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  #1  
Unread 11-06-2019, 07:07 PM
R. S. Gwynn's Avatar
R. S. Gwynn R. S. Gwynn is offline
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Default Sonnet 3

Sonnet 3

Prison the apex of a startling twig,
The vivisection ran to seven days.
The politicians swerved before the big
Implosions of their sun-dried means and ways.
A simple fraction was reduced no more,
But chefs rebounded from their aims to be
The arbiters of re-bar. Still, the war
Progressed as far as anyone could see.

Then came my hair. All efforts with the gray
Were rusted by the dryers’ pelvic wind.
Leaves fell. Leaves rose. I strode the common clay
But messages were few and hard to send.
Was there at length a canticle that rose
Among the fodder baskets? No one knows.

Last edited by R. S. Gwynn; 11-07-2019 at 03:57 PM. Reason: Added "sun-dried" to l. 4
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Unread 11-07-2019, 03:39 AM
Susan McLean Susan McLean is offline
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Sam, I have read this several times without being able to make any sense of it. The metaphors hop around so much that I can't even tell what the subject is, much less how it develops. I did note that L4 seems a beat short. Sorry not to be of more help.

Susan
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Unread 11-07-2019, 04:29 AM
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This reads like a list of clues for a cryptic crossword, without benefit of the square to lock the answers in. I look forward to the solution.

Peter
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Unread 11-07-2019, 06:35 AM
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I am also nonplussed Sam
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Unread 11-07-2019, 07:19 AM
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This feels like a cut-up, an erasure or an exquisite corpse.
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Unread 11-07-2019, 09:41 AM
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It does “resist the intellect.” “Pelvic wind” is striking, like something from Dante’s Inferno or a partisan political poem. I also especially like LL 3 and 4. I’d put a comma at the end of line eleven.

However, I think it’s kind of obscurely clever and only slightly hairy.

Maybe make that nonpartisan.

Last edited by Allen Tice; 11-07-2019 at 11:51 AM.
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Unread 11-07-2019, 12:21 PM
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https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/amphigory

Since amphigories aren't about meaning, they must be all about mood (as opposed to most poems, which are about both).

My favorite amphigory is Rose Kelleher's delightfully dizzy "Love Sonnet," about which I've raved here before (in a thread about "foolish" poems, not all of which were amphigories).

"Sonnet 3" seems full of the urgency of a writer's early efforts to say something profound, but to "tell it slant" ( la Emily Dickinson's advice), to such an extreme that it's unintelligible. It seems like a parody of the work of a certain type of poet, often young. The dropped beat in L4, if intentional, supports that impression.

I would prefer to feel besotted than to feel anguished and self-important, so I prefer the effect that "Love Sonnet" has on me. But I think "Sonnet 3" is successful at what it sets out to do, if its intent is to poke fun at novice poets' intensity.

I've mentioned before that I feel uncomfortable with the notion of mocking beginners, in a world of other potential targets that seem to deserve and perhaps even require mocking. But I'm also not a teacher, so I'm not often faced with the temptation to do that.

Last edited by Julie Steiner; 11-07-2019 at 12:50 PM.
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Unread 11-07-2019, 12:37 PM
Roger Slater Roger Slater is offline
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Rose's "Love Sonnet" reminds me of something ee cummings would have written, but cummings would have played with the typography and punctuation in that way he has. It has a consistent and clear direction and emotion and doesn't make you feel stupid for not quite knowing exactly what every last phrase is referring to since you know you're not supposed to and you don't need to. Sam's poem, though, forces the reader to waste time trying to figure out "is it me or him?" while feeling a bit dumb until you realize it's him. Perhaps if this is really a Sonnet #3 it would come across differently with the foundation laid by #1 and #2, but standing alone it's incomprehensible and seems to be so on purpose.
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Unread 11-07-2019, 12:52 PM
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The more I read this, the more I like my misinterpretation.

(On teachers and teaching, while teaching math, I once had a supervisor, who in my presence among others that included a teenage young man and several adults, referring to a person whom the supervisor alluded to unexpectedly with an anagram of the young man’s name, said that he had: “the attention span of an eel.” I was shocked. Then, I reconsidered. That young man had blinked and suddenly seemed all ears.)

Last edited by Allen Tice; 11-07-2019 at 06:19 PM. Reason: ,
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  #10  
Unread 11-07-2019, 02:39 PM
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Mine is probably a misinterpretation, too, Allen. The more I read the line about hair and gray, the less young the whole voice feels to me.
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