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Old 11-08-2018, 05:10 PM
Jan Iwaszkiewicz's Avatar
Jan Iwaszkiewicz Jan Iwaszkiewicz is offline
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Hunter Valley, NSW, Australia
Posts: 2,542

Pretty, Jim but for me you have lost the wonderful kinetic power that you had in the last version.


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Old 11-09-2018, 12:58 PM
Jim Moonan Jim Moonan is offline
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 1,750

Revision posted. ("3a" deleted. Jan was right. Sorry for the momentary version of neatness and prettiness.)

Mary, The first part (everything before "Now then") was written almost as it was happening. I just let things spill. The paragraph formatting was circumstantial. I was just trying to get down everything I was seeing/hearing and didn't bother to make line breaks. it was almost like painting. I would look up and listen than write.

The second part was written the next morning looking out a large window. Coincidentally I had just found out my cousin had died overnight. It affected the final stanza quite a bit.

The staggered lines of v.2 is an attempt to create a feeling of bluster. It seemed appropriate since the first version was raw/rough with no consideration given to line breaks etc.
Still, I have done a terrible job with line breaks in v.2.
So I've re-constructed the line breaks in the latest version and tightened up the spaces to give it a more solid feel; more like the original.
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Old 11-10-2018, 01:13 PM
John Riley John Riley is offline
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 3,990

I like the immediacy here. I don't have much to add to what has already been suggested. I think Mary's comments are very helpful. I personally wouldn't worry about a haibun and would focus on saying what you are trying to say.
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Old 11-10-2018, 06:24 PM
Mark McDonnell Mark McDonnell is offline
Join Date: May 2016
Location: England
Posts: 2,454

Hiya Jim,

For me this is less Whitman than it is Dylan Thomas: like an extended riff on his rapturous descriptions of snow in 'Child's Christmas in Wales'. It does exactly what it needs to do and I like it. I don't know if I wouldn't end it on 'fallen trees' and cut the last part altogether.

The latest revision is good. As well as the shape you cut a little of the more excessive excess, without hurting the poem.
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Old 11-11-2018, 02:46 PM
David Callin David Callin is offline
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Ellan Vannin
Posts: 2,058

Hi Jim,

I agree with Mark. I don't see much Whitman in here at all - maybe the last two lines? - but there is something of the old DT hwyl there. And yet there is something else, something that I can't quite place at the moment. I'll let you know when (or if) I do.

But I do like it - those last two lines (which are terrific), especially. You achieve the contrast in moods very well.


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Old 11-12-2018, 03:21 PM
Jim Moonan Jim Moonan is offline
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Boston, MA
Posts: 1,750

Thanks John, Mark, David. Writing this (and revising it) is an exercise of sorts. I tried to get out of my own way and just take dictation. In revising, I strayed from the initial inspiration for a time, but found my way back to it after Jan's comment that version #3a was a step backwards. Thank you Jan.

Mark, glad that the reshaping/pruning produces a better poem for you. That you noticed and liked the trimming of words and phrases gives me all the feedback I need to know that I might just be getting the hang of revising, even a little bit.

David, I wonder what that other thing is that this reminds you? I had wanted this to be a bluster of descriptors and a cacophony of images juxtaposed with the contrasting stillness of the day after. I'm especially pleased that the final two lines work for you. They came out of nowhere (though as I mentioned earlier I had gotten news of my cousin's death overnight and I'm sure it was on my mind).
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