Significant Poetry Reads: “Think Tanka – Vision in Verse,” by Annette Rochelle Aben, @YouAreTheExpert

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From the Author

Throughout time, the poet has used words to convey feelings, share ideas and unite the reader with their vision. Think Tanka uses the traditional structure of Japanese lyric poetry to unite the reader to the vision of the poet. If you can “see” what she is trying to “say” in every grouping of 31 syllables, then she has done her job. Think Tanka is a book for those who appreciate poetry, those who enjoy short reads, people who like to smile and those who know what it is like to be lost in a world of imagination. Whether you are buying this book for yourself or someone else, you’ll want to make sure you get an extra copy so you’ll have one on hand to share.

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My Recommendation

When it comes to Japanese poetry, the tanka is one of my favorite forms to read. What I enjoyed most about “Think Tanka” is the author’s wordplay. The poetry resonates with her views of the human condition, which she touches on with humor, wisdom, and love. It was exciting to interpret the world through her eyes.

I enjoy multi-layered tanka poetry filled with meaning. Aben does not disappoint.

The tanka called “Aw Some” is chock full of inspiration:

May there always be 
One bright moment in your day 
To bring light your way 
Hold that vision in your head 
Where you can always find it

Aben, Annette Rochelle. Think Tanka: vision in verse (p. 4). Kindle Edition. 

This humorous tanka named “Praise & Excite” left me chuckling to myself for hours:

She’d receive applause 
Many found her delightful 
Others were annoyed 
Not everyone pulls it off 
Juggling chainsaws while naked

Aben, Annette Rochelle. Think Tanka: vision in verse (pp. 38-39). Kindle Edition. 

I loved the creativity of this tanka about the author:

Thinks in syllables 
Counts them out on her fingers 
Then, counts them again 
Everything inspires her 
She may write about you, next

Aben, Annette Rochelle. Think Tanka: vision in verse (p. 53). Kindle Edition. 

I devoured this book in one afternoon. Later, I returned to savor my favorites. This delightful read will fill your heart with joy!


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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 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.

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