Visions of Longed-for Relief ~ Word Craft Poetry Syllabic Winner

My poem, “Visons of Longed-for Relief,” is the Second Place Winner in the Word Craft Poetry Syllabic Poetry Contest, where Colleen Chesebro asked us to write a tanka prose on the theme of Dreams.  Thank you to the judges for selecting my poem, and congratulations to D. Wallace Peach, Merril D. Smith, and Jude Itakali who placed first, third, and honorable mention, respectively.
Ken G.


Thoughts Take Wing ~ tanka prose

Thoughts Take Wing

From dragonflies to swallows; from great blue heron to bald eagle; this winding river offers sights that take my mind on flights of fancy. Although my passage is never as graceful as theirs, I glide across the water with a paddle as my wings and take in the beauty that surrounds me. Past limestone bluffs with distinctive faces that talk of the mystery of time, beside shoals that hold stone tools from the past, to the passage of time itself as I pass beneath lush, overhanging branches in midsummer that become graceful lines in winter. With nature as my companion, my thoughts take wing.

damselfly in flight
bass jumps out of the water
lands with a big splash
waves roll out in a circle
create ripples in my mind

This is my response to Colleen’s #TankaTuesday Weekly Poetry Challenge
No. 268, Specific Form: Tanka Prose

In a roundabout way, this might be considered on prompt for Day 13 at, where we are asked to write a poem that shows how good fortune is possible, even when it seems impossibly distant.

Music to My Weary Bones ~ tanka prose

Music to My Weary Bones

When I bought my house I knew there were a lot of trees on my quarter-acre lot. The first time I raked the leaves, I counted the trees. Forty. Even if eight of them are cedar it still means I have thirty-two trees dropping leaves. Every year. Fortunately, the trees and brush on the lower quarter of my pie-shaped lot are so thick that I don’t consider it to be lawn. Every autumn, for nine years years, I raked leaves into piles, raked them onto a tarp, then carried them downhill, to the giant leaf-compost pile I had fenced off. Then I walked uphill, to load the tarp again. Twenty to thirty times. Fifteen to twenty hours over a couple of weeks. Until now. I finally broke down and bought a gas-powered backpack leaf blower. I worked with ear-protecting headphones, but as I joined my neighbors in blowing leaves I’m sure it sounded like a chorus of screaming banshees to the outside world. All I heard was classical music on Spotify as I blew those leaves downhill.

fall cacophony
blue jay squawks in protest
all sounds are muted
flying leaves in carefree dance
as Vivaldi’s music plays

This tanka prose is my response to Colleen’s #Tanka Tuesday
Weekly #Potery Challenge No. 254, #SpecificForm.