Equinox tanka

Fun with Google translate, or the perils of trusting a machine to make poetry.

sun moon day night
balanced the space of a day
before earth tips spills
rain fills thirsty mouths washing
summer’s dust-dry taste away

gives this (inaccurate) French translation:

soleil lune jour nuit
équilibré l’espace d’une journée
avant que la terre ne tombe
la pluie remplit la bouche assoiffée de se laver
le goût sec de l’été loin

then back-translated to English:

sun moon day night
balanced for a day
before the earth falls
the rain fills the thirsty mouth to wash off
the dry taste of summer away

Tanka for a dream of cooler weather

It’s still far too hot here. Up again to 38°C/100°F and it’s going to be hot all this week. The break in the weather gets put back further every day.

For Frank Tassone’s haikai challenge.

receding into
the distance the autumn mists
cool of orange leaves
we thought we could bear no more
flames—I hear their crackling still

Tankas for summer’s end

A clutch of tankas for Frank Tassone’s haikai challenge.

august sunset2

twilight and the air

trills to strings of insect legs

katydids sing

to the setting sun rising

moon and the end of summer


cooling the air

the year birds leave following

the heat

katydids stay to play

Titanic orchestra


throb thrill thrum

not melodious

but katydid beat

is the rhythm of the heat

late summer’s final dance