Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Announcement: June Tanka Contests

Calling All Tanka Poets: Entries are currently being accepted for the following contests:
At Biltmore Estate, Asheville, NC, June 2015

Friday, May 20, 2016

Strolling the streets; the shift

strolling the streets
of the happiest place
in America ...
had I remembered
I would have worn a grin

San Luis Obispo, California, USA, August 2013
—Skylark 2:2, winter 2014

It actually was a happy place. I'd happily visit again!

the shift
in my disposition
when I notice
that train is carrying
The Greatest Show on Earth

~railroad crossing, Waller County, Texas, USA
—Atlas Poetica, 20, January 2015

A long, sleek, spotless train, no graffiti. As an adult, I tend to be a little bothered by the notion of circuses (some might say "The Cruelest Show on Earth"?). Yet for a few moments, I felt something magical as that train transported me back. 

Note: Earlier this month, performing elephants were officially retired from the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus, ending a 145-year tradition.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Tanka sequence

Shop of scents 

each soap 
a piece of artwork … 
part of me knows
the sculpted designs 
will in time wash away

a fresh spray 
of "triple cool mint"— 
this desire 
to smell like a patch 
of garden herbs 

"lavender silk" 
for experienced skin ... 
I buy a bar, 
trusting the store clerk 
to keep my secret 

red lights vol. 12, no. 1, January 2016

This shop is in San Luis Obispo, California.

Friday, May 6, 2016

Collaborative tanka sequence ("tanka pair")

I'm pleased to post this tanka pair, a collaboration with the talented Jo McInerney:


Janet Lynn Davis, USA ("what to keep")
& Jo McInerney, Australia ("we repair")

what to keep, 
what to throw away ...
tiny rhinestones 
missing from the wings 
of her butterfly brooch 

we repair 
her diamante bow 
before pinning it 
to her burial shift ...
the hope of resurrection 

Skylark, 4:1, Summer 2016

From Jo:
The woman for whom this tanka was written was Mum's oldest sister and outlived her by 27 years. She was my daughter's surrogate grandmother and my second mother. When she died I felt as though I had been orphaned again. 

From Janet:
This is my first Mother's Day without the earthly presence of my mother, Joan (pronounced JoAnn), who passed away on April 20 after a lengthy, debilitating illness. The world feels a little silent now. (I did, of course, keep the butterfly pin.)