Is the emotion visible--what can make it better

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Is the emotion visible--what can make it better

Post  Ben Johnson on Sat Sep 24, 2016 8:44 pm

I can't seem to get on under Dennis acct. so I am using this one.
My Pets
 
Happiness is a puppy
that leaps to lick my face.
She will chase a stick
and bark at me.
Like autumn leaves
that circle in the yard
she is a flash of color
in a whirlwind.
 
 
Grief is a tabby cat
who arches her back
like winter wind.
Her snowy fur
and slanted eyes
bring icy chills
that bite against
my skin.

Ben Johnson
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Reply from Renee

Post  renee.barger on Mon Sep 26, 2016 9:50 am

I loved how you related happiness to a puppy and grief to a tabby cat. I don't know if it was just me, but I was thrown off when I read the line, "Like autumn leaves" because I thought it was a second complete image at first. I had to get down 2 more lines to realize you were still talking about the puppy. I didn't have any issues in the second stanza. Loved it.
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Showing?

Post  tsukany on Mon Sep 26, 2016 10:22 am

Dearest Ben/Dennis2012,

I wonder if you can show the emotions (happiness and grief) rather than tell the reader.  "Grief" takes me to death.

I wonder if you can start stanza one with the simile?  and then impose that as a "form" for stanza two?

Todd/Thor
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My Pets.... etc

Post  Dewell H. Byrd on Tue Sep 27, 2016 5:16 pm

Ben, you need ten characters in the title to get in. 
In your search for more emotion in your poem... how about more show and less tail? (pun)
I get a good feel for the puppy but the cat seems purrless... almost not there for me.  Cats and dogs are so much a part of our culture that people stop to read about them just because they are there... I think.
Nice to have you aboard.  Dewell

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Re: Is the emotion visible--what can make it better

Post  Karen on Wed Sep 28, 2016 7:34 pm

"I like this juxtaposition," she said.  She then proceeded to gripe about everything else.

I want a different title.  This one doesn't jump out of the table of contents and make me turn to the page.

I want more of a mirror image in the two stanzas.  I want your use of language to parallel.  I agree with Todd - create your form.  Unlike Dewell, I was okay with purrlessness (hmm?) of the cat.  I got the iciness.

I want, I want, I want.

I don't intend to be a fussbudget, Ben, but DANG, you're right close to making me happy.  I want this poem leaner and tighter.
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something for everybody

Post  Ben Johnson on Sat Oct 01, 2016 1:05 pm

Rewrite from insight

Painted Ladies
 
Happiness leaps
to lick my face.
She will chase a stick
and bark at me.
She circles the yard
like autumn leaves
and is a flash of colors
in a whirlwind.
 
Grief arches her back
like winter wind.
Snowy fur and slanted eyes
bring icy chills
that bite against
my skin.
The twitching tail,
a selfish barb
that promotes regret.

Ben Johnson
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Trying again

Post  tsukany on Sun Oct 02, 2016 6:43 am

The formatting went CRAZY!  Hope this one is better.

Dennis

The revision [Painted Ladies . . . an allusion to the ancient profession?] cuts the cat out of the second stanza, "she" becomes a continuation of stanza one.

Could the names of the pets replace "happiness" and "grief"?

Here's a sample of what I suggested in my first post (with the original test)

My Pets

Like autumn leaves
that circle in the yard
Betty is a flash of color
in a whirlwind.
Happiness is a puppy
that leaps to lick my face.
She will chase a stick
and bark at me.

like winter wind.
who arches her back
Grief is a tabby cat
Her snowy fur
and slanted eyes
bring icy chills
that bite against
my skin.

Ben Johnson
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technology is evil today

Post  tsukany on Sun Oct 02, 2016 6:46 am

Dennis

I meant "text" not "test"

Somewhere in cyber hell is my note about how much I like the additions to the last stanza of "Painted Ladies." 

I wonder if I had other things to say that were deleted by the cyber bullies?

Todd
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One more opinion worth less than a nickel.

Post  Pat on Sun Oct 02, 2016 9:36 pm

I think you have two poems.   I'd call the first poem Happiness, then get to specifics about the dog.  Maybe let the first line be:  is a puppy. . . I would keep it in present tense:  chases. . .  Instead of is (a linking verb), could you say "flashes" auburn colors. . . .?  Something to strengthen the verb.  I like the nouns at the end of lines.  Interesting that you chose grief rather than sad to contrast with happiness.  I also like the short poems.  Other thoughts I had with this first stanza:   catching, pursuing happiness, chasing.  Gosh, it can go on and on.  How it can just appear out of nowhere.

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Response for the rewrite

Post  renee.barger on Mon Oct 03, 2016 4:35 pm

I loved the rewrite. I don't think it needs to be two poems. If you did split it, I think I would miss the contrast between the two stanzas. The one thing that made me pause was why does the dog have a name but the cat does not?
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