Ooooh, Sam, that one gave me chills. Especially the part about the galaxy's whirlpool being mirrored in eddies of foam. There's something that is very amazing about the deep way in which everything is connected, isn't there? The equations that describe oscillation, say, are the same for so many different phenomena on so many different scales. I can't help feeling there's something important revealed about God's plan in those deep connections.
Posts: 5509 | Registered: May 1999
Jatraqueros: Let's try to keep this folder up top!
This is one that I don't think I'll ever sell- so here it is in its entirety: Something Southern
mama velvet has a potion, and a notion, your mojo's been cursed. the lady is versed in honeysuckle and voodo, so whatever you do, stand in the surf at dawn before the last star is gone and drink to her health. in exchange for your wealth, she's got notions and potions aplenty. at least twenty.
the seams of the road beat a rhythm to goad weary travellers to seek a path more meek- a narrow tree lined track limbs to dense to see back to that Hell of a trail the asphalt snake pale and scorched beneath the sun. turn away and run through trees, down hills until your flight kills the need for roads and seams- trackless, boundless, freedom dreams.
Here's a brand spankin new one. I thought I saw my ex-girlfriend today, turns out it wasn't her, but that it just looked an awful lot like her. Anyway, it still brought back some of the old pain I felt when we broke up (almost a year ago, but what can I say, I bruise easily ), so I was inspired to write this little guy (feel free to critize, since I just wrote it, it's still pretty much a rough draft):
Your face is a familiar wound, a scar upon my ravaged breast. Your blue-grey eyes once blessed me with a warm and sweet repose that came as such a needed boon.
But now, see how they start to rend the stitches from the sore and tear the flesh that lies before their awful gaze, to but expose the infection that is my heart.
[This message has been edited by sarfa (edited July 14, 2001).]
Wizard lord, sing to me, Crystal cave, fire, and sea. Silver star burns within Circle soft; spells defend. Candle flame reflected and refracted White to color, broken light: Stars stream down to sea like diamond tears About the moon, the lady white:
Mage, why must I ward against your spell? That lesson hard you taught me well. Can you think that you are just any man To take my heart into your hand?
I had hoped that your wizardsong could hush my cries. Promise me that you'll sing me only lullabies. Let me dream: Cast your spell within the magic circle 'round the star. Hold me enchanted and protected in your heart.
sarfa, once again I have suggestions for you poem. I always love them so I take them up and start twiddling with them as though they are my own.
Would "but to expose" not be better than what you have? I like the rhythm of it, and it just reads better that way to me but sounds a bit archaic, maybe, a sound that I like but you perhaps would not.
"Your blue-grey eyes that once had blessed" scans a lot better, but then the "that" that comes two lines later would sound funny because of being repeated too close, and perhaps you like that one better. "Came then as such a needed boon", maybe?
Love the rhyme scheme! It works just right.
Great poem! Sorry about the girl, though. <hugs>
[This message has been edited by aka (edited July 15, 2001).]
thanks aka, I agree that the third line scans better that way, but I'm not happy with the alteration to the fifth. I tried a few different ways, when I wrote it, to make the third line have 8 syllables to match the rest of the poem(except line6, which has six). I like the suggestion you have for it (and will proabably end up using it, or a variation of it),but I'll have to play with the fifth line to make it work right.
I tried saying the ninth line both ways out loud, and "to but" rang truer to me than "but to" ("but" seems like a word that would be more naturally accented than "to", making the iambic rhythm more consistent), but either way would work ok.
Ele, you've got some great imagery in there, I'm impressed. One suggestion I have is to use less fragments. For example, adding the the word "of" to the beginning of the second line would connect the ideas conatined in the first two lines better, and make the language flow more smoothly. It will also help to soften the rhymes a bit, which I think would be a great benefit to the poem, as the rhymes are rather harsh in some places (endstopping rhyming lines will do that, and even though your rhyming lines aren't always technically endstopped, because you've written in fragments, they scan as if they are in fact endstopped). Complete senteces make poetry much more coherent and smooth out the language.
Also, the second line "That lesson hard you taught me well." reads a little akwardly, as does the line with the word "lullabies" in it. Taking out the second "me" would fix the latter, the use of "me" twice is not neccessary, its removal will smooth out the line and the readers will still know who the lullaby is being sung to. To fix the first,you'd have to shuffle a few of the words around to smooth it out.
[This message has been edited by sarfa (edited July 15, 2001).]
Here's a new one, and, as always, feel free to criticize:
I stand beneath the dew slick deck of lifeguard tower number three, burrowing the tips of my toes into the surface of the cold, damp sand.
The night veils her face, but I can hear the frown in the timbre of her voice. Her words are in a foreign tongue, and so I stare at the moonlight dusted waves rolling onto the shore. She wraps her arms around her waist, and though I wish mine were in their place, I am grateful they remain stuffed inside the confines of my pockets.
I realize her glossy sheen is but a thin veneer That wipes away with the utterance of a single phrase. I drive her home while the humming engine converses softly with the stereo.
[This message has been edited by sarfa (edited August 22, 2001).]
Did she turn you down? I also wonder about the waste issue. hmmmm I like the images you create but you need to use them to shed more light on what was going on. At first I just thought that perhaps you were watching a woman's evening swim.
I really like the poem in general I just want a bit more clarity.
Wow, I think that first stanza is absolutely brilliant. You set up an intriguing problem (though I'm not sure what "She" is). Your rhythm in this stanza is nearly hypnotic, almost a chant.
However, the second two stanzas don't seem to follow what you've started. The imagery begins to get too personal or too arcane for such a short poem, and I begin to lose you.
If you ever feel like re-doing that poem, I think the first stanza is a great starting place. What it makes me want to know is:
1. who is "she". (If "she" is "the meaning of my freedom", I'd use "It" unless you have a more specific reason for more personification).
2. What did you find lacking in church?
3. Will you find the "meaning of my freedom"?
4. Where will you search for it?
Not that you have to answer all of those questions, and not that you can't answer some other question, but the following stanzas don't seem to do either.
On second thought, you might be expressing dissatisfaction with religion in general. If this is the case, the driving rhythm of your first stanza seems to be setting up either a determined tone, or perhaps a bitter tone, but your closing note is one of despair and surrender.
Or, it could be that I'm totally misreading the whole thing. So take all of the above at face value. I wouldn't have posted at all except that I really do love that first stanza.
I appreciate your comments KarlEd, and I think you are absolutely right. I haven't written or even read any of my poetry in a couple years, and when I chanced across this poem while cleaning up my computer I thought I'd post it. But you've given me a fresh perspective, and I agree that the first stanza sets a tone or at least raises questions that the rest of the poem fails to address. I think I was trying to include too much is such a compact space. Maybe I will rework it. I've never been much for editing my poetry, but I need something to push me back into writing. Thanks again for your input.
Posts: 56 | Registered: Jun 2001
OK, my turn. My sister and I used to write each other a lot. We'd write little quotes or short poetry, etc. on the back of the envelopes. Here's something I wrote on the back of an envelope to her.
You may fade from the light of the Sun and the Moon And the Stars in their black-velvet sea. And the Earth be bereft of your lyrics and tune, But your music lives always in me.
[This message has been edited by KarlEd (edited August 22, 2001).]
Wow, a beautiful and succint poem, almost haikuish. It seems to me like a sweet expression of love and a haunting farewell at the same time. If you wouldn't have told me the circumstances of its creation I might have interpreted it as an elegy of some kind.
Posts: 56 | Registered: Jun 2001
Thanks. Oddly enough, I was in Korea for two years and wrote to this sister (I have 3) extensively. We were very close. It was very shortly after this time that we began to drift apart. We aren't as close now as then, so it feels a little like an elegy to me too.
Posts: 6394 | Registered: Dec 1999
I reworked the poem to hopefully make it a little more clear what is going on (at least to the extent that the she involved is known to be a female):
I stand beneath the dew slick deck of lifeguard tower number three, burrowing the tips of my toes into the surface of the cold, damp sand.
The night veils her face, but I can hear the frown in the timbre of her voice. Her words are in a foreign tongue, so I ignore her and stare instead at the moonlight dusted waves rolling onto the shore.
Out of the corner of my eye, I see her wrap her arms around her waist, and though I wish mine were in their place, I am grateful they remain stuffed inside the confines of my pockets.
I realize her allure is but a thin veneer That wipes away with the utterance of a single phrase. I drive her home while the humming engine converses softly with the stereo.
"...but I can hear the frown in the timbre of her voice..."
This line is fabulous, sarfa. I forget that tone of voice can be just as expressive as actual facial expressions.
I also like how the toes interact with the damp sand at the beginning of the poem and then at the end the engine converses with the stereo. I think the reason I like these images is that they frame the poem well. They show an interaction that is lacking in the interim i.e. with the girl, and yet they also make sense in the context because neither interaction is necessarily romantic (or at least not classicly so).
I have written very few poems, but I rather like this one. When I first wrote it, (last year) I posted it on the young writersí forum, because there was a young writerís forum and I was supposed to post things there. I wish we still had one. I liked it so much better than this...
Anyway, we had this trend where no one would post poems that rhymed. Every time someone would post one, several people would say that it would be better without the rhyme, that the rhyme restricted your use of vocabulary and that they felt it didnít allow you to express yourself freely. I wrote this in couplets because I like couplets and I felt someone needed to use some sort of rhyme. So, unless you really mean it, and are willing to go into detail, donít tell me to change it! The rhyme scheme, I mean.
Please, read it for enjoyment first, then read it to critique last, if you read it to critique at all. And the commas are there for a reason! Itís not meant to be read fast! Or at least thatís my opinion. But what do I know? Iím just the author.
I look inside the window, at the snowflakes falling there. They try so hard to stay aloft, but gravityís a gentle snare. They seem unique and wonderful, but still they fall the same. I watch them as I wonder. They seem so very tame.
Just floating there until they land, and cluster on the ground. Putting pressure on each other, still they make no sound. Molding together effortlessly, their pressure making one. Waiting for the spring to come, so their winter will be done.
I yearn to follow them, let the simple things take flight. To be as one, forever one, we would not fear the night. Melting in the springtime, below the brilliant sun. Turning into raindrops, when our winters done.
Iím still alone, the waters froze, and I remember fear. My eye sees for the first time, and from that eye, a tear. This feeling is so new, like cold, but only more extreme. I forget why the snow is falling. I remember now, a dream.
Cold ice is on the windowsill, snowflakes in my hair. I wonder how I went inside, the window isnít there. I see them all around me, softly they start to call. I love them for the peace they bring, as I begin to fall.
Iím more interested in your overall feeling at the end, and whether or not you found it confusing.
I trust if youíre reading this, you read the poem. If not, read it before continuing! I figure this poem will have more meaning for my peers, but tell what you think, age-group-wise.
And yes, the beginning could use some work, but Iím not sure what to take out and what I should add. Actually, I almost didnít post it because every time I read it I think that it could be a lot better if only I had some time. I hope that some criticism will help it along.
Alright Casey, you asked for it . I think you have some really good ideas and a great theme for this poem, but there are two major problems that I see with it.
First off, I won't attack your rhyme scheme (when properly done, rhyme can be a very effective poetic device), but I will call into question your execution of said rhyme scheme. You endstopped every line of the poem, and that creates a very harsh mechanical feel, and endstopping with couplet rhyme only exacerbates the problem and kills the mood of the poem. Stick with the rhyme scheme, but try running your sentences and thoughts from one line to the other, and ending them mid line. It will greatly enhance the emotional impact of the poem, and smooth out the harshness of the rhyme (but not so much so that it looses the impact of the rhyme).
Secondly, the poem is overflowing with abstractions (words that represent an abstract idea or emotion, like love, freedom, jealousy, etc.), poems are much more effective when they use concrete words and examples to create the abstract feelings in the reader, instead of using the abstract words themselves. Here are a couple lines from your poem that suffer from too little concrete description of abstract emotions/ideas:
"They seem unique and wonderful"
why are they unique, why are they wonderful? paint a picture, with words, that illustrates this. If done properly, you won't have to say they are unique and wonderful, the reader will realize it himself because of your word usage in describing them.
"Iím still alone, the waters froze, and I remember fear."
what makes you afraid? describe a specific instance of fear.
there are others in the poem, but that is a place to start. You also should consider using more detailed descriptions in your poem, I cannot stress enough the importance of good imagery (it's the whole idea of showing, not telling).
I hope I didn't rip your poem apart too much (it has some great potential). And don't worry too much, those are two of the most common mistakes young poets make, including myself.
I wrote this just last week. I've been having kind of a love-at-first sight experience lately, and it reminded me of a song by Cove, one of my favorite Canadian bands. So I wrote this poem based on the song and the girl I like. If you want to check out my inspiration, you can see the song here: http://www.coveworld.net/cove/lyrics.html#FUGA
Isnít this the first time youíve ever watched someone? The first smile youíve ever seen? Frightening to realize how much youíve learned from a look. Frightening to think how much more a hand on that face could teach you or lips on a face that lovely or her voice.
Childlike you canít think of names now or even ask her name. You wonder what could make her forget the way youíve forgotten names and what she canít help watching the way you canít help watching her.
And to make room for this wondering youíve already lost the rest of life. Tabula rasa is the word for it- an abiding question in bare black Just a clean slate but still wanting her answer.
Somewhere in those eraser smears you think youíve seen pictures of other girls. Maybe you loved someone last year. Maybe ten years ago you looked across a classroom and saw the first question asking itself. Could be she was drawn in there once maybe ten times and now that youíve wiped it clean youíre drawing her in again and you want to draw her closer.
Every slate is the same- just stone. Life is life. But none of this changes your questions. Must be this new cleanliness. Must be those old memories gone.
[This message has been edited by Destineer (edited November 06, 2001).]
Destineer - I can't believe I was away from Hatrack for so long that I missed this! I really liked your poem, I love the way it sounds like you talking to yourself, and I like the extended blank-slate image. *thumbs up*
Just wanted to resurrect this thread... more poetry please!!!!
oh, and while I'm at it, I'm going to plug my college's new writing mag (yes, there's a couple of my poems in there). You can find it at www.kwatkins.co.uk/scrawl . Please let me know what you think!
Posts: 1550 | Registered: Jun 1999
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Hi Destineer. Yeah, I do have new ones, but they're on the scrawl site and I was too lazy to do anything but post the link! Still, now that you've asked:
People make my nationality a guessing game. The raven hair and pale skin reveal nothing. The accent is no help either, it is chameleon: Something vaguely foreign in the speech-rhythm But any Londoner drops their Ďtís when they talk fast, If I speak slowly, choosing my words with care, My voice is precise, giving nothing away. And so I let them guess: Greek, Spanish, Israeli, They latch on to something closer to home Than the correct answer: East African Gujarati. Surprised when I tell them: for how can I So like them, come from so far away?
But perhaps I have no right to claim the label Anglo-Indian. Too white even for that, my very poetry Westernised to the core, yet not at home In this white skin, for my brown soul Yearns for saris and dandia raas and Bollywood films. For the Qurían and Rumi and the Pirs of Gujarat. And so I am condemned to an in-between existence My words fall through the gap between my roots and my home.
Whoo, I wrote a poem. It will probably be the highlight of my week. *chuckle*
One_by_one, the greenskin pulled agonizingly from the flesh Drips spraying into the air nearclear and to my eyes There is no sting, with nonacid lubricating A little breathing factory Over_and_over, with onefocus which inherently must be directly before Dulls and quiets animalfactory As the urges WEAKEN and the dumbness overtakes livesavingdumbness Which wills the mechanized to continue Thy savior Singlemindedness eating away at the guesses and the conjectures and the theories our heaven is stupidity..
I have been reading through the poetry here, but I am new and have only gotten to page 3. Here is one I wrote, which I am currently making into a poster (comming soon to a shopping mall near you!) Let me know what you think. I promise to read the rest later, but it is already one o'clock and you have such a head start!
We trod home with the dragonís bane and thought our welcome passing strange For in the eye of passerby the war was long since lost With lances raised above our dead and saddles hung with dragonís heads We brought no cheer to those who fear they cannot pay the cost
With gravity we took our vow and valiantly returning now We had our share of peril but were still alive to follow We left our king in such great haste returning proud to warm his face To find our dragon victory not enough to ease his sorrow
He spilled some wine upon himself and coughed some on his counted wealth The scribe next to him jumped to save the scroll he was inscribing He sobbed into his thinning beard, ĒThe very thing that I had feared! I heard the news, I was confused to see you now arriving.Ē
We fell at once upon our knees and begged him with our poetries To cheer himself, for we had solved the cause of all his woes So strange to see the tears he shed when we held up the dragonís heads His anguish should have left him, but it held him in its throes
ďThough many years ago it seems, I see it nightly in my dreams A dragon swooped down from the skies and took our seven daughters prize I thought they long ago were killed, but now I find their blood was spilled By the men I sent again to try to slay their captor.Ē
Maidenís heads, not dragons as our recollections vaunted Purest royalty the ugly trophies that we flaunted We stripped our armor off to curb the fury of his ire When all at once the monarch doused us all in dragonís fire
Because I lay upon my face with nothing left to prove The fire shot above me roasting those who held the daughters On looking up the castle I had traveled to was gone The visage of the king was now revealed in real form
I cast my gaze around me cowards cowered in dismay Or howled in bloody torment from the fireworks display I almost saw him taking off the amulet he wore Tail slashing through the standing men the worm let out a roar
Remembering the wisdom of the dragonís was my kingís And seeing bands of gold around his claws which were his rings Spines with crusted jewels was the crown upon his head The drink he spluttered on himself was thick and deeply red
ďDragon King!Ē I shouted and the throne slowly uncurled In the hall, which seemed much bigger now itís wings unfurled I hefted lance and ran headlong into a waiting claw Glowing diamonds loomed above a giant portal jaw
Pulled into itís face, I jabbed my lance into his eye When he tried to stuff me in the lance began to pry Flying out of socket flew the bloody perfect jem Hanging from the hole it left the ravaged hanging stem
Globs of blood fell down on me in acid clinging rain King dragon opened up his mouth and sang an earthquake pain I fell at once upon the floor and loathe to test my honor more Clutching tight the eye so bright I scrambled from the lair
Even as I left the cave the air was choked with sound In rage the creature struck the earth, it threw me to the ground Crawling up upon my horse I rode till she was sore Then wrenched upon her tangled mane and made her travel more
I came unto the palace and I found the place was solemn Hanging on the elbow of the king a filthy golem Slashing through the monster there was bile in my throat I pulled my sword out of his chest and threw him in the moat
The weeping king was silent and his head was deeply bent On the hand that clutched his face were bloody tears that he had spent Slowly then he raised his head to show his face to me A gaping hole under his brow where his right eye should be
I knelt before the monarch then and when I kissed his hem I held above my facedown face the dragon stolen jem ďArise,Ē he said, ďYou serve me well to bring to me this blessing, Though I expect your other news will no doubt be distressing.Ē
I rose and almost answered him but all my blood had froze For the king had crushed the thing alongside his nose Pulling skin around the prize, Blinked and quickly had two eyes.
Here's another one. I wrote this feeling lonely.
In a cave in the heart of the hills There is a beach that no light sees Long ago the rocks were sharp and cruel Shattered from the timeless walls By quake and fingers of ice Laying on the dark shore Worn by the endless churn Of tide no one has seen The rocks are worn and smooth They fade away into mud Washing into depths none will ever go Their faint clicks as the waters move Will never be heard or picked To skip across the surface that cannot be seen Or piled to make anything useful Even whimsical and frivolous use Is not an option now They will not stand upon each other Small swimmers on their backs Paddle with tiny oars to set sail Beaching again where they cast off They are the explorers here Vikings of miniature continents Conquerors of emptiness Sailors that have no future To be seized from underneath By jaws mysterious to them In darkness never warned to steer away They disappear one at a time Without a cry gone forever For a fish lives there, never caught Growing lazy uncontested Eating what he may, could not see If light were ever given, does no good To him who has no eyes Would not swim away at the approach Of fisherís footfalls on shore Would take the bait like a glutton Swallowing the hook and line Confused to be drawn out Little chance of that, he will die old His flesh will flake off Smelling bad to no one His bones ground by smooth stones To become splinters that erode In the soft mud until they are gone
My mother's heart is made of glass Bodies are shapeless Solid and silent Gliding through doors, Hugging 'round stairs Watercolor outlines, nothing to hold Warm love surrounding, but my center is cold And her heart is fragile, crystal glass.
I like that, katharina. It's always refreshing to me when a poet doesn't feel like she has to spell everything out, but leaves some things implicit.
This is relatively new. It's about a quote by Blaise Pascal that I mentioned elsewhere. Referring to outer space, he said,
quote:"The eternal silence of these infinite spaces terrifies me."
Pity Song for Infinity
When you think of your death my darling and you think of how a corpse must wish for movement wish for walking and all the motions of mind, Think of what longing they must have These huge quiet openings.
When you feel the heat of rage or the heat of a real burn marks your soft hand, Even then do not envy the coldness of these great gaps.
When night reminds you of whatís in store Remember your only darkness falls around your shoulders with soft hair and blends your pupil with the edge of your eyeís brown iris. These sorry spaces make up the night.
If they could mouth desires could you guess at their pleas for some taste of our heat and substance? How long would you beg even for tears if you were so dry? Time is a slayer to us. To them it sets the pace of vacuum and shows a single speed Never expanding round a kiss or thinning hours of sleep into moments.
I know what youíll say, and I agree: One day weíll know and justly fear that all our heat is spent. But what scares me more than timeís meager plan for us is eternity the way theyíve had it these poor pieces of space.
Man, I haven't shared these with anyone, I guess out of fear of critisism or somebody getting the wrong message and throwing me in therapy again. But I've kinda been dying to share them with somebody. So here it goes!
What will hapepn when I grow old? Will I be able to find that box in my mind? Will I even have a box? A box to open and share;
How old must you be to have a box? 10,40,78? What is the year when you get a box? A box just for me from good times to bad;
Does a box get full? Does it ever get lost? Or does it stay forever? A box for me, to open and share A box of memories
My soul is like a rainstorm Trying and appearing to be peaceful rain But dominated by the clashes of the tearing thunder The trees of my heart sag While the rivers of joy sing. Can such differences exsist without tearing the soul apart? The happy and content exterior is just that A face, a picture to show the world No one knows of the inner torment That undoes the hearts bindings Alone in the storm.
I'll be your pillar in the darkness Together we weather all the trails I may not stand as strong as you need But you will always have me.
Well, I chickened outta putting up a fourth one, cuz its long and about the death of my grandmother. But those are my poems. I don't rhyme, but oh well.
OK...this is very rough...I'm not very good at poetry...but read it, please?
In heart torn agony I cry Shutting my eyes, i lify my face To the sky, the cold stars. From my throat, a howl, Tearing, pain filled, a plea, For mercy from the sky, Is ripped, piercing the night. And still, these pictures, Of pleasure unmatched, And pain unbearable, pound at my mind. But I can give no vent, no escape. My torment rages, And I lift my face to the sky. I cry out for release, for an answer, But all I hear...is silence.