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Old 05-11-2018, 10:55 AM
Jeanne Jeanne is offline
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Default Some Nights

Some Nights

Some nights will just not lie down.
For hours on end, the wind teases
leaves on the oaks outside
my window. Geese noisily announce
their arrival on the half-slumbering pond.
Insomniac crickets revel in their insomnia.
Some nights I have called this a curse.
Other nights I have called it a wonder.
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Old 05-11-2018, 11:38 AM
John Isbell John Isbell is offline
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Hi Jeanne,

I like this a good deal, especially everything before the last two lines. It seems to me very alive. I'm not sure you need the last two lines as presently constituted.

Cheers,
John
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Old 05-11-2018, 03:15 PM
James Brancheau James Brancheau is offline
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I like this too, Jeanne. I think the last two lines should get to it faster. It's a bit much, especially when the rest of the poem is so image-driven and beautifully direct. It's straining there, imo. Maybe try paring down the close first? Good luck with it and I look forward to reading more of your work.

JB

Last edited by James Brancheau; 05-12-2018 at 01:50 AM. Reason: Precision
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Old 05-13-2018, 07:37 AM
Jim Moonan Jim Moonan is offline
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Jeanne, I think the opening line is excellent but the rest doesn't follow through.
For example, I don't think the personification of the wind and pond and crickets works.
But the opening line excellent.
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Old 05-13-2018, 07:58 AM
John Riley John Riley is offline
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I like this although I too think this starts strong than it finishes. I'm not sure you need "just" in L1, but I always have that reaction to "just."

Crickets don't suffer from insomnia. May seem picky but I find that sort of assigning human characteristics to be too easy. A little more pressure on developing a modifier for "crickets" will certainly create something better. Insomniac is the easy choice.

My problem with the last two lines is that up to here it's an interesting voice that personalizes the experiences, which aren't different than what many experiences. The last two lines are suddenly sonorous, an effort to ring the bell of closure. It doesn't need such closure.

I enjoyed this. Hope this helps.

John
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Old 05-13-2018, 08:23 AM
Andrew Szilvasy Andrew Szilvasy is offline
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Jeanne,

What if you lightly edited the last two lines and brought them to the beginning?
Some nights I have called it a curse.
Other nights I have called it a wonder.

Some nights will just not lie down.
For hours on end, the wind teases

leaves on the oaks outside
my window. Geese noisily announce

their arrival on the half-slumbering pond.
Insomniac crickets revel in their insomnia.

Last edited by Andrew Szilvasy; 05-13-2018 at 10:13 AM.
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Old 05-13-2018, 09:57 AM
Michael Cantor Michael Cantor is offline
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I wasn't enthusiastic about this at first. It didn't get beyond ho-hum-another-nature-poem.

But I like Andrew's revision, including the line breaks. It starts with a mystery - drags in the reader - and the line breaks seem to provide more room for reflection.
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Old 05-13-2018, 12:56 PM
Phil Wood Phil Wood is offline
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I enjoyed this too. Agree with John in regard to the modifier for crickets. The fact the geese announce, that they are geese, makes noisily redundant.

Phil
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Old 05-14-2018, 05:34 PM
Matt Q Matt Q is offline
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Hi Jeanne,

I like the idea of a night that won't lie down, and the poem is well illustrated with visual and aural imagery

I have a couple of nits.

"for hours on end" is a stock phrase, a cliche even. I'm guessing there's a fresher, more interesting way of saying this.

I might consider losing "Insomniac" (or replacing it with something else) so that "insomnia" comes as more of a surprise:


I'd say that using "Some" instead of "Other" in the last line might sound better, the repetition adding something.

Some nights I have called it a curse.
Some nights I have called it a wonder.

best,

Matt

Last edited by Matt Q; 05-14-2018 at 05:39 PM.
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  #10  
Old 05-14-2018, 08:23 PM
Jeanne Jeanne is offline
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Some really good suggestions here. Thanks for sharpening my awareness about the cliches and personification!

Jeanne
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