Friday, September 24, 2021

Poetry Friday: Tankas in Conversation

September's challenge was nothing much: simply peruse years of my dear poetry sisters' archives and write a tanka in response to one of them. (Tanka = a haiku with two added seven syllable lines. See Kelly's informative posts for a deeper explanation.

Well. That went as well as you'd expect. I flailed in a sea of gorgeous choices. I mired in indecision. I gave up on equity and justice and fairness to all my sisters, and picked two poems.  One because I'd missed commenting on it the first time it was posted (sorry, Liz!) and the other because she wrote of sunrises and birds (thanks, Laura!) and I'd just come from Kiawah Island, where I'd also communed with both. 

First, here is Laura's #poemsketch. I adore her easy way with lines (both drawn and written) and her knack for evocative detail.  

And here is my tanka in  response:

Next, a stunning poem from Liz.  She wrote it in response to our challenge to write about "Ponderous, or based on an image of a hippo; written in any form"---a challenge I LOVED, by the way, but somehow, I failed to comment upon Liz's killer poem when she posted it back in September of last  year. Here's a taste:

Stones in the River

When she was seven
and everyone had
make-believe friends
and make believe families
and make believe long hair,
my sister had hippos,
two make-believe hippos,

    (go read the rest here. You really don't want to miss it.

And my tanka, in conversation: 

What a poet wants

what all of us want:
salt, honey, territory
a push upwards, grace 
seven ways to carve rivers
names for the things that surface

     ----Sara Lewis Holmes (all rights reserved)

My poetry sisters' tanka can be found here:



Mary Lee





Poetry Friday is hosted today by our own Laura Purdie Salas