TANKA TUESDAY POETRY CHALLENGE STARS | Synonyms Only “Past & Present” challenge no. 210

This week Word Crafters, I gave you two words: past and present. I asked you to choose synonyms and write your own poetry! Your creativity has reached new levels! You all wrote amazing poetry!

Here’s everyone who joined in:

1.Padre9.Zander17.Ruth Scribbles
2.willowdot2110.Cheryl18.Donna Matthews
3.Trent McDonald11.Jude19.Sue Vincent
4.Dave Madden12.anita dawes20.theindieshe
5.Tina Stewart Brakebill13.s. s.21.kittysverses
6.Myrna at myforever14.Jules22.Kerfe Roig
7.Ritu Bhathal15.Laura McHarrie23.
8.Eugenia16.The Versesmith  

I have a few special mentions to share:

Jude and Aishwarya collaborated on a garland cinquain! This was a fun and creative exercise. The history of Renga poetry was a collaborative effort as well. Check out Jude’s post. He’s looking for collaborators!

S. S. at Mindfills created a Badger Hexastitch that I thought was excellent. Notice how the word before repeats. I feel the repetition leaves you with the feeling of “past and present,” but with deeper meaning.

Zander created a spectacular tanka trio. This is a must read filled with hidden meanings and innuendo.

Aishwarya from Kitty’s Verses created a six stanza tanka chain. She split the first three stanzas to discuss the past and the last three to describe the present.

I’ve been meaning to share with you, the breathtaking poem written by Amanda Gorman, for the Biden/Harris inauguration. She is the youngest inaugural poet in U.S. history, as well as an award-winning writer and cum laude graduate of Harvard University, where she studied Sociology. She has written for the New York Times and has three books forthcoming with Penguin Random House. (theAmandaGorman.com)

Poetry is everywhere! Embrace it, and Write it!

Amanda Gorman: Popsugar.com

“The Hill We Climb” by Amanda Gorman 

For Biden/Harris Inauguration 1/20/2021

When day comes we ask ourselves where can we find light in this never-ending shade,

The loss we carry a sea we must wade. 

We have braved the belly of the beast.

We have learned that quiet isn’t always peace,

And the norms and notions of what just is isn’t always justice.

And yet, the dawn is hours before we knew it.

Somehow we do it.

Somehow we have weathered and witnessed a nation that isn’t broken but simply unfinished.

We, the successors of a country in a time where a skinny black girl descended from slaves

And raised by a single mother can dream of becoming president, 

Only to find herself reciting for one.

And yes, we are far from polished, far from pristine

But that doesn’t mean we are striving to form a union that is perfect.

We are striving to forge our union with purpose,

To compose a country committed to all cultures, colors, characters and conditions of man.

And so we lift our gazes, not to what stands between us, but what stands before us.

We close the divide because we know to put our future first

We must first put our differences aside.

We lay down our arms so we can reach out our arms to one another.

We seek harm to none and harmony for all.

Let the globe, if nothing else, say this is true,

That even as we grieved, we grew.

That even as we hurt, we hoped. 

That even as we tired, we tried that we will forever be tied together. 


Not because we will never again know defeat, but because we will never again sow division. 

Scripture tells us to envision that everyone shall sit under their own vine and fig tree,

And no one shall make them afraid. 

If we are to live up to our own time, then victory won’t lighten in the blade, 

But in all of the bridges we have made. 

That is the promise to glade, the hill be climbed. 

If only we dare it because being American is more than a pride we inherit. 

It is the past we step into and how we repair it. 

We have seen a force that would shatter our nation rather than share it,

Would destroy our country if it meant delaying democracy. 

And this effort very nearly succeeded. 

But while democracy can be periodically delayed, 

It can never be permanently defeated. 

In this truth, in this faith we trust. 

For while we had our eyes on the future, history has its eyes on us. 

This is the era of just redemption. We feared it at its inception. 

We did not feel prepared to be the heirs of such a terrifying hour, 

But within it, we found the power to author a new chapter.

To offer hope and laughter to ourselves. 

So, while once we asked how could we possibly prevail over catastrophe, 

Now we assert, how could catastrophe possibly prevail over us? 

We will not march back to what was, but move to what shall be. 

A country that is bruised, but whole. Benevolent, but bold. Fierce and free. 

We will not be turned around or interrupted by intimidation, 

Because we know our inaction and inertia will be the inheritance of the next generation. 

Our blunders become their burdens. 

But one thing is certain, if we merge mercy with might and might with the right,

Then love becomes our legacy and change our children’s birthright. 

So let us leave behind the country better than the one we were left,

With every breath in my bronze-pounded chest, 

We will raise this wounded world into a wondrous one.

We will rise from the gold-limbed hills of the west. 

We will rise from the windswept northeast where our forefathers first realized revolution. 

We will rise from the lake rimmed cities of midwestern states. 

We will rise from the sunbaked south. 

We will rebuild, reconcile, and recover in every known nook of our nation

And every corner called our country. 

Our people diverse and beautiful will emerge battered and beautiful. 

When day comes, we step out of the shade aflame and unafraid. 

A new dawn looms as we free it,

For there is always light, if only we are brave enough to see it, 

If only we are brave enough to be it.

©2021 Amanda Gorman

Don’t forget to join us for a special rodeo event to honor one of our own poets, Sue Vincent. Be sure to check out carrotranch.com today for a chance to win $100.00 and one of Sue’s books!

No fee necessary to enter, but this is a fundraiser, so we kindly ask for a suggested donation of $5 per entry (no more than two entries allowed per writer). The contest will close at midnight on Friday, February 19th, 2021. Winning entries will be announced and read at CarrotRanch.com/blog on March 22, 2021. Top entries published at Carrot Ranch. We will not accept entries previously published (even if published on your own blog), so keep them tucked away for now.

See you tomorrow for a new challenge!

30 thoughts on “TANKA TUESDAY POETRY CHALLENGE STARS | Synonyms Only “Past & Present” challenge no. 210

  1. Congrats on the special mentions:)
    Thanks for sharing Amanda’s poem here. I don’t think I’ll ever tire of her amazing words.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks, Colleen. I enjoyed getting back to being part of this challenge this week… and thank you for sharing and being part of what the Carrot Ranch crew have organised. x

    Liked by 1 person

  3. A packed post, Colleen. You had a great response to the prompt. And I’m so glad you shared Gorman’s poem from the inauguration. She’s a beautiful inspiration. And I hope you’ve got your chaps on for the rodeo. Can’t wait to see what you come up with!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Diana. Gorman’s poem… I cried through the entire piece. What an inspiration. She made me proud to be an American again! I’ll be there at the ranch. I’m polishing up my spurs. LOL! 😀 I can’t wait to see what you come up with. I know it will be fabulous. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Some amazing poetry this week! Isn’t it interesting that no Republican president has had a poet at his inauguration? It was a beautiful moment. I hope we can live up to her words. (K)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I didn’t know that zero Republican Presidents have had a poet at their inauguration! 🤦🏼‍♀️ I cried through Gorman’s poem. So inspiring! I want us to that America. Our poetry this week was extra special! ❤️❤️❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I Colleen, loved Amanda Gorman’s poem, cried the whole time too. Such a brilliant, young mind!!

    How was the movie? Haven’t been keeping abreast of things, mom was in hospital.. but she’s home now and doing well, thank goodness.

    Will try to do better🙂

    Congrats to the stars from last week. started something for it, but didn’t finish.


    Liked by 1 person

Comments are closed.