Old Pond Comics

Haiku North America 2017 (Santa Fe, New Mexico)

Haiku North America 2017 took place in Santa Fe, 'The City Different', from September 13-17, 2017. It was one of the biggest HNA conferences, with 225 registered attendees.

On Saturday, I was part of the panel on French Canadian Haiku with Maxianne Berger and Claudia Coutu Radmore.

During the event, I was the official cartoonist-in-residence. I was taking photos and videos, and making comics so I could present an overview of the conference on Sunday.

Here are some comics and photos from the HNA 2017 conference in Santa Fe.

santa fe, new mexico

Day 0 | Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4 |Day 5 | Bandelier Monument | Video

Tuesday September 11

I landed in Albuquerque Sunport airport. To reach Santa Fe, I had the choice between taking the airport shuttle or the Railrunner commuter train. Master Kawazu took The Roadrunner, the official state bird of New Mexico, who can run up to 20 mph and eats rattlesnakes.

Bonus feature: read my blog post about how I desperately tried to catch a glimpse of a roadrunner during my trip to Santa fe



I arrived at the beautiful Santa Fe Hacienda and Spa, a beautiful adobe architecture.


After some rest, I had dinner at the Hotel Santa Fe restaurant with some haiku friends. We were intrigued by the salt and pepper shakers: you could shovel salt onto your food!

The battery-operated candle (a flashlight reflecting light on an oscillating piece of plastic) was totally mesmerizing. "Now we know what to get you for Christmas" joked Deborah Kolodji.


Hotel Santa Fe

The hotel was quite nice. At the entrance, the words Mah-Waan, Mah-Waan (Welcome) were greeting us inside Hotel Sante Fe, the only hotel owned by Picuris pueblo.

The hotel had free shuttles: London Taxis and Big Barney.




Wednesday September 12 (Day 1)


Before the conference began, I woke up early to explore Santa Fe.

The hotel shuttle took me up Museum Hill. It was a terrible idea to start on the highest point of the city when you are just getting use to the altitude. When I walked at my regular (fast) pace, I found myself out of breath and had to slow down.

museum hill museum hill

Browsing the collection of the Museum of International Folk Art, I quickly got dizzy.

museum hill museum hill

I slowed down and had a much better time exploring the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture.

museum hill museum hillmuseum hill museum hill

I had lunch at the Museum Hill Cafe with a beautiful view of the mountains.

museum hill museum hill museum hill museum hill

I took the free Santa Fe shuttle to come down Museum Hill for a quick look at the city, starting with Canyon Road.


Canyon Road

Canyon Road is a street lined up with hundreds of art galleries. I only did two blocks and found a kinetic art garden I fell in love with.




Loretto Chapel

At the Loretto Chapel I admired the beautiful spiral staircase built by a mysterious carpenter (believed to be St. Joseph).

loretto chapel loretto chapel staircase


Santa Fe's Oldest House

Santa Fe's Oldest House was located in a small street (almost an alley). You had to move when a car was passing through.

oldest house in santa fe oldest house in santa fe


San Miguel (Oldest church)

Right next to the Oldest House was the San Miguel Mission, the oldest church.

san miguel


Basilica Cathedral of St. Francis of Assisi


Santa Fe Plaza



I enjoyed the different architectural styles of Santa Fe, especially the adobe.


Burro Alley

I visited historic Burro Alley. There was a sculpture of a burro and various artwork in the tiny street.

Burro Alley Santa Fe Burro Alley Santa Fe


Georgia O'Keeffe Museum Group Tour

At 2pm I walked to the Georgia O'Keeffe Museum where I was scheduled to join the group tour at 3pm, but when the tour started, I had alread been in the museum for an hour and was too tired to follow along. I took a few pictures, and skipped the tour to explore the city some more.


Breakfast Burrito

Did you know breakfast burritos were invented in Santa Fe? At the Burrito Co. I ordered a breakfast burrito with green chile. I couldn't help take a picture of the frog that was on the counter.


Nice New Mexico sun

Santa Fe is the capital of New Mexico. It's located 7,000 feet over sea level. It's a high desert. Very close to the sun, so it's important to wear sunscreen and a hat.


Chile peppers are everywhere in Santa Fe. You can't escape them. In restaurant, they ask you the national state question of New Mexico: Red or Green? Meaning, do you want red or green chile in your food. If you want both red and green, you say 'Christmas'




At the conference registration desk, we picked up our badge and a bag full of Santa Fe goodies.

registration desk



The conference attendees got together for a reception and delicious tamales at the beautiful Amaya restaurant.

reception receptionreception reception



In the courtyard, there were weathergrams hanging from trees. Later, they announced that the first sixty haiku to be submitted to the anthology were transformed into a beautiful weathergrams.

Ghost Ranch

no need

for a dreamcatcher

- Lidia Rozmus (Earthsigns: HNA anthology 2017)

global warming

a stamp from Mars

on the envelop

- Fay Ayogi (Earthsigns: HNA anthology 2017)


Kaleidoscope Reading

The first Kaleidoscope reading took place featuring Bill Kenney, Brad Bennett, Charles Trumbull, William Scott Gallaso, Kathabela Wilson, Penny Harter (reading for Terry Ann Carter).

reading Billreading Brad Bennett

Charles Trumbull readingKath Abela Wilsona and Rick Wilson


Penny Harter kj munroe


Glass cover frog

At the Hotel Santa Fe, I was excited to see a frog on the glass cover. I told my roomate: 'Check this out. They knew we are here for a haiku conference, so they put a frog on the glass cover!'

My roomate turned the glass around. 'It's not a frog, she said. It's a deer!'



Turns out the deer was the symbol of the hotel.

hotel santa fe logo with deer


But once I'd seen the frog, I was unable to see the deer again and kept seeing the carton frog.





Thursday September 13 (Day 2)



A continental breakfast was included with the room at Hotel Santa Fe.

breakfast at hotel santa fe


Opening and Blessing

Blessing by Craig Quanchillo, Governor of Picurís Pueblo.

blessing blessing


Welcome by Michael Welch, Sondra J. Byrnes, Charles Trumbull

Sondra J. Byrnes


Anthology reading

Reading from Earthsigns, the HNA Anthology featuring sumi-e by Lidia Rozmus. Copies can be ordered on CreateSpace and on Amazon.


Keynote Speech

Skin tones are earth tones was the title of the keynote speech by Ruth Yarrow.

One of the funniest moments of the conference happened when Ruth finished reading a haiku and an electronic voice broke the silence, loud and clear, saying:


The audience erupted in laughter. 'I am not going to acknowledge this tricker' playfully replied our keynote speaker Ruth before continuing her speech.

Turns out it was someone's phone who went nuts right after Ruth finished reading her haiku. It was very funny.



The State of Wonder: Land of Enchantment, by Scott Mason

Scott Mason (HNA 2917) Scott Mason (HNA 2917)



This year, there were beginner workshops on writing and revising haiku.

(Old Man Gloom is the Zozobra, a giant puppet that people stuff with negativity - such as divorce papers - and then they burn it at the Santa Fe Fiesta that takes place on Labour day weekend.)



During lunch, members of Escribiente, The Albuquerque Calligraphy Society, were calligraphing haiku on paper.



Sumi-e workshop





Mexican Haiku: Tradition, Translation, and Transgression, by Cristina Rascón-Castro


New Mexico Haiku, Miriam Sagan


Haiku Performance, by Jim Kacian

Jim gave us tip to perform our haiku. His objective was to: 'inspire you to consider what haiku performance is and what it might be, and to make of it something that someone besides your mother would enjoy.' (HNA17 program)



Book table

The number of haiku books at this HNA conference was impressive. This was probably 'The most haiku books ever in one place', mentioned the organizer Charles Trumbull.

There was bout $15,000 in sale were made during the event. HNA doesn't keep a cut of the sale, so 'It's all you exchanging money amongs yourselves.' said Charles.

HNa 2017 book table Catkin Press at HNA 2017HNa 2017 book table Body of evidence book at HNA 2017


Freebie table

Bonus material: a blog post reviewing the trifolds of HNA 2017 (posted October 11, 2017)




Altitude sickness

After 4pm, I left the conference to go rest since altitude sickness hit me pretty hard that afternoon. Altitude sickness feels like you're going to have the flu (headaches, body aches, etc.). Just the touch of my clothes or bed sheets against my skin was painful. Even though I was in bedrest for 12 hours, I only managed to sleep 3h 45 minutes. Insomnia and restlessness are also part of the altitde sickness symptoms.

Bonus feature: read my blog post about altitude sickness.


Kaleidoscope reading

I missed the kaleidoscope reading but found an extract from Jim Kacian's book after image on the internet.




Friday September 14 (Day 3)


The sunrise over the Sangre de Cristo mountains (view from my hotel window).



African American Haiku (panel discussion)

John Zheng, Meta Schettler, Tiffany Austin, & Ce Rosenow gave an academic presentation.

African American Haiku panel at HNA17 John Zheng at African American Haiku panel at HNA17African American Haiku panel at HNA17 African American Haiku panel at HNA17

Prior to the conference, I had been so excited to learn more about African American haiku that I went to the library to borrow books, including a book edited by John Zheng that included a lot of haiku by Richard Wright, James Emanuel, Sonia Sanchez, Lenard D. More.

How was amazed that I've never heard of Richard Wright before. He wrote 4,000 haiku in the last 18 months of his life. How did I not know about him?







Georgia O'Keeffe & the Haiku Aesthetic
It was a popular talk by Lidia Rozmus & Charles Trumbull

Lidia Rozmus Lidia Rozmus Charles Trumbull Charles Trumbull





For desert, we had bizcochetos. They are the national state cookies (New Mexico is the only state with a national state cookie). These cookies made of lard, flour, anis, cinamon, sugar, were delicious!


Haiga Gallery

There was a one-hour electronic screening of haigas created by participants of the haiga panel (Linda Papanicolaou, Melissa Allen, Terri L. French, Kris Moon (Kris Kondo), Patricia J. Machmiller, Carole MacRury, and Alexis Rotella.

When I entered the room, there was a pleasant voice narrating the slides. I thought this was part of the presentation but it turned out Sandi Pray (who was sitting in the front) was reading the haiga for those who couldn't read the haiku in the back. This was a pleasant addition to the slideshow.

haiga gallery with haiga by Kris Kondo haiga by Kris Moonhaiga by Carole McRury haiga by Patricia J. Machmiller


Cover to Cover: Writing and Publishing a Book of Haiku

The panel featured Deborah P Kolodji (host), Brad Bennett, Paul Miller, KJ Munro, & Alan Pizzarelli

HNA 2017 panel on publishing HNA 2017 panel on publishing hosted by Deborah Kolodji


Native American Haiku—A Conversation

A beautiful multimedia presentation by Donna Beaver.

native american panel at HNA 2017 with Donna Beaver native american panel at HNA 2017 with Donna Beaver


Forest Bathing

While the Native American Haiku session was taking place, in the other room, there was a workshop by Michael Dylan Welch about the art of Forest Bathing. This sparked my imagination.


Altitude sickness

4-5pm I skipped a session to get to the closest pharmacy to get Vitamine C and an extra supply of acetaminophene for my headaches. In the hotel shuttle bus, I met a participant who spent the morning in the emergency ward because his eye was bleeding. Altitude sickness is affecting a lot of participants. We were warned before hand, but I never thought it would be so bad.


HNA Memorial reading

5pm I made it back on time to attend the HNA memorial reading.



Had a red chile cheeseburger at the Shake Foundation, just 3 minute walk from the hotel.


Altitude sickness

At 6pm, I retreat to my room. I managed to sleep 6 hours which is pretty good. No headache or body aches, but signs of bronchitis.


Sunset on Sangre de Cristo mountains.

People from Santa Fe called these mountains Sangre de Cristo mountains because at sunset the mountains are red like the blood of Christ. Glad I got to see this from my hotel room.


(This photo was taken shortly after a thunderstorm. Yes, it rained in the desert. There was even thunder!)


Kaleidoscope reading

I missed the kaleidoscope due to altitude sickness but found extracts from the books Seven Suns / Seven Moons (Tanya MacDonald and Michael Dylan Welch), Between Waves by Alexis Rotella, and Kala Ramesh online.






Saturday September 15 (Day 4)

I was feeling sick this morning, but really didn't want to miss the Dance your way through haiku presentation by Kala Ramesh featuring bharatanatyam dancer Preethi Ramaprasad. I quickly got dresses and headed for breakfast so I wouldn't be late.


Dance your way through haiku

Preethi Ramaprasad at HNA 2017 Kala Ramesh at HNA 2017

10-11h30 took a break

HNA Group Photo

We posed for a group picture outside the hotel. Just as photographer Garry Gay was ready to take the picture, an airport shuttle pulled between the group and the camera, generating much laughs.

HNA 2017 group picture


Haïjins & Haïkus in French-Canada: Beginnings & Trends

Presentations by Jessica Tremblay, Claudia Coutu Radmore, and Maxianne Berger

Maxianne Berger (HNA 2017)Claudia Radmore Coutu (HNA 2017) Claudia Radmore Coutu (HNA 2017)



Translating Haiku: Where Spirit Meets Letter

David G. Lanoue transformed into Phil Donahue to ask us questions about haiku.

David G. Lanoue (HNA 2017) David G. Lanoue (HNA 2017)


Seeing Haiku: Haiku in American Sign Language and Sign Mime

Jerome Cushman signed some haiku starting with some famous haiku by Nick Virgilio and Basho.

In the second part, he signed some haiku submitted by the audience.

Jerome Cushman signing haiku (HNA 2017)

Trends in Modern Haiga (panel)

The panelists were Linda M. Papanicolaou (chair), Melissa Allen, Terri L. French, Kris Moon (Kris Kondo), Patricia J. Machmiller, Carole MacRury, & Alexis Rotella.

Some tools and apps that were suggested for text and image: pixart (pissart?), Pix Monkey, Phonto, A+ signature, Photoshop PS Express, distress effects, photo toasters, Found Text Poetry imagery, Prisma (or Prizma) - a filter, waterLOGUE (transofrm photo into watercolour), Photo Blender, Mobile Monet, filter forge.

Some fun kids apps: Hello Crayon, Hello color pencil, hello oil painting

For test:

Patricia J. MachMiller  (HNA 2017) Kris Kondo  (HNA 2017)Haiga panel  (HNA 2017) Alexis Rotella (HNA 2017)Carole MacRury (HNA 2017) haiga panel  (HNA 2017) haiga panel  (HNA 2017)


La Fiesta del Haikú


Reading of the two late-night renku by Marshall Hryciuk and Karen Soehne. One of the renku was titled 'The Ghost of Abiqui' and had 25 collaborators.

Some renku links included:

'ceci n'est pas une pipe'

laughing maniacally

(one of the renku participants)


the teepee

stands empty

- Bill Mann (KJ Munro's husband, his first haiku!)



Announcement of the next HNA conference

Then it's time to announce the location of the next Haiku North America.

The next Haiku North America will take place in Winston-Salem (North Carolina) from August7-11, 2019. The organizing committee is Bob Moyer, Lenard D. Moore, Jessica Smith, David Russo, Julie Werther, Terri French. Theme will be community. Pre-conference events will involve community. Haibun contest. Haiku contest about chocolate (winner will see haiku printed on chocolate bar).




Sunday September 17, 2017 (Day 5)

I was the official cartoonist-in-residence during the conference. At 11:00, I presented an overview of the conference in photos, and comics. Here's a short (edited) video featuring only the comics:





Final words by Michael Dylan Welch and invitation to go to HNA 2018 by Bob Moyer. The conference ends about 12:30. Some people go home, others head to lunch because Tanka Sunday starts at 1:00pm.


Thank you!

Thank you to the members of the HNA 2017 organizing committee for an unforgettable conference: Charles Trumbull, Cynthia Henderson, Sondra J. Byrnes, Miriam Sagan, and Scott Wiggerman.

Afternoon of sightseeing in Santa Fe

In the afernoon, I had time for more sightseeing. I purchased a Cultural Pass and I have two museums to visit in only 4 hours.


I walk across the Railyard to catch the Santa Fe free pickup shuttle. The Railyard is a giant artists market. I also catch a glimpse of the RailRunner communiter train at the station.

railyard in Santa Fe

railyard in Santa Fe


At the New Mexico Museum of Art, I enjoyed discovering New Mexico art and also the beautiful courtyard.


At Pizza on the Roof, I eat while enjoying the view of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains and surrounding area.



Monday September 18, 2017 - Day 6 - Post Conference trip to Bandelier Monument

Preparing to leave the hotel for our trip to Bandelier National Monument.


The National Cemetery for veterans, visible from the bus, just outside Santa Fe.


The amazing landscapes of New Mexico between Santa Fe and Los Alamos.

evening falls

with every breath

another color

Agres Yvette (...), one of the winners of the haiku contest at HNA 2017


Rest Stop

A quick stop to stretch our legs on our way to Los Alamos. Beautiful view.


There are cave dwellings at the bottom of the mountain.


The guide pointed out that behind us was the old road to Los Alamos. I really liked the rock formation.


Our first stop is the Ray Bradbury museum in Los Alamos.

Los Alamos museum

Entering Bandelier National Monument.

Bandelier monument entrance


Bandelier Monument visitors centre.


Walking the main loop trail. We stopped to see a reconstructed kiva.

cactus kiva at bandelier monument


Our first view of the cave dwellings at the base of the mountain


Approaching the cave dwelling. There's a reconstructed house on the right side.


We're almost there. We can touch the salt-like surface.


Climbing ladders to access the dwelling.

cave cave

Inside the cave dwelling.


Climbing down the tiny steps.


Petroglyps on rock.


On the way back to the Visitor's centre through a wooden trail.


Tuesday September 17, 2017

The Capitol of New Mexico

After packing up for my trip home, I had a few hours to go visit The Capitol of New Mexico.

Lucky me! In the rotunda, there was a bookbinding exhibit, Portable Magic: the art of the book, by the Santa Fe VBook Arts Group.

There were also 3 floors of artwork.

I also had a lovely stroll in the tunnel linking the capitol to the north building.


Conference photos

Wanna share these photos? The photos are available on my Facebook photo albums (in larger resolution):

Day 1 HNA

Day 2 HNA

Day 3 HNA

Day 4 HNA

Various pictures (freebie tables, etc.)

Day 6 - Bandelier Monument (post-conference tour)




A well-deserved rest

Cartoonist-in-residence Jessica Tremblay enjoying tea on the balcony of the Hotel Santa Fe.


Haiku North America 2019



See you in Winston-Salem in 2019!