Simply Haiku: A Quarterly Journal of Japanese Short Form Poetry
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Spring 2009, vol 7 no 1
 

TANKA

A Country Visit
Jared Carter

 

When my grandmother
brought me, many years ago,
we played hide and seek
among the stones. But today,
finding her will not be hard.

 

First asking his leave,
I clear the weeds from the grave
of my grandfather,
knowing that for many years
he has looked out in this way.

 

Let us close the gate,
and drive back to the home place.
Up in the old trees
there will still be mourning doves
calling among the shadows.

 

What is it you fear,
now that autumn is ending?
We two still have time
to bring in the last parsley,
and rake walnuts from the grass.

 

It is difficult
to contemplate giving up
those two lovely words,
here and now, but I shall not
be needing them much longer.

 

The sun will still rise
in the east, and the new moon,
and the evening star.
It is only this window
that seems darkened now with mist.

 


Jared Carter lives in Indianapolis. His work has appeared in The Heron's Nest, Simply Haiku, and Shamrock Haiku Journal. His fourth book of poems, Cross this Bridge at a Walk, is available from Wind Publications in Kentucky. He maintains a web site at http://www.jaredcarter.com/ .