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Passions in Poetry

A North American Tragedy

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Local Parasite
Deputy Moderator 10 Tours
Member Elite
since 11-05-2001
Posts 2929
Transylconia, Winnipeg


0 posted 06-18-2003 03:25 PM       View Profile for Local Parasite   Email Local Parasite   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to Submit your Poem to Passions   Click to visit Local Parasite's Home Page   View IP for Local Parasite

A North American Tragedy

A cold grey sulphur falls, and on the streets
The lazy flurries all are rushing by
In waves, caressing boulevard with sheets
Of winter ice, and lamp-posts all are froze
With frost, and all are thick with thickness, those
Whom urban sprawl erected, pillars high
With heads cast downward to the dark, it greets
The dry and empty wasteland it so closely knows.

The warm and indoor niceness 'hind the walls
Of brick is decorated in the halls
By greens and reds, dead leaves and little balls
With little bells that jingle anxiously
With angst, replying that same melody
Created by the tiny beast that crawls
From slumber, and the morning loudly calls--
"Wake up!" through all the household, "Wake yourselves and see!"

There is a loathesome happiness upon
Her rosy cheeks, and in her vibrant stride,
Illuminated by the coming dawn
That yellows through the frosty windowpane
And watches her with a prophetic pain
As she's rehearsed so many times inside
Her mind, searching for which her name is on
A hundred parcels high, a thousand letters wide

And they come rushing too, they in her wake
Step down the self-same steps, the self-same path
Into the self-same paper-shredded lake
Of parcels, and they bear their fangs, and then
They tear into its flesh, time and again
To hold the prize, and raise it with a fake
Unknowing happiness, or other wrath
As our protagonist--"there must be some mistake

I told him, Santa, told him every word!"
Her face is wrench'd with violated greed
The simple joy she so expected, cured
By unexpectedness--"what have I found?
This is not it!" she screams, and she turns round
Against it, teary-eyed, her vision blurr'd
Back on the path, with an increasing speed
Fuel'd by the false recoil of her neglected need.

Back to her bed, "oh let this be a dream!"
Into her pillow, streaming forth in tears
Caught in the claws of petty sorrow's scheme
To take her from her innocence--it takes
An hour or two of crying 'fore she wakes
Her eyes again--where a thick, somber cream
Of many-legged dots draws forth her fears;
She calls again, this time, a stomach-twisting scream.

They found her there, a lump of bloody coal
The fat of fortune gnaw'd and pick'd away
From her--and now, a thin skeletal whole
Remaining in a masterpiece of gashes
As if she, in a panic, tore with slashes
Against some phantom army who this day
Selected, after pondering their goal--
And when the moment was befitting of their prey.

Many miles away the night is ever creeping
Where morning still has yet to reach its shine
Across the dim horizon.  In a ditch of mud,
In a far off, arid land, a child is sleeping...

[This message has been edited by Local Parasite (06-20-2003 11:47 AM).]

© Copyright 2003 Brian James Lee - All Rights Reserved
Midnitesun
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Member Empyrean
since 05-18-2001
Posts 29020
Gaia


1 posted 06-18-2003 05:11 PM       View Profile for Midnitesun   Email Midnitesun   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Midnitesun

I knew I shouldn't read this one while eating. LOL
***
An hour or two of crying 'fore she wakes
Her eyes again--where a thick, somber cream
Of many-legged dots draws forth her fears;
She calls again, this time, a stomach-twisting scream.
***
what the heck was that cream stuff with legs?
interesting write, Tiny Tim
Janet Marie
Member Laureate
since 01-22-2000
Posts 18986


2 posted 06-18-2003 06:09 PM       View Profile for Janet Marie   Email Janet Marie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Janet Marie

ooohhhh youre so cool...way to go on posting 500....
the moth will be back to savor this one later when I dont have so many distractions.

No matter what the differences
No matter what the cost
When words become our weapons ...
All that's beautiful is lost.

DeVante'

Poet deVine
Administrator
Member Empyrean
since 05-26-99
Posts 25869
Hurricane Alley


3 posted 06-18-2003 08:00 PM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine

You never fail to impress me with your original thoughts. Very good poem sir. And congratulations!!
Cpat Hair
Deputy Moderator 1 Tour
Member Patricius
since 06-05-2001
Posts 12075


4 posted 06-19-2003 11:05 AM       View Profile for Cpat Hair   Email Cpat Hair   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Cpat Hair

tragedy indeed... well done Bri..as usual, you blend the use of words and images to capticate the reader and to tell in your own way the story...

good stuff...
Sudhir Iyer
Member Rara Avis
since 04-26-2000
Posts 7206
Mumbai, India : now in Belgium


5 posted 06-19-2003 11:38 AM       View Profile for Sudhir Iyer   Email Sudhir Iyer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Sudhir Iyer

Hi LP,
... Overall, this is great writing... there is so much depth in this one, like most of your works... I just wanted to read this aloud and in parts... and that I did... but stumbled at a few things... hope you don't mind me pointing them out...

I will only mention the first stanza and I know you will understand the rest:
----------------------------------------
A cold grey sulphur falls, and on the streets
The lazy flurries all are rushing by
In waves, caressing boulevard with sheets
Of winter ice, and lamp-posts all are froze
With frost, and all are thick with thickness, those
Whom urban sprawl erected, pillars high
With heads cast downward to the dark, it greets
The dry and empty wasteland it so closely knows.
----------------------------------------
I liked the start very much... but I wouldn't put a comma before 'and' and instead have it at the end of the line or maybe not at all... I also noticed excesses of the same images in the first stanza...
sheets of winter ice
froze with frost (did you intend frozen?)
thick with thickness
pillars high with heads cast downward to the dark
dry and empty wasteland

maybe it is just me but I notice that you mention a boulevard with sheets of winter ice
and yet you mention the same region as dry wasteland... is the irony intended?
----------------

anyways, you don't have to change anything in this because it is a great piece of work, would suggest some editing tho'... the last stanza is wonderfully done...

overall, this is a very enjoyable work...

thanks for letting me ramble...

regards
sudhir


Local Parasite
Deputy Moderator 10 Tours
Member Elite
since 11-05-2001
Posts 2929
Transylconia, Winnipeg


6 posted 06-19-2003 11:49 AM       View Profile for Local Parasite   Email Local Parasite   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Local Parasite's Home Page   View IP for Local Parasite

quote:
maybe it is just me but I notice that you mention a boulevard with sheets of winter ice
and yet you mention the same region as dry wasteland... is the irony intended?


Sudhir... if you lived in Winnipeg you'd know what I'm talking about.  When it's really cold, it's dry... know why?  Because all the moisture is FROZEN (or should I say froze?)

If commas are out of place then I apologize, I personally use them to regulate flow... I kind of have a habit of writing with my ear instead of my eye.  I appreciate your comments, of course... and thanks for taking the time to read this.  
Sudhir Iyer
Member Rara Avis
since 04-26-2000
Posts 7206
Mumbai, India : now in Belgium


7 posted 06-19-2003 12:01 PM       View Profile for Sudhir Iyer   Email Sudhir Iyer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Sudhir Iyer

I am trying to understand...

anyway "I froze" and the "lamp-post was frozen" better use the defrost button

don't worry about the commas...

regards
sudhir
Janet Marie
Member Laureate
since 01-22-2000
Posts 18986


8 posted 06-19-2003 12:22 PM       View Profile for Janet Marie   Email Janet Marie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Janet Marie

A cold grey sulphur falls, and on the streets
The lazy flurries all are rushing by
In waves, caressing boulevard with sheets
Of winter ice, and lamp-posts all are froze
With frost, and all are thick with thickness, those
Whom urban sprawl erected, pillars high
With heads cast downward to the dark, it greets
The dry and empty wasteland it so closely knows.


==============================

Well what an awesome opening verse...
you have set the tone and painted the scene with your superb mix of imagery and personification...
you had me from the first line...

A cold grey sulphur falls

how cool is that image and symbol.

and I loved these lines and images:

In waves, caressing boulevard with sheets
Of winter ice, and lamp-posts all are froze



-------------

The warm and indoor niceness 'hind the walls
Of brick, is decorated in the halls
By greens and reds, dead leaves and little balls
With little bells that jingle anxiously
With angst, replying that same melody
Created by the tiny beast that crawls
From slumber, and the morning loudly calls--
"Wake up!" through all the household, "Wake yourselves and see!"



Now this verse really sets it up..the first verse established the season..this one time stamps it and lets the reader know whats taking place...and I love the way your created the mood with a heady mix of imagery and symbolism...we know its Christmas..but also know there is an undercurrent of something amiss... love the erie essence you created with your imagery:


By greens and reds, dead leaves and little balls
With little bells that jingle anxiously
With angst, replying that same melody
Created by the tiny beast that crawls



Tiny Tim's nightmare?...Black Christmas?
youve got the reader wondering....very cool.

There is a loathesome happiness upon
Her rosy cheeks, and in her vibrant stride,
Illuminated by the coming dawn
That yellows through the frosty windowpane
And watches her with a prophetic pain
As she's rehearsed so many times inside
Her mind, searches for which her name is on
A hundred parcels high, a thousand letters wide

=========================

Along with the first verse...I think this is my most fave....

Her rosy cheeks, and in her vibrant stride,
Illuminated by the coming dawn
That yellows through the frosty windowpane
And watches her with a prophetic pain


I just love those images and lines...and not just cuz of the allit   The whole mix of anticipation and angst is so cool...you keep the reader wondering whats going on with your edgy surreal images and word play.


And they come rushing too, they in her wake
Step down the self-same steps, the self-same path
Into the self-same paper-shredded lake
Of parcels, and they bear their fangs, and then
They tear into its flesh, time and again
To hold the prize, and raise it with a fake
Unknowing happiness, or other wrath
As our protagonist--"there must be some mistake

I told him, Santa, told him every word!"
Her face is wrench'd with violated greed
The simple joy she so expected, cured
By unexpectedness--"what have I found?
This is not it!" she screams, and she turns round
Against it, teary-eyed, her vision blurr'd
Back on the path, with an increasing speed
Fuel'd by the false recoil of her neglected need.



these two verses ROCK... you have very cleverly picked up the pace and created the drama and urgency with the wording, rhyme and imagery...You have created the "Night(mare) Before Christmas" with these two very cool verses.

and how cool is this line:

Into the self-same paper-shredded lake


waaaaaay coool  *S*

Back to her bed, "oh let this be a dream!"
Into her pillow, streaming forth in tears
Caught in the claws of petty sorrow's scheme
To take her from her innocence--it takes
An hour or two of crying 'fore she wakes
Her eyes again--where a thick, somber cream
Of many-legged dots draws forth her fears;
She calls again, this time, a stomach-twisting scream.

They found her there, a lump of bloody coal
The fat of fortune gnaw'd and pick'd away
From her--and now, a thin skeletal whole
Remaining in a masterpiece of gashes
As if she in a panic, tore with slashes
Against some phantom army who this day
Selected, after pondering their goal--
And when the moment was befitting of their prey.


Christmas, Bloody Christmas?  LOL

Oh yeah... these verses are the whipped creme
and cherry on top  

The moth is giddy...just look at the alliterations..the word play..the imagery, symbolism...MAJOR symbolism, metaphor and personification...and last but NEVER least..
the rhyme, internal rhymes..and the assonance..these verses made the moth high when reading aloud.


Many miles away the night is ever creeping
Where morning still has yet to reach its shine
Across the dim horizon.  In a ditch of mud,
In a far off, arid land, a child is sleeping...



and thats the perfect ending to this...
you brought the poem full circle..back to the surreal opening...yet the subtle forewarning of things to come...you left the drama open ended...while still giving the write the closure it needed.


I know your love of symbolism and I think you took it to new heights in this.
I also think you took imagery and meter there as well.
I will be honest and admit that some of this is over my head...but thats just cuz you are so danged intelligent and I am but a mere moth. *wink* But you wrote this in such an impressive way that even if the reader doesnt get the "full intend" ... it in no way takes away from the impact and pleasure of the write.

Quite the commentary on commercialism and greed as well as the way we pass things on to our children, even when well intended.

I definately want to know where you got the inspire for this...the way your poetic mind works fascinates me. *S*

Your rhymes rock my groovy Poet Bug
you keep writing them and the moth will keep flying in your flame  


No matter what the differences
No matter what the cost
When words become our weapons ...
All that's beautiful is lost.

DeVante'

[This message has been edited by Janet Marie (06-19-2003 12:27 PM).]

fractal007
Member Elite
since 06-01-2000
Posts 2032


9 posted 06-20-2003 05:44 AM       View Profile for fractal007   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for fractal007

An interesting tragedy.  I like your initial description of the setting.  

The culminating "tragic" event of this story is masterfully drawn, creating a satirical jab at North American life in general.  

We cry over not getting what we want from relatives while the rest of the world experiences much worse tragedy, often at our own hands.

Finally, the elevated language in this piece makes it similar in some ways to Pope's "The Rape of the Lock," a mock epic in which several trivial things happen to various persons of the aristocratic class.

2+2=5 for sufficiently large values of 2
--Smit
My Creations

nakdthoughts
Member Laureate
since 10-29-2000
Posts 19275
Between the Lines


10 posted 06-20-2003 09:54 AM       View Profile for nakdthoughts   Email nakdthoughts   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for nakdthoughts

I was studying your format...loved the way you used the rhyming pattern and this poem would have been one for the book...maybe next time...or maybe I will just print it out and lay it in, as my final read.
It held my attention with each additional line...each description so vivid.

Nicely done, and I, too, use commas where my ear hears a break or a place to breathe...

btw, I want to write like you, with your depth, when I grow up.

M

[This message has been edited by nakdthoughts (06-20-2003 09:55 AM).]

littlewing
Member Rara Avis
since 03-02-2003
Posts 9998
New York


11 posted 06-21-2003 01:28 PM       View Profile for littlewing   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for littlewing

Brian?

this is the best you have ever written
which I have read . . .

I have my own views on it
of course
but  . . . this tore me up
It is beautiful
in its darkness
and stark reality

I am in awe . .  .
xxoo
Allysa
Deputy Moderator 10 ToursDeputy Moderator 5 Tours
Member Elite
since 11-09-1999
Posts 2307
In an upside-down garden


12 posted 06-26-2003 12:59 PM       View Profile for Allysa   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Allysa

The grass is always greener on the other side.  I'm one of those people who wishes it were winter in the summer and summer in the winter.. snow and ice are my friends.. anyway.. to the poem..

WONDERFUL.  Arg.. you're so good it's annoying. lol.

check your email hon.
vlraynes
Member Rara Avis
since 07-25-2000
Posts 9136
Somewhere... out there...


13 posted 06-27-2003 04:58 AM       View Profile for vlraynes   Email vlraynes   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit vlraynes's Home Page   View IP for vlraynes


Brian~
It's been awhile since I've had a chance to read you,
and I apologize for that.  I haven't read much of
anyone lately...been slacking, I guess..lol.
Anyway..I'm very glad that I took the time tonight.
This is an incredible write and, I do believe,
one of my favorites of yours.  I have to echo the
others...your unique thoughts and the creative
way in which you express them, never cease to
amaze and impress me.
Excellent writing, Brian.  
~Vicky

"...until you have read the verse on his heart,
you have not truly met the poet.
~vlraynes

[This message has been edited by vlraynes (06-27-2003 05:00 AM).]

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