I had a poem published today in a cool Australian lit mag. It’s called Trash to Treasure Lit, and the idea behind it is that “every writer has a piece of ‘trash’ that we can treasure.” Look through your drafts, your poems you figured you could never do right by, and if you can write something that explains why this “trash” can be a “treasure,” they might publish it. In my case, I wrote a love poem to my cat Perry, who as you may know, suffers from a couple of terminal illnesses (so far so good in case you’re wondering). I hope you can tell from this poem that Perry is the real treasure.
Colleen Chesebro’s prompt for #TankaTuesday this week is in celebration of her 65th birthday. (Happy birthday, Colleen!) We were to create a poetic form using 65 syllables.
I created a form I will call the aînée, which is the French word for a female elder. I was going to use the Spanish word anciana, but I didn’t like the connotations which seemed less positive. Plus I like that I am honoring the French language which is a language that has originated a lot of syllabic poetry. 65 syllables are arranged this way: ten lines of six syllables each, followed by a line of 2 syllables, and a final line of 3 syllables.
Decades to Medicare, or We Count Slower Later On
The first we play and learn,
then anguish for ten more.
Finally on our own,
we screw it up or not.
Next years we develop
into who we will be.
In our forties we whine
that we are now so old.
Those next decades are fine
for comfort in ourselves.
You might recall that I have been submitting a poem every month to Visual Verse for their ekphrastic challenge. Here is my April poem: https://visualverse.org/submissions/dont-look-back-2/ They showcase each poem next to the inspirational art.
Finally, here is another review of Our Wolves. This review addresses the issue of abuse in some of the poems. https://impressionsininkblog.com/2023/04/13/review-our-wolves-by-luanne-castle-poeticbooktours/
42 responses to “A Love Poem to My Cat and #TankaTuesday”
I LOVE the Perry poem, and it reminded me so much of my baby Smokey, who not only looked a lot like Perry (a gray tuxedo) but also was just as sweet and loving.
And I totally related to the second poem. Turning 70 has been so hard, and I laugh to think about how I felt old at 40…
Oh Smokey! That loving nature is something you can’t predict–which cat will be like that. And even when we lose them, they are still right there in our hearts. Tiger has been gone 10 months now, but I still put her in the poem!
As far as the 40 goes, I have been noticing how many people say things like “I’m FORTY now!” as if that means they are now old. hahaha And yet I remember feeling that weird feeling when I turned forty.
Yep—and I hope I’ll be laughing in ten or even twenty years when I think about how scared I am now, being 70.
I hope so, too, Amy–and in good health!!!! I imagine my mother thinks 70 was a great year!
It didn’t bother me when I turned forty, fifty, or sixty. I was too busy working and writing!
LOL you are always working! People say that about me, but you have me beat!!!
I blame my parents for instilling that work ethic. 😉
That makes sense. Mine probably comes from my ADHD which my father clearly also had.
perry lies tummy up in the crook
of my arm for the length of a movie.
Treasure, indeed! 😻🐾 ❤️
I have had all different personalities of amazing cats, but Perry is the only one quite like this. Even my notices how very special he is.
Yes, it’s learning to live with the time we’re in, not looking forward to what we don’t know or back to what we think we remember.
Well put, Jane. Paying attention to our now.
Your poem is so true. I wish I had not moaned about being forty or fifty.
LOL, I know! Oh, 40. My life is over!
Oh to be 40 again. I remember when I turned 23, thinking that now I was really old. Everything is relative.
Gosh, how time evolves through our awareness. Very creative response, Luanne. 😊
Thank you, Gwen!
I love this, and you and your cat.🐈⬛❤️
Aw, thank you so much, Melissa!
Excellent poem on getting older!!! I loved your cat poem…you articulate his personality so very well. So much love in those lines of poetry…beautifully written!
Linda, thank you for both. My boy Perry, sigh.
Your poetic form is great, and I love how you researched the connotation of the words. Your other poetry is beautiful as well. Thanks for sharing them with us, Luanne!
Yvette M Calleiro 🙂
Thank you so much, Yvette! I wanted to give the perfect name to the form, especially since it’s in Colleen’s honor!
Lots to unpack in this post. Congrats on the published submission. Lots of hugs going to Perry and his cute self.
I enjoyed your aînée. So many truths in those lines. Little kids will start using fractions to account for their age, whereas some of us tend to round down, and, as you say, count more slowly.
Congratulations on the new publications and the new review!! I’m sure Perry appreciates your tribute poem.
Perry listened very politely! hahaha Thanks, Liz! I got your email–thank you! I’m packing to leave first thing tomorrow but will write back soon!
Polite listening is better than tossing a hairball, I reckon. 😉
You’re welcome, Luanne. It was my pleasure to review your chapbook!
I enjoyed all three poems. Can absolutely relate to the aging piece. The one about Perry is so warm and cuddly! A treasure, indeed.
Nice poem! Some interesting thoughts! Thanks for sharing.
Nice poem, Luanne! Now we have more years to look back to what we had done! 🙂
Great poetry, Luanne 🙂
Loved the Perry poem and the Medicare years poem
Congratulations on all your poetry, Luanne!
(And I’m glad Perry is still doing well. 💙)
Congrats on your publication! Perry seems so comfy. aînée is such a lovely word, great choice for the beautiful poem.
Perry is Perry. I loved this one, Luanne!
He is a treasure – if I were the gardener, I would be very careful. 🙂
I love the birthday aînée. Your poem to Perry … oh, Luanne, it brought tears to my eyes. I so hope that, despite his health problems, he’ll have at least several more years. XOXO
Congrats on the publications and the book review 🙂
Thanks so much for a new syllabic form, Luanne. This is amazing! 💜
No comment! 😀
Haha! Thanks, David!