Writing Tip: Poetry Form – Tanka

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photo-10 Photo Credit: Donna J. Sanders

Poetry Form: Tanka

A Tanka is a Japanese poem and similar to a Haiku, however it has seven lines. Tankas are nature, seasons, love, and other emotions.  Line one has a five syllable count, line two is seven syllables, line three is five syllables, line four is seven syllables, and line five seven syllables. In total it has thirty one syllables.  It uses simile, metaphor, and personification.

The pattern for Tanka is the following:

Line 1: 5 syllables

Line 2: 7 syllables

Line 3: 5 syllables

Line 4: 7 syllables

Line 5: 7 syllables


The Black Holocaust

The Black Holocaust

They say it doesn’t exist

Burned bodies don’t lie

DNA charred from C4

Murdered by the privileged

Eleven souls gone

The Martyrs of a movement

Forced to go back in

Black lives didn’t matter then

Still don’t…Thirty years later

In Memory of those murdered…

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