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cemetery rose


eclipse
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The cold autumn winds cannot reunite leaves

with trees-the robins rain enraptured eyes

and wind waltzed wings tempt caged tears that grieve.

A widow plants flowers-her old man lies

ready to caress the contours of a rose,

his fingers are phantoms too frail to grip

a swaying rose as the cemetery gates close

and with newly found notes the robin slips

into a rhapsody. Fingers rove across

thorns, a flower soothed into stillness

a wifes haunted heart made still by the loss

of harking for the music of madness.

Under red winter skies a robin bathes

snow falls from thorns below ice captured graves.

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I really like the cemetary setting and winter imagery Eclipse. The first line, the gate closing, and the couplet were especially conducive to taking me there. Loved "red winter skies."

 

Tony

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

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  • 2 weeks later...
David W. Parsley

Apologies for the slow response, Barry. There is a lot to like about this poem, including the appropriateness of theme to the sonnet form. Many original images and turns of phrase, deliberate use of ambiguity, enjambment, foot substitution, and inventive rhyme. As a couple of the ambiguities come close to resisting comprhension for me, I will address them individually, as well as places where substitution may border on prosiness. As requested, I will share some other suggestions and what guidance I am able.

 

The cold autumn winds cannot reunite leaves

 

A fine image, plunging directly to the poem's theme, grabbing the reader's immediate attention. Nevertheless I would like to quarrel with the line on a couple of grounds. From a diction standpoint, the use of "cold" seems superfluous and redundant, and could even be called over-used. It may also be worth pointing out a segment of modern criticism recommending completion of a sonnet's first line with perfect iambic pentameter. (I, myself, frequently struggle with this particular stricture and even deliberately violate it for my own purposes.) In any case, I find the line difficult of five-beat scansion to any standard meter or admixture thereof.

 

... reunite leaves

with trees-the robins rain enraptured eyes

 

The second line brings flawless iambic pentameter, dazzling alliteration, and startling imagery. Sets a standard by which to measure the entire poem.

 

and wind waltzed wings tempt caged tears that grieve.

 

Thoroughly elegant metric substitution, competent use of a known (but not over-used) rhyme pair with double-entendre on 'leave.'

 

A widow plants flowers-her old man lies

ready to caress the contours of a rose,

his fingers are phantoms too frail to grip

a swaying rose as the cemetery gates close

 

Use of 'old man' here is quite dissonant, dictionally and rhythmically. Repetion of 'rose' disturbs the poem.

 

Recommend deleting 'the' from 'the cemetery gate'. Other repeating words: robin, thorns, wind, fingers. Very disturbing to a condensed form like the sonnet.

 

I like the thought-rhyme pair coming up, "madness-stillness", though the purist might insist that it is not a true rhyme. I find it inventive. Interesting things are happening in the poem here and continue to the end, with great originality of insight and image. Yeatsian craft is all that is required to complete a very fine piece!

 

.... Fingers rove across

thorns, a flower soothed into stillness

a wifes haunted heart made still by the loss

of harking for the music of madness.

Under red winter skies a robin bathes

snow falls from thorns below ice captured graves.

 

Technical problems with number of beats: 4.5 in line 10; 4.25 in line 12. Depends on how faithfully you wish to follow the form, but I cannot scan either line to five beats, even using a pyrhus.

 

What a fine image and turn of phrase: "flower soothed into stillness". Also nice: "red winter skies", "robin bathes", "snow falls from thorns", "ice captured graves." The only problem is that the final couplet is very difficult to make sense of. Is "snow" the beginning of a new sentence? Snow falls underground, or past the text of gravings on stone? Perhaps a little more punctuation could aid the reader here.

 

As I said several times, despite a few blemishes (my view!), this is a good sonnet, with many elements that could make it quite memorable.

 

Compliments,

- Dave

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  • 2 weeks later...
Aleksandra

An amazing poem, Eclipse. I loved the setting, too, as Tony has mention it, already. It's heartfelt poem, and it has some special sound in it. I don't have enough words to express my feelings about this poem. Great poem.

 

Aleksandra

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

History of Macedonia

 

 

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Hi Eclipse, A thoughtful, modern Shakespearean Sonnet.

 

On first read I thought this a little choppy but reading aloud a 2nd and 3rd time I found the rhythm although maybe the last 2 lines could use a little smoothing out.

 

The imagery gave this piece a dark, somber feel.

 

~~Tink

~~ © ~~ Poems by Judi Van Gorder ~~

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

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