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I APPRECIATE POETRY CRITIQUE > i can't think of the right words to end this poem!

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message 1: by Jenifer (new)

Jenifer I love:
The raindrops refracting rainbows on a backlit cellphone screen
The crooked reach of the tree limbs transgressing preconceptions of form
How autumn leaves collect like river detritus in summer’s watering hole
Tenacious nature transplanted like rearranged furniture blithely seated atop store-bought soil
The twitter of leaves playing with the rainstriped skyline
The certain steps of the spider rebuilding a wiped out web
Integrity without thought


message 2: by Grame (new)

Grame | 1 comments May I respectfully suggest that it is not a major aspect of authorship to ask other people to complete work that is yours. TS Eliot regretted allowing Ezra Pound to screw about with his work, and if you have to keep thinking about a poem for twenty years before you are satisfied with it, then it will be so much the better for it.

Publish before you are happy with your work, and you will produce tremendous quantity, but very little quality. Most of the memorable poets published very little over their lifetimes, which is not to say that they didn't throw a lot of stuff away.

Maybe it is finished as it is.


message 3: by Fern (new)

Fern (FernRL) Perhaps it would be easier to end with "the right words" if you began with something more specific than "I love:"

Perhaps the poem needs more transitions from one item on the list to the next. Or perhaps you have the beginnings of several poems.

You have used a lot of alliterations, but there is not much sense of meter or form and very little sense of cohesiveness from one line to the next.

Your poem is yours, so don't let me influence you too much, but you may want to think about these ideas and build on your poem with some of them in mind.


message 4: by h. (new)

h. (goodreadscomh_Krake) | 928 comments Hi Jennifer ---

Just something that jumped out at me --- What if your first line was "I love integrity without thought"??

And then the listing?

Not trying to scramble your poem, but it was the first thing that came to my mind in answer to your question!

And just gorgeous and original reflections on well-worn poetic images. So that's lovely --- especially the spider line. You've given fresh life to images that have become cliched.

h.


message 5: by h. (new)

h. (goodreadscomh_Krake) | 928 comments Grame wrote: "May I respectfully suggest that it is not a major aspect of authorship to ask other people to complete work that is yours. TS Eliot regretted allowing Ezra Pound to screw about with his work, and i..."

Hi Grame,

Certainly a good point regarding Pound and Eliot. That's certainly the danger here! Sometimes, though, a little something someone has offered up has gotten the creative wheels rolling again.

I enjoyed this posting!
h.


message 6: by Richard (new)

Richard | 285 comments I've watched a number of poems on here be improved by suggestions, and yet most of them, while better, end up without any hint of the poet's individual voice so that the result is the standard American workshop lyric with nothing to make them stand out. It's difficult to walk that thin line between a great poem in an indiviual voice and a good poem that anyone with a modicum of talent and experience could write.


message 7: by Jenifer (new)

Jenifer I have enjoyed getting all of the feedback, and i can't wait to play with what i started last week. I haven't written poetry since my college days, which have long since passed. I intentionally posted an unfinished poem, but i had forgotten how the process works, so to speak. The comments given here have been truly helpful in terms of helping me figure out where to go with my initial impulse. I am excited to keep working on the poem, so thank you all!


message 8: by h. (last edited Oct 18, 2012 11:52AM) (new)

h. (goodreadscomh_Krake) | 928 comments Richard wrote: "I've watched a number of poems on here be improved by suggestions, and yet most of them, while better, end up without any hint of the poet's individual voice so that the result is the standard Amer..."

Hi Richard,

This is absolutely true and very well put! I really hate to see people rewriting lines, (or entire stanzas! or entire poems!), rather than commenting on them and offering up little "tweak" ideas or mentioning things that confuse or snag.

I think that's where the poet's original voice really takes a hit!

Thanks for your insights,

h.


message 9: by h. (new)

h. (goodreadscomh_Krake) | 928 comments Jenifer wrote: "I have enjoyed getting all of the feedback, and i can't wait to play with what i started last week. I haven't written poetry since my college days, which have long since passed. I intentionally po..."

Hi Jennifer,

As I said before, this is a really lovely poem and any little changes you make regarding line breaks or the ending will polish it nicely! I've reread it a third time and so many of the observations are fresh and unexpected like "store bought soil" and "the twitter of leaves."

Well done indeed.

Happy revising,

h.


message 10: by Sally Boots (new)

Sally Boots (Sally-boots) | 760 comments h. wrote: "Richard wrote: "I've watched a number of poems on here be improved by suggestions, and yet most of them, while better, end up without any hint of the poet's individual voice so that the result is t..."

I just have to ditto on this. Sometimes it's hard to make suggestions without rewriting, but I find myself cringing when I see people doing that. It would be a shame it all of our poems ended up sounding the same...With my own poems, I try to stick with the advice that strikes a chord, like, on some level I kind of already knew what the advisee is saying.


message 11: by Fern (new)

Fern (FernRL) I do love your poem, or more accurately, many of the parts of your poem. I can also appreciate what others are saying about how too much critique can damage the intent and style of the poet. I don't want to do that; I just want to give you some ideas, for what they may be worth.

First, I think "love" is so over-used, I would rather have the feelings expressed in a variety of other ways. But that could be a part of what everything builds up to be: the ending you are seeking.

Second, there are cases where it seems like re-arranging the phrases would make more sense or add to the satisfaction of seeing clearly what you are writing about.

You could start out with a combination of the first two lines something like this:

"The raindrops on a back-lit cellphone screen
Refracting rainbows thrill me."

...perhaps continuing on:

"The crooked reach of tree limbs
Transgressing preconceptions of form
Finds me staring in awe and wonder.
I smile at the way autumn leaves collect
Like river detritus in summer’s watering hole
Tenacious nature transplanted, like rearranged furniture
Blithely seated atop store-bought soil,
The twitter of leaves playing with the rain-striped skyline,
The certain steps of the spider rebuilding a wiped out web.

I love
Integrity without thought."


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