Margaret Dornaus has put together another wonderfully moving tribute to those loved ones we have lost, on her Haiku-doodle blog, to commemorate Day of the Dead. Click on the link above to read her full post, including a haiku and tanka of mine, and three collaborative haiga I did with Kirsten Cliff (our very first!)




her altar set
for family and friends . . .
each calavera
flickering light that sparks
all of our memories

               –Margaret Dornaus

Once again, I’m privileged to share several images and small poems or calaveras (“skulls”) contributed by my friends and fellow poets for my annual Día de los Muertos posting.  Thank you all for the generosity of your contributions.  I hope you enjoy these offerings as much as I do.


cemetery pines
whispering among the needles
the gentlest of songs

this way and that
the oil lamp flickers–
unmarked grave

the last cigarette
before the aneurysm bursts–
pale moon

–Stella Pierides

this is no
ordinary prayer
that moves me to tears
of my mother’s death

     Pamela A. Babusci, The Temple Bell Stops , 2012

haiga by Cara Holman & Kirsten Cliff


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Gone Before

As I head into my tenth month (yes, it really has been that long!) of writing to NaHaiWriMo prompts, I’ve given some thought to what I have gotten out of the daily practice of writing haiku in community. And the thing that repeatedly pops into my head is the shared sense of community. And so it is always pleasing to me when I have the opportunity to interact with other haiku poets I have met online, whether that interaction is as simple as clicking the Like button on their haiku, commenting on each other’s haiku or blogs, emailing, chatting real-time online, writing collaborative renray or rengay online, or finally meeting in person at haiku conferences and retreats.


It is particularly fun to have the opportunity to contribute to collaborative posts on other blog, as I have been able to do three times so far this year, first with Melissa Allen’s Dragonfly Dreams post (on Red Dragonfly), Aubrie Cox’s Tea with Trolls post (on Yay Words!), and most recently, Margaret Dornaus’ Day of the Dead post (on Haiku-doodle), which honors those who have gone before. When I see my work alongside that of those I have come to admire, I realize anew that the whole is often more than the sum of its parts.