November 2003, Volume 1, Number 5


Artist-poet D.W. (Debi) Bender resides in Orlando, Florida, USA, where she has lived for the past dozen years or so.

Her interest in combining her visual arts with her poetry began many years ago. At times she has experimented with concrete poetry, which eventually found its way into her haiku, haiku series, and "art-haiku" (contemporary "haiga") after she rediscovered haiku on the Internet in 1999. Since that time, she has been exploring the combination of visual arts and poetry in her haiku, tanka, "ren" (new-renga) forms, sijo, haibun and multi-genre poems. She has combined haibun with her artwork, photography, and concrete text-visuals, using the text to illustrate and expand meaning, as she has done in "Departure from Rattlesnake Island."

Debi views her multimedia efforts through the Japanese poetic forms as hybrid styles. Her art-poetry is meant to be different from Japanese haiga and haibun, but in their own right, a Western style of art which has grown "out from" Japanese forms, borrowing from their concepts for inspiration.

Debi has worked with the World Haiku Club in various aspects since 2000, and is WHC's Deputy Chairman and the Editor-in-Chief of its online magazine, World Haiku Review.
World Haiku Club (WHC Official site)
World Haiku Review (magazine of WHC)
Paper Lanterns (Personal Website)

noon hunger
garden tomato plants
all full of holes

my hermitude
broken, beached jellyfish
become visible

the "Fountain of Youth"
nearby, a vendor sells
lemon shave-ice

Ponce de Leon's "Fountain of Youth" St. Augustine, Florida)

a fort made of shells...
what has become
of conquistador dreams

Fort Castillo De San Marcos. St. Augustine, Florida (America's oldest
fort, constructed of cut native "coquina stone", conglomerate masses
of sand and billions of tiny coquina shells).

to the old pond
spring rain

moonlit in dust,
a white camellia withers
without sound

not knowing how
I came to be in this world...
scent of turned earth

inquiring of God
I go to God
among fallen blossoms

without cause,
I'm insatiably drunk --
in the midst of April

spring walk,
pulled along by my shadow
as if I would resist

up and down, up
and down, with the cedar swing:
a little spider

darkening room
a child's enters into
lightning's sound

before this haiku,
I caught a blue butterfly
to let it go

as I wrote of love
a small moth fell dying
beneath my lamp



(World Haiku Review)

alone at the window
with too much to do, I watch
falling leaves

(Ashahi "Haikuists Notebook", May 15, 2002)

misshapen chawan,
offering tea out of
such poverty

("bottle rockets", Issue 7)

spring loneliness
the inch of fathomless space
between two stars

(Interactive Photo Haiku, rev.)

New Year's Day
grandmother and her broom
rest awhile

(Interactive Photo-Haiku) rev. 2003

looking closely,
something in the deep shadows
is staring back

2002 ("Okunohosomichi" World Haiku Review)

autumn journey
making ready, I unpack
a few more things

2002(Asahi Shimbun, "Haikuists Network", February 22, 2002)

gazing on
the February moon
Mother's face

("The Heron's Nest", September 2000)

sultry day
boys on their wheels
making the wind blow

2001rev (Haiku Cycles)

walled garden
cumulus clouds circle around
a gazing ball

(Interactive Photo Haiku/ The Heron's Nest 2001)

smooth stones;
the river washed away
by summer heat

(World Haiku Review, WHF2002 Oko-no-hosomichi) rev.

return to the path
at Urami-no-taki to view
wisteria shoots

Urami-no-taki ("Back-view waterfall", Japan

(1st Prize Haiku, North Carolina Poetry Contest, Robert Spiess, judge)

sweater weather
red firethorn berries
bunched in tight clusters

("A Stray Note: Shiki's Sister", World Haiku Review)

the echo of feet
on a wheelchair ramp;
cold rain

(selected by Hoshino Takashi in 1st Hoshino Takashi Kukai, World Haiku

cuckoo - cuckoo
your song would not stir me
had I confessed love

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