Tanka #5

I have a list of tanka, just as I do haiku. But it’s a lot shorter. I didn’t know about this form until a few years ago and only recently has it caught my attention again.

Standing on the porch
the cold rain hesitated
shifting foot to foot
having yet to choose: linger,
or hit the doorbell and run.

Old House Porch BW small

Old house not far from where I live. It’s since been torn down.


17 thoughts on “Tanka #5

  1. I love the flow of this poem, as well as the imagery. I love the cold rain hesitated. (But I thought of kids daring each other to ring the doorbell at “the house.” In my mind, the kids looked liked the kids in To Kill a Mockingbird.)
    The photo is great–that house looks so creepy and mysterious. It could definitely be a prompt for many other poems and stories. 🙂

    • Thank you. I’ve always liked the feeling of waiting on the porch after ringing the doorbell – it’s done and you can’t take it back, just wait…

      This house was near the PA 309 when construction was being done on the road and later was demolished. I couldn’t find much out about it – just an old house, now gone…

  2. Fantastic use of personification. It captures the Spring we just had perfectly, that hesitant strutting on a tightrope between leaving winter behind and teetering into summer.

    • Thank you. I feel sometimes weather is quite capricious in how it makes it decisions and rain – well, I especially feel it toys with us. In? Out? Hmmm… Let me see…

    • Yes, this poor house had a sad end, neglected and then torn down. I still go by the site and think about it – it’s just a clearing in the woods now, by the highway, and pretty soon the trees will grow over and no one will know!

      I did not know about tanka either until maybe a couple of years ago, when I stumbled on a mention of it, and recently I’ve gotten more interested in it. It’s a good length and I like the discipline of following the syllables.

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