Our hearts go out to the victims of destruction
knowing reconstruction will be long and hard.
Our hearts are heavy for the losses they encounter.

We can offer our thoughts and prayers
We can give financial assistance.
but no amount of resistance will let us

ever forget, we are all in God’s hands

(C) Walter J. Wojtanik – 2017

Poems of Garden Gnomes – Form Friday: Sevenling



I had received a reiki treatment recently for some various aches and ailments I have been experiencing. Reiki is a therapy often described as palm healing or hands-on-body healing in which a practitioner places hands lightly on or over a patient’s body to facilitate the patient’s process of healing. Reiki combines the Japanese and Chinese word-characters of “rei” (spiritual or supernatural) and “ki” (vital energy). A basic idea held by those who practice Reiki is that this vital energy can be channeled to support the body’s natural ability to heal itself. However, there is no scientific support to these claims that this so-called vital energy actually exists, or that there is conclusive evidence Reiki is useful for any health-related purpose. That doesn’t mean it’s a harmful practice.

As Ann Baldwin, (a professor of physiology at the University of Arizona and a trained Reiki master, or practitioner) states “Reiki can do no harm — the worst thing it can do is nothing.”

In spite of all that, I felt better after my treatment. Relaxed. I felt no stress and no anxiety so for me, that “nothing” was something.


Reiki as a poetic form? In homage to the haiku, I envision the Reikiku in that vein – a seventeen syllable channeling of energy or spirit to ease one’s heart, stress anxiety or emotion. Untitled,  is written in four lines with a 5,5,4,3-syllable count. Any rhyme incorporated is purely discretionary. It begins with the trouble you look to ease and works toward that end.

My example of Reikiku:

Weariness of heart
Finds its peace through love
Within oneself
Peace will come.

© Walter J. Wojtanik


I stand within the gate with hat in hand
contrite as I can be, or so I’m told.
As I await my next (and last) command,
I hope it comes before I get too old.
For in this life we live, we’ll take a stand
And make our choices be they brash or bold.
We live within the dictates of our hearts,
And reap the benefits that life imparts.

(C) Walter J. Wojtanik

dVerse Poets Pub – Form For All: Ottava Rima


No one will be more surprised than I
if life turns to give me just what I want.
I’ve given up on wishing to
become famous before I die.
Even in closer circles, I am in
absolutely no hurry to face my
Maker; I’ll continue to take my own
sweet time before eternal sleep offers a bed.

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2016

Taken from Yehuda Amichai’s “I Want to Die in My Own Bed”

dVerse Poets Meeting the Bar: Golden Shovel



I thank my poetic friend, Meena Rose for introducing me to the concept of Boketto. I have been thinking about how to translate this into a poetic form.

Boketto is a Japanese word that really doesn’t translate into English very well. The idea behind Boketto is staring at the sky or into the distance without a thought… Getting lost in one’s own self; removing the self from a place mentally. There is no regard to the past and no concern for the future. There is only THIS moment. The Boketto can be a very personal poem, or can be one of a random observation.

The Boketto consists of two stanzas, One of five lines (30 syllables – 7,7,7,4,5) and a three line (17 syllables – two seven syllable lines and a three syllable line which becomes a refain if a string of Boketto are written).

A variation of the Boketto makes use of two (three) ancient Japanese forms, the Tanka and the Haiku (Senryu). The moment of which you write will determine the choice. (Haiku – nature; Senryu – anything else).


The air is filled with static,
a bombardment of senses
meant to irritate; annoy.
There is no joy,
this moment must cease.

I must escape in my mind,
hoping to find inner peace.
No relief.

© Walter J Wojtanik, 2014

Variation on Boketto:


I am imprisoned,
lost in this moment in time.
I am writing rhyme
hoping to vacate this shell
and become one with my words.

not a sound is heard
silence becomes an ally
setting the soul free

© Walter J Wojtanik, 2014


You are such a pretty thing and you sing
to my soul. You are in control; in charge
of the bilge I proffer as poetic verse.
It could be worse. It could be your brother
that directs my expression. But with each session
you are the reason beauty fills my space.

You make this a wonderful place. A space
where we make my words dance and sing
the praises of the face you present. There’s no messin’
with finely turned phrases. With you in charge
my words ring like no other.
You inject your pulchritude through my rhythmic verse.

You are forever thirty-nine, and I’m fine that your verse
is ageless. I stand still in your shadow trying to keep pace
with the inspiration you offer. You are never a bother,
because your voice sounds like an aria sung;
you are the swell of sweetness waiting to barge
into the room and lift my gloom and despair. My confession:

I love all that you do to lead me through every productive session,
snippets of time where seeds of thought flourish in verse.
You are  demure, yet have the power to overcome; to charge
forward in expression with verve. Your fragrance fills this space.
The gentle trace of your fingers holds no sting.
Every visit with you is a joy! This boy is enamored like no other.

I have spent lurid evenings caressing your softness, just another
suitor with a love for your movements. You are a lesson
to be studied and learned, knowledge that will bring
us closer still. You will lead me to the brink. You will nurse
me to vitality, a reality forged in my mind. A vacuous space
filled with the wealth of words you place in my charge.

Your eyes become my vision. They become large
with the wonder around you. I have found you a seductress like no other.
I am comforted by your tender embrace.
You are a curse and a blessing.
More blessing than curse.
But you make this duet we do something worth singing.

Oh Valentina Sestina! My words sing when you’re in charge.
You give my verse life! Where you revive, your brother would smother
me. This is a beautiful space when you’re in session.