My first encounter with haiku was in grade school in Canada, where it was taught in a writing class. But I never saw it taught anywhere in the U.S. public schools or universities I attended.
My grandmother received an email (see below)...I had no idea my grandfather was an "American Haiku Master". You can see photos of him and some of his haiku HERE. It's odd to me to see photos that I assume family took of him on a stranger's (stranger to me) website. The bottom photo on that site was taken near Highlands, NC outside the old Lodge at The Mountain, a retreat center and summer camp where I pretty much grew up and later became year-long staff. That building is long gone, it burned in a fire.
Dear Virginia Dickson,
I represent Red Moon Press in a new project that plans to bring to
better light some of the early American Haiku Masters. It is important
that as the American haiku movement moves forward we don't forget
those who were instrumental in defining it. The purpose Red Moon
Press's upcoming American Haiku Masters Series is to both honor and
reintroduce major haiku poets to a new and future audience. I believe
Billie Wilson has mentioned to you that something of the sort was in
the planning stages. I have recently been given the green light to
proceed with a book on Charles B. Dickson. I hope you don't mind that
Billie has given me your email address to write to you.
The volume I plan to edit will cover the whole of Charles Dickson's
haiku career. It will be hard cover, around 120 pages, and come out
sometime in the fall of 2007. All production costs will of course be
covered by Red Moon press and we will of course give you a few copies
In order for this to come about, I am hoping that I can persuade you
to allow us the authority to reprint Charles B. Dickson's poems
without a fee. Your husband was a wonderfully fearless poet that
brought a sense of western poetic and local diction to his work. He
more than deserves to be a part of the American Haiku Masters Series.
Please let me know if this is agreeable to you. I look forward to
hearing from you.