Saturday, May 7, 2022

One Man’s Maple Moon: Father's Shoulders Tanka by Michael McClintock

English Original

I’ve this memory --
riding my father’s shoulders
into the ocean,
the poetry of things
before I could speak

Tanka of Michael McClintock, Pinterest, 2011

Michael McClintock

Chinese Translation (Traditional)
我有這樣的記憶 --

Chinese Translation (Simplified)

我有这样的记忆 --

Bio Sketch

Michael McClintock's lifework in haiku, tanka, and related literature spans over four decades. His many contributions to the field include six years as president of the Tanka Society of America (2004-2010) and contributing editor, essayist, and poet for dozens of journals, anthologies, landmark collections and critical studies. McClintock now lives in Clovis, California, where he works as an independent scholar, consultant for public libraries, and poet. Meals at Midnight [tanka], Sketches from the San Joaquin [haiku] and Streetlights: Poetry of Urban Life in Modern English Tanka, are some of his recent titles.

1 comment:

  1. ... I also came to know tanka as a form that could use language to get beneath language, as Michael McClintock did so brilliantly in this tanka...

    ... Even a child that cannot yet speak, may, like the readers of this tanka, intuitively grasp the poetry of a moment in time that defines meaning, significance or beauty in a novel and profound way. William Least Heat Moon spoke of those defining times in our lives most eloquently in his book, Blue Highways. For him, the moment was sharing a piece of old-fashioned buttermilk pie with new-found friends who had taken him in for the night on his long journey across the United States. For Michael McClintock a childhood memory was poetry and it became poetry for us as well as for himself, not through the use of excessive or impressive words, but through the sharing of an image that takes us into the experience with him. Tanka is traditionally imagistic, possessing the power and magic of images that take us beneath words to the essence of experience...

    excerpted from "A Poet's Roving Thoughts: Dreaming Room" by Rebecca Drouilhet, accessed at