still

life
and death
structured together, partnered

nothing
to subtract
or to add

rended,
essence floats
beyond secrets–incandescent

Picture credit: Britta Benson. This photograph was taken inside St. Cecilia’s Church (built in 1739), Heusenstamm, Germany. 

A haynaku for Colleen’s #TankaTuesday Ekphrastic prompt, using Britta Benson’s photo, above, as inspiration. I’ve also used words from Jane’s Oracle 2.

The Melting of Time

Snowfall.  Night.
The shore is distant.
I dream of
flying—but
I remain enclosed within
ice blue, glittering.

North seems far–
where I am has no
direction.
The landscape
retreats until almost all
is trapped within dreams.

Barren seas
echo with silence.
The world cracks.
Wind weeps in
side chasms of solitude–
the melting of time.

Sherry’s heartbreaking photo, above, that accompanied her prompt at earthweal to talk about the connections between life and the melting ice of the arctic, inspired the dreamscape of my shadorma chain, written also for Colleen’s #TankaTuesday, where Jules selected shadorma as this month’s form.

Spiraling

“A Tunnel” by Vika Muse

Is this the inside of my dream?  These days I am cautious of everything—afraid of the future, the past, afraid even of my fear.  But this is not the grey noir darkness of the usual tunnels my night journeys follow.  There are no trains to miss, no staircases to nowhere.  This passageway is alive, a cocoon of possibility opening into an illuminated aperture.

And do I see rabbits?  I was born in the Year of the Rabbit.  What will we find if we enter into that light?

happy end
ings tucked away just
in case—I
whistle on the wind–
birds echo the song

Mish at dVerse has introduced us to the art of Vika Muse:

“I wish I could have manta rays in the sky… instead of Russian bombs and military airplanes. I’ve noticed that my disturbing paintings didn’t make me happier. They cause even deeper depression. So I’ve tried to draw my future. It is bright and sunny. There are no bombs and war… Only beautiful landscapes and dreamlike sky. I hope I’ll meet such a future someday…
P.S. Be empathetic with your relatives and value your lifestyle. It’s big happiness to have mundane life and safety and independence. So simple and so valuable.”

You can find her on Instagram @get.muse She is also featured on this website http://www.inprnt.com

A tankaprose for Colleen’s #TankaTuesday prompt and for the NaPoWriMo prompt to write about the possibility of good things.

abundance

can we remember
the dance, the music?—when life
gathered us as one?

Selma and Colleen chose this Degas painting of Russian dancers, above, as the image prompt for this week’s #TankaTuesday. When I was looking through my archives for my own image to accompany my poem, I came across a collage which I had done for one of Sue Vincent’s photo prompts. I decided to use the same title–my wish for what the earth provides freely to humans, if they would only let it, honor it, nourish it–instead of destroying it with their selfishness and greed.

Year of the Tiger

Margins move, expand
to new apogees, new depths–
vicissitude reigns.

Riding the rainbow we leap
onto the Wheel of Fortune

wheel of fortune card s

Change is the key word for the Year of the Tiger.

The first tiger blends Mexican and Chinese mask elements, and the second is based on Chinese children’s shoes. Tigers are considered a powerful protective motif, and are often used for children’s clothing, hats as well as shoes. Fish are added for abundance and good luck.

Tanka for Colleen’s #TankaTuesday challenge, tasting the rainbow.

The Wheel of Fortune is digital art, created many years ago. I should revisit it in collage.

Portents

Colleen’s #TankaTuesday Ekphrastic prompt, a painting by John Waterhouse, reminded me very much of the paintings Jane Dougherty used to provide for her writing prompts. And so, as I did for those paintings, I created a collage response and consulted the Collage Box Oracle. A badger’s hexastitch was the result.

outside
the rules of time
matter gathers stories
of reimagined light
dreamed into the
beyond

Also linking to dVerse OLN.

Correspondences

Looking at the photo Butterfly on Asters by Lisa Smith Nelson, I’m immediately reminded of a story in Robin Wall Kimmerer’s “Braiding Sweetgrass”.  Kimmerer is asked by her college advisor why she wants to study botany.  She tells him she is hoping to learn “about why asters and goldenrod looked so beautiful together”.  Her advisor is appalled.  To him, the beauty of a field of flowers has no place in science.

I could have told her, as her artist friends later did, about complementary colors.  But I did not know, as she learned in her further studies, that the eyes of bees, like those of humans, are naturally attracted to complementary colors.  I looked up butterflies and their vision, too, is similarly color sensitive.  When asters and goldenrod grow together, they complement each other in more than color—they attract more pollinators.  Plants need pollinators to reproduce. 

The combination of purple and yellow is part of the ecosystem.

It seems that beauty is indeed a necessity for life.

which came first–
the delicate wings
or the seed?

Colleen’s Tanka Tuesday prompt this week was a photo chosen and taken by Lisa Smith Nelson, above.

just like that/either way

more
and more
crow-
ded in-
to less and
less—un-
fold-
ed and
folded a-
gain each new day–
do I need
to know
who
I am?
words scatter
like air–
gone,
disa-
ppeared

David at the skeptic’s kaddish introduced me to the waltz wave, an poetry form that asks you to separate the syllables for some of your words. I like to do this, especially in shadorma.

I found it to be a challenge, especially to find the right subject matter for this kind of verse. In the end I wrote two, both of which seemed to go well with an old collage I had done which was based on a painting by Redon.

do
dreams fly
or
tunnel?
flow or stun?
spiral
to
the cen-
ter or spin
out to the far-
thest away?
will they
em-
brace or
turn around?
para-
llel
or de-
part?

For Colleen’s #Tanka Tuesday, poet’s choice.

Also linking to dVerse OLN, hosted by Mish.

shadorma/liala

the landscape
pauses, quiescent–
waiting on
the edge of
movement—no time passes here–
framed in memories

Colleen’s #TankaTuesday prompt this week was an interesting one–

  • First, choose your favorite syllabic poetry form. Write your poem.
  • Next, give your poem some different characteristics to make it something different. You can change the syllable count, rhyme scheme (add or get rid of it), anything you want to create a new form. Write this poem.
  • Give your new syllabic poetry form a name.

I chose shadorma. How to change it? I had noticed before that all the lines had odd numbers of syllables, so I added one syllable to each line, to make them all even.

landscape pauses,
quiescent, waiting on
movement’s edge—no
time passes here–
a stilled photograph of silence–
time framed in memories

Thinking of a name was difficult. Shadorma seems to be totally made up, although several people noted the similarity to the word shadow. So I decided to pick a name with a beginning from light. I ended up with Liala, because I like the sound of it and the repetition of the a ending. It’s evidently a girls’ name but I could find no meaning for it.

There is a subtle difference between the odd and even syllabled poems, but I’m not sure which one I like best.

The photos are cropped versions of panoramas composed by my older daughter from photos she took in the mountains of Arizona where my father requested that we spread his ashes. My mother did not make any request except to be cremated, but we managed to find the very same place to spread her ashes years later after her death.

scattered dreams

sleepless I
reach deep skyward, wish
ing for wings
to appear–
my hand pauses, empty, catch
ing only moonlight

Colleen chose me to provide this week’s #TankaTuesday image, and I sent one of my artworks, above. I always enjoy reading what others see in what I’ve created. I haven’t done a shadorma in awhile.

I went back to the original post with this image, which was in 2016, to see what I had written (a san san based also on another poem), and used it as a starting point for what I wrote.