Canberra poet, Hazel Hall, has teamed with tai chi practitioner and teacher, Angelina Egan, to produce a chapbook titled Step by Step. Their book was published earlier this year by Picaro Poets, an imprint of Ginninderra Press.
Step by Step presents the 24 posture tai chi chuan, a popular short form tai chi sequence practised worldwide. Page by page, the collection proceeds through the postures, pairing photographs of Angelina in the relevant tai chi pose with related haiku by Hazel. For example:
just before dusk ‒
threading her shuttles
18. Fair lady works the shuttles
Throughout the collection, the nature of each tai chi movement provides an intriguing basis for Hazel’s haiku:
Movement 4. Brush knee and side step three times
one heartbeat ‒
enough that a butterfly
brushes my knee
Movement 19. Needle at the bottom of the sea
a needle lost ‒
finding the point
in the search
Tai chi and haiku seem perfectly at home together in this chapbook. Congratulations to Hazel and Angelina for producing a book that will appeal to those with an interest in either tai chi or haiku, or both. Copies of Step by Step can be obtained from Ginninderra Press.