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  #1  
Unread 08-16-2019, 04:49 AM
Daniel Kemper's Avatar
Daniel Kemper Daniel Kemper is offline
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Default Every Little Thing

Every Little Thing To Him

She treasured every little thing that you
gave her: sparrow necklace (hazel blue
to match her eyes) bracelet slipped inside
the box of chocolate treats-- wine train ride.
And it's not been just things, but moments too:

breezy balcony, Cliff House view,
the kisses long-desired, yet impromptu
when smoky Malbecs were then set aside...
Every little thing.

But smoky moments fade, as breezes do,
as fondled treasures fall away into
disuse, as you fall off to sleep beside
her while she skims the latest fashion guide.
She treasures every little thing but you.
Every little thing.

-- -- --
Tossing a Rondeau version of [Her] in the middle hear by suggestion, just to see how it all looks~
-- -- --
{Every Little Thing To Her}

Just to talk a little bit and stay
his next attempt to take your breath away:
to execute with almost perfect form
the genteel cloak-across-the-puddle or
to name cheap wine in coffee mugs gourmet--

Just to have him understand the way
he looks when he wants something he won't say.
You touch his chest and whisper, "Something more?"
just to talk

What if today is not the perfect day
or if there are no dragons left to slay?
But when you praise his gifts to reassure
him of your love, he scowls. How you long for
the too-slow night, the ordinary day
just to talk

-- -- --

Every Little Thing To Her
You flip through fashions that were never on
your mind. Is he ignoring you? And now
he's sleeping?--YOU might be awake till dawn!
You couldn't show him much more clearly how
you wished he'd ask to talk. A fashion magazine?
Have you seemed like some fashion-forward shrew
or like some fragile little figurine?
He's stressed, so what are you supposed to do?
You treasure him, but how he overpays
for life. He's so uncertain, insecure,
not free and bold. Perhaps exaggerated praise
for all that he provides would be the cure.
But then he just withdraws. And now he's gone
to sleep. What did you do? It's nearly dawn.




fix l8 and person of last several lines.


You flip through fashions that were never on
your mind. Is he ignoring you? And now
he's sleeping?--YOU might be awake till dawn!
You couldn't show him much more clearly how
you wished he'd ask to talk. A fashion magazine?
Have you seemed like some fashion-forward shrew
or like some fragile little figurine?
He tries too hard. What'm I supposed to do?
I treasure him, but how he overpays
for life. It's so uncertain, insecure,
not free and bold. Perhaps exaggerated praise
for all that he provides would be the cure.
But then he just withdraws. And now he's gone
to sleep. What did I do? It's nearly dawn.









v4 per Matt wiped from 3rd to 2nd person
v3 first poem per Nemo + reprise
v2
Every Little Thing

She treasured every little thing that you
gave her: the sparrow necklace (hazel blue
to match her eyes) the bracelet slipped inside
the box of chocolate treats-- the wine train ride.
And it's not been just things, but moments too:

the breezy balcony, the Cliff House view,
the kisses long-desired, yet impromptu
when smoky Malbecs were then set aside...
Every little thing.

But smoky moments fade, as breezes do,
as fondled treasures fall away into
disuse, as you fall off to sleep beside
her while she skims the latest fashion guide.
She treasures every little thing but you.
Every little thing.


v1
Every Little Thing

She treasured every little thing that you
have given her: bird necklace in pale blue
that matched her eyes, the bracelet slipped inside
the box of chocolate treats-- the wine train ride--
and it's not been just things, but moments too:

the breezy balcony, the breathless view,
the kisses deeply planned, yet impromptu
as savored Malbec's were then set aside...
Every little thing.

But savored moments fade, as breezes do,
as fondled treasures fall away into
disuse, as you fall off to sleep beside
her while she skims the latest fashion guide.
She treasures every little thing, but you.
Every little thing.

Last edited by Daniel Kemper; 09-04-2019 at 11:13 PM. Reason: clean up/clear up/chuck in a rondeau version -?
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  #2  
Unread 08-16-2019, 05:01 AM
Aaron Poochigian Aaron Poochigian is offline
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Daniel, this poem is successful in its conception and "got me" emotionally. All the same, its execution is problematic here and there.

The lack of "the" before "bird necklace" and the "in pale blue" sound unnatural to me. Better to just add "the something someth, pale blue to match her eyes."

The "as savored Malbec's" clause doesn't work for me (and the plural is "Malbecs"). Maybe try "though" for "as."

The "beside/her" enjambment is clever but clunks too much for me.

Best,

Aaron
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  #3  
Unread 08-16-2019, 07:13 AM
Alan Wickes Alan Wickes is offline
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I think this has the potential to be quietly acerbic and creepy but does not quite get there to me. It feels a tad over modified in places - 'deeply' and savored', for example seem superfluous to me. Might the poem work better in tetrameter, I wonder...
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  #4  
Unread 08-16-2019, 09:20 AM
Andrew Frisardi Andrew Frisardi is offline
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I basically like it, Daniel, it’s simpatico, but it does need some filling-out and some fine-tuning.

I think you should open with “She’s”—to go with the verb tenses to follow (“have given” and “it’s”).

I had a similar reaction as Aaron’s to “bird necklace” without an article.

Change the dash after “train ride” to a period?

“breezy” and “breathless” are pretty bland as modifiers in line 6. Some specificity would make the scene more particular and interesting.

“deeply planned” seems a strange metaphor for the quality of the kisses. I’m sure there’s a better option.

In the last stanza, “savored moments” and “fondled treasures” are again rather bland and generic. I don’t mind the sharp enjambment that Aaron points to (“beside / her”)—it does stand out, but I think it’s effective and fluid in terms of the sound.

The last three lines are fine as is. “Fashion guide” is the kind of specificity I think the earlier phrases I’ve mentioned could use.

I like this with the pentameter, though I agree that it's fillerish in some spots. But there are other ways to fix that, switching modifiers for substantives for instance.

Best,

Andrew

Last edited by Andrew Frisardi; 08-16-2019 at 10:45 AM. Reason: Now I kneau it's a rondeau!
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  #5  
Unread 08-16-2019, 10:38 AM
Susan McLean Susan McLean is offline
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Daniel, I mainly enjoy this, but if you want it to fit the rondeau form, here are a few suggestions of how to do it. First I'd suggest changing "every" to each, to make it easier to start the first line with that word, like this:

Each little thing she cherishes that you

Then in S1L2, the meter gets weird and so does the syntax. I would suggest "have given her: the bird necklace, pale blue,"

For S2L3 I would suggest something like "as the superb Malbecs were set aside . . ."

In S3L5 you should remove the comma before "but" to get the meaning you want there.

Susan
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  #6  
Unread 08-16-2019, 11:54 AM
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Allen Tice Allen Tice is offline
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I agree with Aaron P. except about the blue eyes, and maybe the enjambment.
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Unread 08-16-2019, 03:04 PM
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RCL RCL is offline
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Daniel,

I find this well wrought and effective, but in addition to earlier suggestions, you could keep to present tense from the start (treasures).
__________________
Ralph
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  #8  
Unread 08-16-2019, 05:55 PM
Erik Olson Erik Olson is offline
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Daniel,

I applaud your observance of the difficult to pull off rondeau form. Only if you want it to be a rondeau proper through and through, as Susan suggests, the first line would begin with the same text as the repetend. Example:
In Flanders fields the poppies grow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place, and in the sky,
The larks, still bravely singing, fly,
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the dead; short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In ........FlandersIn Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe!
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high!
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In........Flanders In Flanders fields.
For my part, I think you can get away without this one stricture and still call it a rondeau, but it is your choice, needless to say. Mind you, it is also customary to indent the repetends but nothing critical and you probably already knew that. As you wish. Usually, rondeaus in English are in tetrameter, but I have no objection to the fact of it being in pentameter; that said, I fancy Alan’s proposal of trying tetrameter might be worthwhile for the reason he suggests in any event.

The lack of article before ‘bird necklace’ and the ‘in’ in ‘bird necklace in pale blue’ strike me as unnatural also. I might suggest what Susan did or alternatively—
She treasured every little thing that you
gave her: as that bird necklace of pale blue—
At the very least, I would use of instead of ‘in.’

I reckon the line—‘and it's not been just things, but moments too’—might be a little more idiomatic and smoother perhaps as—It hasn’t been just things, but moments too.

‘Impromptu ’ would be a fine rhyme in my book, except that the accent falls squarely on the penultimate syllable rather than the last, like so, though perhaps this is being too pernickety.

I think you do not mean for ‘Malbec's’ to be possessive in ‘as savored Malbec's were then set aside’? Should be Malbecs, no?

Outside of these nits of execution, I fancy this poem and find it most effective.

Best,
Erik
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Unread 08-17-2019, 12:50 PM
Jake Sheff Jake Sheff is offline
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Daniel,

I see you returning again to the theme of change, things falling apart. In this case, a romance.

This seems to depend too much on ready-made images of young love or love in bloom. All of this is one-degree separated from "roses are red, violets are blue..."

The acerbic ending was fine, effective but not extremely so.

I think this would benefit from cutting the pentameters to tetrameters. It will not only (probably) become pithier and more memorable, but may enact the all too rapid growth of young love before its inevitable (and slow) decline.

Rondeaus generally read almost rapidly to me -- not just Flanders Field, but Dunbar's The Mask, etc etc.

Hope this helps,
Jake
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Unread 08-18-2019, 03:13 AM
John Isbell John Isbell is offline
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Hi Daniel,

A neat conceit, to my mind, which speaks a necessary truth and is well-executed and sustained. It's what a poem is, as opposed to a bunch of metrical lines that end. You have, more or less, a well-wrought urn, and they are not common.
I love the weirdness of "bird necklace." But my only real niggle is there too; I think you need the definite article before it, because leaving it out looks shoehorned in. So I'd drop "her" just before and add "the" in its place. Given gains in range that way, and the recipient is clear, IMO.

Cheers,
John
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