I had never heard of tanka, a form of Japanese poetry, until I read this article on Almost an Author. It is a five-line poem, the first three containing the same syllables as haiku: 1st line — five, 2nd line — seven, 3rd line — five. The fourth and fifth lines of a tanka poem each contain seven syllables. The author notes that the themes in tanka are more varied than haiku, which concerns nature. As an exercise, the author recommends write “a haiku first and then” add “the last two lines as reflection on your subject.”
So I’ve tried it with the haiku I posted in last Monday’s Sparks.
In April. the sky
Cries. Out of anger? Sadness?
The earth send flowers.
Now I’ll add two more lines of seven syllables and turn it into a tanka.
All tears are worth their price if
Kindness and compassion grows.
Share your tanka below!