Jump to content
Poetry Magnum Opus
Lake

Khan’s

Recommended Posts

Lake

Khan’s

 

Winter covers Dinkytown

with smokes and snows -

a good time to

sit around a hot pot

or eat from a sizzling wok.

 

Put on your uniforms, boys,

tie up your aprons, girls,

and don’t forget your smiles,

a trick for good tips, you know.

The boss babbles like a crow.

 

Her smile freezes. At a table,

a group of college students

are chatting merrily until

one looks up, tips his glasses,

and stutters, “aren’t you...?”

 

Dishes collected, thoughts

cleared, she resumes her smile,

“30 years on the east side of the river,

30 years on the west side of it.”

Head straight, she hurries away.

 

By a window, a news reporter

enjoys his meal quietly.

Free of charge, of course.

Bang! The brass gong rings -

ripples in the lake of mind.

 

 

(It seems I can't get it improved any further. So better post it here for opinions. It's based on one of my old poems but rewritten from a different angle. I appreciate all the suggestions and miss Tinker's tinkering on my stuff. Thanks.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
goldenlangur

Hello Lake,

 

 

I know little about poetic forms and therefore can offer no suggestions for improvement on that score. However, what a great narrative your poem carries. It sent me googling and I was fascinated to learn about Dinkytown and its associations with the university students, which you describe so vividly in your poem.

 

I take it that 'Khan's' is a restaurant and the account is of a person who has worked there. The episode seems to refer to a chance encounter with someone, she knew:

 

"Her smile freezes. At a table,

a group of college students

are chatting merrily until

one looks up, tips his glasses,

and stutters, “aren’t you...?”"

 

This brings back memories of the narrator's own student days or perhaps of a friendship that ended? Or perhaps the narrator was recognized by someone, she did not want to see again.

 

Even if I've got the wrong end of the stick, you poem is rich and evocative and I love your use of language. A few favourite details of mine:

 

"Dishes collected, thoughts

cleared, she resumes her smile, "

 

The wordplay on 'collected' and 'cleared' here is noteworthy.

 

Also love these:

 

"....a good time to

sit around a hot pot

or eat from a sizzling wok"

 

"The boss babbles like a crow."

 

And these telling lines:

 

"...a news reporter

enjoys his meal quietly.

Free of charge, of course. "

 

The "ripples in the lake of mind" is a great image.

 

 

I enjoyed this very much and I'm so glad that you decided to post it here.

 

goldenlangur


goldenlangur

 

 

Even a single enemy is too many and a thousand friends too few - Bhutanese saying.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
tonyv

I absolutely love this poem, Lake! It's one of your best.

 

I, too, checked Wikipedia and Google image. Dinkytown (along with Khan's) looks like a fun place to hang out. I love university towns -- there's always lots of culture. One of my favorites is Ann Arbor, Michigan, the home of the University of Michigan. I have been there numerous times, and I enjoy the abundance of fantastic restaurants, etc. that are there. I haven't been as far into the midwest/heartland as the twin cities, but I would love to check it out (your poem makes me want to go!) ... and Fargo is my favorite movie! Oh, and did I remember to say that I love the poem???

 

Tony icon_smile.gif


Here is a link to an index of my works on this site: tonyv's Member Archive topic

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Aleksandra

Lake definitely your style has been changed by the time, because you said that this is older poem but now revised. Your narrative voice is so good and I am glad that you showed some work from before.

 

It is clear poem, very well written in this narrative style.

 

Thanks for sharing.

 

Aleksandra


The poet is a liar who always speaks the truth - Jean Cocteau

History of Macedonia

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Larsen M. Callirhoe

wow lake, this is one of the best poem's i have ever read. i love it and i applaud you and it was a treat to read. well done! you make everyone seem so human in the poem. there is so much to get out of this with its rich narrative. i definetely get a glimpse into your mind. obviously a college town's resturaunt. two things came to mind when i read the title of the poem, khan's hotdogs and khan's like cohen the jewish word for priest. cohen is pronounced khan in hebrew. that being said i never got into college towns though i did visit the florida state campus. i went to a junior college called broward community college for ine term over two years. i stopped going because i got married then was in a car wreck a month later and broke my neck and became paralyzed. i never resumed college but had set my sights on the university of south florida. i remember eating at this college's broward cimmunity colloge's dining facility many times. i remember siting by myself being a loner and looking at all the pretty females coming and going. i could only imgine what a major campas social life is like. nothing wrong with being a server/waitress. it is a honest living but hard work. i know from experience waiting on tables at pizza hut.i never reported my tips as income so i didn't pay taxes on them lol.

 

larsen


Larsen M. Callirhoe

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lake

goldenlangur wrote:

 

It sent me googling and I was fascinated to learn about Dinkytown and its associations with the university students, which you describe so vividly in your poem.

 

Ah, that google thing is so powerful, nearly everything can be found there. icon_biggrin.png

 

goldenlangur wrote:

 

I take it that 'Khan's' is a restaurant and the account is of a person who has worked there. The episode seems to refer to a chance encounter with someone, she knew

 

You read it very well.

 

goldenlangur wrote:

 

This brings back memories of the narrator's own student days or perhaps of a friendship that ended? Or perhaps the narrator was recognized by someone, she did not want to see again.

 

You are right again, she didn't want to see.

 

 

goldenlangur wrote:

 

Even if I've got the wrong end of the stick, you poem is rich and evocative and I love your use of language. A few favourite details of mine:

 

"Dishes collected, thoughts

cleared, she resumes her smile, "

 

The wordplay on 'collected' and 'cleared' here is noteworthy.

 

Also love these:

 

"....a good time to

sit around a hot pot

or eat from a sizzling wok"

 

"The boss babbles like a crow."

 

And these telling lines:

 

"...a news reporter

enjoys his meal quietly.

Free of charge, of course. "

 

The "ripples in the lake of mind" is a great image.

 

 

Thank you for mentioning these lines and for your close reading, Golden.

 

Lake

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lake

Hi Tony,

 

There's no secret any more on the internet. icon_eek.gif Dinkytown, twin cities, Khan's (Mongolian restaurant), you name it. It's a shame, I haven't watched Fargo yet.

 

I'm not so sure about the punctuations in S2. Would you have a look again?

 

Thanks for your compliment.

 

Lake

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lake
Lake definitely your style has been changed by the time, because you said that this is older poem but now revised. Your narrative voice is so good and I am glad that you showed some work from before.

 

It is clear poem, very well written in this narrative style.

 

Thanks for sharing.

 

Aleksandra

 

Thanks Alek. Glad you noticed the style change. "narrative", is it a good thing or a bad thing? Because I once received a comment on my other poem, saying that poem is too narrative. I took it as a negative in that case.

 

Many thanks for your comments.

 

Lake

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lake

Hi Larsen,

 

I'm so glad you liked it.

 

nothing wrong with being a server/waitress. it is a honest living but hard work.

 

You are absolutely right. But at that time, it was a big change for her, a change from a teacher to a waitress.

 

I'm so sorry to hear your accident. I think there's nothing worse than being paralyzed and at the same time I admire your courage to write on the internet, which requires much more effort than a normal person.

 

Thanks for your read and sharing your thought.

 

Lake

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
tonyv

Lake wrote:

 

I'm not so sure about the punctuations in S2. Would you have a look again?

Certainly. I will try ...

Put on your uniforms, boys,

tie up your aprons, girls,

and don’t forget your smiles,

a trick for good tips, you know.

The boss babbles like a crow.

Hmmm ... I'm not an expert, but it actually looks pretty good to me. I suppose one could use semicolons after boys and after girls, but I think your way flows better, and it's logical, too. If I really want to know, I will usually ask my mother or my sister. They are both very good with grammar and with punctuation. But really, I think this way is okay.

 

Tony


Here is a link to an index of my works on this site: tonyv's Member Archive topic

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Frank E Gibbard

Lake, liked the way you worked your sobriquet into the text, in your interesting acount. I like the narative style in poetry too. Frank

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lake

Thanks Frank. 'sobriquet', nothing escapes your eye.

 

Lake

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lake

Tony,

 

Now I feel a bit more comfortable after reading your reply.

 

Appreciated.

 

Lake

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
badger11

I feel you have lost the 'noise' of the original Lake. Perhaps a short story would be an option.

 

badge

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
rhymeguy

What a great first chapter to an interesting story. Now I want more. Who is she? What is she hiding from? Does the reporter know, is that why he is there? Will she come back the next day or run because she has been recognized? Will you tell us or must we conjure up our own story. A second chapter would be nice. Perhaps, if you wanted to share this great story you could offer this up as an open forum for each to add a chapter and see where the story goes. So many possibilities!

 

I really loved this work.

 

rg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tinker

Hi Lake, sorry I missed this the first time around. And I see no place I could tinker with this interesting piece... Your timing and imagery are perfect. The poem captures the reader with crystal clear sights and sounds and draws us into a mystery which we're dying to solve... but we are better off left hanging... this brings us back again and again. I love it.

 

~~Tink


~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

For permission to use this work you can write to Tinker1111@icloud.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tinker

I remember the original too but it is really an entirely different poem. The first as Badge says has the noise.... it is livelier and in the moment capturing a mood, a place. You can even smell it. The new one is a crafted poem that gives a glimpse of the original but the focus is different. It is more intriguing with multi levels. I would never banish the 1st for the 2nd, nor would I banish the 2nd for the 1st. I would proudly place them side by side, so the reader could enjoy both.

 

~~Tink


~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

For permission to use this work you can write to Tinker1111@icloud.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
badger11
I remember the original too but it is really an entirely different poem. The first as Badge says has the noise.... it is livelier and in the moment capturing a mood, a place. You can even smell it. The new one is a crafted poem that gives a glimpse of the original but the focus is different. It is more intriguing with multi levels. I would never banish the 1st for the 2nd, nor would I banish the 2nd for the 1st. I would proudly place them side by side, so the reader could enjoy both.

 

~~Tink

 

Interesting points Tink. As you say it may be a case of the two pieces offering a differing dish. Of course, what the reader selects from the menu is a subjective choice (or digestion icon_smile.gif ).

 

On a more serious note I applaud Lake for both efforts and the one is more 'crafted', though personally the poems are more relevant than 'pride'. The question is in what form this narrative is best expressed and the answer is a matter of 'taste'.

 

Bon appetit

 

badge the banisher:0)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lake

badger11 wrote:

I feel you have lost the 'noise' of the original Lake. Perhaps a short story would be an option.

 

Thanks badger for your interest. I agree it lost the noise of the original. And thank you for giving the link for the original which reminds me of the good old time in PC.

 

Lake

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lake

Hi rhymerguy,

 

Thank you for your warm words. Yes, it'd be a good idea for everyone to write his/her own chapter.

Glad this raised so many questions to you.

 

Thanks much!

 

Lake

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Lake

Tinker,

 

You are always helpful and supportive. As you say I won't banish either of them.

 

After reading the exchange between you and badger, I realized that the same thing will be looked at very differently as the time passes.

 

Thanks everyone.

Bon appetit!

 

Lake

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
dedalus

Konnichi Wa, Lake

 

Nice one. It has that faint but unmistakable Oriental feel about it that so much of your stuff seems to possess. The story is open to interprtetation (with or without google!!) but that's one of the things that makes the piece so interesting!

 

ded


Drown your sorrows in drink, by all means, but the real sorrows can swim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Larsen M. Callirhoe

bump,

 

this is by far i think your best poem. i hope others reread this one lake. it is a very human humane poem. my favorite of yours of course. i hope life is well with you.

 

victor aka larse


Larsen M. Callirhoe

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Guidelines.