the more you arrive at the end,
the more you remain
at the beginning –
see the koel, with monk-like eyes,
watching the black crow’s nest
My tanka has been featured by Chen-ou Liu on NeverEnding Story along with the Chinese translation.
In the comments section of his blog, he has posted his award winning haibun on the same topic.
Here’s another tanka that was published on his blog in September 2017.
My Tanka Prose was published in Haibun Today’s December 2017 Journal. Many thanks to the editor, Janet Lynn Davis.
I love the way Haibun and Tanka Prose allow the combination of prose and poetry. My haibun series – Conversations with Marcus -is available on my other blog Phantom Road.
Yesterday’s experiment with tanka impels me to take it further with ‘Tanka Prose’. Like a haibun but with a signature tanka instead of a haiku, this is an excellent form to stretch one’s imagination and word crafting skills even further.
Try this or any other form of micropoetry and share using comments or Mister Linky.
For days we climbed together. Sometimes they disappeared into the mist ahead, sometimes they lingered on the edges. I could always hear their whispered voices, even as the sky slipped closer. But now the words are gone and I have been orphaned by the need to speak. In their soundless absence, the river is just one ceaseless motion, the moon in it is just a point of reflection and this moment is both big enough to fill the universe and small enough to tremble as the cold wind rushes by. What will the birds call me if I do not have a name?
on the other side
of the horizon-
the eagle’s wing
the silent dark
A couple of tanka this Friday morning!
The beauty of tanka comes from the juxtaposition of disparate images, the gentle twist, the tug of emotion.
Try a tanka or two! Share your own micropoetry using comments or Mister Linky.
candles and flowers,
an impromptu memorial
where the horror struck-
one goodbye on a page ripped
from a new school book
the moon and I
in an elevator-
trying not to look
at each other
Time for a Tanka, don’t you think. Always a massive challenge to get right, a tanka can be crafted in so many ways but I believe it works better if it says much more than the five lines allow and says it with subtlety, emotion and mindfulness.
Write your own tanka or any other kind of micropoetry and share it through comments or Mister Linky.
this monsoon sky
heaves inside my heart-
how can I hear his footsteps
in the pounding rain
This tanka takes me back to a poetweet (exactly 140 characters long including spaces and punctuation) I wrote almost three years ago:
A mango tree
outside my window
has broken into song.
Hush, I warn,
gather your boughs,
rein in your leaves,
tonight he may whisper his love.
Micropoetry in all its glorious forms is the essence of communication – succinct, layered, seductive and beautiful in its soulful brevity. Am going to be posting micropoetry every day, all through November. Thought I’d warm up my blog with a couple of tanka I posted on twitter earlier. If you’d like to write micropoetry with me by sharing your poem (in the comments section) or link (using the Mr Linky widget), do let me know. Who knows, it might be a fun journey – saying little, saying a lot, travelling far.
after long weeks
the grey monsoon
packs its clouds and leaves-
the turmeric sun
smiles like a stranger
a boy with a kite
was just that-
a tethered dream
writing haiku on empty cerulean
Say hello, share a poem, join the conversation!
Pleased to have my tanka featured by Chen-ou Liu on NeverEnding Story along with the Chinese translation.
I love this form and learnt to work with it through prompts on CDHK last November. Thanks for the master class on the ten techniques, Kristjaan (Chèvrefeuille).
the revolving door spins-
in a crackle of leaves and stars,
the ghost of winter bleeds the sky white,
even memories refuse to walk in this storm
its golden eyes darken
a white scarf tightens around its neck
its soundless voice freezing in the icy wind
just yesterday leaves were falling in russet rhyme
I must go
to that place within me
a return pilgrimage
stripped of thought, unchained from the world,
bloody, screaming, the way I came
Fujiwara no Teika’s Tanka Technique 10: Demon-quelling – onihishigitei or kiratsu no tei – includes strong or even vulgar diction but these elements are treated with sensibility and gentleness.
A wonderful month of Tanka prompts concludes at CDHK. My posts can be found here: The Trouble with Tanka 1-10
no stars in sight
just silent hearts that rise and fall
with the breath of this frangipani wind
the late November wind
breathes slowly, in and out,
cold, colder as it journeys within
the past lies still, unyielding, under the frost
love decays fast
with the bitterness of regurgitated ache
reeking of sour regret
as my memory plays salty tricks
things I forgot to remember to forget
Fujiwara no Teika’s Tanka Technique 9: Exquisite detail – komayaka naru tei -exact and precise details with often complex imagery.