Thursday, November 27, 2014

Wild pansies

wild pansies
her perfect garden—
lanky, jagged-leaved,
grins on their faces

A Hundred Gourds, 3:4, September 2014

Here in southeast Texas, pansies may survive the winter, but cottontail rabbits seem to love the taste of the blooms. 

Saturday, November 22, 2014

In a shoe box

in a shoe box
my Shirley Temple doll
made of china ...
the teardrop crack
under one of her eyes

Ribbons "Tanka Cafe" (theme: heirlooms and relics), Spring/Summer 2014

An aunt of mine was given this doll decades ago. I read via Googling that she (the doll, not my aunt!) was probably made in the year 1934. Fragile Shirley eventually ended up in my hands when I was still a child. Too bad my mother threw the original box away.

Here she is, except mine isn't in quite as good shape. And I learned something: she isn't actually made of china (oops) but, instead, "composition," a painted sawdust/wood blend.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Milestone birthday

milestone birthday—
in a Thinker pose  
on the couch  
he whiles away the time  
with classical music

The Bamboo Hut, Vol. 1, No. 2, January 2014

Oops: I meant to post this last month, when it was "his" birthday (not that my readers would know that, of course!).

Monday, November 10, 2014

Cruising waters

cruising waters
where the great auk once thrived …
what of me
is prized enough
for the greedy to seize?

Skylark 2:2, Winter 2014, "Skylark's Nest" clutch of runners-up

Skylark is a wonderful journal of tanka and its related forms, edited by poet extraordinaire Claire Everett and including a liberal sprinkling of artwork by her talented daughter Amy. With this issue, fellow poet-blogger Jenny Ward Angyal officially joins the crew as reviews and features editor. 

Each issue, poets are invited to write a "Skylark's Nest" tanka inspired by a nature-themed drawing. 

I was happy to be able to cruise northeastern waters last spring. My travels included a side excursion to the Bird Islands off Nova Scotia. The great auk no longer exists, thanks to exploitation by humans, but from a distance, through thick cloud cover and drizzle, I managed to see a few of its relatives, i.e., puffins and razorbills. 

Razorbills: Bird Islands, Nova Scotia, Canada

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Autumn gust

autumn gust—
from all the earrings
in the shop
I pick out the pair
resembling spring leaves

—Atlas Poetica, #17, Spring 2014