The Beginning of Winter #TankaTuesday

You really have to be paying attention to see the beginning of winter in Phoenix. It is a little cooler, but it is still as warm as a Michigan summer. The sky is still bright blue. Our flowers are brilliant, and the sun shining through the leaves of the bushes and trees is a painting.

Still, according to #TankaTuesday, this is the first week of The Beginning of Winter (November 7 – 21) Ritto 立冬. I thought I would try a new-to-me form, the gogyohka. This form is not truly syllabic, but Colleen Chesebro’s research has shown it to be more about breaths. It is a five-line poem, like a tanka. A gogyohka does not need a kigo word, but I am playing along with the seasonal prompts, so I am including “long night” as a kigo.

Some super cool news this week. Both my full-length collection Rooted and Winged and my chapbook Our Wolves are finalists for the American Book Fest 2023 awards!

I’m so pleased with how my books have done with the awards, but they could both use more reviews on Amazon (and Goodreads, too, but especially Amazon). It only takes one or two sentences to help the algorithm, so if you have read the books and liked them, please consider taking the time to drop Amazon a line or two.

It’s been over a week that I have been walking every day. I am so happy that I have been able to sustain this routine, and that my health has permitted. It’s a beautiful walk near me, and so far it’s been almost eventless. I am a little dismayed, though, how few birds I am finding this year. Has anyone else noticed this where you live or is it just here?


Filed under #AmWriting, #poetrycommunity, #TankaTuesday, #writingcommunity, Arizona, Book Award, Our Wolves, Poetry, Poetry Collection, Rooted and Winged, Syllabic Poetry, Writing

62 responses to “The Beginning of Winter #TankaTuesday

  1. Congratulations on the awards, Luanne. Nice to see. I’m glad your exercise is going well.

  2. Congrats on the awards and your new walking routine. Haven’t noticed much difference in birds around here.

  3. Celebrating your every success! LOVE the #tankatuesday poem.

  4. Marie A Bailey

    Wow, congratulations on the awards! And on your walking routine 🙂

    We had to take our bird feeders down several days ago. We had noticed a male cardinal that looked too fat and seemed lethargic. He also didn’t fly away when we approached him. Greg did some research and decided the poor guy might have Salmonella. The Cornell Lab of Orthinology recommends that all feeders be taken down for at least two weeks and thoroughly cleaned to prevent the spread. We still have suet up so we’re seeing wrens and woodpeckers, but it’s sad not seeing the cardinals. We hope they return when Greg can put the feeders up again.

    • Thank you, Marie.
      Oh no!!! That sounds so awful. The poor guys. They didn’t suspect pesticides? I always worry about those.

      • I see my comment! 😉 No, it wasn’t pesticides. Greg says the concern is Salmonella Losus (sp) which is spread by feces and by birds clustering around the same feeders. His analogy is unmasked diners at a popular restaurant during the pandemic… bad things are going to happen. Hopefully the cardinals will come back 🤞

  5. Congratulations on those awards! I know what you mean about reviews, but I dislike reminding folks. Hurrah for your walking routine!

    • Thank you, Joy! I hate reminding, too, but if I have forgotten to put one of my reviews up there, PLEASE email me about it, ok? Yay for walking!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. Yes, the Captain and I have both commented several times to each other, asking, “Where are all the songbirds?” The numbers are WAY down!

  7. Luanne, congratulations for the newest honor for your work!
    I am so happy for you – you are a true pathfinder.
    And now you’re walking again – also great news!
    Always wishing you the best

    • Thank you, Sheila! Yes, I am SO happy to be walking. The legs are still a mess, but they feel better when I walk, whereas sleeping . . . . hah. I wish you and T the best, too!!!!

  8. Kerfe

    The days are indeed too short this time of year, the nights too long. Time to hibernate!

  9. Congratulations on both of your recent books being named award finalists! Very well-deserved. I’m glad to hear that you’re able to take regular walks! I’ve been curious about the gogyohka, but I don’t really get the “breaths” part.

  10. Congrats!! I’m not sure about the birds, they seem ok around here, but who knows.

  11. Congratulations, Luanne! Wow–that is big.
    Your poem is very cozy. I haven’t written a gogyohka in a while.

    Good job with the walking! I always feel so much better after my morning walk.
    Is the change in birds due to the season or in general? Our area is a seasonal migration area. The huge dawn choir has gone, but we still have some birds singing then. Something I noticed last winter, more bluejays and fewer crows at the river, but then the reverse in summer.

  12. Awesome news, Luanne! Congratulations! xo

  13. Congratulations on your book awards! That is very exciting! So glad to hear that you are taking walks and enjoying the season. I enjoyed your winter poem!

  14. Great poem! I really have to hurry home these days to get a walk in with a little daylight. Long nights indeed.

  15. I love that poem. It makes me think ahead to the winter solstice and the length of that winter night up north. Even now, the nights are very long.
    I’m thrilled that “Rooted and Winged” and “Our Wolves” are both finalists for the American Book Fest 2023 awards! Yay!!

  16. Luanne, congratulations on your writing achievements! If I can ever find time to read your book(s) I will absolutely leave review(s) for you.

  17. Luanne, you have been on an award spree for a few months. Congratulations on your well deserved writing achievements. I lived further west than you when I lived in Arizona. The only way I could tell the weather had changed was in the early morning. Good for you on the walking! Those long nights really make me think of all things cozy! ☕️🫖

    • Haha pretty true about morning weather change. The husband keeps whining it’s too cold to do the morning watering. Lol. Thank you for your nice comment, too!

  18. Bee

    Congratulations both for the books and the lovely poem 🍁

  19. Congratulations on your books. Your poem is cozy, just like a warm fire and a cuddle with a blanket. I’m glad you are able to walk. One other poet this week wrote about the birds disappearing. Are they leaving for winter, or is it something else?

  20. D.L. Finn, Author

    You captured that cozy night 🙂

  21. Hi Luanne, your poem is perfect. I know those long nights but we are moving towards the longest days right now. I have noticed fewer bees this years. A lot fewer. It is quite concerning. I also noted this in my poems this week.

  22. Amy

    Slowly trying to keep up with you! I am so glad you are feeling better, and the poem perfectly captures how I feel now that Daylight Savings Time has ended and it’s getting dark around 4:30…. I hate it!

  23. the house is cozy

    I can feel it, Luanne! <3

    And mazal tov on your awards!

    Much love,

  24. A lovely poem, Luanne. I haven’t tried that form but you make it look effortless. And congrats on the news about being a finalist. I loved Our Wolves and it deserves the notice!

  25. That is wonderful news, Luanne! Love your tanka.❤️🙏🏻

Leave a Reply