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.

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Cirrus Clouds


Posts : 719
Join date : 2011-09-12

Cirrus Clouds Empty Cirrus Clouds

Post  Pat on Wed May 23, 2018 10:52 am

Trying to not break the first stanza because that's how the clouds are.  Can you read it okay?  Does it make sense?  The shorter the poem, the harder it is for me.

Cirrus Clouds

Like broken birds
and creeping across mountains
on the far edge of a forest,
they moved like a herd of cats,
to do with low-slung animals,
a creeping
passed from one cat to another,
probably a pre-condition
to which they must
like courageous people
giving over
to an untreatable disease.

I recall
when evening set,
they dimmed down
and away
like prayers

Posts : 65
Join date : 2016-09-17

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Post  renee.barger on Wed May 23, 2018 10:46 pm

I really like that you kept the first stanza long to reflect Cirrus Clouds. I could totally picture the whispy clouds from how the stanza looked. Nice!

What I wasn't so sure about was that you have "Like broken birds... like a heard of cats..." I wasn't sure what to do with the two pictures of birds and then cats. My mind imagined how clouds can look like one thing and then another, but I'm not sure if that's what you meant for me to think about. 

But I loved all the images! Definitely painted some nice images!

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

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Post  Karen on Thu May 24, 2018 5:08 am

Pat, despite your purported struggle with shorter poems, I see an even shorter poem here!

Like Renee, I found the birds distracted me from the stronger cat images that followed.  I lobby for striking the first two lines.  And the entire last stanza.  A little rewrite in order to begin the poem with line 3.  Maybe begin with They creep and change they moved to they move?

The remaining poem knocks me out.  I love the image low-slung animals.
Willie Shaketon

Cirrus Clouds Empty I think you've run afowl

Post  Willie Shaketon on Thu May 24, 2018 7:15 am

Pat,  Like the other two, I was distracted by the birds.  It is more a picture of cats.  Drop the first line and it floats along unimpeded.  Pun intended.


Posts : 641
Join date : 2011-05-21

Cirrus Clouds Empty Two cents

Post  tsukany on Fri May 25, 2018 10:21 am


I agree that the birds and cats don't belong together.  I think "cats" is the stronger word/image.  I wonder if there is a bird that has a cat name that would be more concrete than "birds."  

There are two "creeping" in the poem.  I don't think of birds as "creeping," ever.  That seems like a predatory action.  

Can stanza one benefit from present tense?

Last line of the poem seems to carry weight that "prayer" is broken and holds no worth.  I wonder if that is your intent?


Posts : 719
Join date : 2011-09-12

Cirrus Clouds Empty Clouds

Post  Pat on Fri May 25, 2018 11:09 am

So helpful to hear all your comments.  Fixable.

I do not mean prayer is broken.  Good to see this interpretation. 

Letting first and last go. 

No pain in it at all for me to do that.

Thank you!
Dewell H. Byrd

Posts : 385
Join date : 2012-01-05
Age : 88
Location : Central Point, OR

Cirrus Clouds Empty Cirrus Clouds

Post  Dewell H. Byrd on Sat May 26, 2018 11:55 am

Yes, the birds must go.
Pat, this line about "herd of cats" seems
like a cleche (which I can't spell).
In the last stanza I looked for a cloud
word that would help tie the poem together.

Your work is always so warm, human and
friendly.  A bit more honing on this one
please.  Dewell

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