Does the title work for you?

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Does the title work for you?

Post  tsukany on Thu Jan 23, 2014 11:44 am

Wintering

The last storm left half an inch of ice on the vines.  
They are bent over, stooped like old bones

groaning toward the frozen earth.  They creak
and clink, carry layers of weight, clatter cold

around one another, focused on the grounds,
and maybe a bit on themselves.  Branches

were made for bearing fruit--sweetness given
to others--and yet they live like it’s always winter.

--Sukany 22 Dec 2013

Click the link blow to hear a reading of this poem.
A reading of "Wintering"
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tsukany

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Brr for the season

Post  dennis20 on Thu Jan 23, 2014 2:50 pm

Todd,  On the second reading I grasp the picture of grape vines.  At first, I was thinking honeysuckle since "they live like it's always winter" makes me think they could still have greenery in winter.  I don't see grapes or vines which would bear fruit as living in winter.  I'm not sure about "clatter cold around one another."  Maybe you are giving them a human voice here.  "Focused" may not be the right verb tense since it doesn't go along with the rest of the sentence.  "Focus on the ground" sounds better to me and fits with the rest of the sentence.   The title makes me think "dead" and the picture of ice, bones, and frozen earth seems to verify that picture.  Rereading it a few times leads me to the contrast of what the vines (branches) were meant for and what has happened to them in winter.  I didn't gather that as the intention at first. Now, to your question, I can see wintering after rereading, but I had to picture "live" from a different slant.

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I can see and feel the vines

Post  Pat on Thu Jan 30, 2014 9:18 am

Todd, definitely they are wintering.  Like the bookends:  title, last word.  Amazing how they  can look dead, but survive and green up later.  I wonder about how it would read in present tense all the way without the to be verb.  "They bend, etc."  What if you said, "Branches creak, etc", keeping the reader on what the topic is.  Eliminates one they.  3rd stanza:  do you mean "around"?  I agree with Dennis:  ground.  It may be our locale.  And I think of grounds as acres and acres like in Italy or England where they have grounds keepers.  But aren't those for flowers, shrubs, grass?  Well, what do I know of such places?  Not much.  Okay, now I see branches.  Hmmmm.  I'm thinking about  synonyms.  And the same line:  that sounds so tentative and opinion-oriented:  I don't think you want it.  I'd drop:  and maybe a bit on themselves."  Keep it humble humility.  I think it could carry double meaning if you did that:  bread and wine.  Wine dressers tend vines.  Just rambling.  It's how I brainstorm.  I rarely see you use a transitional phrase:  And yet, . . . .  I like for its smoothness and I think it's needed for contrast. I could not get the video to work for me:  probably my ineptness with high tech anything.

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