Over the years things evolved, although really not all that much, and the chōka faded away and the tanka flourished.
Aristocrats began to hold short-poem parties, some featuring a team sport where two poems on a particular given topic were judged against each other (the winner gained points for his team), and some an affair where where everyone gathered round to read their own poems.
Tanka nowadays traditionally consist of five chunks, with the syllable count (not that what's counted is quite what an English person would call a syllable when the poem is in Japanese) 5,7,5,7,7.
Also traditionally, tanka were exchanged between lovers. From the resurgence of the form from about 1900 onwards, though, the scope of the tanka widened.
Here's a tanka by one of the first people to write as part of this movement, Ishikawa Takuboku.
On the white sand
Of the beach of a small island
In the Eastern Sea.
I, my face streaked with tears,
Am playing with a crab
Word To Use Today: island. The Old English word for island was īg, and later the land bit was added making the word mean, literally island land. The s was added in there as well because, well, the word isle had one, didn't it?
(The word isle comes through French from the Latin word insula.)