Friday, December 23, 2016

Cattails, September 2016

1st Place
2016 Fleeting Words Tanka Competition

mute swans
under a moon bridge
the things
I should have confessed
make no difference now

Comments from the Judge:

Selected for the first place in this competition, is this tanka by a well known author from Canada, Debbie Strange. Smoothly composed, the words "mute swans" in line 1 and "under a moon bridge" in line 2 starts it off beautifully. Debbie creates a distinct pause before she goes into lines 2 and 3 which juxtapose with a human relationship. This tanka then finally spills over to line 5, in a flowing crescendo and the moment of closure. Simple images, and straightforward words make this tanka work for anyone and everyone who reads it.

—UHTS Contest Judge: an'ya cattails principal editor

Jane Reichhold Memorial Tribute (1937-2016)

a broken shell
her words return
in waves


failing light
my life lines cradle
her laugh lines

one-eyed crow
a glimpse of starshine
between clouds

wind gusts
a rotten burl full
of wild plums

these stones
skim across water
letting go
of every burden,
I float into light

in my garden
a gatekeeper butterfly
basks in the sun
I cover my pale body
only coming out at night

the songs
my father sang to me
in a tongue
I could not understand
still, they carry me home

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