NaPoWriMo – Choka – April 13, 2016

Dawn

a silent minstrel
sat at dawn his fingers limp
(the blue sky streaked red)
reminding him of lost friends
a song dangled there
(just out of reach but so near)
he touched the taut strings
and struck a sweet cord
then, heard a sistrum jangle
the music began
flowing like a spring river

he sang of karma
he sang of resurrection
of life – birth and death
and of red dawns and sunsets
o’er the mountains and the sea.

© G.s.k. ‘16

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“The choka (長歌 long poem) was the epic, story telling form of Japanese poetry from the 1st to the 13th century, known as the  Waka period. Most often the Japanese poet would write epics in classical Chinese. Still, the occasional poet with a story to tell would tackle the choka, the earliest of which can be traced back to the 1st century. It describes a battle and is 149 lines long.

Originally choka were sung, but not in the Western sense of being sung. The oral tradition of the choka was to recite the words in a high pitch.

The choka is:

  • a narrative.
  • syllabic. Composed of any number of couplets made up of alternating 5-7 onji (sound syllables) per line. In English we can only treat the onji as a syllable.
  • unrhymed.
  • concluded by a hanka, an envoy in the form of the waka, 31 onji or sound syllables in 5 lines with 5-7-5-7-7. “han” meaning repetition, the hanka is to summarize the choka. The word tanka is often substituted for hanka or waka (they are all rooted in the same 31 syllable, 5 line form, their root seems to make them interchangeable with only subtle differences to separate them.)
  • Another way to write a choka  is to write several katauta (5-7-7 syllable stanzas).
  • The poem can be as long as you like and in classical times there have been choka with hundreds of lines.

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Written for NaPoWriMo inspired by the mandala and words found on 1sojounal NaPoWriMo: Day 13:

minstrel, dawn, strings, blue, flow, fingers, jangle, dangle

From Muddy Depths – Tanka- August 4, 2015

Pond

Pond

from muddy depths
an inner blossoming
moonlight thoughts
why search for inspiration
from a dragonfly

muddy waters
turtles in the lotus pond
whisper secrets
the here and now
just the here and now

© G.s.k. ‘15

Written for:

Carpe Diem #789 Lotus flowers

Inspiration – Carpe Diem Haiku Kai

inspiration
born from wisdom and deceit
blood mixed mead of Kvasir

sweet poems inspired
born from the ashes of deceit
sooth mankind’s hearts


I invite you to read yesterday’s Carpe Diem Haiku Kai – it’s a bit of Norse mythology about how inspiration was born!  A great read. Here’s the beginning:

“The Mead of Poetry

At the conclusion of the Aesir-Vanir War, the Aesir and Vanir gods and goddesses sealed their truce by spitting into a great vat. From their spittle they formed a man whom they named Kvasir (“Fermented Juice”). Kvasir was the wisest human that had ever lived; none were able to present him with a question for which he didn’t have a satisfying answer. He became famous and traveled throughout the world giving counsel.
Kvasir was invited to the home of two dwarves, Fjalar (“Deceiver”) and Galar (“Screamer”). Upon his arrival, the dwarves slew Kvasir and brewed mead with his blood. This mead contained Kvasir’s ability to dispense wisdom, and was appropriately named Óðrœrir (“Stirrer of Inspiration”). Any who drank of it would become a poet or a scholar.”(cont)

 

I don’t know – WDBWP’s Promp #12

1 August 2007  The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope

1 August 2007 The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope – The Witches Broom Nebula

Free Verse

I don’t know

a prompt,
a thought,
some rambling words
that swirl,
then whirl, inside, until I find,
my fingers begin tip-tapping, impetuously.
strangely
I rarely know what I will write,
I just begin – and soon
the stories done,
the poem written,
the song that I’d begun is done …
or a faded photo takes on life!
an idea, a word, a bird singing
first rays of morning light
a photograph or a drawing
reading, commenting, reflecting
what inspires me?
there’s a myriad of choices!
but,
from where do the words come,
where, the colorful combinations?
inspiration is all around me!
my question isn’t from where ideas come
my question is where creations are born
how does
something banal,
something moving,
pathos or boredom
these seeds,
strewn along my path
become something
that wasn’t there …
from where does creation come?
my answer is:
I don’t know.

Written for Sahm’s prompt on We Drink Because We’re Poets

Just a Note: My Favorite Pub!

Mulled Wine

Good Morning World!

Yeah, it’s not Monday but I just needed to give you some of the news from my favorite pub: We Drink Because We’re Poets…yeah, I’ve been letting the heat bake my brain and let this piece of news slip past me without a word…but no more!

If you’re following this fantastic site, you know that there is yet another new addition to the places where we can sit back and let our hair down.  There is now a We Drink Musicc room!!!!  Music Lilith Writes To.  Here, in her own words is what it’s all about:

“I’ll be launching two new bi-weekly features on my other passion, MUSIC! I will be showcasing some of my favorite artists and composers to write to, as well as a writing to music prompt like the last one, as I was SO impressed with the efforts put forth. I am always excited to introduce people to artists that may go unnoticed or undiscovered due to the climate of the music industry nowadays (especially in the States), so the opportunity will feed my desire to share the artists I so love and adore.”

Back on June 5th, Lilith inspired us with a fantastic Prompt from a great piece of music…it was epic…here let me link that for you so you can go and have a look for yourself…Wednesday Short Story Prompt #6, the musician she introduced us to was:  Trailerhead … as you may all know…there are no deadlines for the prompts at We Drink Because We’re Poets…we can click back to them at anytime and get inspired!

Let me just give you a taste of her first feature:

Miyavi, Guitar Samurai

So…missed something…been away…the heat got your brain (oh that has happened to me quite often lately!)…just go to the header page of We Drink Because We’re Poets and pick your passion…we drink music, we drink photography, we drink poetry, we drink short stories and of course featured articles!

By the way!  While this was going to press…Lilith came out with her first new music prompt dedicated to Miyavi! Haven’t seen it yet…now’s the time to do so!

And now for an announcement:

I am taking a couple of days off from commenting, not writing just commenting…then I’m going to the lake to cool my brain down…well maybe I’ll do just a little commenting…ah…yeah, maybe I’ll just visit the reader for half an hour…mmm…well…maybe…

You have a great day everyone and happy 4th of July to you Americans especially to Papi Z 😉 !