I took a redeye flight from Vancouver, B.C. to Ottawa via Toronto, leaving at 11:00 p.m. These next few photos were taken while flying from Toronto to Ottawa on the morning of August 5, 2009. Here, the plane is taking off from the Toronto airport.
Thank goodness for WestJet frequent-flyer miles that got me to Ottawa for free!
Looking south over Lake Ontario, above Toronto.
Heading east above Lake Ontario.
Hey, those people down there look like ants!
Landing in Ottawa.
A sign in the Ottawa airport.
On Parliament Hill. After I checked in at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, I took copies of the conference anthology (which I had edited and published) to the National Library of Canada so they could be made available to registrants, and then DeVar Dahl (president of Haiku Canada) and I spent the rest of the afternoon being tourists on Parliament Hill.
A view over Rideau Canal, looking back towards the East Block of Parliament Hill, with the Peace Tower just beyond.
A statue of somebody-or-other, with the East Block of Parliament Hill in the background.
A statue of Queen Victoria. She was responsible for choosing Ottawa as the location of Canada's capital.
The clouds came and went during the afternoon (August 5, 2009).
Flags don't always cooperate for pictures.
The building in the background is the parliamentary library, the only part of the original building that survived a devastating fire. If you take one of the free tours inside the parliament building, you can go inside the library building, which is even more spectacular inside.
The Ottawa River, with the city of Gatineau (formerly Hull) on the Quebec side across the bridge.
A tour boat on the Ottawa River. On the Saturday night of the Haiku North America conference, we enjoyed a boat cruise up and down the river. Our boat was a little smaller than this one.
This bell was rescued from the fire that destroyed the original parliament buildings (except for the library building shown here).
The Peace Tower crowns the parliament buildings. I've been up to the top before, but today it was closed for elevator repairs. The view from the top is tremendous. The topography surrounding Ottawa is relatively flat in all directions, so the view extends a long way.
It looks like it was 2:20 in the afternoon when I took this shot. DeVar Dahl and I were waiting for a tour of the East Block at 2:45 p.m.
Canada's parliament buildings consist of what's called the Centre Block (with the Peace Tower in the middle), and, on either side of a large grassy area (partly showing here), the East Block and West Block buildings. Shown here is the East Block, where DeVar Dahl and I were about to have a tour. It houses offices for current provincial representatives and other politicians. The West Block is currently being renovated and is not open to tourists.
It bothers me that my point-and-shoot camera sometimes isn't sharp when I take shots too quickly. If I had had a proper digital SLR with me, I bet it would have made sure this shot was sharp.
The East Block building.
Canadians can be proud of having spectacular parliament buildings. I'd visited Ottawa before this trip, but on my first trip I was impressed by how much larger this building is in person, and how high the tower rises above you.
Looks like it's 2:30, and our tour of the East Block starts in fifteen minutes.
I waited several minutes to take this photo until clouds passed and the sun lit the buildings again. Fortunately, the seagull stayed put the whole time on top of the light.
Well, the seagull was supposed to be posing on the light still, but it flew off just before I took this picture.
Another problem with the point-and-shoot camera. Its automatic settings couldn't handle the exposure here, and washed out the top of the photo.
Tried a few shots of this seagull. The person in the statue is holding a copy of the Bill of Rights. Fortunately, the bird didn't make a statement about the Bill of Rights while perched there.
The parliament buildings are endlessly photogenic!
DeVar Dahl, president of Haiku Canada. We're about to start our tour at 2:45 p.m.
Okay, this is the picture I wanted, with better light than the previous photos, and with the gull's beak and eyes more visible.
We've now joined the tour to the East Block, so we're walking over there now.
What a photogenic sky we had!
Our guide inside the East Block building pointing out the office of a former prime minister of Canada. I should have taken notes so that I could sound intelligent in writing these captions. I think this might have been the office of Canada's first prime minister, Sir John A. MacDonald.
How'd you like windows like this in your office?
After our tour of the East Block, DeVar and I then took a tour of the Centre Block, so we're inside the central parliament building here.
Such ornate decorations everywhere! Granite, glass, carvings, sculpture, painting, and more.
A view of the House of Commons. On a previous trip I've seen the house debate issues here, but no representatives were present at this time.
The patterns here are fascinating. This is in the central rotunda area near the base of the Peace Tower.
One of the larger meeting rooms in the Centre Block is called the Reading Room. A year earlier, on May 14, 2008, I was privileged to attend a meeting here, as a guest, not a tourist, with Terry Ann Carter. The event was a celebration of the relationship between Canada and Japan. The event was sponsored by the Canada-Japan Interparliamentary Group Executive Committee and featured speeches by numerous Members of Parliament (equivalent, in U.S. terms, to state senators) and the Japanese Ambassador to Canada. I even got dressed in a suit and tie for the occasion! What a hoot it was to enter the building directly, on "official" business, without going through the tourist entrance.
I wish I'd taken more photos here in the Reading Room. I have some from my previous trip, showing the Japan on the Hill event I attended with Terry Ann Carter. We had hoped that event would help us make connections to support the Haiku North America conference, and perhaps it did.
A view down one of the halls in the Centre Block.
Darn point-and-shoot camera — this isn't quite sharp!
Okay, this is sharp enough for me, but not quite as good as I'd like.
I could spend weeks inside this building photographing all the details.
This is a typical ceiling in the building.
Our tour guide telling us some detail of Canadian history. I'm originally British, but became a Canadian citizen as a teenager. I've lived in the United States more than anywhere else (certainly as an adult), but I still consider myself Canadian. Much of the history pointed out in the parliament buildings was therefore familiar to me. For most of my time growing up in Canada, though, I'd never been to Ottawa, so it was nice to finally visit (before this trip, however).
Here we are in the Senate. The red carpeting is a sign of royalty. Senators are appointed rather than elected. When the Queen of England visits Canada, she comes here rather than the House of Commons.
No, not quite in focus.
Better, and brighter, but still not sharp.
Afternoon light pours in a side window of the Senate.
Wow, what a ceiling!
Ah the joys of point-and-shoot cameras . . .
Another try, but not sharp at all.
This would have been a nice photo if it had been sharp.
No, not sharp. I'll just have to go back with a better camera to take better pictures.
Okay, this one works much better.
Another hallway in the Centre Block. That's our tour group about to go into one of the side rooms.
This room commemorates, as I recall, the relationship between Canada and France. Should have taken notes during the tour!
Wait, didn't I take this shot earlier? Neither one worked.
Another try. Darn camera.
I love the light here.
Back outside again, after our tour of the Centre Block.
Okay, here we are at the Haiku North America conference. Wish I'd taken some pictures of the outside of the building to start, but here we are. Our first event was a reading from the conference anthology by all participants, led by me and Grant Savage. Never got any pictures of that. Then afterwards we had a reception, shown in these pictures. On the right is Rick Black, editor of Turtle Light Press, next to Penny Harter.
We're having a reception in the lobby of the theatre at the National Library of Canada. Left to right here are Beverly Bloom, Joe Kirschner, ???, and Amarjit Tiwana, with Sheila Ross in the background.
Montreal poets regale us with their haiku during our opening reception. Wish I'd taken more pictures of this reading. Left to right are Jessica Tremblay, Hannah Franklin, Ellen Cooper, Angela Leuck, Pamela Cooper (Pamela and Ellen are twin sisters), Carole Daoust, and Martin Franklin on the piano (husband of Hannah Franklin).
The crowd begins to gather. There's a who's-who of haiku poets here. Judson Evans and Raffael de Gruttola in the foreground. Others here are Bill Pauly, Francine Banwarth, Jerome Cushman, George Swede, Dennis Maloney, Lenard D. Moore, John Stevenson, Charles Trumbull, DeVar Dahl, Marshall Hryciuk, Karen Sohne, Margot Gallant, Ian Marshall, and many others.
Jerome Cushman, Francine Banwarth, and Bill Pauly.
Marshall Hryciuk and Christine Nelson.
Paul MacNeil, Naia, and Pat Donegan.
Janelle Barrera and Charles Trumbull. Thanks to Charlie, this reception was generously sponsored by Modern Haiku magazine.
George Swede and John Stevenson. In the background are Garry Gay and Gary Hotham.
Dennis Maloney and Lenard D. Moore. Dennis is editor of White Pine Press, and Lenard is president of the Haiku Society of America.
Kaoru Fujimoto and Janick Belleau. Kaoru came from Japan to represent the Haiku International Association. On the far left is Philomene Kocher.
Kathleen O'Toole came to HNA to represent the Nick Virgilio Haiku Association. And Scott Mason came for a glass of wine (at least).
Boy, the cheese and crackers went fast!
Our opening-night presentation was by Robert Sibley, a writer for the Ottawa Citizen. He described his walking pilgrimage around the island of Shikoku in Japan, weaving in haiku and a tragic story of a person he met on the way. He had originally published his story over many issues of the Ottawa Citizen, and the stories were all on display in the lobby. You can also read all the essays online, starting with a summary page at http://www2.canada.com/ottawacitizen/features/shikoku/index.html.
After Robert Sibley's Wednesday evening presentation, we had an opportunity to see the sound and light show, titled "Canada: The Spirit of a Country," presented on Parliament Hill (projected onto the parliament buildings). My pictures couldn't really capture the show, so I decided to try some blurred lights instead. To see a few pictures and a short video that give you a better idea of what the show was like, visit http://www.canadascapital.gc.ca/bins/ncc_web_content_page.asp?cid=16297-16298-22878&lang=1 (click the red Pictures and Videos link).
Okay, you can see the Peace Tower, and some of the lights showing on the face of the buildings here, but they don't do the show justice.
Maybe this picture needs a haiku at the top-left corner . . .
the sound and light show
enters my bones
The eternal flame burning in front of the Peace Tower.
On the walk back to the hotel from the parliament buildings, we walked along Sparks Street, where I took these photos of neon.
I think this is my favourite. It's not very sharp, though.
We were fortunate to be able to stay at the Crowne Plaza in Ottawa, where the organizing committee had arranged a great rate for us. This sign greeted us in the lobby during the entire conference. I don't know why, but I never took any photos of the hotel from the outside.
On Thursday morning, August 6, 2009, Emiko Miyashita, visiting from Japan, gave a presentation titled "Feel the Word" that emphasized the importance of season words in haiku.
We enjoyed superb audio-visual facilities throughout the conference.
I don't have pictures of a couple of sessions preceding this one (including a panel focusing on the poetry of Nick Virgilio, that I was on), but others have pictures. At 11:00 a.m., we reconvened in the main auditorium for Claudia Coutu Radmore's multimedia presentation. She solicited poems on the theme of crosscurrents (the conference theme), and produced six large paintings that included selected haiku. Her presentation showcased her paintings with the addition of music and other arts. Here, a classical guitarist is presenting a new piece of music inspired by the paintings and the poems. Later in these photographs I have close-ups of the paintings and the poems.
This performance was one of the surprise highlights of the conference. Pat Benedict, of Calgary, is an actor, and here she took on the role of being an art critic and critiqued all the paintings and all the "leetle poems" they contained. It was hilarious, and carried off expertly.
Rich Schnell gave a presentation on train haiku, with numerous examples he had compiled. He wins the prize, too, for best display of materials for his presentation—all these paintings, pictures, the PowerPoint presentation (seen in the upper left), and a large model train (not shown). Oh, and the hat!
Dennis Maloney, editor of White Pine Press, gave a presentation on the poet/hermit tradition in Japanese culture.
Dennis Maloney's presentation.
We had excellent meeting rooms for HNA. We were all very comfortable.
Ian Marshall gave a presentation based on his new book, Walden By Haiku, in which he extracted "found haiku" from the words of Walden, and discusses Thoreau's haiku sensitivities. How quickly the day went by—I missed getting photos of other sessions I attended, including my own, titled "Fuyoh Observations: Seven Lessons We Can Learn from Japan."
We gathered to take a group photo on Thursday at 5:00 p.m. Here are some candid shots during the shoot. For $10.00 each, we got a print delivered to us on Saturday. We'll have that official image added to the HNA Web site in due course.
What a motley crew, eh?
The 2009 HNA conference had more haiku poets attending than any previous HNA conference. They're not all here in this picture, but we sure were a fun bunch.
Here's a shot of our photographer. That's the bookfair area in the background (half of it). Also notice the promotion for the Karsh photography exhibit also taking place in the gallery area in the same building.
No, not a motley crew, but a bunch of supermodels!
Okay, time to take the official photo, already!
Photo's done—time for dinner.
The three amigos—Michael Dylan Welch, Garry Gay, and Paul Miller. The three of us are directors of the Haiku North America nonprofit corporation. Paul takes care of finances and bookkeeping, and Garry and I work on developing the location of each new conference and in imparting a vision for the conference with each new organizing committee. We're extremely grateful for each new committee that takes on the task of keeping the conference going. Terry Ann Carter, Claudia Coutu Radmore, and Guy Simser did a spectacular job in making the 2009 conference the best attended yet.
In case you haven't had enough of the three amigos. This was taken at the bar of the Crowne Plaza Hotel, before dinner on Thursday, August 6, 2009.
Maureen Gorman, George Swede, and Anita Krumins.
Emiko Miyashita and George Swede. We're at Carmello's Italian restaurant (http://www.carmellos.ca/newindex.html) on Sparks Street, a block or two from the hotel. Most of Sparks Street is pedestrian only, which makes for a wonderful place to walk and enjoy sidewalk restaurants in downtown Ottawa. I don't know how often others ate here at Carmello's, but I went three times.
Anita Krumins and Paul Miller.
Bruce Ross, Jim Kacian, and Maureen Gorman.
Michael Dylan Welch and Garry Gay.
Someone said I looked Buddha-like. Hmmmm.
Claudia Coutu Radmore, Inga Uhlehmann, and Dina E. Cox. Can you tell we had a lot of fun all conference long?
Marco Fraticelli and his dinner.
Micheline Beaudry, Jessica Tremblay, and Terry Ann Carter. And there's another table of haiku compadres in the table behind.
Philomene Kocher and Micheline Beaudry. Aren't we a boring lot?
On Thursday evening, August 6, 2009, on the anniversary of Hiroshima Day, our evening speaker was Patricia Donegan, whose talk was "A Pause for Peace." She read selections from her recent book, Haiku Mind, with her commentary on numerous haiku poems.
Patricia mentioned that she's poetry editor for Kyoto magazine, which she's holding here.
After Patricia Donegan's "Pause for Peace," we enjoyed a reading of poems, many relating to peace, from a set of international readers, starting with Garry Gay.
Angelee Deodhar represented India with her reading of poems. Angelee came the farthest distance to attend the conference.
Emiko Miyashita represented Japan.
Michael Dylan Welch read a selection of haiku relating to hands, from his "handout" titled A Haiku Handful. He also read a set of American Sentences devoted to his children (Allen Ginsberg invented American Sentences as an alternative to haiku, requiring only seventeen syllables in a single line, with no attention paid to season words, a two-part structure, or objective sensory imagery).
There's my "Haiku Handful" handout. Zoom in to see it better. If you'd like a copy, and didn't get one at HNA, let me know.
Michael Dylan Welch.
After the formal presentations and readings in the auditorium, we held an impromptu haiku reading in the lobby. Here Roberta Beary reads some of her haiku. Also shown are Henry Brann, Kathleen O'Toole, and Robin Palley.
Roberta Beary, Henry Brann, and Kathleen O'Toole.
Poetry readings always need an attentive audience. From bottom to top and around to the left, here are Susan Antolin, Debbie Kolodji, Dina E. Cox, Pat Benedict, Bill Pauly (at the back), Garry Gay, and LeRoy Gorman.
Marilyn Hazelton, ??? [please help me if I'm not remembering everyone's name], Raffael de Gruttola, and Judson Evans. Raffael and Judson took their turn as HNA organizers in 2001 when HNA was held in Boston.
Susan Antolin reads from her exquisite new book, Artichoke Season.
This is a bag that Bill Pauly was carrying around, with a haiku by Raymond Roseliep.
A haiku by Raymond Roseliep.
David Lanoue and Susan Antolin.
Carolyn Hall in mock fright at being photographed.
Now this is a much nicer picture. This is in the hotel lobby of the Crowne Plaza Hotel.
Emiko Miyashita, Anita Krumins, Garry Gay, and Lenard D. Moore.
Garry Gay, Fay Aoyagi, Guy Simser, and Kaoru Fujimoto.
Mike Montreuil. Mike did a lot of organizing work for the conference behind the scenes, especially in keeping track of registrations, finances, and the bookfair. A deep bow of thanks. HNA couldn't succeed without such dedicated help.
On Friday morning, August 7, 2009, our first activity was to take advantage of the nearby tourist distractions. Guy Simser was a polished tour guide in walking us from the hotel up to Parliament Hill, just a few blocks away, stopping to tell us about the various sites and sights along the way.
Left to right: Grant Savage, ???, DeVar Dahl (at the back, parially hidden), David Burleigh, Angela Leuck, LeRoy Gorman (at the back), Debbie Kolodji, and Garry Gay (wish I had his camera, but then Garry's a professional).
Kaoru Fujimoto, Bill Pauly, Jerome Cushman (behind Bill), Garry Gay, ??? [help me remember!], David Lanoue, Luce Pelletier, Ian Marshall, Grant Savage, Emiko Miyashita, Angela Leuck, DeVar Dahl, and our fearless leader Guy Simser.
LeRoy Gorman, Grant Savage, ???, Rich Schnell, Fay Aoyagi, David Lanoue, Luce Pelletier, Emiko Miyashita (at the back), ???, Ian Marshall (at the back), Deb Koen, Guy Simser's hand (red shirt), Bill Pauly, Charles Trumbull, Garry Gay, Kaoru Fujimoto, and Lenard D. Moore.
Here we are in front of the parliament building and the Peace Tower. The day was partially cloudy, but more sunny than not. We had great weather all conference long, except for a short rain shower one evening.
How many HNA conferences have had THIS sort of historical scenery just three blocks away?
Emiko Miyashita imitating a bug with big eyes.
Our mission this morning was to watch the Changing of the Guard, which takes place on the lawn immediately behind us. Some of us staked out places to watch here, while many of us continued our walk together to the side of the parliament buildings, then came back later. In the foreground are Debbie Kolodji and David Lanoue.
Debbie Kolodji snaps a photo of someone out of view.
Wish we could hang out like this together all the time! What a great time it was.
Guy Simser giving us instructions for the rest of the morning.
Charles Trumbull and Bill Pauly.
David Lanoue and DeVar Dahl.
Dina E. Cox and LeRoy Gorman.
The calm before the storm, so to speak. The Changing of the Guard is about to take place on this lawn.
A cloud went by briefly.
While waiting for the Changing of the Guard, a few of us walked behind the parliament building and took in the view of the Ottawa River. That's Quebec on the other side of the bridge, with the Gatineau Hills in the distance.
Guy Simser points to Canada's National Art Gallery.
Darn, this didn't turn out. I thought it was an unusual composition, but somehow the camera's autofocus got fooled.
You can see that it's 9:40 a.m. (Friday, August 7, 2009). The Changing of the Guard starts at 10:00.
Quick group photo! Left to right are Dina E. Cox, DeVar Dahl (front), Ian Marshall, Charles Trumbull, Deanna Tiefenthal, Kaoru Fujimoto (front), Guy Simser, Bill Pauly, Jerome Cushman, David Burleigh, Rich Schnell, ???, David Lanoue, and LeRoy Gorman.
Okay, we're back to the lawn where the Changing of the Guard will soon commence.
We're standing in front of the East Block, looking across to the West Block as tourists begin to gether for the Changing of the Guard.
The Peace Tower sure is photogenic, eh?
Canadians can be proud of its iconic Peace Tower!
Kaoru Fujimoto jots down some haiku while waiting for the Changing of the Guard.
Tourists, and a few haiku poets, beginning to gather.
Okay, it's almost 10:00 a.m. Time to get started!
There's one of the guards for you. Yes, that's a bearskin hat.
The marching band comes in first. They march in from Wellington Street, then enter through the main gates onto the lawn, a large parade ground.
The guard band in front of the West Block building.
To see some videos of the Changing of the Guard, visit http://video.google.com/videosearch?sourceid=navclient&rlz=1T4GWYE_enUS309US309&q=Ottawa+changing+of+the+guard&um=1&ie=UTF-8&ei=udiISvvpGIaksgOP6LDaAg&sa=X&oi=video_result_group&ct=title&resnum=4#.
Here come the guards. They are both male and female.
Nice . . . hats!
Directly in front of us are the new guard (half of them), which will be replacing the old guard in the distance.
A policeman decided to stand right in front of me. Maybe he wanted to be in my picture?
There's the other half of the new guard. The crowd watching has really thickened.
Various inspections, lots of shouting, and marching around makes the Changing of the Guard interesting. How many haiku events have you been to like this?
The guards stood at attention for long periods of time, occasionally marching to new locations, or raising their weapons for inspection.
I wonder if those are all real rifles, or just fakes.
The people seated on the lawn to the right apparently received a special honour to be seated there. Not sure why or how. As you can see, too, the clouds played with their shadows across the lawn, but mostly we had good sun.
See? Shadows gone already.
A bit of marching after standing still for quite a while.
More shouting and saluting and other ceremonial maneuvers.
The band chimed in now and then during the ceremony.
Note the guard at the far left. It wasn't hot at all, but she was about to pass out. Maybe it was hot in those uniforms and that bearskin hat.
I guess standing at attention for a while can tire you out.
Yes, some Scottish pipers added to the music (far right).
This needs to have a haiku added to the top-left corner. How about this:
somehow I'm on time
Yes, I'm sorry to say that one of the guards tumbled forward and passed out. I saw her take one step forward and tip over, and then I took this picture. The other guards did not react at all. The one in front was almost hit, but even he did not react. The policeman standing near us immediately signalled for some help, and other guards brought out a stretcher (apparently this happens with enough regularity that they had a stretcher handy). The fallen guard never moved at all after falling.
The policeman in front of us started telling everyone not to take pictures while the guard was getting medical attention, so I turned my camera in a different direction.
But I couldn't help taking more pictures of the fallen guard. Here a few policeman are bringing up a stretcher. Two other guards (marching from left to right) continue with the inspection as if nothing had happened, and still the fallen guard never moved.
The policeman have rolled the guard onto her back and are checking her vital signs. The standing policeman has taken the guard's bearskin hat and rifle.
The guard is now loaded on the stretcher. I wanted to take a lot more pictures, but the policemen walking back and forth in front of the crowd kept telling us not to. I took a few when I could. I hope it wasn't disrespectful, but this felt like a news event, and we all felt worried for the fallen guard.
The policemen carried the fallen guard about twenty feet in front of us, but the policemen made it clear that they didn't want us taking pictures, even though I shot what I could.
The guard was carried behind the crowd to this van waiting behind us. The guard never moved at all during this entire time, so I presume she was still unconscious. The police began checking her vital signs again.
I hope the guard was okay. When I next turned around to look, a few minutes later, the van was gone.
The Changing of the Guard continued without missing a beat.
Ottawa is an amazing city!
Okay, this picture needs a haiku added in front of the cloud.
the Changing of the Guard
doesn't miss a beat
Sorry I don't have something better.
This is a close-up of the conference tote-bag, with artwork by Peter Vernon Quenter. Similar artwork, but in colour, appeared on the conference T-shirt.
All the guards and the marching band marched back out the same way they came, onto Wellington Street, and then these last two guards went back across the lawn.
The Changing of the Guard ceremony is finished.
Haiku poets notice these things. And photographers too.
Which is better, this photo or the previous one?
An attractive door on the side of the East Block building. I sure wish I could have had another few weeks (and a better camera) to photograph all the wonderful details around Ottawa.
Let's see, I think this needs a haiku added to it too . . .
A view from the East Block building towards the Fairmont Chateau Laurier Hotel. In between (not visible) is the Rideau Canal.
Guy Simser, in red, continues his fine job as tour leader. We're standing on the southeast corner of the East Block building.
Quick, name those haiku poets!
We sure had great weather, didn't we?
Left to right are David Burleigh, Fay Aoyagi, Ian Marshall, David Lanoue (hidden), Dina E. Cox, and Deanna Tiefenthal.
Whose hand is that? Let me take another picture . . .
Bill Pauly, Jerome Cushman, Garry Gay (back), ???, Luce Pelletier, and Rich Schnell.
A self-portrait. Hey, there's a four-leaf clover!!
I think I like this picture a little better than the previous one.
Guy Simser, Kaoru Fujimoto, and DeVar Dahl. Behind them, to the right, across Wellington Street, is a war memorial. To the left is the bridge across the Rideau Canal. The building to the left in the background is the former train station.
Guy Simser, DeVar Dahl, LeRoy Gorman, and Emiko Miyashita.
Boats in the locks of Rideau Canal, from the Wellington Street bridge.
The Rideau Canal stretches 125 miles from the Ottawa River, in the background, all the way south to Kingston, Ontario, on Lake Ontario, and was a key stratetic and economic link for the region in the last hundred and seventy years. The canal was opened in 1832, so it has a long history. In the winter, when the canal is frozen over, Ottawa citizens make it one of the longest skating rinks in the world.
When we took our boat cruise on Saturday night, we met the boat at a dock on the Ottawa River at the foot of these locks. We took our large boat down the river (to the right in the background of this picture).
If you've never visited Ottawa, it's a city rich in history and culture, not even counting all the national museums throughout the city!
Charles Trumbull, editor of Modern Haiku. He's seated in front of the Fairmont Chateau Laurier Hotel. Charlie took a turn as organizer of the HNA conference when it was held at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois (just north of Chicago), in 1999.
Canada's National Art Gallery. One of the highlights of the gallery (which I'd visited on a previous trip) is paintings by Canada's famed Group of Seven artists.
A sign in front of a bookstore we passed on Sussex Drive, not too far from the United States Embassy, by the Byward Market. I think the same could be said for haiku.
On Sussex Drive, across from the National Art Gallery, is Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica. You can read about it at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Notre-Dame_Cathedral_Basilica,_Ottawa. On a previous visit to Ottawa, I had wanted to go into the cathedral, but it was closed when I tried to visit. So I didn't want to miss it this time.
Another photo of the National Art Gallery and its giant spider, before I enter the Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica. Terry Ann Carter has told me that she participated in Canada's "Random Acts of Poetry" program by reading poems to passers-by underneath the spider!
Inside Notre-Dame. I think I had my flash on here, which didn't help at all. The following photos are better when I had the flash turned off.
I think I still had my camera's flash turned on here, which didn't help. Compare this with the next picture to see how startlingly blue the ceiling is.
Such blue, with stars!
One of my favourite pasttimes in England and the rest of Europe has been visiting old churches, abbeys, and cathedrals. Fortunately, we have a few wonderful examples on this continent too.
Okay, I need another haiku to put with this picture.
we talk of faraway places
and our dreams
How's that for an off-the-cuff haiku? Hmmm.
What a ceiling!
Stained-glass window light plays on the granite floor at the front of the cathedral.
I'm disappointed that these auto-focused pictures weren't all sharp. Time for a new camera!
Boy, this is badly out of focus. Still, it gives you a sense of the place.
Not sure why the camera was having such a hard time focusing.
Emiko Miyashita. I turned on my camera's flash for this photo. No doubt a haiku had just come to Emiko's mind while she sat meditatively.
Emiko Miyashita writing another haiku, no doubt.
Looking to the back of the church. An organist was practicing while we were visiting.
I think the glaring light fooled my camera, so this isn't sharp. This would have been such a nice photo had it been focused.
Emiko Miyashita and I decided to buy a candle and light it in memory of Claire Gallagher and Paul O. Williams, both fine poets who recently passed away. Perhaps both of them would have come to HNA in Ottawa if they could have.
Emiko prepares to light a candle.
In fond memory of Claire Gallagher and Paul O. Williams.
gone from the woods
the bird I knew
by song alone
—Paul O. Williams
I could have stayed here all day.
After leaving the cathedral I took this picture and then realized I'd forgotten some papers inside when Emiko and I were lighting the candle . . .
. . . and once back inside I couldn't help myself from taking another picture!
After leaving the cathedral, a few of us gathered for lunch at an outdoor cafe nearby. This is on the front of Guy Simser's shirt.
Guy Simser raises a draft to haiku poets everywhere! You can see the Peace Tower in the background behind the tree.
Guy Simser, tour guide extraordinaire.
Well, I just had to take a photo of this during a haiku conference, don't you think? You can see me and my little camera in the reflection.
Flags flying in front of the Fairmont Chateau Laurier Hotel. We're on our way back to the National Library of Canada building (where HNA took place) for the afternoon events.
Flags are not very cooperative! I guess this will do.
The third flag is the flag of the province of Ontario.
Back to the Rideau Canal. No boats in it this time.
The East Block building, with its wrought-iron fencing.
What a grand building. It's even better in person!
I took these pictures pretty quickly, while heading back to the conference. Wish I'd had another hour to take them more carefully. I keep thinking of ways to improve these pictures, and see details that I'd like to take closeup photos of.
You can see that it's almost 1:00 p.m., when the next session starts at the conference. Fortunately, I have only three blocks to walk.
Wouldn't you like a building like this where you live? The sound-and-light show we saw on Wednesday night was projected onto the entire face of this building. It included lights, movies, text, and more, with corresponding music and narration in both French and English. Ottawa sure knows how to put on a party—all summer long!
Security was present around the parliament buildings, but not heavy. Everything felt relaxed and comfortable. To enter the parliament buildings, though, we all had to go through an airport-style security screening.
The West Block building. I'm standing on the sidewalk of Wellington Street, a busy thoroughfare, but with wide sidewalks. Ottawa is a great walking city.
I could have spent an hour photographing all the details just within this photograph.
Several of us walking together took nearly identical photographs to this one. Maybe that's similar to "deja-ku"! This photo could do with a haiku at the top! Try to write one without the word "reflection" in it!
The Supreme Court of Canada. This building is between Parliament Hill and the National Library of Canada. We were supremely fortunate to have our conference in such a prestigious, convenient, and well-appointed location. Unfortunately, I took only a few pictures of the library building—not sure why. They appear in a separate set of these photos. Well, maybe I do know why—the building isn't that photogenic.
The Supreme Court of Canada.
Debbie Kolodji giving her presentation on speculative haiku.
Debbie's presentation was well attended!
Karen Sohne's Red Iron Press offered numerous collections of poetry (most of it haiku) to everyone present. Karen wins the prize for best presenation!
Penny Harter brought flyers announcing the 25th anniversary publication of William J. Higginson's The Haiku Handbook, which will be published with a new introduction in 2010. The book was first published by McGraw-Hill in 1985, and republished by Kodansha International in 1989. The book has been in print steadily since then. Bill Higginson was the only person who had been to all nine previous HNA conferences. With his passing in October of 2008, he left a void not only in HNA but in the English-language haiku community worldwide. The HNA conference anthology, Into Our Words, which I edited with Grant Savage, was dedicated to Bill's memory.
The silent auction table was packed with various items. Nearly everything went for a good amount, raising about $600. Thanks to everyone who donated items for the silent auction to help offset conference costs. Ian Marshall contemplates making a bid.
Peter Vernon Quenter's haiga and other artwork graced the room where the silent auction was held. He had many haiga, notecards, and other artwork and photographs available for sale.
More of Peter Vernon Quenter's haiga on exhibit.
Peter's haiga combine delicate and expressive calligraphy, in Japanese, with evocative photographs.
Another view of the silent auction table. To the left are Ian Marshall and Janelle Barrera. To the right are Lenard Moore and Terry Ann Carter.
Peter Vernon Quenter's haiga, notebooks, and gift cards, available for purchase.
Also on display were a number of fans and notecards offered for sale by Kris Moon Kondo.
Lidia Rozmus, of Chicago, was not able to attend this HNA conference, but sent along four of her haiga for display.
Kris Moon Kondo's haiga cards. Zoom in to read the poems!
A number of haiku were also on display in fabric art created by Trisha Terwilliger of Waldoboro, Maine, with poems by the three members of the 2009 HNA organizing committee. This poem is by Guy Simser:
Each of those stars
each of these snowflakes
Each of Trisha Terwilliger's pieces of fabric art was exquisitely presented. This poem is by Terry Ann Carter:
how close the moon
flowering apple trees
Such rich colour and fine fabrics in Trisha Terwilliger's art! This haiku is by Claudia Coutu Radmore:
the click of sparrow feet
on the tin table
You can see more of Trisha's fabric art at http://www.flickr.com/photos/innerscapes/sets/72157622096883782/.
More of Kris Moon Kondo's fan haiga on display.
I had the flash turned off for this photo.
On the Wednesday evening, our speaker was Robert Sibley, who described his pilgrimage walk around the Japanese island of Shikoku. He wrote about his experiences in the Ottawa Citizen. Terry Ann Carter kept all of these feature articles, and put them on display in the lobby of the auditorium at the National Library of Canada. Again, you can read Sibley's series of articles at http://www2.canada.com/ottawacitizen/features/shikoku/index.html.
Here's a close-up of the first article in Robert Sibley's series. If you zoom in, you can read a lot of the text.
Another of Peter Vernon Quenter's beautiful haiga on display in the auditorium lobby. Ottawa is famous for its tulip festival in the spring.
An impromptu haiku message board in the building lobby, next to the registration tables. Zoom in to read some of the poems. Wish we'd had a lot more notice boards to fill up!
Haiku poets are a creative bunch.
The HNA registration table. Thanks to the tireless volunteers who staffed this table during the entire conference. Here was where we picked up our registration packets, conference anthologies, T-shirts, tote bags, schedule changes, and numerous other handouts. We could also buy tickets for the boat cruise here, contribute poems to the kukai, and more. This was the nerve center of the entire conference—if you had a question, here was where you went to get an answer.
Here's the conference T-shirt design, with artwork by Peter Vernon Quenter.
A close-up of the T-shirt artwork.
"Crosscurrents" turned out to be a rich theme for the 2009 HNA conference.
We were fortunate to have three large display cases in the main lobby of the National Library of Canada that featured haiku publications. This case displays English-language haiku materials from Canada. Dorothy Howard provided much of these materials from the archive of Haiku Canada, which she maintains.
Here's another view of Canadian haiku materials. If you haven't seen them before, shown here are rare first printings of George Swede's The Modern English Haiku, Betty Drevniok's Aware: A Haiku Primer, and Eric Amann's The Wordless Poem. Canada has had an extremely rich influence on English-language haiku, greatly out of proportion to the number of people who live in the country compared to the United States. Again, zoom in to see this display in closer detail.
Here's another display case, this time featuring French-language haiku publications from Canada. The French-Canadian haiku scene is every bit as active and rich as the English-language scene. Bilingual haiku poets certainly have much to be thankful for if they can read poems in both languages!
Another display case featuring publications of the Haiku Society of America, including a range of issues of Frogpond, plus a few of the society's annual membership anthologies. Zoom in to inspect. At the top you can see part of a sign that explains each of the items on display. A tremendous amount of effort went into these displays, and it was a rare opportunity for us to have these haiku materials displayed to the public in this manner.
The bookfair area in the main lobby of the National Library of Canada. In the background, behind the glass walls, is one of the meeting rooms where we held many of our events during HNA. I think Maggie Chula was giving a reading at this time.
Press Here haiku and tanka books available for sale in the HNA bookfair.
Turtle Light Press had a fine display not only of its books but of various notecards, accordian books, and more.
White Pine Press books were well represented here, featuring many books by John Brandi, keynote speaker for HNA 2009.
This table featured books, notecards, and other publications primarily in French. Several of Angela Leuck's English-language publications also appear here.
Here's a view of the registration table in the hallway leading to from the National Library's main lobby. Through the glass at the back is the auditorium lobby. To the left past those glass doors was another large meeting room, the silent auction/haiga display room, and a small room for freebies. To the right past the glass doors was the entrance to the main auditorium. Zoom in to read the announcement about the boat cruise on the sign board to the left!
More of Peter Vernon Quenter's wonderful haiga on exhibit, in the hallway across from our registration table.
Jim Kacian leads a reading by contributors to the New Resonance book series. The sixth book in the series had just been published, and more than a dozen contributors to the series were present to read their poems. This HNA conference featured a lot more readings of haiku than previous conferences. This one was particularly well attended. Jim read at least one poem by each of the more than 100 contributors to the series so far.
Judson Evans, David Elliott, Jim Kacian, Carolyn Hall, Roberta Beary, and Scott Mason at the New Resonance reading.
On the far right are Michele Root-Bernstein and then Carmen Sterba. In the left foreground are Paul MacNeil and Garry Gay.
Francine Banwarth stands to read her poems in the New Resonance reading. The New Resonance series has provided a tremendous service to the haiku community by featuring mostly emerging voices with a strong set of their poems in a pleasing anthology. On the far right, on the wall, you can see one of many portraits of famous authors that lined the room. This was, after all, the National Library of Canada!
Eve Luckring, Judson Evans, David Elliott, Jim Kacian, and Carolyn Hall.
Dennis Maloney led a reading from his haiku anthology, coedited with John Brandi, The Unswept Path. The 2005 HNA conference in Port Townsend, Washington, also featured a reading from this anthology, but the two editors were not able to be present then.
John Brandi and Marshall Hryciuk (and part of Patricia Donegan).
Penny Harter, John Brandi, Patricia Donegan, and Margaret Chula, all contributors to the Unswept Path anthology.
Penny Harter reads her poems from The Unswept Path. Sorry this is blurry.
Penny Harter reads while Dennis Maloney looks on.
From right to left: Margaret Chula, Patricia Donegan, John Brandi, and Penny Harter at the Unswept Path reading.
John Brandi talks about editing the Unswept Path anthology, and reads some of his poems.
John Brandi. In addition to giving this reading, John was also our keynote speaker during the Saturday-night banquet.
Dennis Maloney and John Brandi. You can read my review of The Unswept Path, published in Modern Haiku, online at http://www.modernhaiku.org/bookreviews/UnsweptPath2006.html.
Margaret Chula reads her poems from The Unswept Path.
Penny Harter, John Brandi, and Patricia Donegan. That's Bruce Ross sitting on the table at the back.
Patricia Donegan reads her contributions to The Unswept Path.
Patricia Donegan has emerged over the years as a significant contributor to haiku literature with her translation of Chiyo-ni, her book about haiku for children, her recent book Haiku Mind, and her forthcoming book of love haiku translations. This is in edition to her books of longer poetry, including one for which Allen Ginsberg wrote the introduction. Pat is also the poetry editor of Kyoto Magazine.
Patricia Donegan again.
Patricia Donegan yet again.
At 3:00 p.m. on Friday, August 7, 2009, we gathered in the main auditorium for a reading that memorialized prominent and well-loved haiku poets who had died in the past two years, since the last HNA conference. Angela Leuck spearheaded the effort to collect names and poems by deceased poets, and John Stevenson helped her read the names, bios, and poems. Each of us received a flyer containing a poem by each poet who had passed on. Although a sombre session during our conference, the memorial reading has become one of the warmest traditions of the HNA conference as we remember those who have passed on. Angela and John did a wonderful and respectful job of preparing and presenting all the information and poems about the deceased poets.
Angela Leuck and John Stevenson.
After the memorial reading, we moved into another HNA tradition—the regional reading. Garry Gay welcomed everyone and gave us an opportunity to read three of our haiku or senryu. We started with eastern Canada, worked our way west across the country, and then went east to west across the United States, and then covered other countries. The pictures that follow show each person who read (except for one). One or two people read out of order for various reasons. Here, Nick Avis, from Newfoundland, starts us off.
Nick Avis from St. John's, Newfoundland. He was actually our FIRST reader in the regional reading.
Luce Pelletier, from St.-Basile-le-Grand, Quebec.
Janick Belleau, from Longueuil, Quebec.
Grant D. Savage, from Ottawa, Ontario. It was my privilege to work with Grant in editing the conference anthology, Into Our Words. I'm sorry I don't have any pictures of the conference reading from the first night.
Andre Duhaime, a pillar of Canadian haiku, from Gatineau, Quebec.
Andre Duhaime. He's flipping his book over to read both languages (French on side, English on the other, with two front covers on either end).
Dina E. Cox, from Markham, Ontario.
Terry Ann Carter, from Ottawa, Ontario. Terry Ann did a standout job in organizing the 2009 HNA conference, and remained a buoyant presence throughout the weekend, always smiling, always positive. If you've ever organized even a much smaller event, you know how difficult it can be not to be frazzled, but for Terry Ann, remaining upbeat seems to come naturally! We're all very fortunate to have had her as our chief conference organizer!
Margot Gallant, from Ottawa, Ontario.
Margot Gallant. Notice that she's wearing the HNA conference T-shirt.
Philomene Kocher, of Kingston, Ontario.
Marshall Hryciuk, of Toronto, Ontario.
This ends album 1 of 3. See more photos from the regional reading in album 2.