Skip to Main Content

Special Collections: Roseliep Collection

Teaching a class that would benefit from using Special Collections Materials?


Father Raymond Roseliep was a noted poet and haiku master and a faculty member at Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa. He was born on August 11, 1917, in Farley, Iowa, to John Albert Roseliep and Anna Elizabeth Anderson. He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Loras College in 1939. From 1939 to 1943 he studied at the seminary at the Catholic University of America in Washington D.C., and was ordained June 12, 1943, at the Cathedral of St. Raphael, Dubuque, Iowa. In 1946 he joined the faculty of Loras College while working on his Master of Arts in English, which he obtained in 1948, from Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. He received his Doctor of Philosophy in English Literature from the University of Notre Dame in 1954. After his retirement from teaching in 1966, he became the resident chaplain at Holy Family Hall, an infirmary for Franciscan nuns in Dubuque. Father Roseliep died December 6, 1983.

Widely published and recognized as a master of traditional English verse forms, Roseliep began experimenting with haiku in 1960 and published eleven collections of haiku between 1976 and his death in 1983. In addition to the major haiku periodicals which published his work regularly, more than ninety other magazines have printed his haiku, and he appears in many anthologies and in a growing number of textbooks. His haiku attracted critical praise from such poets as W.H. Auden, Josephine Jacobsen, Denise Levertov, William Stafford, X.J. Kennedy, and A.R. Ammons.

Roseliep won the Harold G. Henderson Award from the Haiku Society of America in 1977 and 1982, and the Shugyo Takaha Award (grand prize) from the Yuki Teikei Haiku Society of the United States and Canada in 1980. Sailing Bones earned him first place in the Merit Book Awards from the Haiku Society of America in 1981.

Biography adapted from: Roseliep, Raymond. Swish of Cow Tail. Amherst, MA: Swamp Press, 1982. Print.

Father Roseliep’s books:

  • The Linen Bands - 1961
  • The Small Rain - 1963
  • Love Makes the Air Light - 1965
  • Flute Over Walden - 1976
  • Walk in Love - 1976
  • Light Footsteps - 1976
  • A Beautiful Woman Moves with Grace - 1976
  • Sun in His Belly - 1977
  • Step on the Rain - 1977
  • Wake to the Bell - 1977
  • A Day in the Life of Sobi-Shi - 1978
  • Sailing Bones - 1978
  • Sky in My Legs - 1979
  • Firefly in My Eyecup - 1979
  • The Still Point – Haiku of Mu - 1979
  • Listen to Light - 1980
  • Swish of Cow Tail - 1982
  • Rabbit in the Moon - November 1983
  • The Earth We Swing On - 1984

Roseliep Collections

Finding Aid - File Cabinets

This document contains a guide to materials stored in the cabinets in the Roseliep study room. Included in the documents are reviews of all of his published texts and the research he did for his PhD Dissertation.

Finding Aid - Letters

Listing of all of letters that Father Roseliep sent, received, and retained. Includes the incipit of each letter, a physical description, and a note as to whether the letter contains poetry.

Finding Aid - Poetry

This finding aid is a listing of Father Roseliep's published poetry including the publication date, the publisher, and the call number of the book it can be found in within the Roseliep Seminar Room.

Loras College is the literary executor of Fr. Roseliep's estate. If you wish to publish his work, click on the button below to submit a request.

Finding Aid - Periodicals

This document lists articles about Raymond Roseliep and reviews of his poetry.