The Journey: Tanka


Ship berthed, door opens,

friends lost, remembered now, here

the odyssey ends

far from the blue planet Earth,

immigrants from a dead world




By Reto Stöckli (land surface, shallow water, clouds) Robert Simmon (enhancements: ocean color, compositing, 3D globes, animation) Data and technical support: MODIS Land Group; MODIS Science Data Support Team; MODIS Atmosphere Group; MODIS Ocean Group Additional data: USGS EROS Data Center (topography); USGS Terrestrial Remote Sensing Flagstaff Field Center (Antarctica); Defense Meteorological Satellite Program (city lights). ( [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


This tanka is for Colleen Chesbro’s Weekly Tanka Challenge.

The prompt words were friend and door.



27 thoughts on “The Journey: Tanka

  1. I wish I didn’t think this were to be our possible future, Merril! This was hopeful and may have a positive ending. . . Just curious, do you see their disembarking as fortuitous or dreadful?

    • It’s so funny that I wrote the poem, and then read the news of the new planets, Jennifer. I had originally thought of immigrants, refugees from outer space, coming to Earth, but it went the other way. 🙂

  2. Pingback: Colleen’s Weekly #Tanka #Poetry Challenge # 23 – HELP & SMILE – Colleen Chesebro ~ Fairy Whisperer

  3. The recent discovery of those
    earth-like planets makes your poem’s scenario seem more possible as part of mankind’s future…nice imagining 🙂

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