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  #21  
Unread 02-21-2019, 11:29 AM
Martin Rocek's Avatar
Martin Rocek Martin Rocek is offline
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Wow Jan,
this is devastating. I don't have any nits; the revision ends with a building fanfare of sorrow.

Best wishes,
Martin
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  #22  
Unread 02-21-2019, 11:37 AM
Erik Olson Erik Olson is offline
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Jan,

Responding to your revision, I think it improves on the original. If nothing else, I would urge two things: to include the grammatically necessary comma, as I stated before, and now along with a few other punctuation adjustments; and to keep the tetrameter throughout.
Here in the age of fragile skin,
the slightest knock and wounds begin
to bleed into finality.

Here, I mourn the living dead,
killed by what I’ve done or said.
The blood and friends now lost to me,

I count my blessings on one hand;
the state of joy is a foreign land.
I am consumed by misery.

You were missing: Period or semicolon after land to avoid the run-on sentence; punctuation third line second stanza to avoid the incomplete sentence; period or semicolon after hand to avoid the dreaded comma-splice. What Martin said is true, this is truly devastating. The muses on here have taken a rather sepulchral turn of late, eh?

All the best,
Erik

P.S. I, for my part, prefer the original second line. Should you wish to syntactically join the last and penultimate line, I suppose that you could, say, along these lines. For what it might be worth:
I count my blessings on one hand
with joy remote as rumored land
and am consumed by misery.

Last edited by Erik Olson; 02-21-2019 at 06:22 PM.
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  #23  
Unread 02-22-2019, 12:46 PM
Jan Iwaszkiewicz's Avatar
Jan Iwaszkiewicz Jan Iwaszkiewicz is offline
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Max

I have changed S1 and half-full is gone.

Roger

I knew what it meant but was unsure of the declension. I believe Mater Misericordiae enjoys quite a wide usage and understanding anywhere that has had a European influence. This a play on that. If it limits my audience then so be it I am loath to surrender the depth that it gives.

Sam

Yes it is old hat but here the use of cliche goes to the credit of the voice of N. However I have listened and responded to your reservation the glass is gone.

Erik

The comma is in and half-full is out, I always look forward to your crits.

Jim

Yes but not just a prisoner of place but a prisoner of personality type and mindset.

Martin

I have changed that line but as I have said above I am loath to change the title as it contains the resonances I want and I cannot write for all.

Susan

I concur and have changed it.

Martin

I hear your reservations and think that I have addressed them.

I did change the line to knocks but have since reverted.

John

Yes Dunbar's Lament, but also John Clare's:

My friends forsake me like a memory lost:
I am the self-consumer of my woes—


Martin,

Thank you.

Erik,

I hope the edits satisfy your reservations.

My thanks and regards to all it has been so helpful.

Jan
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  #24  
Unread 02-22-2019, 01:13 PM
Martin Elster Martin Elster is offline
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Hi Jan,

I still like this poem a lot.

I’m still bothered, though, by S3, L1.

I count my blessings on a single hand

All the other lines are now clearly 4 beats, and that’s the only one that’s 5 beats. You don’t seem to be fretting about it, and most other folks probably are not unduly distressed either. But here’s a suggestion if you want to keep “on a single (hand)” instead of “on one (hand).” Just replace “blessings” with “boons.”

I count my boons on a single hand

"Blessings" is probably a better word than "boons" though.
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  #25  
Unread 02-22-2019, 09:33 PM
Mark McDonnell Mark McDonnell is offline
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Hi Jan,

You were right to stick with 'knock' singular in L2. I think I was reading it wrong: I wanted 'knocks and wounds' to be like 'aches and pains', but I see now the sense is causal like this

Here in the age of fragile skin,
(I take) the slightest knock and...

which is better.

I can't make my mind up about the last S. You'd need three unstressed syllables in a row in L1 to make it tet (sings on a) and both those first two lines are certainly more of a tripping mouthful than the stately rhythm of S1 and 2.

Maybe you want it like this. Martin R called it a 'building fanfare of sorrow'. He might be right, but the rhythm seems a bit cluttered there to me. Just for the metre, compare

My blessings take a single hand
forgiveness is a foreign land
I am consumed by misery.

But you may be right. You know what you want, and I was wrong about 'knocks' ha.

Cheers

Mark
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  #26  
Unread 02-22-2019, 09:47 PM
John Isbell John Isbell is offline
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Hi Jan,

That's a tremendous John Clare poem. Thank you for reminding me of it.

John
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  #27  
Unread 02-24-2019, 01:01 PM
Jan Iwaszkiewicz's Avatar
Jan Iwaszkiewicz Jan Iwaszkiewicz is offline
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Martin

I scan the line thusly:

I count my blessings on a single hand

1,4,2,4,1,2,1,4,1,4

I do not think the line is muddy so I cannot see five beats in it.

Mark

I hear you Mark but it is accentual where three unstressed is the limit and there are three unstressed here with none strong enough to be a secondary. See my response to Martin above.

John

The Clare is quite timeless.

Regards and thanks,

Jan
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