Monday, March 31, 2014

to be dipped down tanka

to be dipped down
and again into time—
everyone screams
as they go through life,

stained-glass window tanka

stained-glass window
the beauty of your light 
shining within
a healthy measure 
of darkness

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Just Published in NeverEnding story - First English-Chinese Bilingual Haiku and Tanka Blog - thanks to the editor and translator, Chen-ou Liu

Sunday, March 30, 2014

One Man's Maple Moon: Wild Horse Tanka by Sergio Ortiz

English Original

I was the sin,
a wild horse galloping
from the horizon --
everything I saw
was spoken into her ear

Cattails, 1, January 2014

Sergio Ortiz

Chinese Translation (Traditional)

奔騰而來 --
Chinese Translation (Simplified)


Saturday, March 29, 2014

let’s walk among tanka

*"let’s walk among
the night’s dark roses"—
it's hard to pack
for the rest of my life
when all I really need is a hug

* Cabaret Ludwig by Rachel Wetzsteon

Thursday, March 27, 2014

dawn broke tanka

dawn broke...
no, shattered—
like a coin in a beggar's cup
days after your funeral

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

the skin of sleep is thin tanka

the skin of slumber is thin--
come back
from the echoless shore,
rock me to sleep,
mother, rock me to sleep

Scheherazade tanka

a day-and-night pattern 
of spirals, 
a thousand and one nights 
of her private gamble

Monday, March 24, 2014

attrition warfare tanka

attrition warfare
a language of mass
how high a price
for victory

entre tanto escombro

entre tanto escombro

me sigues colocando
entre tanto escombro
soy el hombre desmembrado,
susurro poemas a la nieve
hago lo que la gente hace
bajo la influencia de un talismán
dices que no me echas la culpa
como los que me echan la culpa
pero siempre estas arriba de mi
desde tu arrogante montaña
como una adversidad pantanosa
y el resentimiento no se te cae
más bien sigue creciendo
la duda se apodera de ti
hasta que la cacerola yace
patas arriba en el fogón 

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Tea Ceremony tanka

tea ceremony-- 
so tightly curled camellia leaves 
as they steep 
the way you woke this morning

Saturday, March 22, 2014

winter and spring tanka.

the bones of winter
become the limbs of spring
nothing to squander …
the buds of my youth
dormant on their boughs

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

grandmother's orchid tanka

grandmother's orchid
was a rainy day in my presence,
the pool of wax
under a burning candle,  
foam from a waterfall

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

a woman moves earth to dispel grief tanka

she spread fires
and floods on her toast,
moving earth
to dispel her grief ...
now she reads the horoscope

Sunday, March 16, 2014

one of these days poem

one of these days ...
you'll fall down the side 
of a mountain and
I'll dream about scarecrows 
with twisted limbs
bouncing from rock to rock

harmony tanka

the original harmony
of a tiny flower
to infuse heartmusic
with mothersong

Saturday, March 15, 2014

change is continuous

change is continuous 
on the seamless web
yet moments come 
when you feel upon your heart
the announcement of an end

Friday, March 14, 2014

to the small throat of sorrow tanka

the small throat
of sorrow…
I am 
that hungry yellow boy
from the third world

Thursday, March 13, 2014

to reach silence tanka

to reach silence
naming what doesn't change
I walk in the river
of crisis toward the real
finding the center of my fear

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

everybody has a heartache tanka

has a heartache,
in the midst of this vastness
a drift of plankton 

Monday, March 10, 2014

eternal voices tanka

eternal voices —
I wade through life’s
the falcon of my mind

Sunday, March 09, 2014

silkworms tanka

smuggled out of Tehran ...
I fear 
this dead end road
of doubt 

Saturday, March 08, 2014

I have my own goats to tame tanka

I have my own goats
to tame in the silence
of my garden 
and a bundle of sorrow
I share with my lilies

Thursday, March 06, 2014

worried your name is missing tanka

your name is missing—
it circles
in the shadow-world
a wind-blown ghost

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

shadows prisoners left on the wall tanka

prisoners left
on the wall —
in a mass grave

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

a prison of sunlight tanka

a prison
of sunlight on my skin —
sing to me, the dust of
the dead dances on my tongue

in bad faith - a mystical tanka

in bad faith—
our sun or then again
the moon
against a flat abyss,
a groundless ground

a walk through the painted sky tanka

through the painted sky —
in this prison 
I count and recount bones
in the blaze of morning

salamander tanka

on the tip of my tongue
ready to confront
strangled with aphasia 

Saturday, March 01, 2014

in my messy room tanka

in my
messy room
blind men
tap their way
by inches

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