General Poetry posted May 10, 2019

This work has reached the exceptional level
my mother and me

tanka prose (touchstone)

by Jmf4119

As I walk through my home this morning, I notice the walnut sewing chest in the den and the exquisite cut-glass vases in the curio cabinet. I sip a cup of tea from one of the delicate china tea cups and pause.  I’m surrounded by all these beautiful treasures that my mother enjoyed. I sigh, aware that her treasures are now my treasures too. 
Her green thumb is evident in her vast collection of house plants.  She took pride in the beautiful hanging Hoya with its delicate scent and her array of dainty African violets that bloom brightly near the window.  Her beloved Christmas cactus is full of buds again.  I begin to water them with the plastic, maroon colored jug that she always used.  I laugh to myself as I think, “this old thing looks like it came from the Dollar Store”.  Before I could turn around, it slips from my hand. As if in slow motion, it hit the ceramic floor. Its contents spilling and splashing across the room. I pick it up. But, it’s too late.  It cracks from top to bottom.  Grabbing the mop to dry the floor, I remember other times and other messes that she and I cleaned up together.  In this moment, I could almost feel her presence and I smile. 
puffy clouds drift  
 across cerulean skies 
life changes everyday
and yet it stays the same


Mother's Day Poetry Contest contest entry



Touchstone - A criterion or standard by which judgment is made. In my case - that would be my mother. This is a picture of her on her 80th birthday.

Tanka prose is a distinct poetic form combining two modes of writing, verse and prose. It is a Japanese Short Form poem.
There are 3 distinct, yet interrelated parts in a tanka prose poem.
The title is unique and sets the tone of the poem.
The prose conveys the message and is generally written in present tense (an instant in time where something is happening). It should leave the reader with a sensory impression of taste, smell, sight, touch or sound.
The tanka prose usually concludes with a tanka that builds on the title and prose in a way that provides closure to the poem.
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