An Attempt at a Renga-Poem

The following information on the poetic form Renga stems from poets.org (the underlined parts are my own doing because of my intent to invite you, dear reader to consider giving this tradition a chance in the “Comments” section of this post):

“Renga, meaning ‘linked poem,’ began over seven hundred years ago in Japan to encourage the collaborative composition of poems. Poets worked in pairs or small groups, taking turns composing the alternating three-line and two-line stanzas. [. . .] To create a renga, one poet writes the first stanza, which is three lines long with a total of seventeen syllables. The next poet adds the second stanza, a couplet with seven syllables per line. The third stanza repeats the structure of the first and the fourth repeats the second, alternating in this pattern until the poem’s end. [. . .] Thematic elements of renga are perhaps most crucial to the poem’s success. The language is often pastoral, incorporating words and images associated with seasons, nature, and love. In order for the poem to achieve its trajectory, each poet writes a new stanza that leaps from only the stanza preceding it. This leap advances both the thematic movement as well as maintaining the linking component.”

And here comes my attempt at a Renga-poem:

leaves began to rain from the sky
the Sun cried its rays
clouds yelled their blues

© hülya n. yılmaz, January 1, 2019

 

 

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“my ABCs”

my ABCs

one morning, as i found out
i had learned my ABCs
from A to V, that is
Venezuela
Argentina
Colombia
Suriname
Paraguay
Uruguay
Ecuador
Guyana
Bolivia
Brazil
Chile
Peru

yes, oh yes!
i now know my ABCs
but only in South America . . .

Asia? Europe? Africa?
Australia? Antarctica? North America?

not as of yet . . .

© hülya n. yılmaz, December 31, 2018

~ ~ ~ ~ ~
This poem is one of the three I have submitted for the February 2019 issue of The Year of the Poet VI, published by Inner Child Press International.

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“indigenous”

indigenous

are we not all?
indigenous, that is?

at some point or another
our host country has feasted itself
with our native tongue, customs
traditions – our native everything
but then, our origins’ uniqueness began to melt
into our new home’s sphere
we were in no despair
we were devoted
and quested
to make it
here

our religion began to change
as did our original language
our ways of life altered themselves
we also had much baggage
from our long-gone past
we needed to adapt fast

did i say “indigenous”?
are we not all?

© hülya n. yılmaz, December 31, 2018

~ ~ ~ ~ ~
This poem will be published by Inner Child Press International in the February 2019 issue of The Year of the Poet VI.

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“Mesoamerica”

Mesoamerica

an area spanning from central Mexico
to Honduras and Nicaragua
encompassing diverse
civilizations of the
pre-Columbian era

what did those cultural entities do
is what i wonder about when i read
generic definitions as the one above
what were the landmarks of distinction
of this region’s “flourished” civilizations?

like we, they too were no doubt divided by language
religion, social class, economics and politics
how did they cope with those divides
is to me the must-be-asked question
did they ever quest for peace?

do we, in full reality, quest for peace?
if so, why then do we not have it yet?
what can i alone, we together, strive
to achieve a stronghold on that too
slippery road of our differences?

their faith was in multitudes
as were their tongues
not any different,
the rest of their
construct

we are looking at ourselves
in the same inexorable mirror
and do not see what we actually are:
bones, joints, flesh, hair and organs inside
all of which we all will have left for the other side . . .

© hülya n. yılmaz, December 30, 2018

~ ~ ~ ~ ~
This poem will be published by Inner Child Press International in the February 2019 issue of The Year of the Poet VI.

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“Cherokee to Ho-Chunk”

Cherokee to Ho-Chunk

it is not only the volume as far as their names
but also their inherent cultures’ vast and timeless bounty
that made today’s North America, the supposedly
newly discovered world’s 3rd largest continent

and, each of their tribes suffered

Native Americans, that is

they faced pain beyond

humanity’s capacity

they were subjected to tortures
to butchery, to slavery and to conversion
to Christianity – or else, they would have met death

we all sit now in our own comfort on their land
having pushed them into the most remote
corners of low lands of their country
either pitying what has become of them over time
or admiring their enduring strength, integrity, dignity

how, amid immensely bloody tragedies, they still do rise
to shout loud and act out their ancient words of wisdom
as to how to live with respect for every dab of our world
in honor of not merely the two-legged animal species
but, of our four-legged counterparts, too

regardless of what any of us has / not done in person
collectively, we bear the onerous weight of annihilating
an entire indigenous people, together with their languages,
cultures, generations-surviving rich history and daily lives;
of guiding them to their irreparable shameful demise

how many times have i cited your wise insights
not having a clue whom to give the credit to
dear members of the Cherokee, the Apache,
the Iroquois, the Pawnee people, the Sioux,
the Miwok, the Shoshone, the Osage Nation,
the Navajo, the Lakota people, the Ute people,
the Sauk people, the Cheyenne, the Crow Nation,
the Nez Perce people, the Ho-Chunk, the Ponca,
the Paiute, the Omaha people, the Hidatsa, the Odawa,
the Chumash people, the Mandan, the Duwamish people,
the Iowa people, the Cahuilla, the Modoc people, the Otoe,
the Yakama, the Pima people, the Chiricahua, the Arikara,
the Missouria, the Sac and Fox Nation, the Omaha people,
the Meskwaki, the Odawa, the Washoe people,
the Patwin, the Goshute, the Serrano people,
the Maidu, the Quechan,
the Oneida Indian Nation,
the Yankton Sioux Tribe, the Kumeyaay,
the Indigenous peoples of the Northwest,
the Chinookan peoples, the Clatsop, the Miami people,
the Tulalip, the Mandan, the Hidatsa and Arikara Nation,
the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes . . .

forgive my silence
forgive my ignorance
i bow before each of you

forgive my daring, desperate plea
that which i brought along with me
in my quest to seek wisdom from thee
it is said to come from a Plains Indian, you see:

“Give me knowledge, so I may have kindness for all.”

~ ~ ~ ~ ~
This poem was submitted to the January 2019 issue of The Year of the Poet VI, published by Inner Child Press International

 

 

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“Pachacuti”

an Inca Emperor takes the throne
Pachacuti is his name
his rule becomes a legacy
and attains a sizeable fame
for its unrivaled magnitude
as South America’s rarity

modern cultural history
traces the Inca back to the 12th century

AD, that is
in the Andes of southeastern Peru
looking from a frozen space in a distance . . .

Manco Capac,
the son of the Inca’s supposed creator,
was journeyed by his father, the Sun God Inti
down to Earth

12 million people of a large diversity,
comprising 100 different sets of ethnicity
made up Tawantinsuyu, the Inca state
thus claim the sources of history . . .

using their intellect effectively

helped them survive

a vast amount of misery

they were helpless however
in the face of the worst kind of agony
people in power had waited long enough
time had already passed by too fast
and had traveled away way too far
for them to establish methodically
an all-inclusive tyranny

there is much more to narrate about the Inca
a huge number of encyclopedias is on e-call
what matters to me though lies beneath the shell
that which i will unearth with vigor oh yes i shall
in fact it is nothing new that i choose to seek
to dare to unbury discoveries is not for the meek
let us go on to play our convenient hide-and-seek

powers-to-be?

today?

no way!

be that as it may
some of us are here to stay
and will turn over the stones for sure
to unravel the treasures of this mystery
then, powers-to-be will be no more
have no dismay!

© hülya n. yılmaz, August 20, 2018

[Published by Inner Child Press International in the September issue of the fifth volume of The Year of the Poet]

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. . .

the camel ride in Petra Jordan

[Petra, Jordan ~ Summer of 2018]

fear of heights no more
many steep valleys later
a camel? a cinch!

(c) hülya n. yılmaz, 10.13.2018

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