Laurels: Tanka Society of America Online Journal

Laurels is the twice-yearly online publication of the Tanka Society of America, launched in 2024, for members only (nonmembers and members are welcome to submit to our print publication, Ribbons). Each issue of Laurels focuses on an announced theme, with members serving as guest editors. Laurels is for individual tanka only, and does not include sequences, tanka prose, essays, or reviews, and will accept no more than one poem per member per issue. We invite members to submit up to three unpublished tanka for each issue. Please, no simultaneous or multiple submissions (submit only once).

Submission Deadlines

Laurels submission deadlines are in-hand no later than the following dates:

Each Laurels guest editor will typically respond to all submissions within one month of each submission deadline.

Laurels #2 Submission Guidelines for members only


Don’t be upset if you’ve no idea what kyōka means. I didn’t till a short while ago. As I found out, I’ve been writing them for years. As defined by the website Poem Analysis, “Kyōka is a traditional Japanese poetic form that emerged in the 15th century. It is a playful and humorous variation of the tanka.” Kyōka literally means “mad” or “crazy poem.” It often parodies, puns, or mixes high language with everyday words and subject matter. Here are two kyōka examples:

the limp windsock

reminds him

of the side effects

of taking prozac

but who cares

Michael Ketchek


Hamlet at the Globe

then dinner at the George

where Shakespeare drank

the only question is

to beer or not to beer

Charles Harmon


Submissions (TSA members only): Please submit by June 30, 2024 using our online submission form. The form should work correctly for nearly everyone, but if it does not work for you, please try accessing it using a different device. If it still does not work correctly for you, please inquire with Michael Ketchek at

Explore Issues of Laurels

Laurels #1 — February 2024

edited by Richard L. Matta

Previous Prompts

Read previous Laurels prompts