Thursday, December 18, 2008

Tinkering with tanka

I've been reading up on the art of tanka in a book called "the tanka anthology" by Red Moon Press, purchased from the most excellent Snapshot Press, who specialise in all forms of Japanese poetry.

This particular anthology is a collection of English speaking tanka poets, and the introduction gives a wonderful short history of the development of the art form from its Japanese roots right up to the present.

I must admit to liking to write in the very compressed form of haiku and now tanka. I like the concentration or distillation of ideas that it affords. And it seems to suit my current restlessness and lack of patience with all things long-winded.

I've only attempted two tanka so far and I'm still tinkering but here they are:

black nyger seed for the goldfinches
rushes from funnel to feeder -
age brings such

weep old pear
cut back -
hard pruned
to within an inch
of my life


Blogger BarbaraS said...

Both very distilled: I'd say you're there!

6:09 pm  
Blogger PI said...

I've just learned haiku
courtesy of Zinnia
I fear that's my lot.

9:33 am  
Blogger Crafty Green Poet said...

oh these are very good! I love tanka too, I'm only just really starting to write them.

2:10 pm  
Blogger apprentice said...

Thanks all. The book is very helpful in that you see how people use the juxtaposition of two ideas or phrases.

My fav was along the lines of:

autumn metastasis
she has ticked
every single
lily bulb
in the catalogue

absolutely brilliant

3:33 pm  
Blogger Lucy said...

They're great. I totally agree with you about age and the concentrated pleasures...

7:57 pm  
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