Oak Leaf Tanka

IMG_2789

small oak sapling sways
leaves bob in the bitter wind
frosted with snowflakes

waving to fallen leaf friends
oak leaf lingers to kiss spring buds

Copyright 2014 Brenda Davis Harsham

Note: A Tanka is a Japanese poetry form that has five lines with syllable counts per line of 5, 7, 5, 7, and 7. In another way of thinking of it, a Tanka is a haiku with two longer seven-syllable lines added as a second stanza. Some purists find fault with any rhyming within the poem. The third line is intended to be a turning point, or a pivot, about which the meaning of the poem turns or changes. I don’t know if my poem achieved that or not. I enjoyed learning about it, and I hope you’ll give it a try, too.

References:

http://www.edu.pe.ca/stjean/playing%20with%20poetry/Hennessey/how_to_write_a_tanka_poem.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tanka
http://examples.yourdictionary.com/reference/examples/examples-of-tanka-poetry.html
http://www.poetry4kids.com/blog/news/how-to-write-a-tanka-poem/

36 thoughts on “Oak Leaf Tanka

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          • He was, and I guess I did. It didn’t even matter that there was a language barrier. Some nights after every one was asleep, I would sneak outside, and lay under the stars, and wish on them that I wouldn’t have to eventually leave, knowing it was silly, but wanting to soak in as much of the orphanage environment I had been doing construction on as possible, before it was time to go.

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            • It’s so much that, as wanting a family of my own, and wanting to live anywhere other than here.

              “Memories warm you up from the inside. But they also tear you apart.”
              — Haruki Murakami

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            • I understand. I was there once. I remember wanting a family, and not knowing if I would ever have my own. And I remember wanting to be away, anywhere else than where I was. I’m very goal-oriented. I worked toward my goals, and eventually I got them. You can do that, too, my friend. Remember the big picture, and keep making choices that lead toward your goals.

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  9. Reblogged this on 21 Shades of Blue and commented:
    I like the poem and the personification! I have a quote by a man with the last name Oaks that sort of goes with this poem, and I can imagine it being said by an older Oak tree to the sapling to explain to it why some are fair-weather friends and why some stick close and can be depended on to “be there” if called on in middle of long, cold winter nights!

    “Desires dictate our priorities, priorities shape our choices, and choices determine our actions.”
    ― Dallin H. Oaks

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  10. I like the poem and the personification! I have a quote by a man with the last name Oaks that sort of goes with your poem, and I can imagine it being said by an older Oak tree to the sapling to explain to it why some are fair-weather friends and why some stick close and can be depended on to “be there” if called on in middle of long, cold winter nights.

    “Desires dictate our priorities, priorities shape our choices, and choices determine our actions.”
    ― Dallin H. Oaks

    Like

  11. awww kissing spring buds. That made me smile.
    Oh…heads up, there is a new haibun prompt site coming along. Will let you know when up and running if you want to join.

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    • Thanks, I have been seeing Tanka challenges, adding the last two lines to someone else’s Haiku, but so far I’ve chosen things that are all my own work. Who knows what the future holds, though. It could be fun. Thanks, as always, for commenting! Brenda

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