#TANKA TUESDAY WEEKLY #POETRY CHALLENGE NO. 217, #THEMEPROMPT

WELCOME TO TANKA TUESDAY!

Welcome! Check out the NEW main menu item: Poetry Book Publishing Links to find poetry book publishing links, including links to literary journals and poetry magazines accepting submissions of poetry. If you know of a link to add to this list, let me know by email to tankatuesdaypoetry@gmail.com. ❤

It’s the fourth week of the month! Are you ready for a theme prompt? Merril D. Smith from last month’s challenge selected the theme of…

“Immortality”

Merril says, “If people want added poetic inspiration, I found this Interesting Literature post with famous poems on this theme–none of them your syllabic forms, but still…” https://interestingliterature.com/2020/06/poems-about-eternity-infinity-immortality/

On the Monday recap, I’ll select someone to choose next month’s theme.

For this poetry challenge, you can write your poem in the forms defined on the cheat sheet:

Here are some sites that will help you write your poetry and count syllables

synonyms.com 

This site even has a link so you can install the extension on Google Chrome.

thesaurus.com

For Synonyms and Antonyms. When your word has too many syllables, find one that works.

howmanysyllables.com

Find out how many syllables each word has. I use this site to compose my poems. Click on the “Workshop” tab, then cut and paste your poetry into the box. Click the Count Syllables button on the button. This site does the hard work for you.

I don't get it

The RULES

  • Write a poem using a form of your choice: Haiku, Senryu, Haiga, Tanka, Gogyohka, Haibun, Tanka Prose, Renga, Solo-Renga, Cinquain, and its variations, Etheree, Nonet, Shadorma, Badger hexastich, and Abhanga. Don’t forget the Diatelle, which is an optional form found here.
  • Post it on your blog.
  • Include a link back to the challenge in your post. (copy the Https:// address of this post into your post).
  • Copy your link into the Mr. Linky below (underlined with a hyperlink).
  • Please click the small checkbox on Mr. Linky about data protection.
  • Read and comment on some of your fellow poets’ work.
  • Like and leave a comment below if you choose to do so.

The screenshot below shows what Mr. Linky looks like inside. Add your name, and the URL of your post. Click the box about the privacy policy (It’s blue). As everyone adds their links to Mr. Linky, you can view the other submissions by clicking on the Mr. Linky link on the challenge post. All the links will show in the order of posting.

Follow the monthly schedule listed below:

Don't forget

I will visit your blog, comment, and TWEET your POETRY. 

If you add these hashtags to the post TITLE on your blog (depending on which poetry form you use) your poetry may be viewed more often on Twitter:

#Haiku, #Senryu, #Haiga, #Tanka, #micropoetry, #poetry, #5lines, #Haibun, #Prose, #CinquainPoetry, #Etheree, #Nonet, #Shadorma #Gogyohka, #TankaProse, #Renga, #SoloRenga, #BadgerHexastich, #Abhanga

Now, have fun and write some poetry!


TANKA TUESDAY POETRY CHALLENGE STARS | Theme Prompt: Dreams

Welcome to our weekly poetry stars celebration. This week’s challenge was to write about the theme of “dreams,” using one of these forms: Haiku, Senryu, Haiga, Tanka, Gogyohka, Haibun, Tanka Prose, Renga, Solo-Renga, Cinquain, and its variations, Etheree, Nonet, Shadorma, Badger Hexastich (hexastich for short), and Abhanga.

Remember… the first of the month you can write any syllabic poetry form of your choice. The rest of the time, we write our syllabic poetry in one of the forms listed, and we follow a schedule (posted below). I do this for a couple of reasons. It requires those of you who would like to enter contests or to submit your poetry to literary journals to learn how to follow their rules. This challenge gives you that practice. Besides, why enter a challenge if you don’t follow the rules? That’s the challenge part. ❤

ALSO: Make sure you are grabbing the URL of your “published” post when you link back to the challenge and in Mr. Linky. If you need extra help with these features, let me know and I will help you. ❤

Many thanks to everyone who joined in below:

1.Trent McDonald10.Zander19.Donna Matthews
2.Padre11.Dave Madden20.kittysverses
3.Eugenia12.Gwen Plano21.Vashti Quiroz- Vega
4.Annette Rochelle Aben13.Erlyn Olivia22.Ruth Scribbles
5.Jules14.s. s.23.M J Mallon
6.Ritu Bhathal15.Anita Dawes24.Sally Cronin
7.willowdot2116.theindieshe25.Merril D. Smith
8.Cheryl17.Balroop Singh26.Kerfe Roig
9.D. L. Finn18.Heather Kelley27.Colleen M. Chesebro

Congratulations everyone! The poems this week were astounding! I have to share a few highlights because we all learn technique and style from each other:

Trent McDonald: Read his poem and follow the link to the discussion of his dream. There is some really strange stuff going on here! Definitely worth a read!

Zander: Notice how he writes his tanka by separating the two seven-syllable lines from the 5/7/5 portion. This effect produces a pleasing visual on the page. Many modern poets write their tanka in this form. I like it!

Willow: She took up the challenge to write a Diatelle. This poem shows how effective a rhyming scheme can be.

In the end, I went with Merril D. Smith’s Badger Hexastich, “The Dream.” This is a delightful poem. Notice how she put herself inside the painting as if she was part of the dream. Writing poetry is a form of communication and connection. When you share bits of yourself with your readers, your poetry becomes personal to the reader. ❤

This week, I’ve asked Merril D. Smith to choose the prompt for next month’s challenge. Please email your words to me at least a week before the challenge to tankatuesdaypoetry@gmail.com. Thanks.

Christian Krohg, “Tired” captured from Merril D. Smith blog

The Dream, #BadgerHexastitch

almost
familiar, this
place, my house, but not—see
the walls dissolve, and I
am someone else
watching

watching
myself, I am
within, without—I am
fixed and infinite, I
am everything
I know.

©2021 Merril D. Smith

See you tomorrow for another Tanka Tuesday Poetry Challenge!

Carrot RODEO #2: DOUBLE ENNEAD SYLLABIC POETRY

Welcome to the Carrot Ranch Rodeo! This challenge is sponsored by the Carrot Ranch Literary Community at carrotranch.com and run by lead Buckaroo, Charli Mills.

Almost everyone knows my love for syllabic poetry; especially haiku, tanka, cinquain, and more. Woo HOO! I’ve got something special wrangled up for this challenge!

For this year’s rodeo, I’ve created a special form called the Double Ennead. The word Ennead means nine, and a double nine is ninety-nine! Carrot Ranch is famous for 99-word flash fiction. Now, the ranch has its own syllabic poetry form written in 99 syllables!

The Double Ennead comprises five lines with a syllable count of 6/5/11/6/5, (33 SYLLABLES per stanza) 3 STANZAS EACH = 99 SYLLABLES, NO MORE, NO LESS!

The Carrot Ranch Double Ennead

Carrot Ranch Rodeo
is calling all poets
round up all the word players, now's the time to ride
let's wrangle syllables
and build a poem

thirty-three syllables—
count all those sounds twice
six, five, eleven, six, five, in three stanzas
any subject will do,
fetch your pens and write

be sure to taste your words
fore you spit them out
and abide by the cowboy code of honor:
if'n you saddle up
be ready to ride

©2020 Colleen M. Chesebro
Much of Cowboy Poetry is Spoken Poetry

Years ago, when I lived in Montana, I worked for a Black Angus cattle rancher and an oilman. He owed a magnificent sprawling ranch near Helena, Montana. His land totaled around 86,000 acres, including the state-leased lands. He ran about 20,000 head of Black Angus cattle in those days.

Sounds romantic, huh? No such luck. I was an administrative cowboy. I worked in the office in Great Falls. I paid the ranch and oil company’s bills, did payroll, kept the accounting books, and learned a bunch about farming and ranching! A few times a year, I visited the ranch and mingled with my fellow employees for a branding, or some other special event. I was “the city-girl,” you know.

One year, the cattle boss got married. They held the wedding at a local small town hotel. The cowboys all turned up decked out with polished boots, sparkly spurs, and clean silky scarves tied around their necks. Even their hats were brushed and clean!

Fancy Cowboy Duds

After the ceremony, they held a small reception. Music played in the background, while they served various foods and drinks, including Rocky Mountain Oysters! Of course, the city-girl had to try them!

It was a typical wedding, except for the older gentleman who sat in the corner reciting cowboy poetry. He was a local ranch hand that everybody knew—except for me and my husband. We didn’t have a clue, but we were about to find out! The man’s words held us spellbound, and we lingered, waiting for more of those smooth words to flow. Everything you look for in a poem, rhythm, pacing, and meaning were all present in the delivery. It was an amazing experience.

Cowboy poetry is all American, both culturally and in its use of rhyme and meter. Cowboy poetry is often contemporary, focusing on the lifestyle, historical events, and the work that cowboys perform on a ranch. Using this spoken poetry form, cowboy poets appear at cowboy poetry gatherings and competitions to share their verses. Subjects range from happiness to grief, including humor, and even a taste of cowboy spirituality. Central to the core of cowboy poetry is the culture of the American West featuring horses, cattle, weather phenomena, and the legendary cowboys who settled the west.

Now it’s time to craft our poetry!

CRITERIA:

* The Double Ennead features three stanzas of five lines, each with a syllable count of 6/5/11/6/5, totaling 99 syllables, no more—no less. Count your syllables. Read the instructions carefully.

* For syllable and line count use: writerlywords.com. Your poem does not have to have a western theme. It can be in any genre, and can include any tone or mood. However, it must have a title. Punctuation and rhyming are optional and up to the poet.

* For this challenge, your poem must include five words taken from the found-poem by Cowboy Poet, Charles Badger Clark, called “The Springtime Plains.” You must use the fives words you choose in the order you found them in one of the three stanzas.

The word placement also depends on the line. Pay attention to the placement of these words in your poem.

  1. Line 1 starts with word 1
  2. Line 2 ends with word 2
  3. Line 3 starts with word 3
  4. Line 4 ends with word 4
  5. Line 5 starts with word 5

* Submit your five consecutive words from the poem “The Springtime Plains” so the judges can determine the placement of your words. Specify which stanza contains the five words.

* Make the judges remember your syllabic poem long after reading it.

“The Springtime Plains,”

by Charles Badger Clark

Heart of me, are you hearing

The drum of hoofs in the rains?

Over the Springtime plains I ride

Knee to knee with Spring

And glad as the summering sun that comes

Galloping north through the zodiac!

Heart of me, let’s forget

The plains death white and still,

When lonely love through the stillness called

Like a smothered stream that sings of Summer

Under the snow on a Winter night.

Now the frost is blown from the sky

And the plains are living again.

Lark lovers sing on the sunrise trail,

Wild horses call to me out of the noon,

Watching me pass with impish eyes,

Gray coyotes laugh in the quiet dusk

And the plains are glad all day with me.

Heart of me, all the way

My heart and the hoofs keep time,

And the wide, sweet winds from the greening world

Shout in my ears a glory song,

For nearer, nearer, mile and mile,

Over the quivering rim of the plains,

Is the valley that Spring and I love best

Poemhunter.com

EXAMPLE of how to write the Double Ennead:

Line 1 starts with word 1 = wild

Line 2 ends with word 2 = horses

Line 3 starts with word 3 = call

Line 4 ends with word 4 = to

Line 5 starts with word 5 = me

Double Ennead: Five lines, with a syllable count of 6/5/11/6/5, 33 syllables per stanza, 3 stanzas each = 99 syllables.

The five consecutive words I selected: “wild horses call to me” used in the first stanza.

“Save Our Earth”


wild mustang gallops free
patron of horsescall to the winds of change to protect the land
ancient spirits call to
me seeking relief
***
for our waters, skies, trees
given to us, clean
for once they disappear, vanished we will be
mankind torches the blaze
pesticides kill bees
***
rouse to the Mother's pain
stand up, say her name
our land is in a constant state of rebirth
giving life to all who
remain on the Earth

©2020 Colleen M. Chesebro

Here’s How the syllable counter counts your syllables:

CONTEST RULES:

* Every entry in the Double Ennead poetry challenge must be 99 syllables, no more, no less. You can have a title outside that limit. Check your syllable count using the writerlywords.com site. Entries that aren’t 99 syllables will be disqualified.

* Enter this contest only once. If you enter more than once, only your first entry will count.

* Do your best to submit an error-free entry. Punctuation and rhyming are optional and up to the poet. It is the originality of the poem that matters most.

* If you do not receive an acknowledgment by email WITHIN 3 DAYS, contact Colleen Chesebro at tankatuesdaypoetry@gmail.com.

* Entries must be received by 11:59 p.m. MST-Phoenix (it’s like I’m on Pacific Standard Time) on October 19, 2020.

* You may submit a “challenge” if you don’t want to enter the contest or if you wrote more than one entry. Do a link-back to this post by copying this URL into your own post.

* Refrain from posting your contest entry on your blog until after November 24. DO Not post your entry on your blog.

* Use the form below the rules to enter.

*If the WordPress form below won’t let you submit, email me at tankatuesdaypoetry@gmail.com.

2020 JUDGING

Colleen Chesebro, Manager of the Carrot Ranch Double Ennead Poetry Contest for the Carrot Ranch Rodeo, will collect poetry, omitting names to select the top ten blind entries. Please refrain from posting your contest entry on your blog. A panel of two judges from the WordPress poetry community will select one winner, and however many honorable mentions they determine from the top ten syllabic poems.

We will conduct the blind judging by email between myself and the two judges: Jane Dougherty and Merril D. Smith.

Meet the Judges:

Jane Dougherty is a writer. She lives in the middle of a meadow where, not having the digestive capacities of a grazing animal, there’s not much for her to do but write. So, she writes, lots, all the time, short stories for hors d’oeuvres, novels for main course and poetry for dessert and snacking when she should be doing something else. The proof: https://janedougherty.wordpress.com/ for more details. Follow her on Twitter @MJDougherty33.

Merril D. Smith is a historian and poet. She’s written and edited several books on history, sexuality, and gender. She’s one of the hosts of the dVerse Poets Pub. She lives in southern New Jersey, and her poetry often reflects the beauty of the natural world around her. Her work has been published recently in Black Bough Poetry, Nightingale and Sparrow, Twist in Time, Wellington Street Review, Ekphrastic Review, and Anti-Heroin Chic. Visit Yesterday and today: Merril’s historical musings for more details. Follow her on Twitter @merril_mds.

A winner for this event will be announced on Tuesday, November 10, 2020, along with any honorable mentions.

GIDDY UP! WHO’S READY TO WRITE SOME SYLLABIC POETRY?

WEEKLY POETRY CHALLENGE STARS | No. 193, #PoetsChoice

1.Reena Saxena10.Ruth Scribbles19.huwanahoy
2.Elizabeth11.Cheryl20.Vashti Quiroz- Vega
3.Kim12.anita dawes21.Sally Cronin
4.theindieshe13.Goutam Dutta22.Ken Gierke / rivrvlogr
5.Linda Lee Lyberg14.Sue Vincent23.David Ellis / Too Full To Write
6.Padre15.D. L. Finn24.M J Mallon
7.s. s.16.Merril D. Smith25.Jane Dougherty
8.Jules17.Gwen Plano26.Roberta Eaton Cheadle
9.willowdot2118.Pat R27.Colleen Chesebro

Congratulations to everyone who joined in this week! You always surprise me with your creativity and clever poetry! I want to share a few of the forms you used and the poetry to go along with it.

Next year, I want to add some new syllabic forms, including a few with rhyming schemes. This is a challenge after all, and we must continue to challenge and expand our poetic knowledge.


Gouttam Dutta shared an interesting form called the Seox, by Anne Byrnes Smith. It is a hexastich, with a syllable count of 3/7/6/5/4/3.

Twilight Hour

Setting sun;
Breath exuding orange hues.
Holds fort at horizon.
Meanwhile, silent dusk,
Spreads a black shroud
On Earth’s land.

©2020 Gouttam Dutta


Merril D. Smith shared a Triquain, created by Shelly A. Cephas. This form is a poem with several creative variences and can be a rhyming or non-rhyming verse. The simpliest form is a poem made up of 7 lines with 3, 6, 9, 12, 9, 6, and 3 syllables in this order.” [Misspellings in original.]

A Laugh Wings, Triquain

A laugh wings–
flies through memories and
dreams. Sings like a mockingbird, repeats
again, imprinted in our minds, within our genes–
well, who’s to say? We remember a
glance, words said—heart-haunted—
we grasp, hold.

©2020 Merril D. Smith

And the last amazing form is created by Jane Dougherty called a Florescence poem. Jane says, “This is a sequence of three Florescence poems, three lines of six, six and nine syllables respectively, with a rhyme on the sixth, twelfth and eighteenth syllables.

Florescence sequence: Day night sleep

Beneath the bird’s egg blue
of sky by rain washed new
and clothed in heaven’s hue, all seems clear,

though in the darkest night
the brashest city light
casts shadow black and white—monochrome.

Yet take my hand, we’ll run
till days and nights are done
swept up into the sun, there to sleep.

©2020 Jane Dougherty

See you tomorrow for the new challenge!

Weekly Poetry Challenge Stars | Poet’s Choice – First of the Month Challenge # 185

Thanks for all of the amazing poetry! You guys are the best! The first of the month Poet’s Choice challenge participants are listed below:

1.Padre10.anita dawes19.Cheryl
2.Jude11.Kim20.Merril D. Smith
3.Dave Madden12.Tina Stewart Brakebill21.Colleen Chesebro
4.Trent McDonald13.Tessa Dean22.Sally Cronin
5.theindieshe14.Ken Gierke / rivrvlogr23.D.G. Kaye
6.Christine Bialczak15.Jules24.kittysverses
7.Pat R16.s. s.25.Marsha Ingrao
8.willowdot2117.Elizabeth26.
9.Kerfe Roig18.Sue Vincent  

While Freyja’s sleeping on my desk, take the time to visit Merril D. Smith’s post on how to write the diatelle: HERE.

It’s splendid fun to experiment with the unique syllable forms. See you tomorrow for another challenge.

The Diatelle Poem | Merril D. Smith, Poetry Star

Merril Smith shares how to create a diatelle poem. Merril says:

“The Diatelle is a fun, syllable counting form like the etheree with a twist. The syllable structure of the diatelle is as follows: 1/2/3/4/6/8/10/12/10/8/6/4/3/2/1, but unlike an ethere, has a set rhyme pattern of abbcbccaccbcbba. This poetry form may be written on any subject matter and looks best center aligned in a diamond shape.”

Yesterday and today: Merril’s historical musings

Merril also shows us how to create the rhyme scheme below:

“Maybe everyone does this, but if not, maybe it’s helpful to see. I made myself a template to keep track of syllable/lines and rhymes. I do this for many forms.”

a1 Light

b2 comes, goes

b3 so it flows

c4 to earth and sea

b6 flaming grassy meadows–

c8 with photons streaming, gild a tree

c10 though shadows loom below, we let them be,

a12 pretend we do not see the coming of the night

c10 but live, walk, talk–and love, the apogee

c8 of our beings–humanity

b6 with stardust traces glows

c4 but faintly—see?

b3 The flickers

b2 dim, grow

a1 bright.

Visit her post below:

I love learning novel poetry forms. What makes the diatelle so fun, is that it is syllabic and rhyming! If you’re interested in learning more about rhyme schemes, this should help:

Colleen’s 2020 Weekly #Tanka Tuesday #Poetry Challenge No. 179, #ThemePrompt

WELCOME TO TANKA TUESDAY!

It’s the fourth week of the month! Are you ready for a theme prompt? Merril D. Smith from last month’s challenge selected a special theme:

This week’s theme is:

“How far that little candle throws his beams! So shines a good deed in a weary world.”

― William Shakespeare, The Merchant of Venice

We’ve never done a quote before as a theme, but as you can see, it’s quite brilliant. Words have the power of inspiration! Have fun.

On the Monday before the next challenge, I’ll select someone to choose next month’s theme.

For Colleen’s Weekly Poetry Challenge, you can write your poem in the forms defined on the Poetry Challenge Cheatsheet:

Here are some great sites that will help you write your poetry and count syllables

synonyms.com 

This site even has a link so you can install the extension on Google Chrome.

thesaurus.com

For Synonyms and Antonyms. When your word has too many syllables, find one that works.

howmanysyllables.com

Find out how many syllables each word has. I use this site to compose my poems. Click on the “Workshop” tab, then cut and paste your poetry into the box. Click the Count Syllables button on the button. This site does the hard work for you.

I don't get it

NEW RULES

  • Write a poem using a form of your choice: Haiku, Senryu, Haiga, Tanka, Gogyohka, Haibun, Tanka Prose, Cinquain, and its variations, Ehteree, Nonet, and Shadorma.
  • Post it on your blog.
  • Include a link back to the challenge in your post. (copy the https:// address of this post into your post).
  • Copy your link into the Mr. Linky below (underlined with a hyperlink).
  • Please click the small checkbox on Mr. Linky about data protection.
  • Read and comment on some of your fellow poets’ work.
  • Like and leave a comment below if you choose to do so.

The screenshot below shows what Mr. Linky looks like inside after you click the image. Add your name, and the URL of your post. Click the box about the privacy policy (It’s blue). As everyone adds their links to Mr. Linky, you can view the other submissions by clicking on the Mr. Linky link on the challenge post. All the links will show in the order of posting.

Thank you to dVerse Poets for the Mr. Linky inspiration.

Follow the monthly schedule listed below:

Don't forget

I will visit your blog, comment, and TWEET your POETRY. 

If you add these hashtags to the post TITLE on your blog (depending on which poetry form you use) your poetry may be viewed more often on Twitter:

#Haiku, #Senryu, #Haiga, #Tanka, #micropoetry, #poetry, #5lines, #Haibun, #Prose, #CinquainPoetry, #Etheree, #Nonet, #Shadorma #Gogyohka, #TankaProse

Now, have fun and write some poetry! Don’t forget to add your poetry to Mr. Linky.


Weekly Poetry Challenge Stars | Theme Prompt #175: Merril D. Smith

Hello, everyone:

Many of you participated in NaPoWritMo, the National Poetry Society’s writing contest where you’re asked to write a poem a day during the month of April. Let me congratulate all of you who took part. In fact, many of you didn’t miss this challenge, taking part in both at the same time! You all deserve accolades for your hard work.

Elizabeth, from her blog, Tea & Paper, picked this month’s theme: “The Day After.” This theme seemed tpo resonate with everyone. I believe I’ve read some of the most emotional poetry since the beginning of this challenge, all in one week!

Here are a few that stirred my soul:

“Blessed,” Annette Rochelle Aben

“The Day After,” D. G. Kaye, Writer

“The Day After,” Kim Blade

Yet, this one image and the accompanying poetry brought me to tears. Poetry is funny like that. It touches your soul in unexpected ways.

I first saw this image taken by Merril after she shared it on Facebook. The photo captured the aftermath of raindrops falling into a puddle. Notice the circles radiating outward, how they interlock and connect. In those circles I felt the past, present, and the future of humanity hovering within those raindrops. It was a profound moment.

On Sunday morning, Merril shared the Shadorma sequence below and the photo. In the particular Buddhist tradition I follow, the Bardo is the place between death and rebirth where one dwells for a time before they choose their fresh life, or if they ascend into Enlightenment. I was so moved by Merril’s words; I shared this poem with my husband.

Congratulations, Merril D. Smith, it’s your turn to pick the theme for next month’s challenge. Please Email me your choice at tankatuesdaypoetry@gmail.com before next month’s challenge.

Image Credit: Merril D. Smith

“Circles”

And after,

do the birds still sing–

the bardo

in-between

past and future, everything

rippling, light circles

to before,

the after, before

time begins,

radiant

waves humming—the sound of dreams–

forever’s spindrift.

©2020 Merril D. Smith

Source: Circles – Yesterday and today: Merril’s historical musings

See you tomorrow for the new challenge!

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.

Colleen’s 2019 #Tanka Tuesday Recap: #Poet of the Week & Honorable Mention, No. 155, #SynonymsOnly or #ThanksgivingTheme

Welcome to the Tanka Tuesday Poetry Recap featuring the Poet of the Week and the honorable mention poetry that spoke to me. If you would like to participate in this challenge, you can learn the rules in the menu item called Colleen’s Weekly Tanka Tuesday Guidelines.

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Congratulations, and many thanks to all the participants!

Please visit the challenge post comments HERE, where you’ll find the links to everyone’s poetry along with many of the poems. Stop by and say hello! ❤

I will publish the Poet of the Week and Honorable Mention Poets in the 2019 Poet of the Week Anthology, which everyone can grab as a FREE PDF in January 2020.

H. R. R. Gorman has kindly volunteered to update the Poet of the Week & Honorable Mention poetry from the weekly recap into the PDF Compilation that will be available around the middle of January 2020. If this works out, I will consider continuing the Recap and PDF for next year. I’ve received great feedback about the recap and how the comments have helped poets perfect their own poetry. I think this is a great way to share all the great poetry from the challenge.

I believe I could compile the PDF into a Kindle version that would be free from my Amazon page. What do you think? Poets would have to complete a signed release of your work before I could publish the book. I would include link-backs to your blogs. It would never be for sale – only a free download. Tell me what you think in the comments. It’s only a thought… I’ve not considered the legal ramifications.

Each week, I like to highlight a poet who I call the Poet of the Week who has shared an exceptional message or shown impassioned creativity through words or form. Poetry is all about perception. You may not feel the same way about my choice. That’s okay. Perception is different for all of us.

The Poet of the Week

This week, I’ve chosen Pat R., as the Poet of the Week for her Thanksgiving themed Haibun Tanka. I love all the sensory details in this poem. From the grocery list to the unknown woman, we learn that amid the Thanksgiving chaos of life, nature reminds us of our own human fragility.

The “self-talk” portion of the Haibun is especially enlightening. The Tanka at the end brings you back into the moment. I like this style of writing. It feels real and unpretentious. Sometimes, the mundane becomes poetic.

“Great & Small,” #Haibun #Tanka

It is the day before Thanksgiving and it seems everyone is out picking up last-minute items. People are everywhere and the traffic is crazy as impatient horns blare.

I reach into my pocket and her list, handwritten in pencil, is crumpled around my keys. I fish it out, smoothing it as I squint to read:

Red peppers
Green peppers
Ginger
Onions
Scallions
Garlick
Greatnut ice cream
Bizzy

Bizzy, she makes tea from this. “Good for the knees,” she says while rubbing it. I still have trouble figuring out which of her home remedies are mostly old wives’ tales. That matters not, though. It’s what she gets from it. I suspect they have more to do with her refusing to just give up. Or, to leave her fate in the hand of another.

Arthritis is taking its toll. That right knee is markedly larger than the left. So it can’t be comfortable. And she has given up on doctors. “They’re not doing anything for me, they’re just rifling through my insurance,” she complains. And soldiers on.

At age 87, she is still a warrior!

sparrows in a ruckus
above the roar of traffic –
how’s this possible?
I pause – from atop street light
an unlikely burst of nature

©2019 Pat R

Honorable Mention(s)

Merril D. Smith’s Etheree gets the honorable mention for this week. She used synonyms for the prompt words instead of a Thanksgiving theme.

I like the analogy of nature hovering “on the edge” between autumn and winter. When reading, I felt those “cold north winds sigh and moan…” The phrase, “…blowing time forward…” signifies change. This is how to SHOW and not tell.

This Etheree is also powerful because of the use of imagery. Try to use your senses when writing poetry. Share your thoughts and emotions with your readers. Poetry is a connection!

“On the Edge,” #Etheree

On
the edge–
fall to winter
burnished gold now
fading, almost gone.
Cold north winds sigh and moan,
Blowing time forward. Squirrels dart,
scamper over oak’s bare branches
gathering acorns for tomorrow
and tomorrow—till spring bursts into bloom.

©2019 Merril D. Smith

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Are you a regular participant of this challenge with a poetry book for sale? Let me know in the comments. I’ll add your book to the list!