Hope and Fear

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Think I’m losing it

My longing, unbearable  

Please don’t burn my dreams

This life you offer, cold void

How can I ever catch up


The poem above uses a Tanka form. I’ve written Tanka poems before that follow 5/7/5/7/7 syllable structure, but I never paid attention to the one unique characteristics of a Tanka poem as explained below (taken from Word Craft & Poetry’s Cheat Sheet :

Your tanka should be filled with poetic passion, including vivid imagery to make up both parts of the poem. The first three lines of the poem consist of one part and should convey a specific theme. The third line of your poem is the often where the pivot occurs, although it can happen anywhere. The pivot gives direction to your poem, whose meaning should be applied to the first two lines of your poem, as well as the last two lines so that your tanka can be read forward and backward.

So I tried to incorporate it this time and read it backward at the end. Think it works. Oh, and this time, I did the writing first and let the writing picked its image (check out my piece Random Thought to explain about this).

The poem above is in response to Tanka’s Tuesday Challenge #216 – Synonyms Only with Eager & Hope as the prompt.

10 Comments

  1. Not one word or emotion overdone. Just right! I truly enjoyed it.
    Like you, I’m starting to see the deeper meaning of these syllabic forms thanks to Colleen’s generous explanations. I hope to return to read often and learn me a thing or two about poetry. Thanks for sharing your poem. I wish you miracles.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Great job! I have also recently learned details about the Tanka form I never knew, thanks to Colleen’s Tanka Tuesday Challenges and making it make sense read backwards took care of itself when all other elements were fulfilled.

    Liked by 1 person

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