Weekly Poetry Challenge Stars | #SynonymsOnly: Comfort & Worn: Traci Kenworth

It’s been a busy week! I’m still working away on my newest book, “Word Craft ~ Prose & Poetry: The Art of Crafting Syllabic Poetry.” What I thought would be a quick book has turned into much more. That’s great because we will all benefit from my research.

My husband and I also decided that since its a good idea to stay inside during the Corvid-19 crisis, it would also be a good time to start painting the inside of our house before the Arizona heat settles in for the summer. So, off we went to buy paint and supplies.

If I don’t respond as quickly as usual, don’t panic… I’m probably stuck on a ladder!

Whenever, there is a crisis, I find that it helps me to stay busy. I limit my time on the news channels (and Twitter). I don’t know about you, but too much of that stresses me out further.

There’s only one thing we need to need to remember. We’re all in this together. This virus doesn’t care what your political preferences are or how much money you have. Just be KIND to each other. Help your neighbors and take responsibility for your own health.

Ruth Scribbles picked a great pair of words for us all to work with this week for our #SynonymsOnly challenge: Comfort & Worn.

Many of you chose to write poetry that reflected for feelings about the insecure times we live in. Some you shared poetry that spoke to the comfort of family, like Merril D. Smith did HERE.

And, some wrote more like Traci Kenworth, in her Haibun, accompanied by three Senryu. The only thing missing is a title, which I took the liberty of supplying below.

Congratulations, Traci Kenworth, its your turn to pick the words for next month’s #SyllablesOnly Challenge. Email me at tankatuesdaypoetry@gmail.com before next month’s challenge.

“Tom’s Dream,” Haibun

Tom spent his days out in the barn. His night by the campfire. He couldn’t quite forget the way things had been when Judith had been alive. He missed her. He found himself growing impatient with the daylight. He wanted nothing more than to be done. He was worn. No comfort remained for him in his days. He closed his eyes, the saw laid to rest beside him. This then, was the end.

He awoke on a park bench, just south of Heaven’s gate. It took him all day and most of the night to get where he headed. He knew he’d find her there, waiting for him. She always said she’d park herself outside the gates and rest a spell till he showed.

It sure was beautiful here.

Look at all the happy faces.

He waved to a few and renewed his pace, energy bursting inside of him that he hadn’t seen in years. He’d been changed inside to a new version of himself, strong and true. He hummed to himself and continued on. Surely, he’d reach those gates soon. He came to a gate, but it wasn’t the pearly ones. It was ordinary and showed signs of life. He gazed at the white picket fence in confusion. He’d seen it somewhere before but where? He peered at it. Why—it couldn’t be.

His old house. The one of his first wedded years with his wife. They’d lived on a farmstead outside of town. Bellbrook, OH. He inspected the gate further. Oh, how he remembered the creak! He always meant to fix it but never found enough time.

His fingers splayed across the gate hitch. Another second and he was inside.

As he approached, he saw someone swinging on the porch swing.

He froze.

It was her. Judith. He smiled and waved.

She blew him a kiss. “Welcome, home.”

“Where’s my tool shed?” He scratched his newly restored hair.

“Take a gander out back.”

He did. The old shed was in need of as much repair as he remembered. He nodded to himself. Just right. He rejoined his wife on the bench and sipped a glass tumbler from the pitcher of iced tea she had on the tray on the table. She passed him a chicken sandwich. With a bite, he savored the quality. “Man, there’s no place like Heaven.”

“Heaven,” she said. “Why, Tom. You fell asleep on your tool bench again.”

He woke to the brightness of another lonely day. With a groan, he picked up his tools and started anew. His gaze went toward the ceiling as he at last set his saw aside for a time.

He blew a kiss. “See you soon, darling.”

The lights dimmed in the shed with a switch.

Maybe he’d enjoy some iced tea. A little reminder. A little promise. He reached for the pitcher and pain shot through him. He heard something shatter as blackness covered his vision.

He found himself before the picket fence. This time, he didn’t hesitate to go in. Judith laughed at the wrinkles fading from his skin. “It’s like we always imagined, isn’t it?” she said.

He nodded; afraid he’d wake again.

“Don’t worry. You’re home now. And about time. This place needs some tending to. Your tools are out back in the shed.”

He smiled. “Don’t nag me, woman. I’ll get to it after a drink of that tea and one of your famous sandwiches.”

scoured boots in the shed
tattered khakis faded perch
before the tool bench

saw rests in
impatience above
the concrete

the brand
cracked in shoes
by choice

©2020 Traci Kenworth

Source: Colleen’s Weekly Tanka 2020 Poetry Challenge No. 168 Traci Kenworth – Where Genres Collide Traci Kenworth YA Author & Book Blogger for all Genres as well as craft books

In my research regarding Haibun (Haikai poetry), I discovered that in Japan, this form was used to write about autobiographical prose, travel journals, a slice of life, memories, dreams, character sketches, places, events, or objects; all finished off with a Haiku/Senryu or two.

Traci’s piece reads like dream/memoir. I enjoyed her creativity. Besides… with everything else going on, it’s nice to spend some time reading about something that turns out happily ever after.

See you tomorrow for the new challenge.

Published by Colleen M. Chesebro

An avid reader, Colleen M. Chesebro rekindled her love of writing poetry after years spent working in the accounting industry. These days, she loves crafting syllabic poetry, flash fiction, and creative fiction and nonfiction. In addition to poetry books, Chesebro’s publishing career includes participation in various anthologies featuring short stories, flash fiction, and poetry. She’s an avid supporter of her writing community on Word Craft Poetry.com by organizing and sponsoring a weekly syllabic poetry challenge, called #TankaTuesday, where participants experiment with traditional and current forms of Japanese and American syllabic poetry. Chesebro is an assistant editor of The Congress of the Rough Writers Flash Fiction Anthology & Gitty Up Press, a micro-press founded by Charli Mills and Carrot Ranch. In January 2022, Colleen founded Unicorn Cats Publishing Services to assist poets and authors in creating eBooks and print books for publication. In addition, she creates affordable book covers for Kindle and print books. Chesebro lives in the house of her dreams in mid-Michigan surrounded by the Great Lakes with her husband and two (unicorn) cats, Chloe & Sophie.

20 thoughts on “Weekly Poetry Challenge Stars | #SynonymsOnly: Comfort & Worn: Traci Kenworth

  1. Beautifully done, Traci 🙂
    Sis, my parents are painting too!
    I think, if we ever shut our schools, a good clear out would be a great idea!!!


  2. Traci’s writing is lovely!
    Funny , my husband just told me we need to paint the house while we are hold up inside,
    We have 130 cases of Cov-19 here in Colorado and I am quite sure the toll will be higher today!
    Happy painting Colleen , LOL 🙂


    1. Oh, that’s funny! We just moved from Colorado Springs last spring to Arizona. There are no tests here so when they start testing it will be huge everywhere I suspect. Stay safe. ❤️


      1. Now, this getting really funny 🙂
        We lived in Colorado Springs for 21 years before moving to Denver in 2012.
        We have been traveling to Az for the last 4 years in our motor home and stay at a County park close to Phoenix.
        We have been lucky with the testing here, we have a great Gov in Jared Polis.
        Yes, I imagine there will be a lot of cases there of the virus when testing starts.
        Take good care, Colleen! ❤


  3. Since spring is almost here, we’re staying inside and spring cleaning. When I feel stressed, I find cleaning to be a good outlet for me.

    Clean hands, vitamin C, drink plenty of water, stay home if you can, be patient.

    Have a fabulous week ahead.


  4. Good luck with the spring cleaning/painting, Colleen, and thank you for the shoutout!
    I enjoyed Traci’s piece, which seemed like flash fiction with poetry to me. The verses were poignant.


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