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Passions in Poetry

Critical Analysis-A Lion's Den!

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Julie
Senior Member
since 08-20-99
Posts 742
Houston, TX


0 posted 10-09-1999 07:35 PM       View Profile for Julie   Email Julie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Julie

I wasn't sure exactly where to post this and found it to be a challenge to direct this issue.

I have posted a few of my poems in CA and was unsatisfied with what I didn't walk away with each time. Someone saying they would get back with me and never did and other times no responses at all. I do not expect this forum to be as communitive as OP#3 but good grief...lighten up. I think many of us write for the shear pleasure or as a hobby. But even for those more serious writers I don't think they need this kind of ridicule. I have viewed some of the poems and comments and am amazed at the lack of TACT when critiquing someone's work. HARSH. I personally have not fallen victim but felt sympathetic to those putting themselves out there to find they were eaten up. I have noticed that one will even justify his obscurities by saying he's had one too many. How about just an apology and rectification for the lack of tact.

ie. If you called upon a professional painter to come look at your house after you painted to ask for advice on touching it up...would you want them to suggest that you just get another house or have him re-paint over everything you just did? Disheartening...

None of us are born poets we are made. We can not be made by tearing away at something we make from our soul. If you say that CA is not for sissies, you are right, but I can not see that it is a place of growth at this time.

If you are going to critique someone's work, use your knowledge of word usage to address the author with some "class."

Thanks to Alicat and Ron for allowing me a place to rant.
Poet deVine
Administrator
Member Empyrean
since 05-26-99
Posts 25869
Hurricane Alley


1 posted 10-09-1999 10:54 PM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine

Julie, I went to the CA Forum and didn't see what you were talking about...could you give me an example...point me to a poem or something. (I don't usually go there.. I'm not an expert on form/meter, etc so I can't critique). Thanks.
doreen peri
Member Rara Avis
since 05-25-99
Posts 8028
Virginia


2 posted 10-09-1999 11:19 PM       View Profile for doreen peri   Email doreen peri   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for doreen peri

I have recently begun posting there myself. I haven't noticed anything like what you're saying here. Could you lead me to an example? HTML is on here in the alley.... maybe you could post a link.

Or just e-mail it to me.

I posted a couple of poems and it's been a very rewarding experience over there for ME, so far. Most comments had "meat"... something which I could sink my teeth into and refer to in order to work on my poem. I didn't feel "torn down" at all. In a couple of instances, I have received detailed critiques from both Brad and Trevor. (One from Trevor was almost a BOOK! hehehe)

Anyway, I have not experienced a lack of tact or harshness so in order to understand your post, could you point me in the right direction?

Thanks, Julie.

-doreen
Brad
Member Ascendant
since 08-20-99
Posts 5896
Jejudo, South Korea


3 posted 10-09-1999 11:21 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Well, the only personal attack, to my knowledge, was directed at me (and that wasn't meant seriously).

Personally, I want the place to get even more detailed (maybe we should change the title to Lion's Den?) Ironically, the only way to really gain anything from the forum is by not taking yourself (and your poem) too seriously. By realizing that we all make mistakes and that one person's opinion is just that, one opinion. You have to take what you find there and find what is useful for you and ignore the rest.

If you've spent any time in the poetry world (on the internet or elsewhere), people here are still being relatively nice.

As for not getting back to you on your poem (that was directed at me wasn't it?) -- sorry about that; I will get back to you in due time (if you still want me too).

Poetry is personal and to try to get a real critical forum going, you're going to step on some toes and bruise a few egos. I don't know if it would help, but maybe we should set up some ground rules? I just figured people probably wouldn't read it anyway.

Brad

Julie
Senior Member
since 08-20-99
Posts 742
Houston, TX


4 posted 10-10-1999 12:35 AM       View Profile for Julie   Email Julie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Julie

Doreen: I can see why you are not able to relate to this. Your an excellent writer and
of course your critiques would not be harsh.

This is an observation more than a personal experience. Maybe those who I believe to be
ignored or to have received harsh replies
don't mind or maybe they do...hopefully soon we will find out. This is not to speak of every piece that is posted but there are a few where I was glad I was not the author.

Brad: I don't agree with you about the only attack being on you. I strongly feel that
critiquing can be done without attacking the style or subject matter; the poets are not asking if you prefer such generalities; they are asking assistance with flow, meter, rhyme. Not what your preference is. If its not your cup of tea then critique something that is. Objectivity is the key and ending a statement with something positive is something any good instructor/professor will tell you. Taking a little care when commenting on someone's poem would help that forum a whole lot. You have the advatage of not having that person standing in front of you and popping off with whatever comes off the top of your head. Use the advantage of thinking about what you want to say before you say it. Objectivity and tact.
I am not pointing out you or anyone else but this to me is the aura of CA.
Just my opinion.
Brad
Member Ascendant
since 08-20-99
Posts 5896
Jejudo, South Korea


5 posted 10-10-1999 02:13 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Actually, recent studies on self esteem show that positive comments without validity inhibit personal growth. If someone is constantly being told how great they are, they don't do anything because, well, they're already great (and certainly don't want to take a chance that it might just be an illusion).

I admire Doreen as a poet as well but I've also read poems by her that I have not liked and have told her so.

The biggest problem with Critical Analysis right now is not negativity or harshness but the lack of any comments altogether. People are posting poems and not giving any comments on other poems. Now, if someone is really a brilliant poet, that's probably okay. But I don't think anyone of us has reached that level yet. One way to improve is to share opinions openly and honestly in detail (it really shouldn't matter if it's positive or negative). Civility is also important but I don't see anyone not being civil yet.

This poem is great!

This poem sucks!

Both of these comments are useless and inappropriate for the CA forum. It's why you feel that way that really counts.

Why is 'I know where you are coming from' or "How true" or 'I feel the sentiment in this poem' really better than me saying "I disagree" or "I don't like this type of poem". When I say that, I'm trying to show the writer that maybe my comments are biased and may not be of use. Actually, there is no type of poem that I don't like but poems that I'm really just tired of reading. If you just start reading poems on the internet, you'll begin to see the same thing over and over again (almost always with the claim to originality). I want to read something different.

I make an active effort to comment on as many poems as I can (a compliment in itself if you think about it) -- but I'm not going to lie. With so few people commenting right now, why in the world would you want me to stop?

Brad

PS There's no such thing as objectivity. Just different points of view.


JP
Senior Member
since 05-25-99
Posts 1391
Loomis, CA


6 posted 10-10-1999 04:42 AM       View Profile for JP   Email JP   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit JP's Home Page   View IP for JP

Hmmm..... lack of tact, being ignored... hard to judge those comments... seems to me I have been on both ends, but that is the mine field one must walk when posting in CA.

I post either in CA or Dark Passions, CA because I want true critique of my work, and Dark Passions because most of what I write fits there best.....

However, no matter where I post, I recieve little or no input and the input I do recieve borders on helpful to useless. Do I like people telling me they like my work? Hell yes! Otherwise I wouldn't post.

Do I get bothered when someone critques my work with little tact? Well.... maybe initially, but then, after a second or two, if the comments are directed at my work, I use them for improvement.

What was my point? Damn, can't seem to remember....

------------------
Yesterday is ash, tomorrow is smoke; only today does the fire burn.
JP

Lost Dreamer
Member Elite
since 06-20-99
Posts 2589
Normal, Illinois


7 posted 10-10-1999 08:14 AM       View Profile for Lost Dreamer   Email Lost Dreamer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Lost Dreamer

I myself have just got brave enough to step over the line and post 2 of my poems to be critiqued. I asked personally for the person I call my teacher to jump in and tell me about them. She has done 1 so far and just from that one I have already learned. From what she found in that one I know when she gets to the other one she's gonna have a field day, but that's what I need now. I will never grow more knowledgeable in my writing if I don't risk getting honest opinions on my work. I have not been writing that long only a year and a half, and everything I have learned has been from her, or here at Passions. There is so much amazing talent here how can one not learn. Now because I am new at this and looking to get better I am not experienced enough to go out there and critique someone elses work, I do not have the knowledge yet that so many here have, so please do not look badly at me for posting in CA, and not responding to others here. I would love to if I could, and in the future that just may be possible. I look forward to any advice anyone here has for me. I have ventured out of the kiddie pool, and now am diving into the deep end. Thanks all for listening.
Julie
Senior Member
since 08-20-99
Posts 742
Houston, TX


8 posted 10-10-1999 03:05 PM       View Profile for Julie   Email Julie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Julie

Brad: I will send you an e-mail due to the
lengthly response.
----
JP: I hope in the future, you can get more input for your poetry. And I am sure that
the postings you have made an effort to respond to are appreciated.
----
Lost Dreamer: Thank you for your comment. We need everyone we can to express how they feel. I am glad you are happy with what you are getting. Maybe it is me and I am being
too empathetic, thinking if I was on the receiving end of some of the critiques. It just looked like from observation that criticism was getting too personal...I have been known to be wrong...well maybe once or twice.
doreen peri
Member Rara Avis
since 05-25-99
Posts 8028
Virginia


9 posted 10-10-1999 05:26 PM       View Profile for doreen peri   Email doreen peri   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for doreen peri

Julie-

First- thanks very much for your kind words complimenting my writing. *blush* I have received many harsh critiques, however, in my very brief history of posting poems on the internet (a little over a year), and they don't bother me.... I take what I can from them and leave the rest alone. Sure, there is something to be said about tact when critiquing, as you so aptly pointed out. But, I'd rather have a tactless insult which states the reader thought my poem sucks and has no merit, then makes a valid point about an area which could use improvement, than a response like "great poem". Well, that's a lie. Sometimes I enjoy the attention and praise of a simple "well done" or "nice one" as much as anybody else. But not when I'm actually ASKING for a critique in a forum set up for critiquing.

Did someone else just say that? hehehe Anyway, thanks again for your kind words.

Brad-

What do you MEAN by you read poems written by me that you didn't like????? how DARE you? If you *admire* me as a poet, you MUST like EVERYTHING I've EVER written!! I don't remember you ever telling me such a thing!

ROFLMAO----hehehe, j/k.

Keep those brutally honest critiques comin' for my poems at least, Brad!

dp


[This message has been edited by doreen peri (edited 10-10-1999).]
Trevor
Senior Member
since 08-12-99
Posts 744
Canada


10 posted 10-11-1999 04:25 AM       View Profile for Trevor   Email Trevor   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Trevor

We now resume our broadcasting day with a speach from the deniable adn discreditable Trevor Max Davis....who will be talking to anyone bored and foolish enough to listen.

What's all the hub-bub about?
(Trevor pulls a stuffed corn pipe from his green moth eaten sweater and creeks into an old rocking chair.)
Let's see here....
ahhhhh....yes.....critiquing
(Trevor lights his pipe, {the one the neighboors claim smells "funny"})
I will now show you all a magic trick....I will contort words....
Julie you said....
"This is not to speak of every piece that is posted but there are a few where I was glad I was not the author."
That's a pretty mean thing to say....that you are glad you didn't write certain poems....are the poems not good enough?? J/K ....it's something in the pipe...or the water.

Trevor on subject matter and style, etc.:
A good, original story is just as important as any technical aspect of a poem (maybe even more important) and needs to be commented on as well....for example....
The man walked into the bar
The man mow-zied into the bar
The man, the bar
The bar was filled by the walking in man
The man filled the bar by walking in
A bar, a man
Bar, man
Man, Bar
and soooo on......
kind of gets tiring reading about a bar and a man even though meters have changed and wording has changed....at least it did for me.

(Trevor teeters in time with his cat's tail as he bathes in the waves of a fallen breeze [hey there might be a poem in that line].
His grandchildren run to him and sit on the porch with bright eyed anticipation of another long-winded story)
"Grandpa Trevor, Grandpa Trevor!!! Tell us another story."
"Well kids have you heard the one about tact??"

How does one be tactful when they dislike something and are being asked for their honest opinion?
"Great poem but I really didn't like it."
"Terrific poem, the only suggestion I have is to change everything."
Perhaps there is no easy way to say "I didn't like it", no right way or wrong way but rather the truthful way. I feel like I'm really babbling on this posting and not really saying much except for a lot of words flying their own tangent highway.....I apoligize for that...... I first visited this place in the beginning of this summer (because of the suggestion from someone whose name rhymes with Doreen Peri) and was disappointed at the lack of enthusiasm.....I returned once again because another friend suggested I check it out, now it seems there is a little more fire in the breath of the young poets here and I find it refreshing. I've been seeing a lot more indepth and articulate critiques in the last little while and I think it's great.

One must remember to be careful how a tone is interpreted within the written word. Something that may read harsh to one may read thoughtful to another....If I was to write, "You suck!!" to say someone like Doreen she'd probably giggle and start talking about sandwiches again, if I was to write it to Brad....he'd probably say, "Yeah I know", one simple phrase interpreted different ways though I never wrote a single thing differently....my point....is in my pencil....I guess what I'm trying to say is I don't think anyone is intentionally writing anything that they think is harmful but rather the exact opposite....I don't think I've read a single critique where everything in it was "negative". All of them have had some encouraging words and constructive criticism.
Now part is directed toward Julie....I personally would like to read the critiques you are referring to....I'm curious to know if you think some of my critiques were too harsh. I hope you are not confusing harsh with honest or blunt or direct....there are differences. Harsh would be saying, "Honey that dress looks about as pretty as a ****sicle", blunt or direct would be saying, "Honestly I don't think that's a very pretty dress."......and what most people here would probably say..."Wow Honey!!! That's such a great dress!" J/K As far as tact goes, it seems that there is always going to be someone upset if you don't like their poem no matter how much carefully you spoon feed them a candy coated critque. I know I'm new here and probably shouldn't say what I'm about to say....but when has that ever stopped me before....I don't think a place called "Critical Analysis" should give out first place red ribbons to everyone who posts a poem. Anyone can write a poem....everything is not only born a poet but lives a poem as well. If someone there wants a "Great Job" yellow star on their paper then maybe they should earn it....write something that deserves to be called "excellent"....now of course all opinions are just that and there will always be arguments to what is good and what is bad but lets not fall back to telling people how great their poem is because they've felt an emotion or they had a thought.....especially if it's not original.....ok, ok, you're all completely right....I'm babbling again and probably run into too many subjects at once and crossed wired the X's and Z's but I just want to read the fire in people...the passion that all of us have to offer....that's my whole take on this subject, you can all go back to ignoring me now....if you haven't done so already half way through this post....for all those out in la-la'sville, thank you and take care,
Trevor "the Bloody Finger Pirate" of three seas and two Great Lakes.
doreen peri
Member Rara Avis
since 05-25-99
Posts 8028
Virginia


11 posted 10-12-1999 10:01 PM       View Profile for doreen peri   Email doreen peri   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for doreen peri

Trevor! Geez, did you spill the bloody mary all over your finger again? Quit foolin' around and come on over here and help me make this sandwich! Please?

Trevor
Senior Member
since 08-12-99
Posts 744
Canada


12 posted 10-16-1999 02:03 AM       View Profile for Trevor   Email Trevor   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Trevor

Doreen,
One order of Trevor coming right up...literally
Iloveit
Senior Member
since 09-02-99
Posts 1168
NM


13 posted 10-19-1999 02:51 PM       View Profile for Iloveit   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Iloveit

well, I ended up here at the alley cause I am stuffing envelopes at work and was looking for reading material to keep occupied, and julie, I am not sure what you mean either, have seen no really bad critiques.
I find the lack of responses to be the worst offense. I will read a poem, and not be able to critique or give an opinion period other than "I don't understand this" (which either says something about me as the reader or something about the poem), and so ask the author to discuss it with me and clarify the meaning, and I wait days and days and they never post again.

This I find frustrating.

and on mine, even if I am stubborn and hard headed and changed not a word on one of my poems, I learn from critiques and try to apply it to my next work...I love reading a good critique, brad's and trevor's on any poems, not just mine, help me lots, they help expand the mind and let me see things in more than one way, and that is a good thing, I am not always right, *g* I found that out the hard way.

and I am hungry, stayed in for lunch, trevor and doreen are you guys sharing that sandwhich? *g*

oh and doreen, have been interested in your further comments on your poem God don't tell no secrets(please excuse if I didn't get the title quiet right, but I loved the poem)....hope to see you in critical

oh and julie, one more thing, I totally agree with what was said above, we are all just people, you take what you can use and discard the rest, not everyone will see exactly what you meant your poem to be....but something is better than nothing.
I recently posted a poem in critical because I felt uneasy if I the author got my point across, and got only one response from a reader who said it was vague.
I looked at it and looked at it and finally posted in open poetry and got applause from some of the poets that I really admire. Now I didn't write it for applause, but a "BRAVO" from a poet like hoot will make any one feel a little better about writing.

my point? it is all relative, you take what helps you, and if someone posts something off the wall, disregard.
and heres hugs, glad to see you bringing up points such as these, it helps everyone to discuss



[This message has been edited by Iloveit (edited 10-19-1999).]
Toerag
Member Ascendant
since 07-29-99
Posts 5839
Ala bam a


14 posted 10-19-1999 03:52 PM       View Profile for Toerag   Email Toerag   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Toerag

Julie...Well, just think? Hell, they tear me up where-ever I post?....And you're right in one respect for sure...Doreen, JP, Balladeer and so many of the others are just plain pros! I don't post in the Critical forum cuz I am already aware of the quality of my garbage? I guess if ya wanna critique..ya gotta take the good with the bad? Yassee? I don't really want a critique that badly..but I can always depend on Balladeer or LongJohn or deVine to tear my old butt up anywhere? Hmmmm?...yanno? I think you've brought something to my attention? Gee! I've been unjustly critiqued many times just for breathing? (Of course every breath I take is to make a smart ass remark, act insane, or to get on someone's nerves?).....never mind....I'm just rambling....I guess a little tact would be good....(And I have as little as anyone around!)
Nan
Administrator
Member Seraphic
since 05-20-99
Posts 24426
Cape Cod Massachusetts USA


15 posted 10-19-1999 04:52 PM       View Profile for Nan   Email Nan   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Nan's Home Page   View IP for Nan

Toe - Does this mean you're not gonna be tactless any more????

...or any less????
Toerag
Member Ascendant
since 07-29-99
Posts 5839
Ala bam a


16 posted 10-20-1999 06:44 AM       View Profile for Toerag   Email Toerag   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Toerag

Nan....yes it does
Julie
Senior Member
since 08-20-99
Posts 742
Houston, TX


17 posted 10-21-1999 06:26 PM       View Profile for Julie   Email Julie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Julie

doreen: Thank you for your input; I have learned a lot these past weeks about these things and hopefully I can clarify and upgrade what I've learned.

trevor: Geez...you should market that comment, you even show your creativity in a debate. May I say I enjoyed the read. I think you have taken things a little far to the extreme. Allow me to clarify myself on some of your responses to my comments: "terrific poem but I didn't really like it"...how about a response like..."I really liked your imagery and theme but would have chosen a different form because I believe it would relay your emotion about the subject better." Get the idea. I do agree with your statement regarding the tone and relationship between the author and person critiquing. This is a recent lesson I have learned. I also have learned that when someone has taken the time to critique that they do have care behind it otherwise they would just move on to something else. I am not trying to seek a mode of candy coating for this does nothing for a poet. Just think balance is a good key...as I demonstrated. Being vague about your opinions or leaning one way. I believe that just saying great poem in this forum is pointless, if it is that great in (your) opinion why not say why...getting a full picture. I can say I don't like watercolor paintings but I can say also that I liked the colors used in a particular painting also.

Toe...I enjoy all your poems, never a day when you didn't bring a smile and a good chuckle to my face. So if all those big bad boys are too hard on you, I will have a hug waiting for you.

Thank you all for your comments and input it has helped me a lot in seeing things in a broader perspective.

------------------
Julie
-------------------------
Almost all our misfortunes in life come from the wrong notions we have about the things that happen to us.
>Stendhal


hoot_owl_rn
Member Patricius
since 07-05-99
Posts 11105
Glen Hope, PA USA


18 posted 10-31-1999 10:06 AM       View Profile for hoot_owl_rn   Email hoot_owl_rn   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit hoot_owl_rn's Home Page   View IP for hoot_owl_rn

Julie...I am happy to join Brad as moderator in CA and hopefully between the two of us we can give the poets that post the attention they deserve. I think because of our difference in styles Brad and I will make for a good combination in Ca and it will prove benificial to all who post.
Julie
Senior Member
since 08-20-99
Posts 742
Houston, TX


19 posted 10-31-1999 12:13 PM       View Profile for Julie   Email Julie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Julie

hoot: Thank you. I have popped in Ca from time to time...and it has much improved in the quality of sugguestions...and Thank you Brad.
Brad
Member Ascendant
since 08-20-99
Posts 5896
Jejudo, South Korea


20 posted 10-31-1999 08:10 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Julie,
Don't you think Hoot is a great addition? I do. Ha!! I haven't changed, though. Everyone else has moved toward me.

The terribly conceited and arrogant Brad who desperately needs a good spanking (from my wife of course),
Julie
Senior Member
since 08-20-99
Posts 742
Houston, TX


21 posted 10-31-1999 09:15 PM       View Profile for Julie   Email Julie   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Julie

Hoot is DEFINATELY a great addition. I for one have great respect for Hoot; a wonderful writer, her suggestions and comments are always honest and with integrity, plus being of service to her community. Can't do any better than that!

Brad: You are wonderful too! It has taken me a while to kind of get to know you but after I did I was pleased to know the some of the churnings of Brad's mental wheel. I don't know a whole lot about you but I do know you care about Passions and poetry and that is enough for me.

------------------
Julie
-------------------------
Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss it, you will land among the stars.~Les Brown~
hoot_owl_rn
Member Patricius
since 07-05-99
Posts 11105
Glen Hope, PA USA


22 posted 10-31-1999 09:44 PM       View Profile for hoot_owl_rn   Email hoot_owl_rn   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit hoot_owl_rn's Home Page   View IP for hoot_owl_rn

Okay guys...I'm blushing here. But thanks, I do my best.
Julie will be notified of replies
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