Tanka (The Cursed Sapling) by Jenna Le

I’d rather make a bonfire
by heaping the hazel eyes
of my dead forebears
than break off a branch of that dried-up hazel tree
you once straddled like a horse

Jenna Le’s first book, Six Rivers (New York Quarterly Books, 2011), was a Small Press Distribution Poetry Bestseller. Her poems have appeared in AGNI Online, Barrow Street, Margie, Massachusetts Review, New York Quarterly, Post Road, Rhino, Salamander, and 32 Poems. Her translations of poetry have appeared in Asymptote, in The Brooklyn Rail InTranslation section, and on the Sycamore Review website. She has been a finalist in the William Carlos Williams Poetry Competition, a Pushcart Prize nominee, and a nominee for the PEN Emerging Writers Award.