The Last Friday

The Last Friday is a poetry editing group. Once a month, we post a poem and then offer feedback to the other poems on the Forum. We're a friendly but honest group. We value each other deeply and desire for every poet to be published or become famous.


    Dewell H. Byrd

    Posts : 382
    Join date : 2012-01-05
    Age : 88
    Location : Central Point, OR


    Post  Dewell H. Byrd on Thu May 26, 2016 8:57 pm

    I like the ideas in this poem... images, too... but wonder if there are enough poetics to please the reader.  And that stanza #4... should it fly away??  Open to all ideas.  Dewell


    A family of blackbirds is gleaning
    My freshly mown lawn.

    Mother and daughter in the near corner,
    Head to head sharing each find,

    Chatting about nutrition, new flight feathers,
    The best nesting materials,

    Danger, eye-to-the-sky alert,
    The shadow of starlings in over flight.

    Father and son in the far corner,
    Back to back, competing for morsels.

    Strutting about, singing, extoling
    The virtue of their plumage.

    Ignoring each other as if their feathers
    were more attractive to females.


    The girls would be sharing ideas,
    Chatting about school, cells, friends,

    Fashions, dating, coming events;
    Preening each other's hair and nails.

    The guys, one foot on grass, one on
    Concrete sidewalk, would be arguing

    About keys, curfews, careers;
    Making little speeches..... body politic.

    Dewell H. Byrd

    Posts : 320
    Join date : 2014-10-25
    Age : 65
    Location : North Little Rock


    Post  Karen on Thu May 26, 2016 9:29 pm

    I like these images.  I would take the scissors to stanza 4, and snip off your family entirely. They're lovely folks, I'm sure, but you've drawn them so much more interestingly as blackbirds.  I am particularly partial to blackbirds. 

    I long to write the poem that illustrates the moment when the chorus of the multitude stops and they all take flight.

    Posts : 626
    Join date : 2011-05-21

    Just a thought

    Post  tsukany on Fri May 27, 2016 6:35 am


    I didn't mind the fourth stanza.  I thought it added tension.

    I lobby for a "bird" word for "arguing."  You have "preening" with the girls.

    Don C

    Posts : 42
    Join date : 2013-09-24


    Post  Don C on Fri May 27, 2016 4:17 pm

    I think it's good as is. I see no point in the 4th stanza since the blackbirds have no reaction. You tell us that there is danger, but the conclusion is that the starlings continue their flight, and the danger is just for the moment. Like seeing a storm cloud pass over. We may need to run and hide, or we may go back to our routine. Good as is.
    Good images

    Posts : 690
    Join date : 2011-09-12

    Family Outing

    Post  Pat on Sat May 28, 2016 7:55 am

    I love the blackbirds.  Picnic sounds cordial.  Do flocks ever quarrel when eating?  Not sure.  I would like some sound words, but maybe that can come from starlings passing overhead since the blackbirds are feeding.  I like the images of birds here.  They seem alert but untroubled.  Maybe the starlings could boast of something?  They yammer all the time in my opinion.  Noisy. Maybe they chant?  Blackbirds, not as much as starlings or crows, I think.  As a reader, I don't need any of the stuff on the human family.  The birds are acting it out, living it out, showing us.  Maybe the word devouring or bloody blackness or something not so nice.  I guess that'd be for tension, some wildness like a member of the human family would throw in.  Maybe one could drop a feather. . . jerk its head, fltter its tail or a slow-poke bird.  : )  

    Family:  it's in the title, so I'd just start:  Blackbirds are gleaning. . . .

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