Balconies and concrete stairs,
beery piss in broken lifts,
every night the same old prayers,
someone get us out of here.
Tightrope walking on the fence,
leap the gap between the sheds,
long walk to the traffic lights,
sideswiped by a motorbike.
Buttercups and dandelions
crowd long grass by rusty gates;
in the alley, shadows fall
where the friendly flasher waits.
Kim M. Russell, 2018
My response to dVerse Poets Pub Meeting the Bar: Tanaga
Frank is our host this Thursday, bringing us the tanaga, a short form from the Philippines, which comes in stanzas of four lines with seven syllables per line. It often rhymes, but it can have variable end rhyme patterns. The tanaga is part of the oral tradition of the Tagalog language going back to the early 16th century. One example is the English poem, ‘Twinkle, twinkle little star’ written by Jane Taylor and published in Rhymes for the Nursery in 1806. Frank says that she probably wasn’t trying to write a tanaga, but the form of her poem matches the tanaga as well as a variation of common meter.
Frank would like us to write tanaga poems of one or more stanzas.