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TANKA TAKE HOME: 29th May, 2024 Beverley George - poet of the month

Updated: Jun 6

hosts: Firdaus Parvez, Kala Ramesh, Priti Aisola & Suraja Menon Roychowdhury


Introducing a new perspective to our Wednesday Feature!


May 29, 2024


poet of the month: Beverley George

beneath banter

and café clatter

you tell me 

truths of your life . . .

I tell you truths of mine


Eucalypt A Tanka Journal 

Issue 27, 2019



it isn't only

that you brew me tea

when I am tired

it's which cup you bring it in

. . . and why


(From a shared perpetual calendar devised with David Terelinck titled Those Special Days) 

We are deeply grateful to Beverley George for sharing her beautiful poems with us.


Bio-note: Beverley George is a Writing Fellow of The Fellowship of Australian Writers and past editor of Yellow Moon 9-20, 2000-2006 poetry journal which included tanka. She is the founding editor of Eucalypt: a Tanka Journal, Australia's first poetry journal dedicated to tanka. She edited issues 1-21, (2006-16) before passing editorship to Julie Thorndyke. In addition, she edited issues of Windfall Australian Haiku issues 1-10, 2013-2022.


Beverley was president of the Australian Haiku Society 2006-10. She presented papers at the 3rd Haiku Pacific Rim Conference in Matsuyama, Japan 2007 and at the 6th International Tanka Festival, Tokyo, Japan 2009. She also conducted a tanka workshop at Haiku Aotearoa 3 Katikati, New Zealand in 2012.


In 2009 she convened the four-day 4th Haiku Pacific Rim with delegates from six countries attending at Terrigal, Australia.


Her books of tanka poetry include:

empty garden; Tanka by Beverley George 

Sydney, Yellow Moon, 2006, reprinted 2013


This Pinging Hail

Eucalypt 2012


Only in Silence

Tanka by Beverley George; Translated by Aya Yuhki

Pearl Beach, Kenilworth Road 2017


A Shared Umbrella

the responsive tanka and rengay of Beverley George & David Terelinck

Eucalypt 2016


Grevillea & Wonga Vine; Australian Tanka of Place

edited by Beverley George and David Terelinck

Eucalypt, 2011


wind through the wheatfields

Tanka by Beverley George writing with friends

Eucalypt, 2012


A Temple Bell Sounds; 108 tanka from the first twenty-one issues of Eucalypt: a tanka journal, selected by the journal’s founding editor Beverley George, Eucalypt 2017

Some thoughts on Beverley's tanka:


In Beverley's tanka, an everyday situation is being spoken of and yet something profound happens. In the first tanka, the setting is a café with its ‘clatter’ – the clang of cups, saucers, trays, serving dishes and the clink of cutlery. But ‘beneath banter’, a lighthearted conversation, something significant is shared. And one imagines that the bond between the two people, who exchange these ‘truths’ of their life, becomes stronger and deeper.


Oftentimes, it is the seemingly small gestures and the caring thought behind those gestures that strengthens the bond between two people. In simple, unassuming words, the second tanka suggests this very beautifully. It also leaves enough ‘dreaming room’ for the reader to create their own story.

Prompt for this week: A no-prompt week this time. Feel inspired by the lovely tanka above to write your own.

 Important: Since we're swamped with submissions, and our editors are only human, mistakes can happen. Please, please, remember to put your name, followed by your country, below each poem, even after revisions. It really helps our editors; they won't have to type it in, saving them from potential typos. Thanks a ton!




And remember – tanka, because of those two extra lines, lends itself most beautifully when revealing a story. And tanka prose is storytelling.


Give these ideas some thought and share your tanka and tanka-prose with us here. Keep your senses open, observe things that happen around you and write. You can post tanka and tanka-prose outside these themes too.


An essay on how to write tanka: Tanka Flights here



1. Post only one poem at a time, only one per day.

2. Only 2 tanka and two tanka-prose per poet per prompt.

   Tanka art of course if you want to.

3. Share your best-polished pieces.

4. Please do not post something in a hurry or something you have just written. Let it

    simmer for a while.

5. Post your final edited version on top of your original verse.

6. Don't forget to give feedback on others' poems.


We are delighted to open the comment thread for you to share your unpublished tanka and tanka-prose (within 250 words) to be considered for inclusion in the haikuKATHA monthly magazine.


Please check out the LEARNING Archives.

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677 views278 comments


mona bedi
mona bedi
Jun 04

Gembun with tanka


Fledglings leave their nest and they rarely return

moving out -

I softly ask my son

won’t he miss

the laughter still resounding

in his childhood home

Feedback appreciated:)

Mona Bedi




from behind the saint’s head

a wood pigeon

coo coos at the spikes

standing in its way





at the age of forty

this sudden urge

my wish for one more

child to bear

barbara olmtak

The Netherlands

Feedback welcome 🙏

Barbara  Olmtak
Barbara Olmtak
7 days ago
Replying to

Thank you for stopping by Kanji ! Your comment so very much appreciated 🌹A blessed weekend to you.


Jun 03



the moon

in grandma's tales and

stars in our eyes

little we knew we'd write

our stories with earthly hues

Kalyanee Arandhara

Assam, India

Feedback most welcome

7 days ago
Replying to

Thank you, Mohua.


2/6/24. #1

the Periyar elephant 

swings his huge trunk

to greet visitors

grandson wants to know

who broke his tusks and why

Neena Singh


Feedback welcome.

Kanji Dev
Kanji Dev
Jun 04
Replying to

I'm intrigued! I agree with Shawn - "my grandson"?

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