Downstream (was Crossing)

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1lankest
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Downstream (was Crossing)

Post by 1lankest » Wed Oct 01, 2014 8:24 am

Version 2


Downstream

At each meander I brave the rocks,
all memory lost to previous turns,
each stretch a fresh amnesia, alluvial plain.
The sea-door swings beyond the fields,
its hinges groaning in the tidal rip.
And your face, refracted in the ebb.
Only this I recall: longing for the water,
with you left standing on the ledge
to guard my pile of trampy clothes,
paperback, phone. The sky was glacial blue,
assured above your wavering form
as you watched me go, wide eyed,
holding your breath to the cold.

Original


We were barely afloat in the worn Optimist dinghy,
spring tide turning, wind like a noose around our throats.

So I leapt onto a passing boat - all motor, chrome and cushion,
and a cool-box of provisions. I drank, for I was thirsty from the salt;

and sped on: a cormorant toying with the surf. Looking back
at where I'd been, the water in vortex, eddying like a malevolent smile,

I glimpsed the four fingers of your shrinking hand
clasping at the air, and bowed, and turned away again.
Last edited by 1lankest on Mon Oct 06, 2014 1:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

thoke
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Re: Crossing

Post by thoke » Wed Oct 01, 2014 9:01 pm

This is a bit disturbing. Man leaves woman drowning in sinking dinghy? I guess I want more information, to hear more from the protagonist. Interesting but doesn't seem quite there.

Ben

1lankest
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Re: Crossing

Post by 1lankest » Thu Oct 02, 2014 8:14 am

Interesting, thanks thoke. I guess it is disturbing if taken literally, I had hoped it wouldn't be, and that it would be seen as metaphorical, but perhaps I need more information as you say. That said, more info would envelop the reader further in the literal. Also, what made you think it was about a boy and a girl?

thoke
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Re: Crossing

Post by thoke » Thu Oct 02, 2014 11:39 am

Okay I imagined some pronouns that aren't there. Fair enough if it's metaphorical, but for what?

Ben

ray miller
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Re: Crossing

Post by ray miller » Fri Oct 03, 2014 6:52 pm

I think the middle verses are very good, though I'd quibble at the punctuation and suggest

for I was thirsty from the salt

and sped on, a cormorant toying with the surf. Looking back

The opening line seems rather heavy-handed, especially Optimist, and the last couplet overdoes the melodrama a bit, I think.
I'm out of faith and in my cups
I contemplate such bitter stuff.

1lankest
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Re: Crossing

Post by 1lankest » Mon Oct 06, 2014 12:19 pm

Thanks Ray, agree entirely. Overly melodramatic. Will tone down

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Re: Crossing

Post by 1lankest » Mon Oct 06, 2014 1:47 pm

Total revamp posted......it is basically a new poem, inspired by thoke rightly questioning the metaphor. Hopefully now it's clearer - I think it's better either way.

Luke

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Re: Downstream (was Crossing)

Post by 1lankest » Wed Oct 08, 2014 4:47 pm

Any thoughts? Improvement?

penguin
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Re: Downstream (was Crossing)

Post by penguin » Wed Oct 08, 2014 7:25 pm

Quite different poems, aren't they? In content as much as form.
1lankest wrote:Version 2


Downstream

At each meander I brave the rocks,
all memory lost to previous turns, - maybe of rather than to?
each stretch a fresh amnesia, alluvial plain. - the last two words are unnecessary, I think.
The sea-door swings beyond the fields,
its hinges groaning in the tidal rip. - groan rather than groaning?
And your face, refracted in the ebb. - I like these first 6 lines very much, great rhythm.
Only this I recall: longing for the water, - Only this turns out to be several recollections, doesn't it?
with you left standing on the ledge
to guard my pile of trampy clothes,
paperback, phone. The sky was glacial blue,
assured above your wavering form - not clear to me who or what is assured, the sky or the wavering form. Could be put better, I think.
as you watched me go, wide eyed,
holding your breath to the cold.

The 2nd half suffers in comparison to the 1st, its language and rhythm aren't as striking.

Original


We were barely afloat in the worn Optimist dinghy,
spring tide turning, wind like a noose around our throats.

So I leapt onto a passing boat - all motor, chrome and cushion,
and a cool-box of provisions. I drank, for I was thirsty from the salt;

and sped on: a cormorant toying with the surf. Looking back
at where I'd been, the water in vortex, eddying like a malevolent smile,

I glimpsed the four fingers of your shrinking hand
clasping at the air, and bowed, and turned away again.

1lankest
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Re: Downstream (was Crossing)

Post by 1lankest » Fri Oct 10, 2014 8:08 am

Thanks penguin,

I agree with some of your suggestions, especially that alluvial plain is superfluous.
I had hoped the second section gave the preceding images a personal, tangible quality. Perhaps it needs work.

Thanks again mate.

Luke

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Re: Downstream (was Crossing)

Post by 1lankest » Thu Oct 16, 2014 9:37 pm

'the sky was glacial blue, assured above your wavering form
as you watched me go'

To me this is this grammatically clear? Any other dissenters? Not my strongest area this!

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