“The Woman in Red,” tanka, senryu, Abhanga

The Crystal Ball is a charming painting from John William Waterhouse which features a plethora of influences from Renaissance architecture to British Pre-Raphaelites like Dante Gabriel Rossetti, William Holman Hunt and John Everett Millais. ~ via John William Waterhouse

This week’s #TankaTuesday poetry challenge is an Ekphrastic challenge. Read the post HERE.

It thrilled me when my friend, Rebecca Budd, introduced me to her blog called Chasing Art. I’ve always been interested in art, and the different mediums an artist uses to interpret their creativity. She shared John Waterhouse’s works, and my mind lit up with the poetic possibilities!

Painting reminds me of syllabic poetry… we choose a form based on our inspiration and what we want to say or share. We paint with words as we express our stories.

The woman in this painting captivated me. I had so many questions. Here is my first epiphany, a tanka, told from the perspective of the woman in the painting:

in my solitude
I conjured the oracle
for future outcomes
the truth is now crystal clear
'he loves me not,' my lament

© Colleen M. Chesebro

But wait… I still had more questions to answer. How about a senryu?

crystal ball readings...
the lady's favorite game
she loves when she's right

© Colleen M. Chesebro

I think there is a story here… How about this double Abhanga? I think this might be the unspoken truth revealed:

deep inside her study
the young lady in red
weaves magic in her head
to pursue truth

the crystal ball foretells
the babe she carries low 
conceived by her old beau
her spouse will scorn

© Colleen M. Chesebro

Join me every Tuesday on wordcraftpoetry.com for the #TankaTuesday Syllabic Poetry Challenge.

Thanks for stopping by to read. <3

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56 thoughts on ““The Woman in Red,” tanka, senryu, Abhanga”

    1. I loved this painting and other works by Waterhouse. There is just so much to infer from his work. It was fun with the different forms. Just shows that syllabic poetry has a voice in Ekphrastic poetry. <3

    1. I’m on a MAC. For me it’s the option button and the letter g pressed at the same time. Google keyboard symbols on Windows to see what they use if that’s your computer. ❤️

      1. Hello to you too!🙂 My poetic muse slowed from semicolon, to a Full Stop. I’m waiting for her to re-jiggle and re-start.🙂. How is the cold weather treating you.

        1. I think its wise to not write when the mood doesn’t strike you. The muse needs a break too. You’ll get your poetic mojo back when you least expect it. It’s been cold, but little snow until this weekend. I’m not complaining. How about you? Stay warm. I hope to visit you more often. LOL! <3

  1. I like all three responses. I saw that maybe she is pregnant too, you brought in quite a story in the third poem, a lot of intrigue in a few lines. It is a wonderful picture, so much going on in it.

  2. You are right, wise one🙂, everything in time. Same here with the cold, only no snow thank goodness. Being busy is a good thing, stay warm as well. A good Sunday to you♥️

  3. Beautiful, Colleen. What a fun demonstration of different forms and completely different outcomes. The painting was a great choice. It had so much detail to draw on. Wonderful reads, my friend.

  4. Pingback: #TankaTuesday #Poetry Stars No. 257 | #EkphrasticPrompt – Word Craft: Prose & Poetry

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