Mountain stream: haiku or tanka?

mountain stream talking to myself


birds gone south
with their soliloquies
the mountain stream
and I talking
to ourselves


I personally prefer the haiku, but I think this might be a pretty good tanka. “Soliloquy” is one of those ten-dollar words that one wouldn’t necessarily want in haiku, which to my way of thinking should stay fairly colloquial. By the same token, I changed “stream and me” to “stream and I.” Writing tanka originated with the aristocracy, and even after it filtered down to everyone, retained a more refined feel than the haikai tradition, which is so closely identified with the urban middle class and the demimonde.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.