Wednesday, February 18, 2015

A Toom of My Own: A Tanka about Formosa

In 1544, a Portuguese ship sighted the main island of Taiwan and named it "Ilha Formosa," which means “Beautiful Island.”

all of a sudden ...
my vision blurring
and the words
in From Far Formosa
lifting off the page

Note: For more information about the joshi, see "To the Lighthouse: Joshi (Prefatory Note) as a Poetic Device." From Far Formosa, written by George Leslie Mackay (March 21, 1844 – June 2, 1901), is considered an important early missionary ethnography of Taiwan and an important contribution to the anthropological understanding of the culture and customs of the people of Taiwan during that period.

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