Reading performance in Japan and overseas. Mariko Kitakubo

Mariko Kitakubo Profile

Mariko Kitakubo

Born in Tokyo.
Living in Mitaka-city, Tokyo
Japan Writers' Association,
Japan PEN Club,
Association of Contemporary Tanka Poets,
Japan Tanka Poets' Society,
Tan-Ku Co-Founder,
Tanka Society of America.

In commemoration of
15 years of tanka reading
The Latest Tanka Sequence
Original Tanka presented at
Spoken World Live

Contemprary Tanka Poet Mariko Kitakubo. Reading Performance.

Tanka reading performance oveseas.

2024_06_08_Hosei_University_Workshop.png On June 8, 2024, the International Institute for Japanese Studies Joint Workshop was held at Hosei University Graduate School, Room S306, Sotobori Building, Ichigaya Campus.

Overall Flow:

First Half:
- Introduction to Tanka poetry.
- Reading some pieces from Manyoshu and Modern Tanka, two sequences themed about pets and one piece themed about Father's Day.
- Sharing my bizarre yet funny experiences during solo travels for tanka presentations across different countries.

Second Half:
- "Easy Order Tanka" activity, where participants selected their favorite type of tanka from seven examples and arranged the first or second half of the tanka in their preferred way.
- Participants were encouraged to create a completely original tanka as well.
- The workshop concluded with group representatives making stage presentations using percussions provided at the workshop.

The workshop was highly successful, and I regretted not recording the participants' presentations.

Each student group engaged in discussions to create tanka pieces on varied themes such as a familiar ramen flavor, a casual interaction in daily life, and a deep exploration of reincarnation. I found the participants uniquely authentic and intelligent and was pleasantly surprised by their rich expressions based on the small suggestions and advice provided.

I express sincere gratitude to the professor for attention to detail and overall support.
Thank you very much.


Move to "Reading Performance"

Monday, June 10, 2024

On March 24, 2024, I hosted an online Tanka workshop via Zoom organized by Ms. Flavia Garcia in Montréal.

It was the second workshop, and the content was the same as the one I did at La Livrerie the day before.

During the workshop, I presented Tanka reading in Japanese and English and introduced the attendees to the art of Tanka. I also explained the percussion instruments I used during my reading performance for background music. After that, the participants created their Tanka and presented them to the other attendees.

I thank those who participated in the workshop on a beautiful Sunday afternoon. It was delightful to hear that some participants attended this online workshop because they missed the previous day's workshop.

I hope this event will be an excellent opportunity for people to get familiar with Tanka poetry.


Move to "Reading Performance"

Wednesday, March 27, 2024

The weather in Montreal, Canada has turned cold this morning after being mild until last week.

However, despite the powdery snow falling since morning, I was delighted to see many people attend the tanka poetry workshop organized by Ms. Flavia Garcia at La Livrerie. The audience filled the venue.

After my brief presentation on Japanese-English reading performance and lecture, I answered questions from the attendees. We ended the event with an open mic session where attendees shared their tanka and enjoyed playing percussion I brought from Japan.

It was an afternoon filled with gratitude and appreciation for the great interest in Japanese literature among the younger generation, not only English speakers but also French speakers.


Move to "Reading Performance"

Sunday, March 24, 2024

Ms. Flavia Garcia, a poet residing in Montreal, Canada, kindly invited me to take part in the Poetry Event called "Soirée de poésie et traduction" held on March 21, 2024, at La Sala Rossa, a live music club located in Montreal.

It was an extraordinary evening with 12 performers presenting their unique style of poetry in various languages.

I was deeply impressed by the attention to detail of the organizers. I take this opportunity to express my sincere gratitude to everyone who commented after the performance that they were "moved" and "deeply healed."

I extend my special thanks to Mr. Osvaldo Rabunal, the musician who added the tongue drum background music to my performance.

Thank you all very much.


Move to "Reading Performance"

Sunday, March 24, 2024

On February 16, 2024, I had the pleasure of participating in a reading event by Drank Poets Tokyo at Garigari, a live house in Ikeunoue, Tokyo.

Among the members were individuals I had met at the publication celebration party for Tokyo Poetry Journal Vol.14 last December.

Today, I presented a reading in Japanese and English of my previously created tanka sequence, "BanyanTree," which I composed during my past stay in India.

I was grateful to share this experience with everyone. Thank you all so much.


Move to "Reading Performance"

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

On December 9, 2023, I had the privilege of reading at the launch party of the Tokyo Poetry Journal Vol. 14. The event took place at Ryozan Park Lounge in Sugamo, Tokyo, and it was an incredibly enriching and meaningful experience for me.

Each previously designated presenter shared their unique expressions on stage, making it a memorable few hours.

I extend my heartfelt thanks to Ms. Joy Waller for organizing this event. Thank you very much.

Photo by Mr. Edward Levinson.


Move to "Reading Performance"

Monday, December 11, 2023

On Friday, November 17, I participated in a poetry reading event at Garigari, a live bar in Ikenoue, Tokyo.

Ms. Joy Waller, the co-organizer of the event, also offered me the opportunity to be a performer at the launch party for the latest issue of Tokyo Poetry Journal, a poetry magazine for which she serves as Co-Editor. It was a great honor, and I am very grateful.

Although it was the first time for me to submit my work to the journal, my dream of being published in the journal also came true. Thank you very much to the editors for featuring my English tanka works.


Move to "Reading Performance"

Monday, November 20, 2023

Saturday, October 14, 2023

On October 8, 2023, I was delighted to have been invited to participate in a poetry reading event organized by NVHA at the Nick Virgilio Writers House in Camden, NJ.

Alongside Ms. Deborah P. Kolodji, I presented a selection of pieces from the Tan-Ku collection "DISTANCE" with percussion for approximately 20 minutes.

It was an honor for me to have the opportunity to introduce the Tan-Ku collection to the poetry community on the East Coast of the United States.


Move to "Reading Performance"

Monday, October 9, 2023


I am in the United States to attend a reading event at Nick Virgilio Writers House in Camden, New Jersey on October 8th. Along with Ms. Deborah P. Kolodji, I'll be one of the featured poets in the event.

On my second day in the U.S. on October 4th, I received a wonderful suggestion from haiku poet Mr. Henry Brann to participate in an open mic reading at Kelly Writers House in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Most of the attendees at the Kelly Writers House event were young university or graduate students. It was an honor to present a tanka reading in both Japanese and English. Some of them were even moved to tears as they heard Tanka for the first time.


Move to "Reading Performance"

Saturday, October 7, 2023