Fishing is one of our oldest pursuits, a source of sustenance and sanity. It has a significant literary history as well, as one of our first great prose stylists, Izaak Walton, in his Compleat Angler, supplied us with lure and lore for all those quiet times when the fish won’t bite. Haiku has been no slouch in addressing the topic either, of which guest editor Chad Lee Robinson takes full advantage. As he explains, his gallery “Gone Fishing” is
a collection of haiku exploring the rod and the reel, the lure and the line. British poet Ted Hughes once said, “Fishing provides that connection with the whole living world. It gives you the opportunity of being totally immersed, turning back into yourself in a good way.” Fishing is a time-tested tradition of the human race, one that allows for solitude and reflection, but it can also provide that rare opportunity for real one-on-one time with a friend or loved one. In a very real sense fishing pulls nature closer to us. Of course, we feel a kinship with the inhabitants of waters shallow and deep. And it does seem as though we can reel in the moon and the stars, or rub shoulders with those other fishermen—the birds. So grab your gear. You bring the worms and I’ll bring the beer.
Chad adds “Thank you to Charles Trumbull for sharing a catch of over 3,000 fishing haiku from his Haiku Database project, and to all the poets who allowed me to feature their haiku in this per diem.” See you on the water!