Tanka Writing Roundtable • Fall 2009
Dr. Randy Brooks

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Nikki Evans

Second Hand Sweatshirt

Nikki Evans

My tanka journey has been a learning and growing experience. Not only did I learn about tanka—I learned a lot about myself.

My family
full of art people
yet I
struggle ceaselessly
through art class

I've out grown
this place
take me back
to my home
away from here

Where two rivers meet
is where you take me
I imagine you holding our child
while we walk
to our home here


The depth
of the conversation
by the waitress
pouring us water

the everlasting question of
what to do with my life
my outgoing self
becomes shamefully


In an old rocking chair
You drift into isolation
I sit here with you
Wishing your mother was here
Wishing you where here

Your grandfather
Eating pumpkin pie
So silently
I cry inside to think
What little time he has left


secondhand sweatshirt
warming my bones
such a chilly day
nowhere near

© 2009, Randy Brooks • Millikin University
All rights returned to authors upon publication.