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Laughing To Myself, by Tom Clausen, Michael Ketchek Publisher, 125 High St., Rochester, New York, 14609, mketchek@frontier.com, 2013. 8.5 X 5.5 inch paperback, 25 pages.
Review by Dennis (chibi) Holmes

I’ve known Tom online for a few years. He has written in the short poem venue based upon the Japanese haiku, senryu, haibun, and tanka since 1989. His book, Laughing To Myself, spans then until now with poems plucked from publications such as Bottle Rockets, Brussels Sprouts, Empty Ring of Stones, Frogpond, Modern Haiku, and Upstate Dim Sum, to mention a few.

Laughing To Myself, is strewn mostly with three line poems together with a two and few one line poems. The poems are personable, mostly, containing a “nature” theme. The poems are easy to read and resonate with an inner calm, offering a polite “ah” with a thoughtful yet enjoyable “ha.”

A good three line example from Tom’s book:

riverbank swallows
  my beer label
     peels easily

(It’s probably my penchant for puns, but, I read “swallows” as word play, although, I do not know if that Tom’s intent.)

A two line poems:

losing control of my son
 —and myself

(I’ve been there and do/did that!)

A one line example:

in the theater spotlight dust falls

(the imagery quite fetching)

I would hope to see more of Tom’s poems in future publications. I’ve smiled at his poems in, Laughing To Myself.

review by Dennis (chibi) Holmes in Lynx XXVIII: no. 3- October , 2013