The Look of Love

Snow Capped

Winter locks the door on Spring
Frigid in the sack.
There’s snow and trees without their leaves.
Clean white suggests a lack
Unless it’s looking back.

Text: I am trying a variation of Japanese tanka that William N. Porter used to translate the The Hyakunin-isshu in 1909.  He used five iambic lines of 8-6-8-6-6 syllables with an end-rhyme on the shorter lines.  There should be a pivot of the meaning at the third line separating and then reconnecting the top and bottom two lines.

Photos: “Snow Capped”, above, “Love of Winter”, below, linked to K’lee and Dale’s Cosmic Photo Challenge with the theme “the look of love”.

Love of Winter

Author: Frank Hubeny

I enjoy walking, poetry and short prose as well as taking pictures with my phone.

20 thoughts on “The Look of Love”

  1. Whee! a new form!~ I will look into this more. Around 1890’s there was a change in tanka, also……I can’t remember what exactly, but it went against the historical tide. The photo is stark, lovely, Frank and the poem very interesting.

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      1. Yes, the Japanese modified tanka a couple of times, it seems starting in the 1890’s. Something either making it more ‘personal’ or not doing so. I remember reading about it and the trend…I’ll try to find it and send it to you, Frank. That photo is marvelous. Says much.

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          1. I think it was pretty stagnant for centuries. Probably because of isolation, and that court and priests were the major writers and spreaders of tanka and later haiku. But there are so many factors in this issue. Certainly political change would be a factor, and perhaps social mood.

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  2. Interesting idea to write an English tanka. Most of all I enjoyed the sequence of winter pics from the forlorn icicles of the first pic to the snow free vegetation of the last.

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