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  #11  
Unread 09-13-2020, 04:03 PM
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Daniel Kemper Daniel Kemper is offline
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How about kill "had" from the whole poem (basically)?
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  #12  
Unread 09-14-2020, 07:23 PM
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It is metrically ambivalent Carol as has been noted. If going for a triple would you consider the easy speech of amphibrachic as you have that in your tail-less first line.

I like the story it travels well.
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  #13  
Unread 09-16-2020, 10:56 AM
Carol Taylor Carol Taylor is offline
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Thanks for comments, Jan. Amphibrachs are pretty much the same meter as anapests, depending on where you start counting, aren't they?

I think if this were read as normal speech or prose the meter wouldn't be ambiguous, but when they approach a poem, sometimes people automatically go into recitation mode and default to iambic pentameter. For example,

You SEL/dom SEE/ DOWNpours/ like THAT/ anyMORE,
LIKE/ the DE/luge the DAY/ they BUR/ied old BERry,
RAIN/ BLOWing/ SIDEways/ and DARK/ coming DOWN.

Sounds normal for poetry, right? But as natural speech? Not so much. In general, I don't think iambic pentameter is the default meter of speech in English, especially unsubstituted iambics, which slow you down and make a weightier or more formal statement. I'm going for casual speech here, and I hear a lot of substitutions in a loose anapestic tetrameter:

You SEL/dom see DOWN/pours like THAT/ anyMORE,
like the DE/luge the DAY/ they BUR/ied old BERry,
RAIN/ blowing SIDE/ways and DARK/ coming DOWN.

Daniel, thanks for the suggestion. Getting rid of "had" would change the verb tense, and I need the pluperfect.

Carol
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  #14  
Unread 09-16-2020, 01:59 PM
W T Clark W T Clark is offline
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Hello Carol
Funeral Rain may be a false title, but I prefer it to "Funeral in the Rain", it has more metaphoric weight.
[quote=Carol Taylor;454217]Funeral in the Rain (rev)

You seldom see downpours like that anymore,
like the deluge the day they buried old Berry,
rain blowing sideways and dark coming down.
***** I find the first line redundant. The second is there to establish context, and the third has some nice sonics. Yet the ideas the first line contains are never explored throughout the poem, the rain is not considered in past vs. present, it seems more metaphorical than that, and therefore I find it unneeded.

Old lady Sparks had hiked out from town
and stopped for a place to hole up from the storm
and a lift to the Fairland cemetery.

Likely shed not even met old Berry,
***** Three uses of old in 7 lines is risky.
but how could we leave her outside to drown
or be pounded by hailstones or lost in high water?

So we sat her to steam by the fire and warm,
her clothes dripping puddles under her chair,
and it fell to us kids to sit there and watch her

while our folks finished getting ready to go,
though at school kids had whispered if nobody died
***** The repetition of kids is distracting, in my opinion.
she might kill a child, and it may have been so.
"it might have been so" seems as if it is only there for the metre and rhyme. It also repeats so. I find it redundant.

No funeral was ever too distant or private.
***** A fine line.
Wed see her sometimes out on 281
headed for Austin, riding her thumb.

I think of the rain, how it sounded back then:
the roar on a tin roof and wind in the rafters,
like an old woman mourning her next of kin.

***** This is the true coda to the rain and the poem. It exists, therefore the first line should not.





































I think the poem is mostly effective.

Hope this helps.
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  #15  
Unread 09-16-2020, 11:11 PM
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Jan Iwaszkiewicz Jan Iwaszkiewicz is offline
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Hi Carol

I do think that they are more than a little different e.g.

anapest

and the beat and the beat of our swift horse's feet

amphibrac

we mutter in trenches and hide from the shells now

The difference is quite marked.
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  #16  
Unread 09-20-2020, 11:46 AM
Carol Taylor Carol Taylor is offline
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Thanks, Cameron and Jan.

Cameron, the title is a place holder, but rain as it used to seem to N is more to the point than the funeral, which she brings in as an associated memory. I need to come up with a better title. Also I'll see if I can get rid of some repetition on "old" and "kids." "It may have been so" indicates N child's and (N adult's) uncertainty about whether the crazy old woman could actually have presented a danger as rumored.

Jan, everything you say is true, but for practical purposes the only real difference in the meter of the two lines is where you begin to count. Since modern poetry uses a lot of substitutions and enjambment, lines are seldom read as independent units. One measure elides into the next, with the metrics often wrapping from line to line. If you remove "and" from the head of the anapestic line and put it at the end, the meter is identical, an anapestic line starting off on an iamb and with a feminine ending.

the beat and the beat of our swift horse's feet, and

we mutter in trenches and hide from the shells now

That said, I usually try to match up an extra syllable at the end of one line with a headless or substituted next line, and I know I haven't done that between some of the stanzas here.

More food for thought. Thanks,

Carol
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  #17  
Unread 09-21-2020, 09:33 PM
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Jan Iwaszkiewicz Jan Iwaszkiewicz is offline
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Hi Carol

You said;
but for practical purposes the only real difference in the meter of the two lines is where you begin to count
I must disagree vehemently
The trochaic Tetrameter of Longfellow's Hiawatha cannot be read as iambic no matter where you start the count. The difference between all meters is marked.
Substitutions are often used as an excuse for a lack of observance of craft.
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  #18  
Unread Yesterday, 05:53 AM
W T Clark W T Clark is offline
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[quote=Carol Taylor;454697]Thanks, Cameron and Jan.


"It may have been so" indicates N child's and (N adult's) uncertainty about whether the crazy old woman could actually have presented a danger as rumored.













Hello Carol,
Yes, but shouldn't that uncertainty be sprinkled throughout the poem? To shove it all into one phrase seems inconsistent.
Hope this helps.
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