Thursday, April 14, 2011

Book Giveaway - Tanka Moments: A Man's Journey by David Lee Kirkland

In honor of national poetry month, I'm giving away a copy of a book of poetry written by David Lee Kirkland, a long-time writer friend.

David, or Kirk as many of us call him, is an award-winning poet, novelist, short-story writer, storyteller, Templar, fiddler, and frequent wearer of kilts.

Tanka Moments: A Man's Journey, published by High Hill Press, is his latest published work.

Packed in the slim volume are 265 tanka and dozens of haunting illustrations, which capture the essence of the book. The tone of poems ranges from playful to serious, uplifting to thought-provoking, romantic to down-to-earth.

Here's a sampling:


Children's eyes

Even averted

See so much

How can we wonder

Where lessons are learned?



Head poised, tail shaking

Fair warning

If only people

Were so courteous


Learning to drive

On Dad's old Mercury

No second gear

Transitions are not smooth

Between youth and manhood


Hungry birds huddle

Outside below the feeder

Hopeful, eager

Our children gather inside

Seeing presents by the tree

If you would like to win a copy of Kirk's poetry book, here's what you need to do:
* Leave a comment
* About your favorite poet or poem or your thoughts on poetry
* Between today and April 20th
* Be sure to include an e-mail address so I can contact you if you win
* I will pick one name at random from all who leave comments.
* Winner will be announced on or around April 21

Good luck, and Happy Poetry Month!


  1. Hi Donna! Great contest! I've never really been a fan of poetry, but I guess I never gave it much of a chance, either. I've always been busy reading other genres! So, enter me in! I really liked the samples you posted. My favorite was 43, learning to drive.

  2. I have done some haiku, but I don't know much about tanka. I'd like to take a look at this book. What fun he pubblished them all together.

    Poetry is so personal. I will admit some poetry is over my head. If it is work to comprehend then it isn't fun to me. I love Mary Oliver and Jane Kenyon.

  3. Hi Becky,
    Love your new photo. It's so you!
    You are entered.

  4. Hi Claudia,
    You are also entered. Good Luck!

  5. Don't enter me in the contest because I am lucky to already have a copy of the book, but I wanted to chime in and say that Kirk is a master at Tanka. You should follow him on Twitter because he puts up tankas--I believe at least once a day. They are also fun to write if you ever feel like trying something new. Thanks for the post, Donna!


  6. If I had your money, I'd throw mine away
    I'd be happy then but pray that i not git bored
    With all the things I could newly afford
    I stole the first line from Donna Sue
    need a rythm here but nuttin's new
    so enter this in your drawing
    give out my number when Pullettzer starts callin

  7. I love to write free verse. I know nothing about Tanka, but I would love to learn. I write a poem a month on children's author David L. Harrison's blog. Join us. Mary Nida

  8. I like them all, but 43 is my favorite. I love the twist at the end. In college, I wrote poetry, but haven't written many since then. A poem has been bugging me lately, though. It's one I read in college and loved, but now can't remember any of it except what I think was the opening (I once had an uncle named Sol who was a born failure...). I've even tried to Google it. Ah well.

  9. Hello Donna - Happy to be out of the anonymous shadows and be an official follower. I love your blog. And I'd love to win Kirk's book.
    Some favorite poets, off the top of my head - Dr Seuss, Ogden nash, King David (Psalms), JRR Tolkien, HW Longfellow, and two co-poets from my April PAD group - de jackson and RJ Clarken.
    -Marcia Gaye

  10. Donna,
    Enter me in the contest. I love Kirk's books, so I know I'll enjoy his poetry. Thaks for your blog comments.

  11. You had me at "kilt." :) My favorite poem (don't laugh) is Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll. I've had it memorized since I was a kid, and love the way so many made-up words told a story and how, without knowing what the words meant---just from their usage---I could follow the poem. :) I also love Robert Frost.

  12. Kirk is one very talented (and funny) fellow.

    Back in elementary school we always had to memorize poems. One I recall in particular, I don't remember title or poet name. I'll spare you hearing the entire thing, but the first lines go: "How do you like to go up in a swing, up in the air so blue? Oh, I do think it's the pleasantest thing, ever a child could do."


  13. I love Mary Oliver, Langston Hughes, Nikki Grimes, and lots more.

  14. I'd love to win this book. Do I have a favorite poem? I love so many--like Sioux I love Mary Oliver and Langston Hughes (I quote him a lot) but there are so many that I love that I can't really choose.

    to K9friend is she sees this--the poem she was quoting is from Robert Louis Stevenson's collection, A Child's Garden of Verses. Yes, I LOVE those and can quote bits and pieces of many in that book. And I'm off now to check out David Harrison's blog (another writer we love and his friend Ted Kooser) via Mary Nida! THANKS!

  15. Hmmmm...I spread the word about your giveaway, then forgot to comment myself! I love poetry, couldn't possibly name all my faves (but "The Swing" is one I often quote), and I'm intrigued by the tanka form. So, yes, please. Enter me. Thank you. :-)

  16. It sounds like a great book! I love poetry. I also like A Child's Garden of Verses and have a very old copy of that book.Thanks for the give a way.

  17. Hi Margo,
    Thanks for the kind words. It was great to see you and Katie and Rick at the conference.

    Hi Anonymous,

    Hi Mary,
    Thanks for entering.

    Hi Helen,
    Thanks for entering. I like #43 too.

    Hi Marcia,
    Love your screen name. Got you entered in the contest.

    Hi Linda,
    Got you entered.

    Hi Lisa,
    Yep. Kirk has been known to wear kilts to writing conferences. Got you entered.

    Hi Pat,
    Kirk is a character. If you read Clara's post, she has the source of your favorite poem.

    Hi Sioux,
    Good choices. Thanks for entering.

    Hi Clara,
    Thanks for all the information, and good luck.

    Hi Cathy,
    Got you down, and thanks for spreading the word about the contest.

    Hi Janet,
    Lots of folks like A Child's Garden of Verse. It's so great you still have a copy of the book.


  18. Please don't enter me in the contest because I already have one, but wanted to comment that I was impressed by the language and the imagery. Beautiful!

  19. Hi Mary,
    Thanks for your comments. I'm sure Kirk appreciates them.

  20. I'd love to win Kirk's book. I have been doing haiku and tanka this last year - love the creativity in such short work. Now I'm doing the poem-a-day challenge on my blog for NaPoWriMo. Tough! I also love Child's Garden of Verses and treasure my old copy from childhood.

  21. Hi Linda,
    Thanks for you comment. You are entered in the giveaway.


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