Mile Stamenković


Mile Stamenković was born in 1952 in Ogulin, Croatia. He was a medical doctor, gynaecologist and had a Master’s Degree in Medical Sciences.  He died in Rijeka in 2000. Mile was also a prominent writer and haiku poet and his poems and haiku have been published in magazines and anthologies in Croatia and abroad. He was a member of The Croatian Haiku Association and The Haiku Society of America.

Mile Stamenković started writing poetry more intensely from 1974 onward and won his first prize in 1977 in the ‘Goranovo proljeće 77’ poetry competition. From then on his poems appeared in many national and international magazines. His haiku were featured in some of the most prestigious haiku journals, anthologies and haiku-calendars (Blithe Spirit, Azami, Woodpecker, Modern Haiku, Haiku Headlines, Hobo, Paper Wasp, The Daily Yomiuri, KŌ, Frogpond, Timepieces). His haiku was also included in Haiku World, an International Poetry Almanac by W. J. Higginson, 1996.

Mile published and illustrated two books of poetry in 1976 and 1993, and a collection of haiku, Breaths of July's Linden Forests, waka and renga in 1995. In 1998 he co-edited with Jadran Zalokar a trilingual anthology of haiku poetry (in Croatian, Italian and English) - Hvatanje sjenke vjetra/ Catturare l'ombra del vento/ Grassping the Shadow of the Wind. In the same year in Rijeka, Mile Stamenković hosted the first meeting of haiku poets from that region. 

Books published:

  • Poezija i ilustracije, (Poetry and illustrations), 1976;
  • Poezija i ilustracije, (Poetry and illustrations), 1993;
  • Dahovi srpanjskih lipika / Breaths of July's Linden Forests, waka and renga, 1995;
  • Hvatanje sjenke vjetra / Catturare l’ombra del vento / Grasping the Shadow of the Wind, regionalna antologija haikua / Regional Haiku Collection, Rijeka 1999.

Selected haiku:


Uništen prostor -                                             Destroyed area -
vjetar se zaustavio                                          the wind has stopped
pod divljim kestenom.                                   under the horse-chestnut.

(An Award, 33rd A-Bomb Memorial Day Haiku Meeting Competition, Kyoto, 1999)


Vjetar u šašu.                                                    Wind in the reed.
Divlje guske gledaju                                        The wild geese look                       
u vodu ...                                                             into the water ...

(Vrabac/Sparrow No. 7-10, 1994-1995)


Next to the flutter
of the wings, the buildings
had flown through.

(In the Prime Selection for the best Croatian haiku of the year - Second Annual Haiku Competition 1994 of the Croatian Haiku Association) 


to be waist deep
in water:  neither man
nor – fish.

(Haiku World, An International Poetry Almanac William J. Higginson; Kodansha International Tokyo-New York-London, 1996, p. 125)


A demolished town.
The wind howls not knowing
where it would go.

(Calendar-book the Timepieces: Haiku Week-At-A-Glance 1997)


an owl hooting…
the moon slowly siling
down the windy night

(Hvatanje sjenke vjetra/Catturare l'ombra del vento/Grasping the Shadow of the Wind, Regional Haiku Anthology. StaM, Rijeka 1999)


In the deserted town
hungry war victims
feed the pigeons.

(Knots: The Anthology of Southeastern Europe Haiku Poetry. ed. by Dimitar Anakiev, Jim Kacian, Tolmin, Slovenia: Prijatelj Haiku Press, 1999)


A distant offing.
Shimmering under the Sun
some fish and shells.

Daleka pučina.
Na suncu se ljeskaju
ribe i školjke.

(Karolina Riječka 2004 - 2005)


The morning guest
shaking down the snow
of his worn out coat.

Jutarnji gost
otresa snijeg sa svog
istrošenog kaputa.

(Nepokošeno nebo/An Unmown Sky (Antologija hrvatskoga haiku-pjesništva 1996-2007/Anthology of Croatian Haiku Poetry 1996-2007), ed. by Đurđa Vukelić-Rožić, Ivanić Grad, 2011)


This profile was created in collaboration with the Croatian poet and editor Đurđa Vukelić-Rožić. We are very grateful for her support and dedication!