T is for …

Tenth Birthday Tanka

magnolia air
spring sun lights my face with warmth
today she is ten
this child who lights my heart
tomorrow she takes the world

I spent the whole day knowing I wanted to write a tanka for my niece, but had no ideas.  Then walking home this afternoon, I was hit with a breeze scented by the magnolia trees growing along the avenue.  And as soon as I had ‘magnoia air’ … the rest just fell into place.  It’s not exactly for her, but it’s working for me all the same.


I am so exhausted, I can hardly hold my head up.  I’ve been working to get this submission together for the art fellowship.  It has to be mailed tomorrow.  And I no longer have the option of quietly letting the deadline pass and not sending anything.  Not only have I written about it here and put that bug in people’s ears, two of my friends have written me the most lovely and loving letters of recommendation I could ever have hoped for.  Can’t have the letters arriving and no packet full of stories from me! 

I have the ‘work sample’ all ready, of course.  What’s holding me up is the description of the project I’d work on if I’m chosen … and the realization that, when they ask for a professional resume, they surely are asking for an artist’s resume or bio, not my regular work resume.  So those are the two things I’m trying to get together now.

Exhausted, too, because I’ve been stressing about some things going on at the office.  Got past one of the hurdles yesterday.  Have to find my way past the second one on Monday.

And now, it’s time for a little ‘early to bed’ …


6 thoughts on “T is for …

  1. I was at the garden today and as soon as I saw the magnolia grove, I thought of cake–wedding, birthday, buttercream icing in pink, white, and yellow…but I couldn’t smell the blossoms’ perfume! Shadra could smell them before she could see them…maybe it’s my allergic/asthmatic self deliberately not breathing deeply. I’m so impressed with your tanka skills…I’m stubbornly sticking with haiku b/c I don’t think I could manage the pivot…but maybe I’ll give it a try. Writing proposals are really challenging, esp if you write intuitively and not according to a blueprint…but your sample will speak for itself. Good luck!


    1. The magnolia’s made me so happy Thursday and all weekend. And we’ve finally hit that moment when all those trees in Parkslope have their showy white blossoms out. Too nice.

      Thanks for your kind words about my tankas. I’m enjoying trying this month-of-one-form, but I’m not sure I’m really getting it with every one, so your praise means a lot!


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