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Ahavati
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Ahavati
Tyrant of Words
United States
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Joined 11th Apr 2015
Forum Posts: 1157


ManorMyth said:This is a poem I wrote awhile ago and posted on here, but I always felt something was off about it. If anyone could possibly help me figure it out.

A Scream Echoes...

A scream echoes through the halls. (lose the period and go with nothing or a semicolon to connect the next line)
With the sound of nails screeching across the walls.


First, I agree with Johnny on the elipses doing nothing. I want to add that while I understand your goal may have been to lead the reader into the poem somewhat suspensefully, what it actually accomplished was the reader not being able to take a deep breath into the first stanza. If you hadn't repeated the title at the beginning of the line, the ellipses may have provided a different effect. But, as it stands, we already know a scream is echoing down the hall, so it's kind of a let down to read it again after the eclipses.

A shadowy figure then appear[s,] that is quite very tall.  
It camecoming to take my life,and that is all.


I might even go so far as to rewrite this so it flows more smoothly, i.e. -

A tall, shadowy figure appears
To take my life, end my years

I'm not saying use that couplet, I'm saying you may be able to rewrite for a smoother transition that seems less forced to rhyme.

Also, your tenses are aligning, i.e. - present and past. In parts you're living in others it seems you're recalling.

It'sIts presence surroundsparalyzes me with fear and loathe
As it reaches into me and
my heart begins to slow...


I agree with Johnny on the suggested edits, but feel much of the syntax reflected in this is to force rhyme. When writing, ask yourself if you would literally say, "fear and loathe".  The goal of this verse is to convey your horror regarding the arrival of death. That's your central focus, not rhyme (although rhyme could be a goal). So, the question is, how do you convey horror and retain a seamless rhyme that doesn't interrupt the flow nor detract attention from the emotion you're attempting to project?  I would suggest substituting paralyzes for surrounds so the reader immediately freezes in fear vs imagining being surrounded by something. I mean the very word paralyze (for whatever reason) evokes fear and dread. When selecting words to convey emotion, think hard about what you want the reader to relate with...in this case, fear.
 
...down toon one knee I drop and, clench my chest.  
With a feeling Knowing/Realizing/Resolvedthis will be the last place I rest.


Do you feel like you're dying or do you know you are? This is very important emotion to convey to your reader.

I agree the ellipses here is brilliant. It takes the reader down with you and conveys the sinking feeling perfectly.
 
I begin realize the scream through the halls was actually me  
And the screeching across the walls was me dropping to that knee.


This was a refreshingly surprising stanza that I didnt see coming. After removal of the extraneous words you may want to revise the syntax a bit.

I'm continuously reliving the day death came to set me free.  
As I burning in hell
for my sins for the rest of eternity.


I would refrain from using the word "sins" as burning in hell implies you haven't been an angel. Also, "the rest of" negates "etenity", as eternity is endless.

I would further agree with Johnny regarding details of your life. A flashback to a sin, perhaps, giving us some indication of what you committed that lands you in hell.

I think with a tad of reworking this could delve a bit deeper into some circumstantial details for the reader to relate with, while conveying the emotion through carefully selected and placed words.

Thank you for the honor of the read and opportunity to critique.

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Jade-Pandora
jade tiger
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Bravo!👏👏👏

I think you & Johnny did a superb team critique on ManorMyth's piece!

👍😎👈wearing shades to prevent rain blindness

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Ahavati
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☔🍸

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PsycoticMastermind
Thought Provoker
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Even us critters are not above being critiqued.

Me:

Where has My Head Gone?

As the previous evening and
night's events flash unfold
in a sudden rush, I take inventory
Such a carriage ride of disturbing dreams!
tossing, turning, tumbling
me around with far less prosing
much more favoring poetry
nonetheless
posing a story so deviously plotless
my brain could no longer follow
Waking on the cold ground
before dawn, still sleepy
Hollow my body lay in - a dense brush
and bramble nightmare. Creepy
doesn't begin to describe
how this day is starting out
and I find myself asking
while fumbling about

Where has my head gone?


Ahavati:

A carriage ride of disturbing dreams...how very aptly put. The reference between poetry and prosing is an interesting one and can be translated per the reader's individual interpretation. It's almost as if you felt you were drowning in a sea of prose looking to poetry as a life-preserver. Or being haunted by a plotless piece of prose you were forced to read repeatedly.

I would recommend hyphenating flash-unfold, as I tripped and had to reread. Almost recommended you remove it; however, just as a flash-flood comes on quickly and unexpectedly, so, too, do recollections of disturbing dreams as we attempt to make sense of them.

Love the Sleepy Hollow reference, I almost expected to read a footnote saying this was in regards to the headless horseman.


Me:

I shall heed your recommendation in an upcoming revision, as I am not satisfied with the whole shebang. It is a mess of rhymes that are out of sync.




Where has My Head Gone?

ick ...
A body
Mine?
waking to rain, cold
... yuck
Soggy, muddied
on sloggy ground
What the fuck?

As events of previous eve
and night flash-unfold
I find myself taking inventory
during the sudden rush

Such a tumultuous carriage ride of disturbing dreams!

tossing, turning, tumbling me around
with a mischievous weave of poetry
so bizarrely prosed, it seems a story
much composed by an absent mind
Who would dare an attempt to follow?

Before dawn
Groggy, still sleepy
Hollow my body lay in
a dense brush, wood
and bramble nightmare. Creepy
doesn't nearly begin to articulate
how this day is starting out
but solving the mystery has to wait
as I have to ask while fumbling about

Where has my head gone?


Me:

There. Much better.

Your assessment clued me in to the fact that I wasn't being forthcoming enough with the narrator being a victim of the Headless Horseman.

Thank you.


Ta-da.

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elise0622
Jinx
Lost Thinker
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the wars within

Angels and demons war in my head both screaming commands both trying to break and bend the other the results are always pretty some steined the color red others cause the vision to turn black, black and red, red and black dancing within the long lost tortured sky they dance Ha Ha Ha Ha they destroy and they hurt all filled with the most beautiful of damage or scars oh so pretty and fun dancing within the chaos a trapped butterfly i've become a trapped and broken angled wing destroyed and mangled, manlgled and destroyed lets watch the war lost in this world let's disappear into the nothingness filled with flame






......and....

SELF DESTRUCTION-lost life-no hope to far gone

Hold a gun to my head
Rap a noose around my neck
Kill me

IT doesn't matter .....never has

Disappear without a trace
Without the place
No safety
No love
Just the gun
Just the attack
......Of the demons........OF life?

A single slice becomes the instant remedy the distraction the ultimate need the oone thing to take away the pain

Soon it's an addiction
Mentality and body unravels
While the mind travels
Causing my sanity to unravel
All of life becoming a life long battle
Sanity and insanity
The safety soon travels to the arms of the devil
To entangle the dreams

Soon trapped and pinned to the devil
Who gives false remedies
But to fill the disease
That is the mind

Hand me a boy and whisper a single prayer over my head
The note to suicide becomes inevitable
Yet untouchable
Pushing the breath of life through my veins yet can't see the pains

Soon handed a best friend and people to care for
Drowning in the dark
Stumbling looking for a reason

Yet left alone with face to the ground
Left for dead craving for alcohol
A need to watch myself bleed
A single need to cut
Soon left and lost in the unforgiving cold to be ripped apart by the wolves

He lies so close a close friend.....
LEFT ME TO BLEED AND DIE
CHOKING AND BLEEDING
HE CAN'T SEE ME
THE PAIN
THE DESTRUCTION

I need to die the whisper engulfs watch the wretch die
yet they all care say stay strong
force me to live in a place i don't belong
With a lost talent
A talent that fades
Hold me destroy me
I'm no longer relivent and can no longer care
That talent that disappears writing no longer having the emotion to do it and now im gone

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JohnnyBlaze
Fire of Insight
United States
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elise0622 said:the wars within

Angels and demons war in my head both screaming commands both trying to break and bend the other the results are always pretty some steined the color red others cause the vision to turn black, black and red, red and black dancing within the long lost tortured sky they dance Ha Ha Ha Ha they destroy and they hurt all filled with the most beautiful of damage or scars oh so pretty and fun dancing within the chaos a trapped butterfly i've become a trapped and broken angled wing destroyed and mangled, manlgled and destroyed lets watch the war lost in this world let's disappear into the nothingness filled with flame


I suggest breaking this up into lines like a poem and doing a spellcheck.

I also suggest changing this train of thought from

"a trapped butterfly I've become
a trapped and broken angled wing"

to

"a trapped butterfly I've become
a broken winged thing"

Why? Because you used the word "trapped" already. Repeating words can hurt or help a poem. In this instance, it hurts because I noticed it as I read it. It was a minor distraction, but as the minor distractions add up, it becomes a major distraction. We want your poem to be distraction free.

The word "angled" was also a distraction, but for different reasons. You already mentiond "angels". Angels have wings. Are you trying to say you are angel winged? Or that you are a butterfly with angled shaped wings? I can't be sure. A solution is to remove the distraction altogether.

You have a good poem here, writtin in a manner that reflects a mind entranced by the chaos that occupies it.  Saying "pretty" and then "oh so pretty" works in a rambling way to your advantage.

I'll have more to say about your 2nd poem tomorrow.

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JohnnyBlaze
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United States
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elise0622 said:SELF DESTRUCTION-lost life-no hope to far gone

Hold a gun to my head
Rap a noose around my neck
Kill me

IT doesn't matter .....never has

Disappear without a trace
Without the place
No safety
No love
Just the gun
Just the attack
......Of the demons........OF life?

A single slice becomes the instant remedy the distraction the ultimate need the oone thing to take away the pain

Soon it's an addiction
Mentality and body unravels
While the mind travels
Causing my sanity to unravel
All of life becoming a life long battle
Sanity and insanity
The safety soon travels to the arms of the devil
To entangle the dreams

Soon trapped and pinned to the devil
Who gives false remedies
But to fill the disease
That is the mind

Hand me a boy and whisper a single prayer over my head
The note to suicide becomes inevitable
Yet untouchable
Pushing the breath of life through my veins yet can't see the pains

Soon handed a best friend and people to care for
Drowning in the dark
Stumbling looking for a reason

Yet left alone with face to the ground
Left for dead craving for alcohol
A need to watch myself bleed
A single need to cut
Soon left and lost in the unforgiving cold to be ripped apart by the wolves

He lies so close a close friend.....
LEFT ME TO BLEED AND DIE
CHOKING AND BLEEDING
HE CAN'T SEE ME
THE PAIN
THE DESTRUCTION

I need to die the whisper engulfs watch the wretch die
yet they all care say stay strong
force me to live in a place i don't belong
With a lost talent
A talent that fades
Hold me destroy me
I'm no longer relivent and can no longer care
That talent that disappears writing no longer having the emotion to do it and now im gone


The narrator mentions at the end no longer having the emotion to write.

That is the most outstanding aspect of the poem, but you waited until the very end to say it. This is The Narrator's Personal Struggle. You should be starting with this.

Otherwise, what you have is what I call a "woe is me" "emo poem".  It is written with emotional venting at the expense of poeticism. In other words, you aren't using language and words creatively.

From a therapeutic standpoint, it may be cathartic and healthy for you to let these feelings out.

Yet, from a poetic or even prose standpoint, you are communicating feelings without information.

Stanza 3 mentons "the place". What place?

Stanza 2 mentions "It doesn't matter". What doesn't matter?

My advice is to revisit this at a later date and do a rewrite when you are in a more calm and creative frame of mind.

If you want to keep writing poetry as a hobby or even as a means of financially supporting yourself, you'll need to learn how to express yourself more clearly so that your readers aren't abandoned in the darkness wondering what you are saying.






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Ahavati
Tyrant of Words
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Exquisite_Chaos
Twisted Dreamer
United States
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If you would Johnny, I would be appreciative.

Windswept

every stitch which
held me together
was approached
by a whispering
seamstress
who had been
waiting eagerly within
the darkness

edge was poised
at just the perfect angle
to slide between
a butterflies wings
found pinched
and
folded back
by silken threads
now coming untangled

wings then flew me
far and wide on a journey

lifted by the gusts
of blown away selfless hearts,
in the updraft of unkept promises

I sailed on a rescue raft;
navigated towards your direction,
with never a second thought

it'd be needed by me
in the end

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JohnnyBlaze
Fire of Insight
United States
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Exquisite_Chaos said:If you would Johnny, I would be appreciative.

Windswept

every stitch which
held me together
was approached
by a whispering
seamstress
who had been
waiting eagerly within
the darkness

edge was poised
at just the perfect angle
to slide between
a butterflies wings
found pinched
and
folded back
by silken threads
now coming untangled

wings then flew me
far and wide on a journey

lifted by the gusts
of blown away selfless hearts,
in the updraft of unkept promises

I sailed on a rescue raft;
navigated towards your direction,
with never a second thought

it'd be needed by me
in the end


The poem as is:

I'd trim these lines to

seamstress
who had been waited eagerly
within the darkness


now coming untangled

wings then flew me

I'd rearrange these lines to

Navigated towards your direction
with never a second thought,
I sailed on a rescue raft


I'd trim the end to

it'd be needed by me
in the end

How could this poem be further improved?

Be clearer in your language so that the reader has a more immediate understanding that the seamstress released the narrator/butterfly from a cocoon. I suggest

her sharp edge poised

Elaborate on why she is whispering and what she is whispering about or strike whispering from the poem.

What I "gather on my own" is that the seamstress is instrumental in the narrator going through a transformation, from being selfish to selfless.

If she has a strong relationship to the narrator, his unkept promises would explain her eagerness to accelerate his transformation. Is she also the one in need of rescue later on, perhaps a victim of his selfishness that he now has to save her from?

Sounds to me like he was too late. His selfishness took it's toll on her. The relationship couldn't be saved.

But then again, I'm assuming all these things after "an inordinate amount of scrutiny".

You have an amazing poem here.

It would be even more amazing if you wrote it in a more direct manner that allows the average reader an immediate grasp of what actually happens -  in one pass.

We should be reading it more than once out of desire, not out of necessity.


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Exquisite_Chaos
Twisted Dreamer
United States
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JohnnyBlaze said:

The poem as is:

I'd trim these lines to

seamstress
who had been waited eagerly
within the darkness


now coming untangled

wings then flew me

I'd rearrange these lines to

Navigated towards your direction
with never a second thought,
I sailed on a rescue raft


I'd trim the end to

it'd be needed by me
in the end

How could this poem be further improved?

Be clearer in your language so that the reader has a more immediate understanding that the seamstress released the narrator/butterfly from a cocoon. I suggest

her sharp edge poised

Elaborate on why she is whispering and what she is whispering about or strike whispering from the poem.

What I "gather on my own" is that the seamstress is instrumental in the narrator going through a transformation, from being selfish to selfless.

If she has a strong relationship to the narrator, his unkept promises would explain her eagerness to accelerate his transformation. Is she also the one in need of rescue later on, perhaps a victim of his selfishness that he now has to save her from?

Sounds to me like he was too late. His selfishness took it's toll on her. The relationship couldn't be saved.

But then again, I'm assuming all these things after "an inordinate amount of scrutiny".

You have an amazing poem here.

It would be even more amazing if you wrote it in a more direct manner that allows the average reader an immediate grasp of what actually happens - in one pass.

We should be reading it more than once out of desire, not out of necessity.



Thank you very much Johnny! Here we go! Round 2!

Windswept

every stitch which
held me together
was approached
by a seamstress
who waited eagerly within
the darkness
for the final repair
to each frayed edge

her sharp tip poised
at just the perfect angle
to slide between
a butterflies wings
found pinched
and
folded back
by silken threads
coming untangled

with precision
seams ripped free
allowing me to fly
far and wide on a journey

lifted by the gusts
of our blown away selfless hearts,
in the updraft of their unkept promises

navigating towards your direction
braving the storm to save us both
I sailed on a rescue raft
with never a second thought

it'd be needed only by me
in the end



My repressed self was the seamstress...

?? better or worse, lol

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JohnnyBlaze
Fire of Insight
United States
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Exquisite_Chaos said:

Thank you very much Johnny! Here we go! Round 2!

Windswept

every stitch which
held me together
was approached
by a seamstress
who waited eagerly within
the darkness
for the final repair
to each frayed edge

her sharp tip poised
at just the perfect angle
to slide between
a butterflies wings
found pinched
and
folded back
by silken threads
coming untangled

with precision
seams ripped free
allowing me to fly
far and wide on a journey

lifted by the gusts
of our blown away selfless hearts,
in the updraft of their unkept promises

navigating towards your direction
braving the storm to save us both
I sailed on a rescue raft
with never a second thought

it'd be needed only by me
in the end



My repressed self was the seamstress...

?? better or worse, lol


It's progress.

But if the seamstress is freeing herself/repressed you, she/you would be best  depicted as being inside the cocoon slicing her/your way out.

Then it would be more obvious to 1st time readers that the narrator and seamstress are one. We can appreciate the depths of your symbolism in real time or subsequent reads.

I  suggest

held me bound
was approached
by a seamstress
who waited eagerly within
cocoon's shroud of darkness

Who are you trying to save? And why do you end up needing to be rescued?

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Exquisite_Chaos
Twisted Dreamer
United States
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Forum Posts: 29

JohnnyBlaze said:

It's progress.

But if the seamstress is freeing herself/repressed you, she/you would be best depicted as being inside the cocoon slicing her/your way out.

Then it would be more obvious to 1st time readers that the narrator and seamstress are one. We can appreciate the depths of your symbolism in real time or subsequent reads.

I suggest for Line 2

held me bound

Who are you trying to save? And why do you end up needing to be rescued?


Got it! (I think, lol...) Thank you, Johnny!

Windswept

every stitch which
held me bound
was approached
by a seamstress
who waited eagerly within
the darkness
for the final repair
to each frayed edge

her sharp tip poised
at just the perfect angle
to slide between
a butterflies wings
found pinched
and
folded back
by silken threads
coming untangled

with precision
seams ripped free
allowing me to fly
far and wide on a journey

lifted by the gusts
of our blown away selfless hearts,
in the updraft of their unkept promises

navigating towards your direction
braving the storm to save us both
I sailed on a rescue raft
with never a second thought

it'd be needed only by me;
turned away and left stranded in the end

poet
JohnnyBlaze
Fire of Insight
United States
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Joined 20th Mar 2015
Forum Posts: 644

Try this on for size:

held me bound
was approached
by a seamstress
who waited eagerly
within this cocoon's
shroud of darkness

Then you'll have a solid merger of seamstress and narrator.

I still have no clue who you are trying to rescue.

Who are you trying to rescue?

And why does that person turn you away?

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