top shadow image

Honorary Curator Charles Trumbull

Charles Trumbull
Honorary Curator, 2013–2014

Appointment Announcement

Charles Trumbull photoThe American Haiku Archives advisory board is pleased to announce the appointment of Charles Trumbull as the 2013–2014 honorary curator of the American Haiku Archives at the California State Library in Sacramento. This honor is in recognition of his support for haiku organizations in many capacities, as a scholar writing about the genre, and as a poet. Charles has served as editor for Modern Haiku magazine, as president of the Haiku Society of America, as a director of the Haiku North America conference, and as publisher of Deep North Press, among many other contributions to English-language haiku. It is particularly fitting to appoint Charles as honorary curator of the American Haiku Archives because of Charlie’s deep interest in preserving the history of haiku literature. His many papers and presentations on haiku at haiku meetings and conferences have frequently focused on historical aspects of haiku in English, and his two-part essay, “The American Haiku Movement,” is the definitive history of haiku poetry in the United States. We are pleased to bestow this honor from the American Haiku Archives, which seeks to preserve and promote haiku and related poetry throughout the North American continent.

The American Haiku Archives, which includes the Haiku Society of America archives, is the largest public collection of haiku materials outside Japan. Each year since the archives were established on July 12, 1996, the AHA advisory board, currently chaired together by Garry Gay and Randy Brooks, appoints a new honorary curator (an idea suggested by the former California state librarian, Dr. Kevin Starr). Past curators, in order starting from the first year, have been Elizabeth Searle Lamb, Jerry Kilbride, Cor van den Heuvel, Robert Spiess, Lorraine Ellis Harr, Leroy Kanterman, William J. Higginson, Makoto Ueda, Francine Porad, Hiroaki Sato, H. F. Noyes, George Swede, Stephen Addiss, Gary Snyder, Jerry Ball, and LeRoy Gorman.

The AHA advisory board is delighted to pay tribute to Charles Trumbull as the seventeenth honorary curator of the American Haiku Archives.

—Michael Dylan Welch

Biography

Charles Trumbull was born in Flint, Mich., on May 17, 1943. At age four he moved with his family to his father’s hometown of Las Vegas, New Mexico. He graduated high school there and was educated at Yale (BA) and Notre Dame universities (MA, PhD). Trained as a specialist in the foreign policy of the Soviet Union, he first served as a program officer for the Soviet and East European scientific exchange programs of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences in Washington, D.C. Later he joined the staff of the Academy’s Report Review Committee, responsible for editing and quality control of Academy advisory reports. He left the Academy to take a job, briefly, as Soviet analyst at Science Applications, Inc., then moved to Munich, Germany, where he occupied several staff positions at Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Inc., including director of RFE/RL’s daily and weekly research publications (RFE/RL was one of the first organizations to issue news by means of a daily Internet newsletter). In 1993, when the Berlin Wall came down and the U.S.S.R. disappeared, he jumped over to a job at Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., in Chicago as editor of the Britannica Book of the Year and later director of yearbooks. He oversaw five annual publications and developed and designed the Britannica Almanac. Charlie retired (from steady, paid employment) in 2007. In the years since, Charlie has continued his publishing activities, including editing scholarly publications for Stanford University Press, an Iraqi novel from American University Press in Cairo, a scholarly study of Soviet secret patents, and several books of poetry and autobiography from Red Mountain Press in Santa Fe, where he now lives.

Charlie first encountered Japanese haiku in Harold Henderson’s Introduction to Haiku and the American haiku of the Beat poets in the late 1950s, but pursued other interests for some decades. He got reacquainted with haiku in 1991, literally on a bet. Immediately bitten by the haiku bug, he has since served as newsletter editor (1996–2002), president (2004–05), and chairman of the history committee (2010–12) of the Haiku Society of America; a founder of Chi-ku, the Chicago-area haiku club, in 1996; an organizer of Haiku North America—Chicago (1999), a biennial international gathering of haiku poets, and of a series of haiku conferences in Mineral Point, Wisconsin, under the general heading of “The Midwest—Cradle of American Haiku”; and proprietor of Deep North Press, a publisher of haiku books with sixteen titles in its catalog. Following a four-year stint as editor of Modern Haiku Press, from March 2006 until March 2013 he was editor of Modern Haiku, the oldest haiku journal outside Japan. In 2012–13 he served as secretary of the New Mexico State Poetry Society.

Activities and Bibliography

Charles Trumbull’s haiku, longer poems, and critical essays have appeared in publications in twelve countries, won awards in several haiku contests, and appeared in many anthologies. Well known as a contest judge and book reviewer, he frequently speaks and leads workshops on haiku-related subjects. Recent appearances include featured speaker at the Haiku North America conferences in Winston-Salem, North Carolina (2007), Ottawa, Ontario (2009), and Seattle, Washington (2011), the Robert Frost Poetry Festival in Key West, Florida (2007, 2008, and 2009), and the “Cradle” conferences honoring haiku pioneers Raymond Roseliep (August 2008), Robert Spiess (September 2010), and the seminal journal American Haiku (July 2012); featured poet at the Seabeck Haiku Getaway, Seabeck, Washington (November 2010); workshop leader at the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico (November 2010) and the April 2012 convention of the New Mexico State Poetry Society; jury member for the Fifth International Haiku Competition (2012, Moscow, Russia); presenter at the fifth Haiku Pacific Rim conference, Asilomar, California, in September 2012; and coleader of a ginko for attendees at the Federation of State Poetry Societies national convention in Albuquerque in June 2013.

In November–December 2012 Charlie made a month-long journey through the Balkans and Turkey, formally addressing scholars and informally meeting with haiku poets in ten cities. Between the Chimes, a chapbook of Charlie’s haiku, was published in Marco Fraticelli’s Hexagram Series in summer 2011, and a full-length collection of New Mexico haiku, titled A Five-Balloon Morning, was released by Red Mountain Press in June 2013. That same month Charlie was invited to present the William J. Higginson Memorial Lecture at Haiku North America 2013 in Long Beach, California.

Charlie’s work in print has been oriented mostly toward historical analysis, collection, and editing haiku. Major scholarly papers and workshops include:

“Politics versus Haiku.” Paper read at the Haiku Society of America third 1996 quarterly meeting, Northbrook, Illinois, September 14, 1996.

“Believability in Haiku.” Paper read at the inaugural meeting of the South Region of the Haiku Society of America, Hot Springs, Arkansas, November 7, 1997.

Eight-week haiku course, Udumbara Sangha, Evanston, Illinois. October–November 1999.

“Seasonality: English-language Haiku in Search of Its Vertical.” A.C. Missias, editor, In Due Season: A Discussion of the Role of Kigo in English-language Haiku. Acorn Supplement #1 (Spring 2000), 10–30.

“The Importance of Seasons.” Haiku World [online], May 2003.

“An Analysis of Haiku in 12-dimensional Space.” Simply Haiku [online] 2:5 (2004). An earlier version of this paper was read at the Haiku Society of America annual meeting, Evanston, Illinois, September 2003.

“Pedro Xisto and Brazilian Haiku.” Modern Haiku 34:3 (Autumn 2003), 57–62.

“Marrying Music and Haiku.” Paper/performance at the Haiku Society of America second 2005 quarterly meeting, Minneapolis, Minnesota, June 25, 2005, and again at Haiku North America, Port Townsend, Washington, September 24, 2005.

“Haiku w Ameryce, Haiku na swiecie” (“American Haiku, World Haiku”). Estetyka i Krytyka 6:1 (Kraków, Poland: Uniwersytet Jagiellonski, 2004), 103–20. Paper presented at the International Haiku Conference, Manggha Center of Japanese Arts and Techniques, Kraków, Poland, October 4, 2003.

“The Uses of Haiku: Native American Writers.” Paper read at the first 2004 quarterly meeting of the Haiku Society of America, Fort Worth, Texas, March 2004.

“The American Haiku Movement—Part I: Haiku in English.” Modern Haiku 36:3 (Autumn 2005), 33–73.

“The American Haiku Movement—Part II: American Haiku, the Internet, and World Haiku.” Modern Haiku 37:1 (Winter–Spring 2006), 29–54.

“Harry Behn: Research Note.” Modern Haiku 37:3 (Autumn 2006), 75–80.

“Haiku—Is It Really a Poem?” Workshop presented at the Robert Frost Poetry Festival, Key West, Florida, April 12, 2007, and again at the “3rd Saturday Coffeehouse: An Open Mic,” April 19, 2008, Unity Temple, Oak Park, Illinois.

“One Hundred Bridges, One Hundred Traditions—Part I.” Modern Haiku 41:2 (Summer 2010); “Part II,” Modern Haiku 41:3 (Autumn 2010), and “Part III,” Modern Haiku 42:1 (Winter–Spring 2011). A short version of this paper was read before the Haiku North America Conference, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, August 18, 2007.

“Research Note: In the Classic Tradition: Faubion Bowers.” Bottle Rockets 17, (2007).

“A Short History of Haiku.” Presentation at a public haiku reading at the Winnetka (Illinois) Public Library, September 30, 2007.

Emcee and short paper, “Definitions and Origins of English-language Haiku,” read at “Homage to the Haiku: A Celebration of Japanese-style Poetry and Art,” Vernon Area Public Library District, Lincolnshire, Illinois, March 2, 2008.

“Writing Haibun.” Workshop presented at the Robert Frost Poetry Festival, Key West, Florida, April 2008.

“Haiku Diction: The Use of Words in Haiku.” Workshop presented at the Robert Frost Poetry Festival, Key West, Florida, April 2009.

“Crosscurrents East and West: Masaoka Shiki and the Origins of Shasei.” Paper presented at Haiku North America 2009, Ottawa, Ontario, August 8, 2009.

“Shangri-La: James W. Hackett’s Life in Haiku, Part I,” Frogpond 33:1 (2010), 80–92, and “Part II,” Frogpond 33:2 (2010), 88–102.

“One Hundred Bridges, One Hundred Traditions—Part I.” Modern Haiku 41:2 (Summer 2010); “Part II,” Modern Haiku 41:3 (Autumn 2010), and “Part III,” Modern Haiku 42:1 (Winter–Spring 2011). A short version of this paper was read before the Haiku North America Conference, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, August 18, 2007.

“Verbs in Haiku.” Paper presented at “The Midwest—Cradle of American Haiku” Festival II, Mineral Point, Wisconsin, July 2010.

“Writing Nature: A Haiku Workshop.” The Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico, November 15, 2010.

“The Uses of Haiku: Native American Writers.” Revised version of 2004 paper. Read at the Seabeck Haiku Getaway, Seabeck, Washington, November 2010.

“A History of American Haiku.” PowerPoint presentation, Haiku North America 2011, Seattle, Washington.

“Vaznost godisnjih doba u haiku” [Croatian translation by Durda Vukelic-Rozic of “The Importance of Seasons,” Haiku World website, May 2003], Diogen pro kultura magazin [online], May 2012.

“Black Haiku: The Uses of Haiku by African American Poets.” Paper presented at “The Midwest—Cradle of American Haiku” Festival III, Mineral Point, Wisconsin, July 21, 2012.

“Black Haiku: Jazz Haiku & Blues Haiku.” Expanded version of the previous paper, presented at Haiku Pacific Rim, Asilomar, California, September 5–9, 2012.

“Meaning in Haiku.” Frogpond 35:3 (Autumn 2012), 92–118. Originally read at the Seabeck Haiku Getaway, Seabeck, Washington, November 2010.

“Research Note: Revising Haiku: A Case Study.” Frogpond 34:2 (Spring/Summer 2011), 79–83.

“Research Note: Shiki and Buson—A Case of Déjà-ku?” Frogpond 35:1 (Winter 2012), 134–35. Reconsideration in Re:Readings section, Frogpond 36:1 (Winter 2013), 45.

Haiku, “the aspens / and the chamisa agree / on a shade of yellow,” selected by graphic artist Donna Rutt, who created a collage of postcards for the ekphrastic art project Odes & Offerings, organized by Santa Fe Poet Laureate Joan Logghe. This work was on display at the Community Gallery, Santa Fe, New Mexico, March 23–June 8, 2012. Accessible online on July 15, 2013 at www.loosidia.blogspot.com/2012/03/.

“Elizabeth Searle Lamb—New Mexico Haiku Poet.” Malpaís Review (Winter 2012–13), 118–33.

In 2001 Charlie’s “Haiku Publications Survey” appeared online, and in 2008, as a supplement to the HSA Newsletter, he prepared “A Guide to Haiku Publications.” Both are still available online www.haikuworld.org/survey and www.hsa-haiku.org/archives/Guide-HaikuMagazines-2008.pdf, respectively, though both are now dated. Charlie has prepared a bibliography of some 6,000 haiku titles and made it public on The Haiku Foundation website www.thehaikufoundation.org/bibliography/. His index of the first 25 volumes of the Haiku Society of America journal Frogpond can be accessed at www.hsa-haiku.org/frogpond/frogpondindex.html, and a similar index of Modern Haiku is in progress.

In 1993 Charlie began work on his Haiku Database, a full-text collection of published haiku, mostly in English or translated into English, culled from journals, haiku collections, anthologies, and websites. This finding and research tool is made available on an individual, private basis as a service to the haiku community. The database now includes more than a quarter million entries.

In the summer of 2012 Charlie spent two weeks at the American Haiku Archives researching a biography in poetry of Elizabeth Searle Lamb, which he expects to complete in 2014. He is also assisting with the preparation of a biography of early haikuist Raymond Roseliep and working on a second full-length collection of his own haiku and senryu.


Selected Haiku by Charles Trumbull

the swell of her breast
against the watered silk
summer moon

                                                                   late to the office
                                                                   my desk already piled high
                                                                   with zucchini

 

pansies    we smile back

 

                                                                   on a diet
                                                                   I weigh myself again
                                                                   after shaving

between Lake Erie
and the nuclear station
fireflies

                                                                   sunrise
                                                                   among the silent earth movers
                                                                   a fawn

for Double-Word score
I add an “s” to “haiku” . . .
distant thunder

                                                                   between
                                                                   the chimes of the clock
                                                                   shooting star

 

Web Links

Charles Trumbull: Three Questions
http://tobaccoroadpoet.blogspot.com/2008/03/charles-trumbull-three-questions.html

Haiku Registry: Charles Trumbull
http://www.thehaikufoundation.org/poet-details/?IDclient=167

Haiku Database Project
http://www.tempslibres.org/tl/hku/hdb/hdb01.html

The Haiku Foundation Readings: Charles Trumbull [video]
http://www.thehaikufoundation.org/2012/12/04/the-haiku-foundation-readings-charles-trumbull/

The Haiku Foundation Lecture Series: Charles Trumbull on Richard Wright [video]
http://youtu.be/H9_iHRqn4jQ

Tinywords: Charles Trumbull Haiku
http://tinywords.com/haiku/?q=Charles+Trumbull

Between the Chimes by Charles Trumbull
http://lilliputreview.blogspot.com/2011/09/between-chimes-charle-trumbull.html

A Five-Balloon Morning by Charles Trumbull
http://redmountainpress.us/haiku-by-charles-trumbull/

“The American Haiku Movement—Part I: Haiku in English.” Modern Haiku 36:3 (Autumn 2005), 33–73. http://www.modernhaiku.org/essays/AmHaikuMovement1.html

“The American Haiku Movement—Part II: American Haiku, the Internet, and World Haiku.” Modern Haiku 37:1 (Winter–Spring 2006), 29–54.
http://www.modernhaiku.org/essays/AmHaikuMovement2.html

“An Analysis of Haiku in 12-dimensional Space.” Simply Haiku [online] 2:5 (2004).
http://simplyhaiku.com/SHv2n5/features/Charles_Trumbull.html

“The Importance of Seasons,” Haiku World, May 2003.
http://www.haikuworld.org/begin/ctrumbull.may2003.html

“Vaznost godisnjih doba u haiku” [Croatian translation of “The Importance of Seasons” by DurdaVukelic-Rozic] Diogen pro kultura magazin, May 2012.
http://diogen.weebly.com/uploads/4/6/8/8/4688084/charles_trumbull.pdf

Valentin Nicolitov, “Interviu cu poetul american Charles Trumbull / Interview with American haiku poet Charles Trumbull.” Revista Haiku (Bucharest, Romania), May 24, 2013. In Romanian and English; includes eight haiku translated into Romanian by Vasile Moldovan.
http://revistahaiku.blogspot.com/2013/05/interviu-cu-poetul-american-charles.html

 

bottom shadow image

This site is independent of and not endorsed by the California State Library. It is operated by the American Haiku Archives advisory board in support of the archives and its mission, which is to collect, preserve, and promote haiku and related poetry as a vital component of literature in the English language. Webmaster: Michael Dylan Welch.
 
© 2017 American Haiku Archives • http://www.americanhaikuarchives.org/