PRAISE FOR SHADED PERGOLA:
“THIS BOOK IS A MUST-READ. Graceful, like a quiet call to prayer...the beauty and quiet power of the poet's work make this volume of verse one that almost any poetry fan will likely treasure”
— THE US REVIEW OF BOOKS
“Fall into a kaleidoscope of poignancy and beauty as the pages unfold in this delightful read. Eloquently written and gorgeously illustrated with handcrafted artistry, haiku poems and delicate prose lull the soul into a world where little exists except purity and succulence”
— THE MANHATTAN BOOK REVIEW
“Multi-talented, [Traganas] defies definition. She is all about beauty with all its deep implications. For those who have a penchant for botanical studies, there is a delight waiting to feast their eyes...gorgeous manifestations of beauty”
— WORLD HAIKU REVIEW
ELENI TRAGANAS is an award-winning renaissance artist in many fields: musician, composer, painter, pen-and-ink artist, writer, and poet. In Shaded Pergola she brings her talent to haiku and short poetry in a rare volume featuring exquisitely detailed botanical illustrations. Long ago on a blisteringly hot July afternoon, we read in the Preface, the author trekked home from the library with a cache of books, sat herself under the cool shade of a garden pergola and excitedly unpacked the volumes that would be accompanying her on her summer vacation. To the fourteen-year-old bibliophile, every book lovingly flipped through elicited a fresh and thrilling tactile sensation of great expectations to come: a weighty tome of breathtaking engravings, some plant identification guides. And finally, two slim volumes: one modest book of Japanese haiku, and a collection of T'ang Dynasty Chinese poems. Immersing herself in the simplicity and evocative power of these unassuming poems, she sensed a shiver of recognition and sat entranced in a state of exhilaration. On that singular bucolic afternoon many decades ago, the author was baptized into the mesmerizing world of Haiku.
The haiku and senryu of Shaded Pergola revisit those first moments of intense discovery. With luxurious original sketches and botanical illustrations inspired by antiquarian engravings, the poems in this unique collection embody evanescent impressions meant to speak for themselves—and lead the reader into a transitory and spellbinding world where nature and the human soul find a common but rarefied affinity.