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Passions in Poetry

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Grinch
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25 posted 03-28-2009 10:10 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

Iím ticking them off, one by one, but Iím finding it easier going by stringing them together as I go, the theme is a useful scaffold, Hereís what I have so far, though rough and draft should be two words at the forefront of your mind when you read it.

Dig covers for the dead men
ironed with a sapperís spade.
Plant them with poppies fit to make
old Owen weep
for dulce et decorum est
is infinite.

Look to the skies to mask the stench
of brave men buried by the whim of fools?

Those crosses lie.
No saviour walks these fields
to heal the gouged and gassy wounds
and Berthaís boom out-shoots that wordy book
by thirty miles.

.

[This message has been edited by Grinch (03-28-2009 11:57 PM).]

Grinch
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26 posted 03-28-2009 11:50 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

Feel both the tocking and the tick
slip from the timer counting down
through deaf drums
Passchendaeleís pretence of bees.
Incendiaries all sing the same
ďthat penprick heís a flesh fund for the groundĒ.

Rain chases mustard through an orphan trench
kissing all the babies off to sleep.
Yellow clouds of nightmares hum
a lullaby, a witches slit,
to boil a toady blister on each lip.
Which witch brewed this?

The taste of a bayonet,  a steely sin,
that saves you if you fail to fall
down dead at the first bite.
Your stretcher is a bier through the lines
Of dead men on their way to die
Salute them.
Heroes donít ask why
decorum unlike death
is infinite.

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

Well how did I do besides badly?

[This message has been edited by Grinch (03-29-2009 12:08 AM).]

Bob K
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27 posted 03-29-2009 01:56 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     Well, Grinch, you're talking drafts here. so I'd have to say pretty good.  You're in a bit of a hurry though.

     Why not mark off which of the Simmerman exercises go with which of the lines so we can look at things more closely.  If you're think well or badly, you're in a rush to finish without digesting the details of what you're doing, and I think you're doing some interesting things.  Slow things down and breathe while you work.  We'll get to the line breaks later.  Right now, try to do each of the exercises and make each of them clear as prose, in the same way that you're careful to communicate when you're talking to me.

     Whatever may be wrong with Ezra Pound, and believe me, there's plenty, I think he's pretty much got the right idea when he says that poetry has to be at least as well written as prose.  So slow down and make everything as clear as you can.  Remember, this is early draft time.

     By the way, I have a fascination with this world war I stuff too. I had take "Wipers" out of a poem because it would only bamboozle folks who barely understood "Ypres."    Make the stuff as clear as you can first.  Who did what to whom, in what order where and when. Fancy can come a little later.  In my humble opinion.

     On the other hand, what about the other folks who are watching and listening.  I suggest they use the reference to the Simmerman exercise whose link you so kindly dug up and offer thoughts on the exercise itself or whatever.  I think it's a very good try, by the way.  Let's keep rolling with it.

Yours, Bob Kaven

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28 posted 03-29-2009 04:25 AM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Wow Bob, what very useful stuff   - and impressive Grinch ("a witches slit"? )

I loved Simmerman's list, especially the "adjective, concrete noun of abstract noun" exercise; which it seems to me, can turn even the commonplace into something unusual.

More later maybe, from the beautiful cat of love.  

Grinch
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29 posted 03-29-2009 06:42 AM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

quote:
You're in a bit of a hurry though.


Sorry Bob, itís the way I normally write, an hour or two of scribbling and a several years in edit mode. Iíll try to slow down though..

Iíll add some notation later today.

Simmermanís projects are very useful, however, I found it difficult using them all in a simple exercise - Iíd advise anyone trying it to perm any five from twenty.

I think after I add notes to this one Iíll start again doing just that and follow your suggestions this time - slow and simple.

Moon,

What can I say, it was late I was thirsty, my throat was as dry as.. well letís not go there.

Grinch
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30 posted 03-29-2009 12:01 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

Dig covers for the dead men 1
ironed with a sapperís spade. 2
Plant them with poppies fit to make
old Owen weep 5
for dulce et decorum est 7 and 18
is infinite. 17
Look to the skies to mask the stench 4 and 3(1) and 3 (2)
of brave men buried by the whim of fools?
Those crosses lie.
No saviour walks these fields
to heal the gouged and gassing wounds 16
and Berthaís boom out shoots that wordy book
by thirty miles. 17
Feel both the tocking and the tick  3 (3)
slip from the timer counting down
through deaf drums 3 (4)
Passchendaeleís pretence of bees. 5
Incendiaries all sing the same
ďthat penprick heís a flesh fund for the groundĒ. 19 and 14
Rain chases mustard through an orphan trench
kissing all the babies off to sleep. 12
Yellow clouds of nightmares hum 11
a lullaby, a witches slit,  10
to boil a toady blister on each lip. 8 and 16
Which witch brewed this? 9
The taste of a bayonet,  a steely sin, 3 (5)
that saves you if you fail to fall
down dead at the first bite. 3 (5)
Your stretcher is a bier through the lines
Of dead men on their way to die 12
Salute them.  13
Heroes donít ask why.
Decorum unlike death
Is infinite. 6 and 20

.
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31 posted 03-29-2009 04:31 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Pesonally, I think a lot depends  on why one writes. Does one write for other poets? does one write for himself? Does one write for an audience? I think these points mean a lot when writing. If I read a poem that makes me say "huh?", the poem to me is a failure. However there are writers that could care less if 95 out of 100 don't "get it".

So what is your purpose, grinch, in writing your free verse? The purpose will determine it's success.
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32 posted 03-29-2009 04:54 PM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

I agree with you Mike - that's one of the first questions anyone should try and answer.  But, believe it or not, I think a lot of poets have problems giving themselves an honest answer.

FV my numbers Grinch - humm.  I think this is ok as an exercise, but I kind of think you are "beyond" it in ability.  Have you tried just reading a number of FV poets you admire in a concentrated way for a couple of days, then just putting them aside, and, as Karen said, just writing?

Grinch
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33 posted 03-29-2009 06:00 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

Thatís a good question Mike.

I write all types of poems for all types of reasons. I get asked to write poems for weddings, birthdays and funerals etc. the stuff youíd call poetry for the common man - always a metrical form with rhyme. That stuffís for other people to read, though I enjoy constructing them to boot.

Then thereís the complicated traditional forms - the sonnets, rondeaus, villanelles etc. I write those because theyíre a challenge.

Then thereís my syllabic and obscure stuff, thatís written primarily for  my enjoyment, if I gave one of those to someone to read at a wedding or add to an anniversary card theyíd string me up or look at me as if Iíd flipped probably saying something like.

ďvery nice but I wanted a poemĒ

Or just plain ďhuh!Ē

Iíd say the syllabic and obscure stuff is, for me, like creating a crossword puzzle, working out what word fits where and how to get 2 down to slot into 3 and 9 across is something I enjoy. Those poems are generally convoluted, the metaphors and language twisted to include multiple meanings and themes to make the construction as hard as possible, the meanings as obscure as possible and consequently increasing my enjoyment as I grapple with them.

Because theyíre like crossword puzzles though, something that needs to be worked out, Iíve discovered a strange phenomenon - some people when they read them donít say huh! As youíd expect, they scratch their heads and say hmm! Then sit down and try to solve them.

Free verse - to me - fits somewhere between a sonnet and my obscure syllabic stuff, itís another form for me to learn, another puzzle to solve and overcome. Iíll be writing them primarily for my enjoyment but if someone else enjoys them too - well thatís a bonus.

.

[This message has been edited by Grinch (03-29-2009 06:39 PM).]

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34 posted 03-29-2009 06:19 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

Moon,

Iíve been reading FV as long as Iíve been reading sonnets and syllabics.

I still donít get it, I like them, I recognise they've been carefully constructed I just want to know how..

Itís like trying to find the beast of Bodmin trying to pin FV down. Some folk tell you FV is anything but free, itís very carefully and precisely constructed. Great! HOW!

So what are the rules of construction?
There arenít any.
So I can basically write anything I want?
Well no, you need to use specific devices.
OK what are they?
Ah, theyíre the same as the devices used in formal poetry.
Then what makes them free?
Theyíre more specific and natural, more conversational.
So is this conversation FV?
Err.. No.

Bob K
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35 posted 03-29-2009 06:56 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K




Dear everybody,

quote:

Personally, I think a lot depends  on why one writes. Does one write for other poets? does one write for himself? Does one write for an audience? I think these points mean a lot when writing. If I read a poem that makes me say "huh?", the poem to me is a failure. However there are writers that could care less if 95 out of 100 don't "get it".

So what is your purpose, grinch, in writing your free verse? The purpose will determine it's success.
[


     Now I wouldn't have put Mike's points exactly this way, but I think that he says something interesting here.  

     When I write, I want to make a point of people understanding the prose content of what I'm saying.  That doesn't mean that I want to write down to them and to dumb down what I'm saying; this is simply one of the personal values that I've decided is useful in my own writing and that I've decided to adopt.  I will stretch this from time to time, but I want to remain aware where and when.  I don't (for me) want my poetry to be more difficult to follow than reasonably clearly written prose.

     This is why I feel itís important to read what my contemporaries are writing, to gain something of a feel for what the nature of the poetic conversation of my time actually is about.  That way, Iím more likely to make a conscious choice when I  write about how I want to address it.  Do I want to capitalize the words that begin my lines?  Do I want to use a capital ďIĒ when I write?  Do I want to use an ampersand  (ď&Ē) or an ďandĒ in my lines.  Is there some way I can tell when each of these is a useful way to go?  What use do I want to make of internal  rhyme?  Of end rhyme?  How abstract do I care to be?

     Each of these questions are things that I must approach with an open mind on pretty much a daily basis.  Some will become longer term policy.

     ďHuh?Ē is not a reaction I like to have generated by my poems because I want them to be understandable on a prose basis.  The plot and action and sequence should be pretty clear and get more clear as the number of drafts increase.  This is a personal value and not a prescription on how to write free verse.  In free verse, what succeeds is whatever  works for you and for your given audience.

     Dick Hugo used to disagree with that sometimes.  He used to say that you didnít have to please anybody but yourself, and the next word or sentence was there because you put it there.  The heck with logic.  He also said that he took it for granted that you could and would write a good clear and understandable english sentence.  Hugo was great with paradox.

     So much for general comments.  Iím likely to be wrong or at least very opinionated about such things, and my opinions often change from day to day.  Why not look at Grinchís effort a little more closely, but do it in another little block of commentary.  And anyway, Iíd like to hear what folks think of the guano that Iíve been spouting so freely here anyway.

Cheerfully enough, Bob Kaven
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36 posted 03-29-2009 08:12 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K




Dear Grinch,

          I've had a look at the first few of the poetry exercises here.  I've tried to talk about them a little bit.  My sense overall is that you're in a hurry to get through them.  I understand that this is the way that you usually tackle things, and I don't want to get in the way of that too much, but in this case there is a point to it.

     You're coming together here too quickly, I think, to get the benefits of the exercise.  Think of each of these things as a separate small poem, each deserving its own little sentence.  Don't think of them as being about the same subject.  When it comes time, eventually, to revise, it may turn out that way; but for now if you close in on a single subject, you won't be getting the sense of the individual importance of each of these little pieces.  You won't, in the end, have enough pieces to move around and try alternate story directions because you will have already hammered yourself into a predictable text.

     You want to be able to shake up your writing a bit so that you can see what your actual options may be for texts that you didn't know you had inside you.  Then we can add one stuff about lineation and internal rhyme and stuff like that.  First, we need to get you pried loose from the place you are barnacled to at this point, and give your poetry some wandering room, to stretch and see things from different perspectives, still your own, but less accustomed.  Is that Okay?

     I try to go through the first few of the exercises in the Simmerman poetry projects.  I'd like to hear what you think of what I'm saying, and what other folks think as well.

Dig covers for the dead men 1


A metaphor is basically one (familiar) idea used to explain another (less familiar or even novel) idea.  Simmermanís thinking here, I expect, is to start of the poem by tossing the reader into suddenly novel territory from ground thatís started out as being quite regular and predictable.  The object is to surprise not only the reader, but probably and even primarily, the writer him or herself so that the writer find him or herself on on ground where he has no mastery or control.  The idea is that perhaps in revision, in being forced to make clear sense of these things, a seamless sense of delight and meaning will be generated not only for the reader, but for the writer as well.

     Your experience in talking about how people settle down to read your free verse things as though solving a puzzle has something to it, but it leaves out the sense of emotional delight and engagement, you see, that can come from this sort of constant surprise within the context of discovery.  Take a moment in working at the revision here actually to think about making the metaphor.  The first poem that Simmerman wrote using this exercise ended up in Poetry magazine.
ďMoon Go Away You Donít Love Me Any MoreĒ was the title, as I recall it; if you can find it, itís worth having a look at.  
ironed with a sapperís spade. 2

     Now this is interesting, but you leave out a lot of information that might help us understand why this particular piece of information is actually preposterous.  Inquiring minds, wishing to be surprised, would like to know.


Plant them with poppies fit to make
old Owen weep 5

     You do have (Wilfred) Owen.  Thatís not bad for a first draft.  For your next revision, what about the name of somebody that surprises you or me, and that gives us a place that offers us a surprise as well.  Spread out, give yourself a challenge and a bit of a shock.  Youíve already settled into a poem that youíre pretty much sure is going to be about World War One, and the moves are already laying themselves out for you in advance.

     Let me be clear, here.  There is nothing wrong with such a poem.  But the idea of writing this sort of poem is to stretch beyond that sort of thing, into areas where youíre not sure where things are going to go.  Robert Graves and Wilfred Owen already did these things.  It may be that you and I will surpass them; the material is very powerful.  You can continue to work on that poem as well, in a different place.

     For this poem, you shouldnít be so settled so early into the text.  You should still be writing small single poetry projects.  Later you can worry about how they fit together.  Right now, think of them as separate things, one about coconuts, the next about famous danish Kings, a third about diseases I have have known and loved.  Later you can go back.

Best for now, Bob Kaven


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37 posted 03-30-2009 05:17 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

1 A poem is a library

2 Shrews catch worms with razor blades

3 The coffee smelled like roasted oak
  Felt like a water bottle in my hands
  Looked like liquid dreams
  Tasted smooth like sleep
  And sounded like a fine idea

4 I felt the sound of thunder moan

5 Einstein would have liked the warmth of Spain

6 Poems arenít libraries they are sewers

7 Did I tell you that I once lived in a library

8 The wazack didnít know the blue wire was live

9 Trout force mayflies out of the stream

10 I wouldnít trust him as far as I could chuck him

11 A mahogany suit of dreams

12 The exploding television caressed my legs like a lover

13 Tom ate the mountain and the moon

14 The jack of knaves he worries words

15 She will rule when the west wind calls

16 Woody seas licked at the prow

17 I danced the tango on one leg

18 ich kann diesen freien Vers nicht Schreiber

19 The spade swam the river like a fish

20 Cold black coffee in a thimble

.
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38 posted 03-30-2009 05:28 PM       View Profile for moonbeam   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for moonbeam

Oooooooooohhh I wanna buy 1 and 16 from you.

oh and 2

(and 8 is funny but the yanks won't get it )
Grinch
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39 posted 03-30-2009 06:12 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch


Karen you just ordered:

Won Tun Soup,King Prawns with Ginger and Spring Onions with a portion of Fried Noodles and Bean Sprouts.

is that to eat in or take out?



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40 posted 03-30-2009 06:21 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

Are you asking me out?



Or...suggesting we stay "in"?

Grinch
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41 posted 03-30-2009 06:30 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch


Eat in, definitely - I donít like crowds.

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42 posted 03-30-2009 06:36 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

Well then, we'll order to go and eat in.

But I get to be in charge of the movie choice.

Maybe some Bruce Lee thingie?

and oy, I wish I could write today.

My head is constipated.
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43 posted 03-30-2009 07:35 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K


Grinch,

      This is lovely, Mr Grinch.  The bit about the yanks not getting it is, at least for this yank, true.  And you do seem to be able to write it, you simply are nervous about it.  

     How does this particular list feel for you, by the way?  This is a question of personal curiosity, since it seems quite different than your usual material.

     Next step, Leaving your first and last lines as is, read the projects over a few times until you get a sense of a story running through it.  You may have to swap lines around and do some minimal revisions in the order, but the idea is to revise toward that story with as few actual changes as you can get away with, only those to make clear the connections and to get a clear prose sense of what's actually going on.  

     Why not give that a try, and see what you come up with?  Let's have a look see then.

     I'm also curious if you notice any difference when you use the sensory references.  I'm not so good about putting them in my stuff, but I often feel a significant difference when I do.

     You'll notice, I hope, that these are also formal demands in the same way that use of fourteeners or hendecasyllables or poulter's measure can be formal demands.  Think of it as a sort of Structuralist approach to formalism, if it's helpful to you; the formalism is still there, but the shape it takes focuses on different aspects of the text.  You still need to meet demands, but the demands that you need to meet are in the service of the poem and not in the service of showing off for your fellows.

     My position here is that in this sort of writing, you become the servant of the poem rather than of the tradition, and your writing process becomes a process of of dialogue between the text and your self.  In traditional verse, frequently the effort is in making the poem do what the poet wants it to do.  This is of course an iffy statement, you'd be justified in disagreeing, and given the day and the phase of the moon, I might disagree with me as well.  Nevertheless I make the statement because I think there is a piece of truth in it someplace that may be useful at times in the writing process.  If there isn't, throw it out.

     My suggestion about the next stage of the revision, however, still stands.  I'm trying to get you acquainted with one sort of process here, and this is a way of getting your feet wet with it.  Don't take it too seriously; and do enjoy.

Looking forward, Bob Kaven

[This message has been edited by Bob K (03-30-2009 08:47 PM).]

Grinch
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44 posted 03-30-2009 08:41 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch

A poem is a library;
A mahogany suit of dreams.
Did I tell you I once lived in a library?
Where old trout forced mayflies from the stream;
shrews catching worms with razor blades.

That was a woody sea licking at the proud
as I, dancing the tango on one leg,
felt the sound of thunder moan,
ďa jack of knaves he worried wordsĒ
ich kann diesen freien Vers nicht Schreiber,
Poems arenít libraries theyíre sewers


Einstein would have liked the poems of Spain
But I wouldn't trust him as far as I could chuck him.
The wazack didnít know the wires were live,
even after the explosion of television caressed my pen like a lover
and the word ends swam my arteries like a fish.
They felt like silver bullets in my hands,
twisting like liquid dreams.
Words, not science, will rule when the west wind calls.

In the cafe Thom Gunn ate the mountain and the moon.
He said it tasted smooth like sleep
That the coffee smelled like roasted oak
it sounded like a fine idea:
Cold black coffee from a thimble

  
Bob K
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45 posted 03-30-2009 08:55 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K


Dear Grinch,

          Interesting text so far.

          What do you think about it, before we go further?

     To my mind it's beginning to look better and better, though I think it has some problems with shifting of tense at this point, and there is some problem with the prose sense of it because of the difference in dialect between U.S. and U.K.  Speak to me here, Mr. Grinch.

     Also, as far as I know, this isn't a one-to-one tutorial, so any comments from other folks watching and listening in are very welcome.  This is not only for Grinch, it's a process for everybody that Grinch has been courageous enough to take a shot at, and at which he is doing very well indeed.

     Best to everybody, and all comments are encouraged.  For those of us whose German is even worse than mine, his comment in German was a suggestion that he couldn't write free verse.  Clearly he was premature.

     The reason I'm asking for his personal thoughts here is so I know which way it might be best to steer him and which way it might be most fun for him to try on the one hand, and also to get some feedback for myself, for my own pleasure as well.

All my best, Bob Kaven

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46 posted 03-30-2009 09:10 PM       View Profile for Grinch   Email Grinch   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Grinch


Bad idea asking me what I think about what I write - Iíve a deep seated hate\hate relationship with everything I write.

I think itís too disjointed, minimum editing to loosely tack the ideas around a vague central theme has resulted in a disjointed, loosely tacked together poem based around a vague central theme.

I was itching to lose the whole Einstein sidetrack, the last strophe was tight, though Iíd try to put some of Thom Gunns words in there to give it some authenticity if I were going to take it further. The end lacks any punch - it sounds like some frilly sleeved poetician trying to sound poetic and profound and failing badly. In fact most of it sounds a little like that.

ich kann diesen freien Vers nicht Schreiber

Bed time, back tomorrow

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47 posted 03-30-2009 10:09 PM       View Profile for Hypatia   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Hypatia

I too, kept a library--
my father left it to my keep.
Everything you'd want to know
was housed in it, shelved deep.

The scrolls were kept better than bones
in jars with herbs that do such things.
Yea, I had a library
and it housed the works of kings.

I speak of Alexandria
where even paupers peered the scrolls.
There has not been another since
that rivaled such papyrus, fold.

The people hated me for this--
a woman's mathematics?
Worshipping the pagan gods--
such assumptions deemed me odd.

And so they tore me limb from limb
because I worshipped none but whim.
Someday, again, I shall return
and slant my rhymes and free the verse!

Until then I subject my curse
(just when it can't get any worse)
someone sparks an infamous
fire that destroys the words.

Free the Grinch! I rally, cry!
And be damned this flesh of mine
frying as I'm burned alive
until the very end of time

finds the center of the clock.



serenity blaze
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since 02-02-2000
Posts 28839


48 posted 03-30-2009 10:43 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

Dannnnnnnnng...Hypatia?

That ain't half bad, considering it took you longer to log in and out than it did to write it.



*laughing*
Bob K
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since 11-03-2007
Posts 3860


49 posted 03-31-2009 02:58 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     Thank you, Hypatia!  

     Thanks, Grinch, for the honest modesty.  I believe you mean it, and I think as far as it goes, it would be true for any of us trying to avoid getting tangled in the various traps narcissism provides us ó over or under estimation of what we're doing, being the most potentially painful ones for me personally.

     This is one of the reasons why looking at our own work and doing our own revision is so very difficult, and why listening to others is so important, of course.  I too am quite fond of the last stanza.  I'm not sure about it being as slight as you think it to be, though.  I worry about those with a deep seated love for everything they write most.

     One way that I find helpful for looking at what works in a poem or not ó in my own poems, it often takes me longer to see this ó is to notice where there is a shift in energy in the the writing.  In my own stuff, and in many people's stuff, you can actually hear or feel a place where the energy shifts and the poem starts to work or where it stops working, like live and dead spots in the ongoing fabric of the text.  This is much clearer when you read the poem out loud, preferably to somebody else, but even if you only read it out loud to yourself you can often feel the difference.

     I'd like other folks to comment, too.  I want to be clear that I happen to think that this is a pretty decent piece of work on its way to happening.  It may work out in the end or it may not, but I can feel a clear difference in it over the past few days, and it does feel more alive and lively to me at this point.

     Do other people agree or not?  If they do agree, where do they see this; if not, where do they find it missing?

     I, for example, find something I can't quite put my finger on that troubles me about the question.  I'm trying to find language for it.  I'm also considering whether it might want to be someplace else in the poem, or to take some other form, or whether possibly there's something about one of the lines before or after that makes it sound as though it doesn't fit there to me.  I'm also considering that I'm completely off base somehow, trying to hold all these possibilities in mind at once and let my unconscious give me a nudge about it, because I don't want to do something hasty.

     These are some of the things that I think about when I revise.

     But what about the rest of you folks?
 
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