Long Distance Relationship–Somonka with the Poetry Princesses [Poetry Friday]

Happy Poetry Friday! Welcome, everyone! (Wondering what Poetry Friday is? Click here.)

The Poetry Princesses are starting off 2017 with somonka, two combined Japanese tanka written in a love poem/response form. What better way to start off a new year than with some love?

Still, with the end of a year, and Maddie heading back to Scotland, goodbyes have been on my mind. So I decided to write my somonka as a poem between Jack and Maddie. It’s really meant for Jack’s tanka to come first, but I couldn’t make that work with the picture. And it also should really be shown as one 10-line poem. But that didn’t work, either. What can I say? Love breaks the rules!

Long Distance Relationship

I created this on my phone and kind of in a hurry. I didn’t realize until I saw it larger that it’s hard to read part of Jack’s tanka–line 4 says, “I’m twitching legs, drooling dreams.”

We’ve been in a bit of a scramble, so I will be visiting my Poetry Sisters to see what they wrote–and I hope you will, too!



Click here to see all our previous Poetry Princesses collaborations. 

And don’t miss the Poetry Friday Roundup with Linda over at Teacher Dance. Don’t miss the lovely Rilke poem she’s sharing!











39 Responses

    1. Thanks, Brenda. It’s so hard because Jack doesn’t understand where Maddie disappears to for 6 or 9 months.

  1. I love this sweet tanka exchange. The dog is such a special part of the family.

  2. This exchange is both sad and endearing at the same time. Don’t you wonder what dogs think when the special pal disappears? You’ve shown the love connection beautifully in this back & forth poem, Laura. Hugs to you, too!

  3. LOVE this — and I’m in awe of how clever you are to pair it with an image and mess with fonts and all!

  4. Well, this is a beautiful “in a hurry” job — your phone has some neat tricks up its sleeve! I really like all of this, including breaking the form up into two sections. Sometimes, that’s just the only way it works.

    I am (north-by-next-door) so proud of Maddie, too, and always love to hear the stories. I’m so glad she’s making a go of this mission life in Scotland, and all the cold and the muck hasn’t gotten her down.

    1. When she visited Spain for a conference last year, she was all, “SUN!” So, the weather is wearing on her a little by now. :>)

  5. This is so lovely, Laura. Our college student and our dogs have a similar connection. “My silly little nugget” is my favorite line, because it’s so real. Best wishes to your daughter!

    1. Thanks, Laura! Jack is “poor little nugget,” “silly little nugget,” and other variations. But always little nugget:>)

  6. Such a lovely image! And I loved learning about this new-to-me form…you Poetry Princesses always find new ones!

    1. Thanks, Kortney–we are on a 5‑year mission to explore the universe of poetry (not really, but it felt kinda Star Trekky to me:>)

  7. I’m always in awe of how you combine your poetry with images. This one, in particular, feels so RIGHT, so cosy, and warms me to my toes. (And makes me miss my own dear doggie although she was never a snuggler; more of a guarder.)

  8. Laura, what a special two way conversation-love connection you created with I am presuming Word Swag. The artwork is a vivid, endearing rendering of love and affection. I offered my perspective for last week’s 15 words or less poem based on the photo you took at NCTE16 with credit to you. Thanks, friend, for the good times we shared.

    1. Yup–the swag. Plus filter in PicsArt. I love bringing the visual side to poems, even though the words are my first love.

  9. Our animals are so special. They are our babies. I’m glad you shared that obscured line “twitching legs, drooling dreams.” captures doggie love.

    1. Yeah, the downside of creating on my phone. Stuff I THINK will be clear in larger format isn’t necessarily:>)

  10. Your poem brings a lump to this dog lover’s throat. I’m always awed at how purely our animals love us. I can’t imagine how poor Jack must feel with your daughter gone for so long. Or how hard it must be for her to say goodbye to him. I love your poetry creation too. Can’t believe you could do this on a phone!

    1. Thank you–it is a wonder, isn’t it? With Maddie living overseas for a couple of years now, and Jack not having the greatest hearing or sight, so Skype makes no impression on him, I sort of think he assumes she’s gone forever. He’s so happy (but confused) when she pops in again for a few weeks.

  11. Oh, my heartstrings! They are stretched tight to the point of weeping a little. My eldest left for college and she had to say goodbye to the pets too. That’s so neat that you created the image and poem on your phone. I gotta go try that.

    1. Hugs, Linda. These goodbyes are hard for everyone, even though they’re for joyous reasons!

  12. This is so sweet, Laura. We have a beagle, too, so I especially loved “your silk ears, sad eyes,” but had to laugh at “soft snores.” Lucy’s are anything but! We love her anyway. 🙂

    1. Heehee. Catherine, Jack is snoring in front of the fire RIGHT this instant. Kinda sounds like coffee percolating this morning!

  13. I like the order of the two sections this way, how it contrasts from our human future-looking, “I already miss you” perspective with the dog’s surprise and happiness in the present– “She’s here!” My creative writing club will be taking a look at this form tomorrow! Thanks to all of you for your great examples, reflections, and background information, as always! 🙂

    1. Thanks, Elissa. Our group comes up with some cool forms. I’m not usually the one to find them, but I reap the benefits:>) Enjoyed your observation about the perception of time!

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