on the sardine still lingers
the ocean's color.
How fresh and lovely they are
When not confined to a can
Gaki & Cie
The Hokku (Haiku) stanza of this Tan Renga was written by Akutagawa Ryunosuke a.k.a. Gaki (1 March 1892 – 24 July 1927, death by overdose of Veronal.) The Ageku or closing stanza was written by me.
One of the things I treasure about this type of poetry is the way it makes a mundane item or creature such as a sardine beautiful and precious. Some people mock minimalist forms such as Haiku/Senryu or Tanka/Tan Renga, but I find that they have a meditative quality.
My monkey mind is far too chatty and jumpy for me to meditate very well using traditional meditation methods. Either my mind wanders off track and I get bored and antsy, or if I do manage to relax, I fall asleep.
This type of poetry allows me to meditate. I find that engaging in the Tan Renga challenge has made me calmer overall and given me an eye of the storm to escape to although my life is very chaotic. I am extremely grateful for this gift.
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