John Brandi - Poet & Painter
John Brandi - Poet & Painter


The Great Unrest
2019, White Pine Press

The poems in John Brandi's new collection, The Great Unrest, illuminate a lifetime of travels—-southern Italy, Crete, India, China, Alaska, the Caribbean—-as well as the intimate landscape of New Mexico, his homeland for fifty years. Sober, unfiltered, defiant, and pulsing with joie de vivre, these poems represent the interior and exterior world of a seeker who refuses to give in to the darkness of our times.

Pa' Siempre: Cuba Poems
2016, Tres Chicas Books

38 poems by John Brandi and Renée Gregorio culled from several trips to the island Of Cuba; 8 drawings by John Brandi. Afterword by the authors. Glossary of Cuban cultural and musical terminology.

At It Again
2015, Tooth of Time Books

"John Brandi's poems are simple enough, made out of whatever's at hand. They aren't highfalutin and won't make you rich, but they'll make you happier than you were before you read them."
—Bill Porter / Red Pine

The World, the World
2013, White Pine Press

In The World, the World John Brandi takes his cues from the works of Chinese painters, the travels of Basho, and the plain speech of his "shack-simple" contemporaries. His poems distill the essence of his travels in the American high desert, Japan, India, the Himalayas, and blend them with his life at home in the mountains of New Mexico. With keen ear, offbeat humor, spiritual insight, and love for all that illuminates mind and heart, Brandi transforms our idea of the world and our sense of place in it.

Seeding The Cosmos
2010, La Alameda Press

Thirty years of selected modern American haiku from John Brandi's oeuvre have been collected into this handsome edition with a cover collage and three illustrations by the author.

Road to the Clouds House
2009, La Alameda Press

Twenty prose poems, written in call-and-response tradition with Renee Gregorio, from the authors' stay in Chiapas, Mexico. This is the softcover edition of the rare limited-numbers edition published by New Mexico's Palace Press. Chiapas poet, Ambar Past, says: "John Brandi and Renee Gregorio follow the ancient Sak Be to the highlands of Chiapas. 'The White Road' of the Maya is the blank page on which they write their poems. Wandering and writing in the tradition of Basho, they share with us a poetic testimony of the Journey."

Facing High Water
2008, White Pine Press

"These poems shine with a Taoist sensibility and the wisdom and simplicity of self. John Brandi, as a traveler throughout Asia and the Americas, gives us the artist's heightened sensitivity and clarity of detail; and poems of rare precision, charm and truth."
—Joanne Kyger

Water Shining Beyond the Fields
2006, Tres Chicas Books

A collection of journeys through Cambodia, Southern China and Thailand written in the haibun form.

"Brandi writes honestly and wittily; his prose is swift and crisp. Like another poet, Leonard Cohen, who wondered rhetorically if travel leads us to anywhere, Brandi seems to suggest that destination is not as important as the act of adventuring itself."
—Preston Houser

Kyoto Journal

The Unswept Path
2005, White Pine Press

Edited by John Brandi and Dennis Maloney, The Unswept Path is a diverse gathering of American poets who have chosen the haiku as one of the forms in which they write. This anthology presents the many faces of the haiku. Each poet chosen has worked the territory of the haiku into a personal landscape, and they offer a panorama of images and sound, joy and sadness, recollection and thought.

Empty Moon : Belly Full / Haiku from India and Nepal
2004, Pilgrims Publishing

"These poems ring true, ring changes on our lives as planet people, caught in our inner bureaucracies of the soul, found in the very lostness we once feared. Turn off your computer, stop the car and muffle the cell phone: find something human, right here in your hand."
—William J. Higginson

In What Disappears
2003, White Pine Press

"Delicate, gracious and eloquent, John Brandi's moving new collection...reveals that he remains an extraordinarily profound poet of prayer and praise. His tradition is that of the timeless spiritual mendicant, the perpetual wanderer, the seeker who travels the raw paths of experience in search of the world's wisdom. His is the most honorable and heroic of ambitions—to dress our broken world in the clothes of language, trust, and hope."
—David St. John

Stone Garland
a haiku journey: northern Viet Nam
2000, Tooth of Time Books

96 haiku in a limited edition with loose-wrap cover. From Brandi's introduction: "While in Viet Nam, my eyes never stopped looking, my pen never stopped writing. Of the haiku that follow, most are culled from notebooks penned during three inspiring weeks among people of varied tasks—some in the maze of Ha Noi's Old Quarter, some in village river ports, many at work in the rich, wet poetic mountainscapes nearing Yunnan."

Reflections in the Lizard's Eye
2000, Western Edge Press

Thirteen stories on the land and people of the American Southwest: hidden nooks, wandering poets, Hispanic curanderas, maverick truckers, lone cowboys, Mexican folk artists, Hopi mesa dwellers.

"The way John Brandi interprets the desert world is rich with the guts and gusto of old-fashioned magicians. The man is absolutely shameless in his lust for being alive. His is a bittersweet, loving vision, as well as a hardass, heartfelt swansong to disappearing vestiges of a more truthful way of life."
—John Nichols

From the Introduction
Unmasking the Fire: Bali Journals
2000, Yoo-Hoo Press

Co-authored with Renee Gregorio, these paired journal excerpts are culled from several journeys to Bali. Two distinctive viewpoints, written in haibun style, enhanced with Brandi's collage images.

Visits to the City of Light
2000, Tooth of Time Books

Poems & prose from travels in the Himalayas, Laos, Thailand, Indonesia, and India. Three photos by the author.

"It's not simply the light of Asia that's informing these poems. In this book one perceives a deepening inward ... moments of absolute epiphany flooded with the details of life. Brandi is a human being, affirming poetry of great beauty and, amid multi-petalings of image-details, lines that speak to the core of the self."
—Jack Hirschman

From the Introduction

No Other Business Here: a Haiku Correspondence
1999, La Alameda Press

Co-authored with Steve Sanfield. For decades Brandi and Sanfield have exchanged plaintive, often whimsical 3-liners full of quick-spark insight into the world's fleeting essences, and into the little truths at the core of their slapstick stumbles. Here are the best of 'em.

"Brandi and Sanfield are pioneers of the American haiku. Read these poems only for pleasure."
—Michael McClure

Heartbeat Geography
1995, White Pine Press

"I love John Brandi's 'pledge to clarity,' his politics in the sense of witness, his candor, his delight & heart towards children & friends, his terrific travel details and his aspiration toward egolessness ... This book sings with life!"
—Anne Waldman

A Question Of Journey
1995, Light and Dust

"Brandi's work exemplifies the impressionistic postcard travel-writing style established by Jack Kerouac. His work seeks source and renewal in new geographies and in the act of travel with its inevitable encounters and mysteries. He gets inside and outside things. Nothing passes him by. He is a seer, a person who looks, who retains an abiding curiosity and sympathy with special people and places. Lucky for us that John's a praiser, a psalmist if you will, affirming and preserving the facts of his life his art abounds in."
—David Meltzer

Weeding The Cosmos
1994, La Alameda Press

"Here are poems which leap into the center of gravity... As delicious as discovering the moon over and over again, this book says- Wake up! Be amazed at what happens, no matter what."
—Natalie Goldberg

"I never tire of Brandi's humor, which is never superficial and mixed with compassionate sadness."
—Morgan Gibson

Kyoto Journal

That Back Road In
1985, Bookpeople

"Good strong simple poems, quietly eloquent, shapely as snowflakes."
—Edward Abbey

"John Brandi's sandy poem mandalas, crisscrossing back and forth on their own paths, begin to fill out landscapes in depth. Life in both space and time—"
—Gary Snyder

"Lines as wiry and sinuous and vivid as a desert campfire. Brandi's idea that landscape 'projected' the typography is fascinating."
—Michael McClure