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  #1  
Unread 07-07-2021, 10:02 AM
Aaron Poochigian Aaron Poochigian is offline
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Default All I Know Right Now

All I Know Right Now

Towers gather, to a glare, the last long light, and in the glow where
doves come down and eye a squinting woman, she says, “shoo.”

A bicyclist is pushing, hands-free, up Fifth Avenue.
Steam rising from a manhole, he is, for an instant, nowhere.

. . . . .
Line 2, "squint-eyed woman" for "one-eyed woman" for "homeless woman" for "crippled woman" for "lean blackwoman" for "thin old woman"
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Last edited by Aaron Poochigian; 07-12-2021 at 06:35 AM.
  #2  
Unread 07-07-2021, 10:28 AM
Roger Slater Roger Slater is offline
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The second couplet is strong, I think, but I'm not sure about the first. The first, though, would be improved by a comma after "light" (or even a full stop).

Still, I think "lean old woman" can be improved upon, perhaps with something specific we can visualize as well as we can visualize the cyclist in the next couplet.
  #3  
Unread 07-07-2021, 12:03 PM
Aaron Poochigian Aaron Poochigian is offline
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Thank you, Roger. I have added the comma in the first line. I will think about the old woman who says "shoo."

Best,

Aaron
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  #4  
Unread 07-07-2021, 01:08 PM
Jim Moonan Jim Moonan is offline
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.
I love the long lines and the contemplative tone.

I personally like the old woman who says "shoo" for its play on words (There was an old woman who lived in a shoe). Should "shoo" be capitalized?

If you want to milk the silence between the images, I would add yet another comma in line one after "glow". That would make ten commas in four lines! Hurray for commas. The turtles of punctuation.

May I suggest a semi colon after manhole?

Interesting metrical patterns and sounds to the rhymes.

A calming read, even with the temper and the disappearance.

.
  #5  
Unread 07-07-2021, 03:39 PM
John Isbell John Isbell is offline
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Calming is right. There's a serenity to this that reminds me of what the Imagists found in the T'ang corpus. I like the whole thing, but agree that the cyclist is splendid.

Cheers,
John
  #6  
Unread 07-07-2021, 10:17 PM
Aaron Poochigian Aaron Poochigian is offline
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Roger, Jim and John,

Roger has prompted me to be more descriptive of the "lean old woman" in question. I have done so. I hope the poem is better for it.

Best,

Aaron
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Last edited by Aaron Poochigian; 07-07-2021 at 10:20 PM.
  #7  
Unread 07-08-2021, 08:42 AM
Jim Moonan Jim Moonan is offline
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.
Never mind. I like dove better.
.

Last edited by Jim Moonan; 07-08-2021 at 10:44 AM.
  #8  
Unread 07-08-2021, 12:16 PM
MJ Starling MJ Starling is offline
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Hi Aaron,

I also love the second couplet and don’t care as much for the first couplet. I would like to see the first couplet as imagistic as the second.
I read line 2 as follows: the blackwoman rejects the doves of peace.

Thanks
MJ Starling

Last edited by MJ Starling; 07-08-2021 at 12:28 PM.
  #9  
Unread 07-08-2021, 12:43 PM
John Isbell John Isbell is offline
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A vote for the original version. I liked it!

Cheers,
John
  #10  
Unread 07-08-2021, 04:07 PM
Mark Stone Mark Stone is offline
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Aaron,

1. I have never seen "black woman" written as one word.

2. It appears that the accepted practice has become to capitalize the "b" in black when referring to Black people. This is discussed in two articles: "AP changes writing style to capitalize 'b' in Black," APNews.com, June 19, 2020, and "Why we capitalize 'Black' (and not 'white')," Mike Laws, Columbia Journalism Review, June 16, 2020.

3. I think L4 works as is. However, when I see a dependent clause that precedes a pronoun, I am used to the dependent clause describing the pronoun in some way. Since this is not the case in L4, it just strikes me as a little unusual.

4. After reading the poem, I thought of the old woman who whispers "hush" in Goodnight Moon.

Best, Mark
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