Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Long cracks; the way lines

long cracks
in the asphalt road
near our house—
each morning I walk
my own damaged trail

the way lines
seemed to form overnight
around my mouth
... as if I had smiled

one time too many

—both individual tanka: kernels ("featured poet"), Summer 2013 
Note: The online journal kernels has morphed into cattails, but the archives are available.


  1. Two wonderfully thoughtful poems that fit together so well.
    To say "keep smiling" sounds cliche; but smiles from the deepest wellspring are never damaging.

  2. Thanks, as always, Jenny.
    That's true - about "smiles from the deepest wellspring"!

  3. This is such a charming piece. I think that poems that acknowledge our shared less-than-perfect human realities – like wrinkles – are the best kind of humor. They exude warmth and empathetic people relate. There is a lot to give one pause, here. The line: “as if I had smiled one time too many” – perfect. As Shakespeare put it: “With mirth and laughter let old wrinkles come.”

  4. Thanks, Wendy, your detailed feedback is always so helpful - and appreciated.

  5. "Each morning I walk my own damaged trail..." Beautiful poem Janet!

  6. Cracks and lines are life well lived, right? That's what I'[m holding onto :) ha! Wonderful, both!

  7. Thank you, Jennifer.
    Yes, cracks, breaks, bruises, etc. - we all have them!