Sturdy trunks, or: Through the trees

A Sijo

she stumbled upon idyllic path
one day, to great relief-
stunning, straight, sure, surrounded
by stern, steadfast, sturdy trunks;
certain, she strode forward...
behind her, her dears dispersed through the trees


A Korean verse form related to haiku and tanka and comprised of three lines of 14-16 syllables each, for a total of 44-46 syllables. Each line contains a pause near the middle, similar to a caesura, though the break need not be metrical. The first half of the line contains six to nine syllables; the second half should contain no fewer than five. Originally intended as songs, sijo can treat romantic, metaphysical, or spiritual themes. Whatever the subject, the first line introduces an idea or story, the second supplies a โ€œturn,โ€ and the third provides closure. Modern sijo are sometimes printed in six lines.

Moonwashed weekly prompt


Let’s write poetry together!

When it comes to partnership, some humans can make their lives alone – it’s possible. But creatively, it’s more like painting: you can’t just use the same colours in every painting. It’s just not an option. You can’t take the same photograph every time and live with art forms with no differences.

Ben Harper (b. 1969)

Would you like to create poetry with me and have a completed poem of yours featured here at the Skeptic’s Kaddish? I am very excited to have launched the ‘Poetry Partners’ initiative and am looking forward to meeting and creating with you… Check it out!

27 thoughts on “Sturdy trunks, or: Through the trees”

  1. “certain, she strode forward…” Oh those roots must be firmly grounded in order to move forward! Very nice reminder of strength and courage David and the image is strong! โค

  2. I love the way it is written with ‘her dears’. I feel it is excellent wordplay and adds mystique to your poem. Brilliant piece, David.๐Ÿ’ž

    1. ๐Ÿ’™๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป Judy ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป๐Ÿ’™ ~ yes, I did, but I considered writing ‘the rest’ instead of ‘her dears’… I’m still not sure how I feel about it

          1. It’s in my family culture – we constantly correct one another in all the languages we speak, and that includes my eight-year-old daughter correcting my Hebrew pronunciation ๐Ÿ˜‰ ~ which I encourage her to do!

Leave a Reply to ben Alexander Cancel reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s