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his dresses: the dark after dark, comets in the nightsky.

Byline: Subterranean Blue Poetry

Title of Book: his dresses: the dark after dark

Author: ai li

Publisher: ai li

Date of Publication: 2012

Pages: 134

"It was in Bobcaygeon, I saw the constellations
Reveal themselves, one star at time"
- from Bobcaygeon by The Tragically Hip

his dresses: dark after dark by ai li, is erotic haiku that explores the dark side, breathes into the cold night air, a brilliant read. Poet ai li lives in London and has been published in the United Kingdom, Japan and the United States. She has published 18 books of Haiku and Tanka at Amazon Station and is the Poetry Editor of the online journals, Still and dew-on-line.

East meets West in this fantastical work of New Age Haiku and Tanka, poetry writing as a storybook, a journal of days passing. The writing is an art nouveau evolution in the traditional Japanese form, the Poet describes haiku as “a poem of one to four lines about a moment in time allows a glimpse of the eternal” and tanka as “a poem of five lines about a journey into life, love and loss touching memory at its deepest level”.

“a teacup

in her bedroom

a teacup


nothing on”

This poetry is dark, yet exquisite, comets falling through the darkness, streaks of light in the black of night. This poetry is enigmatic, in a breath, profound, as if having been found on a path after a disaster and having survived. Themes include suicide, death, love, as if a darkness around love, aches, is immeadiate, plays with the sensual, perhaps the dark side of ended love relationships.

“half the night

holds my

silent scream

the other half


“late night movie suicide

her empty apartment

my empty apartment”

There are some allusions to power paradigms and gender politics, as the sun sets on the cultural dirge of ego in the West. A juxtaposition with a celebration of the mystique of the feminine. The sharp edges, dark with violence become art, as if bright light plays through silk gauze. As if a struggle, a dialectic between the breath to live and the wish of death all soothed with the Poet’s pen.

The poetry is original, the use of language sublime, rarely the haiku rhyme or repeat words. And it is all riveting. The use of words, very pared in as if adhering to the unofficial rule of 11 syllables in English for Haiku, it is the economy of space, lending itself to brilliance, streaks of light in the dark night.

One of the best films i have seen is “Yes”, a film with dialogue in iambic pentameter and rhyme. Imagine a film score entirely in Haiku or Tanka form, it startles and fascinates the mind. Some of the best Haiku in English, This Writer has ever read, his dresses: the dark after dark by ai li.

Available from Amazon Canada.

Available from Amazon United States.

Available from Amazon United Kingdom.

Genre: Poetry, New Age, Women's Literature

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