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Have had poetry on my mind this week. Jane over at Making it write plays around with senryu. So I looked up the definition to see how that differed from haiku. Like haiku, senryu (also called human haiku) is an unrhymed Japanese verse consisting of three unrhymed lines of five, seven, and five syllables (5, 7, 5) or 17 syllables in all. Haiku traditionally evoke images of the natural world whereas senryu is usually written in the present tense and only references to some aspect of human nature or emotions.

Then there’s a tanka which is is very similar to haiku, but tanka poems have more syllables and use simile, metaphor and personification. There are five lines in a tanka poem of 5, 7, 5, 7, 7 syllables (31 in all). Tanka are written about nature, seasons, love, sadness and other strong emotions.

Well today I’ve written a sentanku (if there IS such a thing)! I’m finding it’s kind of hard to seriously set out to write one of these poems and say what you need to in so few words. It works best for me if it’s just spontaneous. This was not. I was trying to tell a truth but it feels really forced… Need more practice.




my fears birth the thoughts
that forge the false facades
of my daily mask;
that face of many smiles
hides my insecurities


Picture Credit: earlfooteband.bandcamp.com