Poems: A Photographic Tanka Journey

I’m still messing around with the Walks and trying to decide how to format them, write them, etc.  Should they be recorded in a diary-style?  Or prose?  Poetry?  A series of tankas?  Free-form poems?  Or should I just give it all up?  😉

So this is the latest incarnation of Walk #1 and a complete experiment. I’ve never written tankas before.  A tanka is usually a five line Japanese poem with the syllable count of 5-7-5-7-7.  The idea to try my hand at tankas written about walks in city parks was inspired by reading Urban Tumbleweeds: Notes from a Tanka Diary by Harryette Mullen.

Walking Roegner Park:  A Photographic Tanka Journey

by Debi

Sun barely risen

Empty, cold I start to walk

Well-trodden concrete

Right or left, is the question,

To take the trail less traveled?

river with sun (2)








Choose the river path

Sound of crows, footfalls, river

Soggy from night’s rain

The wind is quiet today

Grasses bent from prior storms

trees with a crow (2)









Crows are still scolding

Following me as I walk

Same crows or others

Passing their scolding to friends?

In the distance, train whistling

train on bridge (3)








Sound of cars, river

The train’s crossing the bridge now

Graffiti’d roadway

A city park, not country

Impervious surfaces

grafitti (3)








A pair of mallards

Sun is beginning to shine

White puffy berry

Too wet to pop, it went squish

An albino cranberry

White_Berries_by_dsimple (2)








I notice more birds

Sparrows, chickadees, finches

A flock of flickers

A pilated woodpecker

Gaggle of south-flying geese

geese (3)








Abandoned playground

In the midst of a puddle

Surface reflects sky

The mud sucks at my new shoes

Vanity wins, I move on

playground (2)








Playing detectives

Lots of mem’ries at this park

Kids playing ‘gators

Stop!  Don’t touch the hot lava!

Nearly twenty years ago

toy and footprints in mud (3)










Do people ride here?

A rail for tying horses

Park coming alive

Dog walkers, German shepherds

Hello car, time to go home

horse rail (2)








Poem: Artful

Short poem in response to Ali Smith’s book, Artful.


We lived together, her and I

Our bookshelves melded, too.

The scholar and the arborist,

Introduction days were through.

A world of sorrow at her loss.

Moving chairs to better see

My books, my rugs, my furniture.

Time heals, but not for me.