Unless stated otherwise, all poetry on Swimming in Lines of Haiku is Copyright Kirsten Cliff and may not be reprinted in any form without written permission from the author. kirsten(DOT)cliff(AT)gmail(DOT)com

Friday, June 10, 2011

A Word On Kyoka

I had never heard of kyoka before stumbling across the term on the Prune Juice website, where it states:

Kyoka is often regarded as being to tanka what senryu is to haiku. They are usually five lines in length and read like tanka. (read here in full)

I decided to follow the blog link given and found the writings of M. Kei on kyoka, including his article Kyoka vs. Tanka - Examples (2006) which makes for very good reading. I highly recommend that you go and take a look yourself.

Kyoka don't have to be tasteless or funny. They don't have to be satire. The great virtue of kyoka is that they give voice to what cannot be voiced in tanka as it currently stands in the English language. I hope kyoka amuse you. I hope they shock you. I hope they hurt you. I hope they open your tanka so that you too will be able to express yourself with all the aching joy of being human.

So, I wonder if this is a kyoka?

he told me
a mouse was atop
the fridge
& I replied, well -
there's no food up there!

Probably yes: all be it a not very good one...

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