In the Garden of Absence
by Stella Pierides
with an Afterword by Michael Dylan Welch
Awarded third place in the Haiku Society of America Mildred Kanterman Memorial Merit Book Awards 2013 (for books published in 2012).
From the judges commentary in Frogpond, journal of the Haiku Society of America.
“A charming collection… This intersection of the past and present is within all of us, and Pierides mines it well. A very satisfying read.”
From the back cover:
In the Garden of Absence takes you on a journey echoing the author’s childhood. Yet it does so in the context of adult concerns, uncertainties, and anxieties—as well as pleasures. This book explores the existential fear of loneliness, the many facets of absence, and glimpses a path towards bearing absence and being creatively alone.
“Readers of any book of poetry can assume that each poem has substantial personal meaning for the writer. The poems in this collection go one step further, offering personal meaning to the reader. Stella Pierides pays attention in simple ways (and sometimes vast ways) to her surrounding world, noticing the warmth of a hen’s eggs on Mother’s Day, that only a dog makes eye contact on a crowded train, or in observing the tiny dark holes in a pin cushion as she extracts its pins.”
—Michael Dylan Welch, from the afterword, “Presence in Absence”
in the garden of absence
Painting: Welsh Hill, by Maria Pierides
Poster design: Maria Pierides and Rubin Eynon
Print book formatting: Thomas Geyer
Honours, comments + Essays:
— “In Pierides’s meditations, imagination takes center stage, as do imaginary gardens, real toads, and their negative space… The result is a welcome debut in which the reader will find much to admire.”
In Briefly Reviewed, Frogpond, 36-1, Spring 2013 (Click here, please scroll down).
— “This is an engaging collection…”
Modern Haiku 44.2, 2013 (in the “Briefly Noted” section).
— “A Poetic Gem… In the Garden of Absence is a lovely little book that sparkles with a quiet brilliance – every word shines.”
— “In the Garden of Absence is a stunning book. From homely to somewhat obscure, Pierides touches a chord. Her poetry is the essence of haiku and an inspiration for many of us. In the Garden of Absence A must-read book of poetry.”
Sondra Byrnes on Amazon.co.uk
–“… everything, from cover to cover, the cover image, the design, the graphical presentation, the empty space around the haiku, also the introduction… all very aesthetically (one more Greek word) appealing and pleasing! Thank you for taking me on this Magical Journey!”
Freddy Ben-Arroyo, Haifa, Israel*
–“… I really enjoy reading it, and already have some favorites…”
Annie Juhl, Svendborg, Denmark.
–“I just wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed reading your book this afternoon while sipping on a chai latte. A few that I particularly like are: “between my ego and yours”, “the horses neighing”, “your vacant stare”, “moment of stillness” and “shooting stars”. The whole book is really lovely… the beautiful cover, the feel of the paper and the afterword by Michael Dylan Welch. Thank you for sharing your beautiful poems with me!”
Lauren Mayhew, Boston, USA
–“Stella Pierides pays attention in simple ways (and sometimes vast ways) to her surrounding world, noticing the warmth of a hen’s eggs on Mother’s Day, that only a dog makes eye contact on a crowded train, or in observing the tiny dark holes in a pin cushion as she extracts its pins.”
Michael Dylan Welch, Sammamish, Washington, USA
–“I cannot recommend ‘In the Garden of Absence‘ by Stella Pierides highly enough. A great Afterword too by Michael Dylan Welch. … The book is entrancing.”
Sheila Windsor, Worcester, UK
An informative, literary, well-written essay, “Presence in Absence” by Michael Dylan Welch, first written in October of 2012 and included in In the Garden of Absence as an afterword, can be read at Graceguts, by clicking here
The print edition can be ordered from
and from your local bookshop: ISBN: 978-3-944155-00-5 (Germany) Fruit Dove Press, Paperback, 76 pages.
-Price: USD: 10.00 + p&p; GBP 6.50 + p&p; EUR 8.00 + p&p
e-editions are now available from Smashwords https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/263461
(Apple iPad/iBooks, Nook, Sony Reader, Kobo, and most e-reading apps including Stanza, Aldiko, Adobe Digital Editions, others), PDF and kindle
Publication information: – ISBN: 9783944155012 e-book
– Published by Fruit Dove Press at Smashwords. Price: USD 5.99