I no longer can live in solitude at my little studio. The last several weeks I have spent in hospital and rehabilitation. Now I live in an assisted living setting. To everything, there is a season. Fortunately, I still have my computer and access, so I plan to continue this blog. I hopefully expect to continue to add resources and publications to this Tanka In English site. Inasmuch as I will not be sending off my new poems in submission for publication at any of my favorite fine tanka, haiku, etc., online and print venues, I will publish them by posting to Tanka In English. I hope you will follow my blog or check in from time to time for the latest. You are invited to email me at email@example.com with suggestions, comments, and so on. — Denis M. Garrison
Modern English Tanka Press (aka MET Press) is my, Denis Garrison’s, small publishing proprietorship. MET Press did business from 2006-2019 publishing both print and digital editions of books of poetry, journals, etc., related primarily to tanka, haiku, and other eastern short forms. Today, my blog, Tanka In English, is all that remains of MET Press which will go out of business at the end of this month. The printing relationship with Lulu Press will be ended this month and no further print publishing will be undertaken. MET Press’s many titles will be available to varying degrees in the secondary market but I will not be involved in that market. I have no stocks of out-of-print MET Press books so, please, no purchasing inquiries. Beginning in 2020, Tanka In English will be my personal blog; nothing more. It is my hope to continue the blog indefinitely as an archive of many great poetic works and resources for the reading public and as a place for my new poetry to appear. I do not plan to send out poetry submissions to journals, anthologies, etc. any more. My progressively worsening health is the main cause of this wrap up of MET Press and general withdrawal from participation in the poetry community. I have had a fabulous time in Tanka Town and met many wonderful and creative writers and artists. Still, there always comes a time to go home from the fair.
cramped and dark
oh … how the memories
flash across its walls
Denis M. Garrison
JUN FUJITA, TANKA PIONEER was perhaps the first master of tanka poetry in English. His work is an important and foundational aspect of the English tanka heritage. Modern English Tanka Press takes great pleasure in making this fine poet’s work once again available to the reading public. It is posted at the More Great Books page of this blog. Read and download for free at this link: Jun Fujita, Tanka Pioneer.
I am home again after two heart operations. The experience brought to mind the title poem of my first book length collection of poems. It is not radically brief poetry, but still a personal favorite and now with a new resonance for me.
The Brink at Logan Pond
On Logan Pond, the rose gold sky in pines’
Embrace between the cedar-shrouded hills,
Now from the stained-glass stone-still surface shines,
Just wrinkling at the emptying of rills.
The heavens condescended on this cruel
And vacant stretch of wet, this verdant sink.
Beneath its jeweled face, this silent pool
Still craves the careless creatures from the brink.
Just pausing there, at water’s edge, I feel
The almost tidal pull of Logan Pond.
It tempts me from the land, to blindly reel
In wanton waves and break my earthly bond.
The gorgeous waste shall not see me descend.
I’ll stand my ground ashore until the end.
HAIKU WISDOM : Living the Principles and Philosophies of Kung Fu, Haiku and Nature by Don Baird has been archived here on the More Great Books page of the Tanka In English blog. From the Foreword: “The title of this book is Haiku Wisdom. Its secondary title is Living the Principles and Philosophies of Kung Fu, Haiku and Nature. While much of the book is drawn on the philosophies of martial arts and its centuries of wisdom, it isn’t limited to that. Haiku, themselves, are often written as clear witnesses of nature and her ways. When observed well and written objectively, the messages of nature readily reveal themselves to the reader. Philosophical surprises are around every corner. It simply takes the poet and reader to connect the dots; aha! … the reader walks away with new and wonderful insights of life and its mysterious ways and workings.” This outstanding collection is archived here by permission of the author. This is a great read. Read and download Haiku Wisdom for free here.
First Winter Rain: Selected Tanka from 2006-2010 , the best tanka by Denis M. Garrison from his first five years, has been posted at the Poetry of Denis M. Garrison page. This is the first edition of this collection. We thank Hansha Teki and Don Baird for providing a copy of the original PDF file which we had lost in a digital meltdown. Read and download First Winter Rain for free here.