Eratosphere Forums - Metrical Poetry, Free Verse, Fiction, Art, Critique, Discussions Able Muse - a review of poetry, prose and art

Forum Left Top

Notices

Reply
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #11  
Unread 05-20-2020, 03:43 AM
Andrew Frisardi Andrew Frisardi is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Lazio, Italy
Posts: 5,146
Default

I like Allen’s suggestions for revision too, but even then I’m not convinced this one has found its inspiration, Aaron. I don’t think it’s as fleshed out (yet) as your better work is. It feels more academic than poetic.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Unread 05-20-2020, 06:47 AM
Aaron Novick's Avatar
Aaron Novick Aaron Novick is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Lafayette, Indiana
Posts: 2,294
Default

Thanks Allen, Martin, and Andrew. Funny thread, with a contingent seeing the real poem as lying in its last few lines, and another contingent wanting the same beginning but with a different ending. Nobody for whom it seems to work, in part because, so far as I can tell, the central animator of the poem hasn't come through. It's just not clear what it's doing.

And then there's me, who wrote, and still wants to write, a poem that does what this poem does. And the revisions this thread have prompted have gotten me to a point where I think I'm basically happy with how it does that thing. Which I guess means it's a private poem.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Unread 05-20-2020, 07:45 AM
Rick Mullin's Avatar
Rick Mullin Rick Mullin is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Northern New Jersey
Posts: 8,185
Default

Boy am I fickle.

I now think those last three lines should be cut. Problem I had with the top of the first version is along the lines of it sounding too academic. I now kind of like the absurdity of asking a tree about an arcane point of probably mathematical philosophy, especially one called non contradiction. I think you make your point in the lines about the last three and that it ends there. Those three lines become a sort of telly, almost "here's the moral of our story," close that you can definitely do without.

I would suggest cutting that ending and seeing if what is left suggests at least one more pass--without adding anything at the end.


Rick
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Unread 05-20-2020, 07:52 AM
Aaron Novick's Avatar
Aaron Novick Aaron Novick is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Lafayette, Indiana
Posts: 2,294
Default

Thanks, Rick. I'm glad you're enjoying the absurdity. Matt was right when he recognized this poem as having the structure of a joke.

What do you take to be the moral that is given too explicitly in the last three lines? Asking because they don't seem to me to give a moral, so it'll help me better understand your criticism.
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Unread 05-20-2020, 09:02 AM
Mark McDonnell Mark McDonnell is offline
Member
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Staffordshire, England
Posts: 3,593
Default

Hi Aaron,

I read this, once I got to the 'under my breath' line, as a person talking to themself. Perhaps trying to resolve some internal contradiction they have about some issue. The thread title made me think of political or 'culture war' issues, as I believe it has become a kind of article of faith among some on the right that they use 'facts and logic', which has then become a source of amusement to some on the left. The dropping leaf suggests one side of the Ns resolve beginning to crumble, perhaps. Am I close?

Like Uncle Walt (and lately Uncle Bob) said, I'm sure we are large and contain multitudes.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Unread 05-20-2020, 09:17 AM
Rick Mullin's Avatar
Rick Mullin Rick Mullin is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Northern New Jersey
Posts: 8,185
Default

Not a moral of the story, exactly. It's an explanation that you're giving--"Ah, I see. You turn yourself in one direction." It should not be necessary to give an explanation. Those lines just fall flat. I think you can leave the "Ah-ha." In fact, you definitely should.
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Unread 05-20-2020, 09:40 AM
Aaron Novick's Avatar
Aaron Novick Aaron Novick is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Lafayette, Indiana
Posts: 2,294
Default

Thanks, Rick, that helps. I'll push back slightly: the I, and not the N, is offering that explanation. I hope the reader is treating the I's take on this situation with due skepticism. That said, I'm seeing how it stands with the most "telly" line removed. I think it may work, though I worry that a poem whose main issue seems to be its obscurity has now become even more obscure...

Mark, thanks. I might need to rethink my thread titles, which are always throwaways, but which shape interpretations of the poem. Yes, the thread title references the culture war; the poem itself has nothing to do with it.

There really isn't meant to be anything hidden in this poem. A man is talking to a tree, asking it about non-contradiction. The leaves rustle under the wind of his breath, then the tree "turns" (imperceptibly!) toward the sun. The man takes this as an answer to his question. He hugs the tree in joy, causing a leaf to fall. That's it.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Unread 05-20-2020, 10:25 AM
Andrew Mandelbaum's Avatar
Andrew Mandelbaum Andrew Mandelbaum is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Portland Maine
Posts: 3,427
Default

I read this as the leaf drop indicating the trees dissent from the philosopherís reduction. It doesnít turn in one direction but all parts of it follow the ever changing sun. I am guessing the main thrust is that the certain can always see confirmation every where even when the evidence is actually against them. I see you underlining imperceptible. The certain canít actually see heliotropes. They only imagine it in their own image. The voice of the tree is under the certainís breath because the certain are only attuned to their own output? I just like that the Aspen is given personhood. But maybe a bit more tinkering might find a way to make its point felt rather than so much of the Sherlock Holme-ing. Still I do like it in any case.
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Unread 05-20-2020, 12:13 PM
Rick Mullin's Avatar
Rick Mullin Rick Mullin is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Northern New Jersey
Posts: 8,185
Default

Hi Aaron,

Doesn't matter if it's I, N, or P.D.Q. Bach... those three lines got to be got. IMO. Cut the explanation, and let I's or N's (what is the difference in most cases) Ah-ha! be the reader's as well.

Also, see Horace on brevity and obscurity!

RM
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Unread 05-20-2020, 01:47 PM
Aaron Novick's Avatar
Aaron Novick Aaron Novick is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Lafayette, Indiana
Posts: 2,294
Default

Andrew, Rick, thanks for your comments.

They've prompted a semi-radical revision which doesn't really address your concerns, but does cut some fat and add some puns.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump



Forum Right Top
Forum Left Bottom Forum Right Bottom
 
Right Left
Member Login
Forgot password?
Forum LeftForum Right


Forum Statistics:
Forum Members: 8,091
Total Threads: 20,024
Total Posts: 254,550
There are 102 users
currently browsing forums.
Forum LeftForum Right


Forum Sponsor:
Donate & Support Able Muse / Eratosphere
Forum LeftForum Right
Right Right
Right Bottom Left Right Bottom Right

Hosted by ApplauZ Online