top of page

triveni spotlight: 23rd March 2023

triveni spotlight A FEATURE EVERY ALTERNATE DAY! hosts: Teji Sethi and Kala Ramesh GUEST EDITOR: John Stevenson



alone in the waiting room

   checking the plant

      for reality


Tom Clausen

Woodnotes, 1996


John Stevenson (born October 9, 1948, Ithaca, New York), professional actor, especially in playback theater, and haiku poet and editor. He began college as a visual art major and finished with a degree in theater. Before retiring in 2015, he worked as a human resources administrator for the New York State Office of Mental Health. His first poetry publication occurred at age 8, and his interest in haiku dates from 1992. He is a founding member of the Route 9 Haiku Group and its journal Upstate Dim Sum, and has served as regional coordinator, president, second vice president, treasurer, associate editor, and editor of Frogpond for the Haiku Society of America. In 2013 he received the HSA Sora Award for service to haiku, and from 2018 to 2019 he was the honorary curator for the American Haiku Archives at the California State Library. Since 2008 he has served as managing editor of The Heron’s Nest. His haiku collections include: Something Unerasable (1996), Some of the Silence (1999, 2008), Quiet Enough (2004, 2008, 2016, 2018), Live Again (2009), d(ark) (2014), and emoji moon (2018). He has received over 200 awards for haiku and haiku-related poetry. Since 1985 he has resided in the Village of Nassau, New York.

This month is going to be a treat for our members. _()_ Thank you so much, John.

42 views7 comments

7 Comments


"reality" is a good word choice as it tells us that there is something else going on here. Perhaps bad news that the writer can't quite believe. Perhaps it is good news, too good to be true. This is where the reader has to do the work.

Like

Kavita Ratna
Kavita Ratna
Mar 23, 2023

Love the ku for its very real moment :) Was wondering if it would have read a bit more smoothly with this:


alone in the waiting room

checking if the plant

is real


Like
Billie Dee
Billie Dee
Mar 24, 2023
Replying to

Ditto Lakshmi.

One often needs a reality check in a waiting room.

---Billie

Like

lakshmi iyer
lakshmi iyer
Mar 23, 2023

L 2 & L 3 has so much to say and if we take that backwards we can to some extent get the knowledge of the 'waiting room' which the poet talks about.

'checking the plant for reality' gets us a feeling that prior to seeing this, the poet must have experienced something very senseless and fake emotion which must have brought about this feeling to check whether if even the plant is real or not.

If my guesswork is right , I feel it must be some office waiting room or the court waiting room. Waiting to get a fair judgement for his work/ an appreciation....

But, a beautiful poem and opens a whole new perspective for the reader.

Like
Billie Dee
Billie Dee
Mar 24, 2023
Replying to

Insightful comments, Lakshmi. I also thought of a medical waiting room--a space where reality is often suspended.


---Billie


Like

Kala Ramesh
Kala Ramesh
Mar 23, 2023

What a lovely haiku from Tom Clausen. Generally, L 3 would have been dismissed as a telly line or a word too abstract. alone in the waiting room

checking the plant

for reality


There is a naturalness here and honesty because of Ls 1 & 2. What is this waiting room? A clinic? Or a labour room? This 'waiting room' brings the whole poem together for me. Any comments on this haiku?

Like
bottom of page