Don Corleone (Tanka)

I ask a favor;
You’ll receive my gratitude.
On this paper sheet:
Your signature or your brains,
An offer you can’t refuse.

6/23/17

Inspired by a recent post by Kindra Austin.

The Faerie Queen (Tanka)

The fair fay kingdom
Otherside of the West Wind
Inside the mirror
Enchanted and eternal
Ageless monarch; Faerie Queen.

6/13/17

This tanka is my response to Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge # 38 – FAIRY & MAGIC. Note: I substituted “enchanted” for “magic” and used the Old French form “Faerie” for “fairy.”

Fire (Haiku)

Through the smokey veil
Devouring inferno
Timber burning black

6/13/17

This is my response to Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge # 37 – SMOKE & VEIL

Sophia

Oh, Sophia Shekinah,
Socrates-lover, Plato-Friend,
Maternal dwelling of the Logos.
Sefirah, emanating
From the crown of creation without end,
Wisdom, Understanding: Knowledge.
Understanding wisdom is knowing
That you know nothing.

6/7/17

Notes:
Shekinah (Hebrew:שכינה ) – Pronounced Sha-kee-nah. Literally “dwelling.” A Rabbinic term for the presence of God, held by some to be the feminine attribute of God. See more here.
Sefirah (Hebrew: סְפִירָה ) – Pronounced Se-fir-ah. Literally “emanation.” A term from Kabbalah. See more here.
Logos (ancient Greek λόγος) – Pronounced “low-gose,” which has been used as a term in Philosophy and Theology since the time of Heraclitus. See more here. I’ve written about the Logos previously.

Content (Senryu)

Pleased to be alive
Gardening in the hot sun
Grieving not its end.

6/6/17

This senryu (aka a “human haiku”) is my response to Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge # 36 – HAPPY & SAD. I subsituted the synonyms “Pleased” and “Grieving” for “Happy” and “Sad”

Survival Skills

In the chasm between dreams and reality
Falls pain and disappointment,
Bridged by madness and hope,
Holding off the suffocating
Black blanket of eternal night.

5/29-6/3/17

Reoccurring Dreams

The dreams return,
Can’t stop them from coming,
Dreams of the past,
Relived like a robot,
Unable to deviate from programming.

Dreams of things that never happened
–that never could–
But I that know to be true:
On stage alone,
Ukulele-playing Tangled Up In Blue,
Rock-Band-Playing
Won’t Get Fooled Again,
Sharing a backstage drink with
Early ’80s Pete Townshend,
Toasting a fallen friend,
Fidgeting for a fix.

Dreams of the future,
Not flying-car Flash Gordon future,
No Starships or monoliths.
The real future, my future:
The coming darkness,
Depression and death.
Standing on the beach
Feeling old and tired,
Isolated; alone,
Ready for the end.
But I’m wrong.

5/29/17

Adapted from Chapter II of Summer of a Doormouse.

Bus Terminal Blues

Through the dirty bus window
The past plays like a silent movie,
Scene after scene, never changing.

Memory contradicts memory,
A story told so many time
It becomes your truth.
Alone without a home,
Drifting back to the beginning,
High school hallways,
Smiles and promises,
Bent and broken.

A bus station in Purgatory,
The next scene already written.
Play your part;
Hope for a sequel.

5/29/17

This poem is partially based on the Second Alternate Prologue to Summer of a Doormouse.

Thermodynamics (a Tanka)

Entropy grows
Past the point of no return
Time’s arrow flies on
Toward the heat-death future
A fate sealed by mathematics.

5/24/17

This is my second response to Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge # 35 – PAST & FUTURE.

Very observant readers will note that this Tanka doesn’t hold strictly to the 5/7/5/7/7 syllable count. I opted for what I felt was best for the poem. There is actually some disagreement regarding syllable counting when writing Japanese forms(Haiku, Senryu, Tanka, et cetera) in English, since the Japanese “on” and the English “syllable” are not synonymous.

Now (A Senryu)

Now is all there is:
The past is a memory,
Future just a dream.

5/23/17

My response to Colleen’s Weekly #Poetry Challenge # 35 – PAST & FUTURE. It is, I believe, more a senryu than a haiku, so I hope that is acceptable (Actually, after learning of the senryu form I may have to reclassify some of my haiku anyway).