Tuesday, July 23, 2013

One Man's Maple Moon: Chrysanthemums Tanka by Pamela A. Babusci

English Original

the intense white
of chrysanthemums
while making love
i become
a thousand petals

Ribbons,  5:3,  Fall 2009

Pamela A. Babusci

Chinese Translation (Traditional)


Chinese Translation (Simplified)


Bio Sketch

Pamela A. Babusci  is an internationally award winning haiku, tanka poet and haiga artist. Some of her awards include: Museum of Haiku Literature Award, International Tanka Splendor Awards, First Place Yellow Moon Competition (Aust) tanka category,  First Place Kokako Tanka Competition,(NZ) First Place Saigyo Tanka Awards (US), Basho Festival Haiku Contests (Japan).  Pamela has illustrated several books, including: Full Moon Tide: The Best of Tanka Splendor Awards, Taboo Haiku, Chasing the Sun, Take Five: Best Contemporary Tanka, and A Thousand Reasons 2009. Pamela was the founder and now is the solo Editor of Moonbathing: a journal of women’s tanka; the first all women’s tanka journal in the US. 

1 comment:

  1. The shift is visually and emotionally riveting. The lower verse reminds me of one of the iconic images in the award-winging movie, The American Beauty: when Lester fantasizes about having sex with Angela, she is naked and covered with rose petals.

    A beautifully-crafted tanka about love-making that possesses a transformative power.

    Note: In some countries of Europe (e.g., France, Belgium, Italy, Spain, Poland, Hungary, Croatia), chrysanthemums are symbolic of death and are used only for funerals or on graves; Similarly, in China, Japan and Korea, white chrysanthemums are symbolic of lamentation and/or grief (for more information, see the Wikipedia entry, "chrysanthemum") Read in the symbolic context of chrysanthemum mentioned above, the lower verse forms a thematically and emotionally dialectical relationship with the upper verse, subtly conveying the French conception of "La petite mort."

    Below is excerpted from the Wikipedia entry, La petite mort:

    La petite mort, French for "the little death", is an idiom and euphemism for orgasm. This term has generally been interpreted to describe the post-orgasmic state of unconsciousness that some people have after having some sexual experiences.

    More widely, it can refer to the spiritual release that comes with orgasm or to a short period of melancholy or transcendence as a result of the expenditure of the "life force," the feeling which is caused by the release of oxytocin in the brain after the occurrence of orgasm. Literary critic Roland Barthes spoke of la petite mort as the chief objective of reading literature. He metaphorically used the concept to describe the feeling one should get when experiencing any great literature.