Stumbling Toward Happiness

Paperback and e-book are available worldwide at Amazon stores and at The Book Depository.


Kat reads from Stumbling Toward Happiness (and her other books) and talks about her journey as a poet on Rattlecast #8, a podcast of Rattle Magazine (Sept 10, 2019), links:

My poem ‘taxonomy’ is published in Rattle Magazine issue 64 with a recording of Kat reading it.

My poem ‘attend’ was nominated for a “Best of the Net” award by Human/Kind Journal.

The Stumbling Toward Happiness book cover won the cover design award in Nonfiction (August, 2019)  at The Book Designer.



Stumbling Toward Happiness is a spin on the “how to be happy” genre. Each of us has what we need to be happy already inside us, and no one can tell us how to get there. Isn’t that empowering to think about? The point is not so much to arrive, but to learn and unlearn through the gifts of our beautiful imperfection–compassion, forgiveness, patience, courage, resilience, strength–as we strive along that unwieldy path. It’s an ongoing, unending, beautiful process, and we’re all connected through it.

Happiness meditations. Field notes from an inward journey home.

With 111 meditations of interconnected poetry and prose compiled into in 9 chapters, Stumbling Toward Happiness is an all-immersive journey of self-discovery, personal transformation, and triumph. The relatable insights celebrate the process of growth and the personal and enduring center of joy within. Like a diary of inner travel, this third book in its series is rooted in the lived experience that happiness is a journey not a destination.

These Japanese-form hybrid poems, called haibun and tanka prose, combine a lyrical paragraph of spiritual reflection with a haiku, tanka, or other 1-5 line “small stone” poem that expands its meaning.

Informed by the author’s deep contemplation of nature as a scientist and a poet and reminiscent of the reflections of Mark Nepo and Mary Oliver, the book encourages deep soul-searching.

Themes include connection and compassion, the gifts of imperfection, radical forgiveness, the search for happiness and healing, a return to simple abundance, and awakening to the wonder of the universe and ourselves.

Stumbling Toward Happiness will resonate with every reader as they reflect on their own source of inner wisdom and joy.


  • “A wonderful collection of her work that reveals as much about the reader as the poet.” – Michael Rehling, a quiet haiku poet living in the North Woods of Michigan
  • “This book is about being “wrapped in birdsong waiting to be released,” as gentle conversations abound in these hybrid pieces of prose and poetry.” – Alan Summers, President, United Haiku and Tanka Society and co-founder, Call of the Page
  • “This book reminds us that we all—from the weeds in our own yard to the stars in the heavens—are in this together.” –Terri L. French, haiku poet and editor, author of Keepers: a Book of Haibun


  • “She casts light on private shadow moments. I highly recommend this book” – Amazon reader ★★★★★
  • “These poems make me feel it is okay to be a work in progress…Tremendously cathartic to read.” – Amazon reader ★★★★★
  • I am savouring each deeply touching piece of prose, every sparkling gem of poetry.” – Amazon Canada reader ★★★★★