Anthology
Now, be sure to fly on over to Wee Words for Wee Ones, where our generous and lovely Bridget has this week's Roundup, and some thoughtful comments about "community." Makes me thankful to be a part of this one!