Tanka T156

Love, fear, universe –
Happiness, sadness, friendship –
Imagination –
What are some words worth at least
A thousand pictures to you?





Copyright by Minh Tan on listed dated of completion.



Notes to this poem…

Almost as long as I have known the English idiom, “a picture is worth a thousand words”, I’ve wondered how much truth there was to its inverse, words that were worth a thousand pictures. I didn’t have much doubt there was, only which words were worth a thousand pictures. Those would be words worth a million other words to say enough about it, if you were doing the math or trying to understand my conceptual thought in some other way. Over the years, as I’ve thought about it, I’ve not succeeded much at that approximation. Instead, words I deemed could be worth a thousand pictures, I valued at almost infinite value. For example, how many pictures would you need to show all the possible forms and variations of love?

For me, there doesn’t seem to be a middle ground for how many pictures words are worth… at least the middle ground not being about a thousand pictures.

Whether you agree or not, I’m curious about which words are worth a lot of pictures to you. Please do share in the comments. Thank you.

The T-series poems are tanka composed while I was not engaged in some activity during which I frequently composed poetry. That is why these are called the Inactive Tanka collection.


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