In October of 2011, I facilitated a writing workshop called The Haiku Aesthetic. We filled a classroom at Sussex County Community College on a gray Saturday morning as the first few flakes of an unusual autumn blizzard began to fall. I look back at that morning as one of the highlights of my poetry life. The room was a warm, laughter-filled island oblivious to the cold and threatening weather. This setting, in fact, seems to me in retrospect a perfect example of the paradox inherent in haiku, one of the elements of the haiku aesthetic I shared that day in the workshop.
The Haiku Aesthetic : Short Form Poetry as a Study in Craft by Jean LeBlanc, a teacher and writer living in New Jersey, U.S.A, shows her original scholarship. She is one of the greatest haiku poets. She very aptly convinced the writing workshop participants “that the haiku aesthetic can be an element of all their poems, whether haiku, tanka, or longer poems.” We find in these haiku, tanka and critical essays the especial brilliance of Jean LeBlanc’s genius.
Dr. Karunesh Kumar Agrawal