Two Friendship Tanka (or, Poetry Challenges Are Fun and You Should Participate, Too!)

It’s been a while since I participated in one of Rebecca’s poetry challenges over at Fake Flamenco, and I’m excited to get back to it. This month’s challenge is to write a tanka poem about a friend or companion animal. And you know how I feel about friendship. 😊 So here are my contributions, because it seems like I can never write just one.   

Today, I called you
just to say hello and chat
about life and stuff.
It was a small moment, but
those small moments make a life.

Wherever we go
together, that’s home for me.
Home isn’t a place,
see, because instead it’s love
that makes a home in our hearts.

If you’d like to participate, as well, you’ve got until Sunday, February 5th. I think you should! I always enjoy these, and reading everyone’s poems is definitely the best part.

Two Nature Haiku (or, a November Poetry Challenge!)

It’s been a little while since I’ve participated in Rebecca’s monthly poetry challenge over at  Fake Flamenco. November’s is to write a haiku about something in nature that fascinates you, and that’s right up my alley. So, here are a couple of offerings.

Though we may hold on
Nature knows when the time’s right
To just let things go

Bare limbs twist and reach
Like wanting hands to the sky
Hungry for winter

I’m particularly inspired by nature in fall and winter, and I love the change in the color and light, and the bare limbs of the trees. So, this challenge came along at the perfect time! And if you’d like to join the fun, you’ve got until November 13th. 😊

Two Inspiration Cuartetos

It’s time for another monthly poetry challenge from Rebecca over at Fake Flamenco! July’s challenge is to write a cuarteto about what inspires you to write. This one was a little tricky for me – I don’t focus on rhyming in my poetry, so it felt something like flexing a new muscle. I think I did okay, though. 😊

Raindrops pinging on the roof,
a cup of tea, and a cloudy day
make a happy writer, I would say.
And right here is the proof.

I like to write at night
when all is quiet and still,
to keep company with the moonlight
and share thoughts with just paper and quill.

I had a lot of fun with this one! If you want to participate, too, you’ve got until Sunday. I think you should! It’s always good to try new things, right?

A Naani Poem (or, A New Way to Say I Can’t Sleep)

Finishing out this week of poetry! (It wasn’t intentional. I guess I was just feeling poetic. Not mad about, it, though.) Here’s a naani poem for the June poetry challenge over at Fake Flamenco:

Staying up to greet the dawn,
to welcome the new day –
once a pleasure,
now a curse.

As with many of these challenges, I’ve never tried this poetry type before, and it was a lot of fun! I like learning different ways to put words together and create music out of sound and silence. 😊 If you want to give it a go, as well, I think you should!

It’s always good to try new things, right?

Trying out a totally new poetry form!

Here’s another one for the monthly poetry challenge over at Fake Flamenco. April’s challenge is to write a Prime Verse – a brand new form – around a theme of the wonder of experiencing the universe or the earth.

Here’s mine:

Look at the night sky –

the moon, stars, and velvet dark –

and know: you’re looking out, into, on, not up.

Do you tremble to be small?

Does it frighten you?

Or, instead, do you marvel,

find wonder, splendor, in the vastness of it?

Look at the night sky

and know: a whole world, the universe, is nigh.

I love this form that Rebecca has created! It’s got a nice ebb and flow, and feels just really fluid and lyrical. And of course, the theme this month was fun, too. If you want to participate, the deadline to post is April 10th at noon. I think you should! It’s always fun, after all, to try new things. 😊

A Shadorma for Graham

I’ve really been enjoying the monthly poetry challenges over at Fake Flamenco! March’s challenge is to write a shadorma around the theme of light and darkness. I wrote two, because it was fun. 😊

Here’s one for Graham, who I often call “my guiding star.”   

You’re my light
A star in the dark
Shining down
On my path
A guide in the deepest night
To bring me home safe

And here’s another one, revisiting a poem I wrote back in 2020, called “Free Will.”  It was already sort of composed around a theme of light and shadow, and it was interesting to take a look at it two years later and retool it for a specific poetry form.

We are light
And also darkness
Both reside
In us all
And we choose how they balance
Each moment we live

I’m looking forward to April’s challenge!

Two Friendship Pareado Poems

Another one for the poetry challenge over at Fake Flamenco!

The challenge for February is to write a pareado with the theme of friendship. Well, I’d never written a pareado before, and y’all, it was a lot harder than I thought it would be! But friendship certainly has a place in my heart, what with the Better Friendships podcast that I co-host with one of my besties. So, even though it was difficult, I had to give it a try. The results?

A true friend is a guiding star
who lights the way even from afar.

No one walks life’s path alone
who has a friend in heart or home.

…Not my best work. But it was still super fun! And if you want to participate, the challenge is open until February 12th.

A Solstice Flamenca

Another poetry challenge from Fake Flamenco! And another poetry form I’ve never tried: a flamenca. And y’all, this was most definitely challenging, but also really fun. I always love a chance to flex my writing muscles in a new way. So, enjoy! And if you want to participate, too, the deadline to post is Sunday, December 12th.


The old year turns to new
with a promise of light.
The darkest of days
reminds a weary earth
there’s peace in the night sky.

Three Celestial Tanka

I wrote these for the November 2021 Poetry Challenge over at Fake Flamenco (which is a wonderful blog that you should definitely go visit and follow). I’ve never written a tanka before, or done a poetry challenge, for that matter, so I had some fun and wrote a few different poems. Enjoy! And if you want to participate, too, the deadline to post is Sunday, November 16th.    


The moon and the sun

They are sisters eternal

Each in her own place

They bring balance to the sky

And harmony to mankind


I can hold it all

Stars and moon, the midnight sky

Wrapped close in my arms

The velvet dark and blue light

A cosmic lover kept safe


Paint the stars with me

Dream the dreams and name the lights

Sing songs of elders

Deep in the dark sky’s belly

Awaken the living flame