Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

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Macavity
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Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by Macavity » Thu Jul 11, 2019 12:00 pm

revision

Her loose dress flaunts the colours of sweet peas.
Another moment delights another stranger.
His tailored cloth is brown like sun-baked clay.

She woos the stranger at a bus-stop queue.
Her skin mapping tattooed promises. She strays
on the way to the garden seeking Lancelot.

No one labels strangers in the garden.
The vicar's rule. Bees are fixated by the bloom.
She's allergic to bees. Their feckless sting.

She scans the soil with a shoplifter's intent,
her eyes flecked green like Guinevere's.
Uproots another flower. Grants life to weeds.


original

Her loose dress flaunts the colours of sweet peas.
Another moment delights another stranger.
His cloth's a brown like sun-baked crusted clay.

She woos the stranger at a bus-stop queue.
Her skin inking tattooed promises. She strays
on the way to the garden seeking Lancelot.

No one labels strangers in the garden.
A convent rule. Bees are fixated by the bloom.
She's allergic to bees. Their feckless sting.

She hoes the soil with a shoplifter's intent,
her eyes flecked green like Guinevere's.
Uproots another flower. Gives life to weeds.
Last edited by Macavity on Tue Jul 16, 2019 5:48 am, edited 7 times in total.

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's

Post by David » Thu Jul 11, 2019 6:42 pm

Terrific, Mac. Really good. A new favourite of yours of mine.

I only deplore the presence of an apostrophe in "clothe's" (although I'm really not sure what you're trying to say there).

And I think there's two t's - okay, make that three - in "tattooed".

Somehow I can imagine this, in pictorial form, as the cover of an early Fairport Convention album. Gatefold, of course.

Cheers

David

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's

Post by twoleftfeet » Thu Jul 11, 2019 7:59 pm

Much enjoyed,Mac

"Gives life to weeds" - doesn't seem quite right to me,at least botanically. The buggers overwhelm the flowers
on their own,they don't need any help :)
Religious metaphor? If not,maybe "Grants life to weeds"

Some Mr Thicky moments -

"Strangers" is repeated twice so must be important,but all I can think is that she is in residence in the convent..

"His clothe's a brown like sun-baked crusted clay."
Is that "clothes" or "clothe is"/"cloth is"?
- if the latter is he a Franciscan friar? If not,I'm bamboozled.

I'm loving the Lancelot/Guinever/strays/garden metaphors.

Cheers
Geoff
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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's

Post by Macavity » Thu Jul 11, 2019 8:01 pm

Thanks David. I meant cloth rather than clothe, though perhaps that's too poetic? Thanks for picking up on the spelling issue. Pleased you enjoyed.

cheers

mac

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's

Post by Macavity » Thu Jul 11, 2019 8:37 pm

Thanks Geoff.
"Strangers" is repeated twice so must be important,but all I can think is that she is in residence in the convent..
I was using 'stranger' for those disconnected from society and norms of behaviour, outsiders not accepted because of being 'different' or alienated to act 'differently'. The 'community garden' is provided to reach out to the 'excluded'.
"Gives life to weeds" - doesn't seem quite right to me,at least botanically. The buggers overwhelm the flowers
on their own,they don't need any help :)
Religious metaphor? If not,maybe "Grants life to weeds"
Fair point Geoff. I'll ponder 'grants'...threads nicely with the sonics of 'flaunts'.
"His clothe's a brown like sun-baked crusted clay."
Is that "clothes" or "clothe is"/"cloth is"?
- if the latter is he a Franciscan friar? If not,I'm bamboozled.
I hadn't thought of that, but I like the notion (perhaps accentuates the attraction of opposites). Maybe clothes is a simpler option.

cheers

mac

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's

Post by barrett » Thu Jul 11, 2019 8:52 pm

I like this too, Mac.

I'm quite a fan of the Arthurian cycle, so I was trying to find some sort of subtext here linking it to part of the legend. Then of course it struck me that, as it's a garden, we're talking about the other Lancelot and you've playfully linked Guinevere to it ( I think, anyway!). Is the green eyes a reference to the Crosby, Stills & Nash song?

I really like cloths in L3. I read this earlier when it was clothe's and it confused me, I was going to suggest changing it to cloth's. I wonder if 'crusted' is need in this line? Reads better without it to me.

All the best,
barrett

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by Macavity » Fri Jul 12, 2019 5:41 am

I wonder if 'crusted' is need in this line? Reads better without it to me.
Thanks Barrett. I didn't have the word in an earlier draft, but the line length was niggling me. The end line is adjective heavy and so I'll try the edit.
Is the green eyes a reference to the Crosby, Stills & Nash song?
No, but I am intrigued, could you provide a link?

I did run with Morgana for a while, probably because of the wonderful Helen Mirren... :)



cheers

mac

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by barrett » Fri Jul 12, 2019 8:08 am

That film is just magnificent, isn't it?

I think Guinevere is a better fit for the poem than Morgana. Here's the C,S&N song. First lines:

Guinevere had green eyes
Like yours, lady like yours
She'd walk down
Through the garden
In the morning after it rained



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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by Macavity » Fri Jul 12, 2019 10:09 am

Thanks for that Barrett. Classic.

Yes, one of the best Boorman films - Point Blank is my fav. - and certainly one of the best Merlin's

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by twoleftfeet » Fri Jul 12, 2019 1:22 pm

barrett wrote:
Fri Jul 12, 2019 8:08 am
That film is just magnificent, isn't it?

I think Guinevere is a better fit for the poem than Morgana. Here's the C,S&N song. First lines:

Guinevere had green eyes
Like yours, lady like yours
She'd walk down
Through the garden
In the morning after it rained
I can't believe I missed that - as it's one of my favourite songs!
C&N reckon that it comes out different every time they perform it.
This is from when they'd just teamed up.
I think Mr Nash comes in slightly late on one line - apart from that it's perfection!



Oh,and I also prefer Guinevere (Cherie Lunghi) to Morgana (Ms Mirren) :)

Cheers
Geoff
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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by twoleftfeet » Fri Jul 12, 2019 2:03 pm

Mac,

I prefer the new version.
Changing "cloth's" to "tailored" and "convent" to "vicar's" removes the non-existent connection that I was making to "friars". :)

Is St Peter's somewhere in Wales?
If so it makes the use of Guinevere (Gwenhwyfar?) even more apt,to me.

I'd say you've nailed it.

Cheers
Geoff
Instead of just sitting on the fence - why not stand in the middle of the road?

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by Macavity » Fri Jul 12, 2019 7:14 pm

Thanks for taking another look Geoff and the thumbs up and the nudges in the first place.

https://www.stpeterscommunitygarden.org.uk/about-us

cheers

mac

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by Perry » Sat Jul 13, 2019 4:39 am

Try as I might, I can't figure out who is who in the poem, or what they are up to (and this time I read the whole thread, though I didn't watch the clips because I don't have sound on my computer). Sorry for being so dense.
If I don't critique your poem, it is probably because I don't understand it.

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by Macavity » Sat Jul 13, 2019 6:41 am

No probs Perry. Thanks for taking a look.

cheers

mac

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by NotQuiteSure » Sat Jul 13, 2019 11:34 am

.
Hi mac,
couple of thoughts.

His tailored cloth as brown as sun-baked clay. ?
What's the difference between 'inking' and 'tattooed' ?
Bees are obsessed by the bloom. ?
Is the sting of a bee really feckless? (What have I missed?)
'Shoplifter's intent' (one beat too many?) - thief's intent, shoplifter's x?
Beheads another flower. Grants life to weeds. ?

Regards, Not

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by JJWilliamson » Sat Jul 13, 2019 1:24 pm

Yes, I also like this one, mac, although I had to read it a few times. I should have paid more attention to the title. :)

Is there an intentional link to Capability Brown? He was a Lancelot, methinks, but I don't know if he ever found his Guinevere.

I also wondered if there was an element of the odd dodgy character creeping through, with 'shoplifter's intent', as if she actually WAS a shoplifter.
At first it seemed like a metaphor for enthusiastic and purposeful, then the literal possibility emerged.

The punctuation made me pause in places but I managed to negotiate the style.
Macavity wrote:
Thu Jul 11, 2019 12:00 pm
revision

Her loose dress flaunts the colours of sweet peas.
Another moment delights another stranger. ...Does this follow on from L1 or is it a different moment? What moment?
His tailored cloth is brown like sun-baked clay.

She woos the stranger at a bus-stop queue.
Her skin inking tattooed promises. She strays ...I'm not sure what a tattooed promise is. If you substituted "sweating" for 'inking' and "hot" for 'tatooed' I'd be flying! :)
on the way to the garden seeking Lancelot.

No one labels strangers in the garden.
The vicar's rule. Bees are fixated by the bloom.
She's allergic to bees. Their feckless sting. ...The 'bees feckless sting' reads like a metaphor for failed relationships.

She hoes the soil with a shoplifter's intent,
her eyes flecked green like Guinevere's.
Uproots another flower. Grants life to weeds. ...Drawn to the wrong type is she?


Very enjoyable, mac, with nice layering.

Best

JJ
Long time a child and still a child

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by Macavity » Sun Jul 14, 2019 5:50 am

Thanks for taking a look Not. I'm more or less happy with this, but I may revisit in future since some of the points you make have been on my radar.

best

mac

NotQuiteSure wrote:
Sat Jul 13, 2019 11:34 am
.
Hi mac,
couple of thoughts.

His tailored cloth as brown as sun-baked clay. ?

Yes, I've thought of that one. It is my default mode for similes, smoother, but felt the more pronounced option was right here. For now.

What's the difference between 'inking' and 'tattooed' ?

One draft had the word 'leaking', but that felt silly. I want a fluid/active messaging image, but I take your point

Bees are obsessed by the bloom. ?

I chose fixated for the harsher sonics and for the soundscape in general

Is the sting of a bee really feckless? (What have I missed?)

This is her perspective, filtered by her anxieties

'Shoplifter's intent' (one beat too many?) - thief's intent, shoplifter's x?

There are eleven syllables in the line, but I can scan five stresses: She hoes the soil with a shoplifter's intent - double iambic or anapest/trochee in the line. It doesn't matter either way for me because I write for the line not the prosody (though it is messy here, it does give emphasis where I want it). However, I'm not decided on the image! :)

Beheads another flower. Grants life to weeds. ?

She's hoeing not pruning. Deadheading encourages growth

Regards, Not

.

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by Macavity » Sun Jul 14, 2019 6:07 am

Thanks JJ. Always profitable on the crit side, and the pleasure of reading your poems, to have you on the poetry forums, though I suspect your first love is painting!
JJWilliamson wrote:
Sat Jul 13, 2019 1:24 pm
Yes, I also like this one, mac, although I had to read it a few times. I should have paid more attention to the title. :)

Is there an intentional link to Capability Brown? He was a Lancelot, methinks, but I don't know if he ever found his Guinevere.

I hadn't thought of that JJ. A subject for another poem me thinks...landscape gardens of the C18 :)

I also wondered if there was an element of the odd dodgy character creeping through, with 'shoplifter's intent', as if she actually WAS a shoplifter.

Yes, that was my intent

At first it seemed like a metaphor for enthusiastic and purposeful, then the literal possibility emerged.

The punctuation made me pause in places but I managed to negotiate the style.
Macavity wrote:
Thu Jul 11, 2019 12:00 pm
revision

Her loose dress flaunts the colours of sweet peas.
Another moment delights another stranger. ...Does this follow on from L1 or is it a different moment? What moment?

It follows on from L1

His tailored cloth is brown like sun-baked clay.

She woos the stranger at a bus-stop queue.
Her skin inking tattooed promises. She strays ...I'm not sure what a tattooed promise is. If you substituted "sweating" for 'inking' and "hot" for 'tatooed' I'd be flying! :)
:lol: Yes, I suspect I need to be more tactile/visceral

on the way to the garden seeking Lancelot.

No one labels strangers in the garden.
The vicar's rule. Bees are fixated by the bloom.
She's allergic to bees. Their feckless sting. ...The 'bees feckless sting' reads like a metaphor for failed relationships.

Yes, that was part of my thinking


She hoes the soil with a shoplifter's intent,
her eyes flecked green like Guinevere's.
Uproots another flower. Grants life to weeds. ...Drawn to the wrong type is she?

The wrong type is drawn to her :)



Very enjoyable, mac, with nice layering.

very pleased you think so

Best

JJ
all the best

mac

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by NotQuiteSure » Sun Jul 14, 2019 10:59 am

Macavity wrote:
Sun Jul 14, 2019 5:50 am
She's hoeing not pruning. Deadheading encourages growth
Indeed, but I dimly recall, from my allotment days, that the hoe is a bladed weapon :)

Regards, Not

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by twoleftfeet » Sun Jul 14, 2019 12:29 pm

Macavity wrote:
Sun Jul 14, 2019 5:50 am
She's hoeing not pruning. Deadheading encourages growth
.
Hello again,Mac
Tbh,I didn't get "deadheading" out of that line.I took "uproots" literally - ripping the whole plant out.
As a metaphor I interpreted it as the woman preferring "bad boys" to "nice guys",and maybe that she had mental
heath issues (e.g. shoplifting to feed a habit) which had led to having destructive tendencies.

Cheers
Geoff
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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by Macavity » Mon Jul 15, 2019 1:05 pm

Thanks for taking another look Geoff and Not. I uproot weeds with a hand digger, to get at the root, and picked 'hoe' because I like the word. On further investigation, like you said Not, hoes are used in different ways:



My earth tends to be clay rather than the fine soil in the clip. Anyway have edited out 'hoe'.
As a metaphor I interpreted it as the woman preferring "bad boys" to "nice guys",and maybe that she had mental
heath issues (e.g. shoplifting to feed a habit) which had led to having destructive tendencies.
Yes, fair to say the individual had issues.

cheers

mac

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by NotQuiteSure » Mon Jul 15, 2019 1:43 pm

.
Hi mac.

Probably hitting all the wrong notes :) ... but,

her skin slick with tattooed promises. She strays
or
skin awash with tattooed promises. She strays
or
skin a stream of tattooed promises. She strays

The vicar's rule. Bees are fixated by the bloom.
They bring her out in hives. Their feckless sting.

She rakes the soil with a shoplifter's eye,
her own flecked green like Guinevere's.
Uproots another flower. Makes room for weeds.


Regards, Not

.
Last edited by NotQuiteSure on Mon Jul 15, 2019 2:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by ray miller » Mon Jul 15, 2019 2:03 pm

Interesting, though like Perry I've difficulty tracking who's who. I wonder if the 3rd stanza shouldn't be the first stanza. I may be misunderstanding the poem, but for an antidote to fecklessness Lancelot has an unfortunate name.
I'm out of faith and in my cups
I contemplate such bitter stuff.

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Re: Community Gardening At St Peter's (revision)

Post by Macavity » Tue Jul 16, 2019 5:53 am

Thanks Not and Ray.
... but for an antidote to fecklessness Lancelot has an unfortunate name.
:lol: Good one
her skin slick with tattooed promises.
A possible Not, but I've gone with a mapping/seeking thread for now.

cheers

mac

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