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.

    Mulling Over Losses



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    Mulling Over Losses

    Post  Pat on Wed Jan 25, 2017 9:19 pm

    Any help is welcomed.

    Mulling Over Losses
    It’s not the loss of hair that gets me
       or the values conflict with a son
       or even the hammering I took
       from a healthcare provider.
    But the lost wedding ring,
       a leaky faucet,
       the high prices on vegetables
       encountered every week.
    These nibble away at my sanity.
       Underground tremors,
       found in the ordinary.
    The sudden death of my brother
       still shocks and knocks the breath
       out of me. Understandable.
    But a forgotten appointment,
       the loss of keys,
       not remembering the name of a friend.
    These give me backaches, headaches.
    Unconscious. I am unconscious
       and blame weather.
    Then, one evening—the soup bubbles over
       on the stove—I find myself



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    Regarding the last line

    Post  Pat on Wed Jan 25, 2017 9:21 pm

    I don't know how lost got separated from the last stanza.  I have it as a last line, but part of the last stanza.  Oh well. . . .

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    Post  tsukany on Fri Jan 27, 2017 12:31 pm


    This poem reminds me of "One Art."  Nice.

    I find a couple places seem to be telling "Understandable" and the lines until "Then, one evening . . . ."

    My favorite part is the "vegetables . . . nibble."  I like that connection.

    Not sure of the ending either way (with or without "lost")

    Looking forward the the feedback of others on this one.



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    Todd, I read "One Art" 2 weeks ago.

    Post  Pat on Fri Jan 27, 2017 1:25 pm

    I'm sure it influenced this poem, also the blog that will come out on Monday.  I can so relate to losing things.  I'll be looking at "telling."  You catch me every time, thank goodness.


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    Post  Dennis2012 on Sat Jan 28, 2017 9:37 am

    Pat,  Since you and Todd both acknowledge it, let's get it out in the open:

    One Art by Elizabeth Bishop
    the art of losing isn't hard to master; 
    so many things seem filled with the intent 
    to be lost that their loss is no disaster.

    Lose something every day. Accept the fluster 
    of lost door keys, the hour badly spent.
    The art of losing isn't hard to master.

    Then practice losing farther, losing faster: 
    places, and names, and where it was you meant 
    to travel. None of these will bring disaster.


    —Even losing you (the joking voice, a gesture
    I love) I shan't have lied. It’s evident
    The art of losing's not too hard to master
    though it may look like (Write it!) like disaster.

    She wrote this in a villanelle.  I like rhyme so it appeals to me in this form but that is for another time.  Notice how she (and you) started out with trivial things in loss and grew to something (death) that would slap the reader in the face. This is a teaching moment for the reader to be ware.  The poet can evoke an emotion at a turn in a poem.  I think you captured the reader with the death and drew sympathy and kinship when the pot boiled.  At least for me that works.  I think it is neat when the reader is left with the taste in his mind, "I can relate to that. How did the poet know?"  Good poem, powerful.

    Dewell H. Byrd

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    Mulling Over Losses

    Post  Dewell H. Byrd on Sun Jan 29, 2017 1:37 pm

    I don't know about that last stanza... unconscious, etc.... just seems weaker than the previous stanzas... what I was looking for was something as trivial as a hangnail causing disaster... the poet to boil over...   I think you might consider deleting :: encountered every week ... and understandable...  (Nit pick; of vegetables not on vegetables)...
    This poem resonates with me.  Dewell

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    Really liked it

    Post  renee.barger on Mon Jan 30, 2017 9:47 pm

    I liked the ideas in this poem a lot. I hadn't read One Art, but I can see the similarities, which I like. I wasn't crazy about the title, although it definitely helped me know what to expect. Also, I wasn't quite sure what unconscious meant.


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    Unconscious is becoming

    Post  Pat on Tue Jan 31, 2017 8:59 am

    Unaware or oblivious or something else.  If it jumps out at two of you, then whatever the word, it is gone.  : )   Thank you, one and all.   Revising a couple of other things too.

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