Chen-ou Liu's Translation Project: First English-Chinese Haiku and Tanka Blog

Friday, February 12, 2016

Without the Middle

A Tanka Sequence

on a blade of grass
at twilight
this lingering fear,
I want a divorce

surge of the wind ...
her voice hardens
into its rigid strength,
I love you, Eric,
but I can't stand you anymore

all those nights
her moist smile nuzzled
the nape of my neck ...
now in the dim light
one wedding pillow left

a white trail
left in the winter sky
by her plane --
I still wait for the turn
and wave of her hand

Third Prize, Haiku Canada Tanka Story Contest, 2016

Judge's Comment by Angela Leuck (Haiku Canada Review, 10:1, February 2016, p. 47): The story is enhanced by effective and contrasting imagery: the poet refers to delicate, transitory phenomenon like "dewdrops" and a plane's "white trail," while the wife's steely determination to leave is indicated by the use of strong words like "blade," "hardens" and 'rigid strength." The poet also evokes endings through reference to the day's end: "twilight" and "dim light."