A Northern Autumn, Cinquain

A Northern Autumn, Cinquain


bland carcasses — 

seeds have flown on the wind,

Monarchs  cruise in southern precincts —


c. Lemuel ’20

Instincts have to do with behaviors related to animals. Plants, bacteria and viruses exhibit tropisms or responses to the environment. In my imagination I can create a milkweed being no more attached to their seeds than a typical migratory butterfly would be to their eggs, Nemo and Marlin of “Finding Nemo” in the Great Barrier Reef notwithstanding.

I wrote this poem, as a cinquain, but for fun I adapted the form a little.

I relied upon Adelaide Crapsey, a twentieth-century poet who used a form of 22 syllables in five lines as a 2, 4, 6, 8, and 2 pattern. Some say her poems are similar to Japanese tanka, a five-line form, and share a designed focus on imagery and the natural world.

kindles memory, a tanka poem

lamp light secret porch

cedar sweet scent dark image

moth hovers silence

the taste of your mouth lingers

sun dew kindles memory

(c) Lemuel

19 April, 2018

Tanka Poetic Form


  • Tanka poems have 31-syllables. In tradition all written in a single line.
  • Usually written in five lines L1,5-syllables,

L2, 7-syllables, L3, 5-syllables, L4 and L5, 7-syllables each.

  • No much rhyme.

NaPoWriMo 2018


National Poetry Writing Month 2018