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Northeast Metro


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Northeast Metro Region

This region includes Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.

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Route 9 Haiku Group (Upstate Dim Sum)

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Members of the Northeast Metro Chapter gathered at Stuyvesant Square Park in New York City on June 4, 2011 for a ginko before the main meeting at Tenri Cultural Institute. The ginko began with a group walk through the park, facilitated by Jeff Hoagland, Education Director of the Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association, who was recently selected for The New Resonance Emerging Voices in English-Language Haiku.

Jeff introduced participants to the park's plants, trees and birds. We then went off on our own, to discover the haiku moments hidden there. After exploring and writing, we printed our haiku on large cards and hung them throughout the park, where each haiku had been inspired. A "tour" of these haiku followed, where everyone could observe the inspiration behind each poem. Jeff later said that a favorite memory of the ginko was watching a passerby swerve into the park to read the words on one of the cards that caught her eye. She read the haiku, pulled out her cellphone, snapped a picture, and walked back onto the street wearing a beautiful smile.

Gathering later for the meeting at Tenri, the haiku cards provided the basis for a small contest. The winning poem was by Rita Gray

standing still
I see

After a bit of discussion, Jeff suggested that we try to do a street ginko. We stepped outside the Institute and experienced the difference between a city park and a city street. A haiku by Marilyn Hazelton written in homage to Rita's poem

city passersby
stare at haiku poets
standing still

provided the theme "Standing Still" for the August Haiku North America Conference in Seattle.

Those participating included John Stevenson, Rita Gray, Jeff Hoagland, Jaxon & Arlene Teck, Marilyn Hazleton, Peg McAulay Byrd, miriam chaikin, Yoko Arimura, Jim Clements, Maria Santamauro, Carol Pearce Worthington, Dorothy McLaughlin, Elizabeth Bodin, and Ellen Peckham.

Regional Coordinator

Rita Gray
785 West End Avenue #12C
New York, NY 10025-5454


Rita Gray lives in Manhattan and works with children as a teacher and play therapist. She has published four books for young children: Nonna’s Porch (Hyperion, 2004), The Wild Little Horse (Dutton, 2005), Easy Street (Dutton, 2006), and Mama Mine, Mama Mine (Dutton, 2008). She also edited an upcoming poetry anthology for children for Charlesbridge entitled One Big Rain, including haiku translations by William J. Higginson.


June 2011 GatheringEllen Peckham and Rita Gray engage in a spirited discussion as miriam chaikin observes and enjoys the banter at the June 2011 event.

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