The realm of American haiku poetry has been exceptionally blessed by Robert Epstein, undoubtedly one of California’s most studied and accomplished haiku poets. Epstein’s third Middle Island Press title, Haiku Edge: New and Selected Poems, was a long time in the making but is a beautiful finished product that is generously showered with the artwork of Ed Markowski. The “edge” that the title aptly implies is a sense of morbidity with sections throughout the 135-page collection such as “Tarot Reading” and “In the Morgue.” Bear in mind that Robert Epstein is a psychologist! This makes his haiku particularly intriguing as he wrestles with the perpetually haunting ghosts of the unknown, unabashedly questioning with rationality. We recommend this title to everyone who enjoys haiku and seeks a refreshing (or hair-raising) twist on it, or for those who enjoy pondering subjects such as the afterlife.
Haiku Edge: New and Selected Poems can be purchased through Amazon.com and elsewhere online.