Leaf litter – #TankaTuesday

Photo by Ray Bilcliff on Pexels.com

Scent of falling leaves
Not quite floral, not quite musk,
Signals change to come

Ah, fall – I dread it because it means winter, my least favorite season, is coming. There’s a reason I live below the Mason Dixon line, and part of it is that I don’t like cold.

This was written for Colleen Chesebro’s Tanka Tuesday #198, poet’s choice.

Adoption – #TankaTuesday #Haibun

getrudes-nose

The medicine man draws the marks of the chosen one on her forehead, her cheeks, with a muddle of red clay and pure springwater. The gourd bowl he draws from is stained red by years, decades, and generations of uses before. It is a holy day, and a gift must be flown to the gods. He places a bearskin cape on the chosen one’s back, the horns of a deer on her head, and precious shells in her hands. He commands her,

Stretch your holy wings –
the gods’ gift on sacred days.
Brave the daunting jump!

And so she leaps, the cape flapping in the wind, feathered wings of the gods sprouting from her back. She becomes the bird, the bear, the deer, and radiance as the child soars to her new, adopted parents.

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This was written for Colleen Chesebro’s Tanka Tuesday #184, a picture and form prompt! We were to write a haibun inspired by Frank J. Tassone’s picture of a New York natural area. I went a fantasy route.

Earth’s Maiden #TankaTuesday #Etheree

elf forest tanka tuesday grass redwood tree

I’ve
never
seen her here
before this day,
but she acts as if
I’m the one to invade.
“Good heavens,” I say, “Who’re you?”
Soft-voiced says she, “What is a name
but manacles holding the soul hostage?
The trees have not names, so why must I stoop
to this human, imprisoning game?”
I thought. “I suppose you should not.”
“I’m now visible because
you matured enough to
understand me.
Listen, learn,
become
free.”

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This week, Colleen Chesebro’s Tanka Tuesday #174 is a photoprompt. To me, this is one of those pictures begging a story, so I had to take the longer form – a double etheree – to get that out.

Rebirth – #TankaTuesday #Cinquain

close up environment flora ground plant budding

Budding
From withered shoots,
New plants remember those
Which died before and and take their
Mantles.

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This was written for Colleen Chesebro’s Tanka Tuesday #171, write a cinquain. Today, as we sit in hushed houses and watch our gardens grow in the back, I chose to limit my words and put everything into as small a bite as I could.

This one is dedicated to my raspberry briers which recently decided they weren’t dead.

Photo by David Alberto Carmona Coto on Pexels.com

Nest – #Haiku #TankaTuesday

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Used nest
Scrapped for new –
Homey

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This was written for Colleen Chesebro’s Tanka Tuesday #168, Comfort and Worn. I decided to do a 2/3/2 haiku because it was hard to get the synonyms forĀ those words to fit together in such a tight space with a nature theme. I think I did it, but wow! What a challenge!

This was inspired by a birds nest in the maple tree in my backyard. This spring, when the blackbirds returned, they ripped apart the old nest and built a new one in my neighbor’s back yard. The traitors.

Moth #TankaTuesday #Gogyoka

antenna biology blur butterfly

Soft dust flakes from gentle wings
Which beat in the floodlights and moonbeams.
The lethal heat of halogen bulbs attracts you
Like lumps of gold attracts man.
Do you laugh when we die for a rock?

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A new poetry form to learn!? Yes please! This is my first ever attempt at a gogyoka poem, as written for Colleen Chesebro’s February 4th Tanka Tuesday, Poet’s Choice.

Photo by Egor Kamelev on Pexels.com

The Lake – #TankaTuesday #Haiku #HaikuMadness

adventure blue calm waters climb

Serene, hushed lake
Plants and animals now sleep
Wait for ice to melt

Serene hush
Lake, fish, cat-tails, now
Solid ice

Placid
Now frozen
Iced lake

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This was written for Colleen Chesebro’s Tanka Tuesday #160, Calm and Present (synonyms are in bold). Recently amongst the blog-o-sphere (or cube? why can’t it be a cube?), there’s been some controversy over how long to make an English haiku. Each of these were intended to be closely related, but they’re obviously not the same.

Which length do you prefer?

Photo by Riccardo Bresciani on Pexels.com

Slow Insanity – #Cinquain #TankaTuesday

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Living
Exhausting days,
Tiring, sleepless darkness,
Elicited madness in her.
Survive.

Slinging
Cruel statements
To hide dishonor
Against her failed ambitions.
Careless.

Reaching
Depressed stages,
Hopelessness inching in,
She concocted a fantasy.
Straining.

Growing
Cucumber dreams,
Night-times of potatoes,
Sublime and pumpkin reveries.
Working.

Never
Sluggish despite
Corrupt voices’ chiding,
Her delusional garden grew
Lifelong.

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This was written for Colleen Chesebro’s Tanka Tuesday prompt, poet’s choice. I chose the crown cinquain to honor my grandmother, who this poem was written about. She was absolutely, totally insane, but despite this she held so much of the family together and made her garden fantasy a reality.

Because the bleeding heart flowers represented this poem well, I chose to use a picture previously shared by Alexander Eliot for a prompt. Check out his work too – he’s got a load of stories and some really nice photography.

Salvation – #Shadorma #Tanka Tuesday

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Salvation
From infernos and
Damnation;
Sacrifice
Self for love, commutation
Of darling’s penance.

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This was written for Colleen Chesebro’s Tanka Tuesday #158, a photoprompt based on the given image. If I’m remembering correctly from my knowledge of the scientific world, the image is supposed to be an aerogel (a very light gel material with aqueous material inside the crosslinks) that is lifted by the hot air blowing beneath it. The flower is protected by the water in the gel, which is where I came up with the salvation theme of my shadorma.