Simply Haiku: A Quarterly Journal of Haiku and Related Forms
Spring 2005, vol 3 no 1

Traditional Haiga

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Cathy Drinkwater Better

~ brush paintings & haiku




Cathy Drinkwater BetterCathy Drinkwater Better is a longtime journalist, book author and editor, and award-winning poet living in Eldersburg, Maryland. Her poems, including haiku, senryu and tanka, have appeared in magazines, journals and newspapers in the US, Canada, the UK, Australia, and Japan since 1976. Most recently she won first-place in HaigaOnline's 2004 haiku contest and received an Honorable Mention in the WPA's 2004 Francine Porad Award competition.

An award-winning humorist since 1984, writing for newspapers and magazines in Maryland, Pennsylvania and Kentucky, Cathy pens a regular humor column for two Tribune-affiliated newspapers in Maryland. She also freelances humor and articles to magazines and journals, as well as working as a freelance editor on a wide variety of assignments. As Cathy Walker, her married name, she is the editor of The Medical Bulletin, a family of newspapers for physicians in Maryland; Washington, DC; Northern Virginia; and the San Francisco Bay area.

Cathy has authored more than two dozen books for publishers such as Paradise Press, Broadman & Holman Publishers, Concordia Publishing House, Random House Value Publishing, and Better Than Broccoli Books; including children's books, humor, three collections of haiku and senryu, and other genres. She is currently writing several new storybooks for Grandreams Books.

Cathy is co-owner, along with her husband, Doug Walker, and editor of Black Cat Press, which produced "to find the moon: The Tanka Society of America 2004 Members' Anthology." They have several new books of poetry in the works for 2005 release.

Working with sumi-e ink and brush, Cathy, a watercolorist and illustrator in years past, has only recently tried her hand at haiga. She enjoys the highly personal process of combining art and text to bring haiku into another dimension. A traditionalist by nature, she does not use computer-generated or manipulated images, and she hand-letters her poems directly onto the art. Because she allows the poem to dictate the image, Cathy's depictions may be impressionistic (e.g., her zen banjo), realistic, or somewhere in between.

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