Kirsten Cliff Elliot

kirsten2013 Kirsten Cliff Elliot fell for haiku in 2007 and has been writing and publishing them, along with other Japanese short-form poems, ever since. Some of her haiku have been prize-winning, many have appeared in overseas anthologies, and she was a featured poet in A New Resonance 8: Emerging Voices in English-Language Haiku (Red Moon Press, 2013). She was previously editor of the haikai section of a fine line, the magazine of the New Zealand Poetry Society.

Despite living with the disability fibromyalgia, Kirsten keeps turning lemons into lemonade. She has several writing projects on the go, including blogging with her husband at Help! My husband has Asperger’s: Our life on the spectrum’s edge, and her first poetry collection is forthcoming. She is currently working in a high school library and studying towards a Bachelor of Arts in Information and Library Studies. You can find her on Twitter @bookfuelled or contact her via email.


between breaths
following the white
of this butterfly


drifting evensong
pine needles cloistered
in fresh snow


heartsick . . .
the foxgloves of my childhood
out of reach


first winter’s day
I slip into
his gumboots


coming home
to an empty house
so many stars


winter afternoon
one empty space
in the library carpark


these country roads
the curl of her hair


day moon
hoof prints litter
the beach track


heat shimmer
a heron drinks
from the horse trough


sun-soaked sky . . .
seeking out the wisdom
of beach glass


Publication notes

between breaths: The Heron’s Nest XV.2, June 2013.

drifting evensong: 5th Prize, NZPS International Haiku Competition 2013; Given an ordinary stone (ed. Owen Bullock, NZPS Anthology 2013).

heartsick … Issa’s Untidy Hut, Wednesday Haiku #106, March 13, 2013.

first winter’s day: The Heron’s Nest XIII.3, September 2011.

coming home: Kokako 12 (April 2010).

winter afternoon: Honourable Mention, Haiku International Association 2009 Haiku Contest.

navigating: Highly Commended, New Zealand Poetry Society International Haiku Competition 2008; Before the Sirocco (ed. Joanna Preston, NZPS Anthology 2008).

day moon: Third Prize, Katikati Haiku Contest 2008.

heat shimmer: The Heron’s Nest XV.1, March 2013.

sun-soaked sky … A New Resonance 8: Emerging Voices in English-Language Haiku (eds. Jim Kacian & Dee Evetts, Red Moon Press, 2013).