Taiwanese Lessons (Revision 4)

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JJWilliamson
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Re: Taiwanese Lessons (Revision 2)

Post by JJWilliamson » Mon Jun 22, 2015 9:01 pm

Thanks, David
David wrote:I've added a few notes, JJ. There are a lot of stills in there!
JJWilliamson wrote:Yi Chin studies like a famished wolf,
follows me a few steps behind
and when we speak she nods
the silken nod of respect. - I still prefer "tiny" So do I, consider it changed. It was an oblique reference to the Silk Road.

Keep up, you're in the UK now.

She sweeps the ground,
listening for the sound of friendship. - These lines still don't work for me
I guide her; she doesn't object. - Is it worth just dropping this troublesome line? Looking at your suggestion, I have something else in mind.
My smile unsettles her culture
as her forefathers threaten my eyes. - Still confusing! Could adapt. Not sure if that would work though. A rewrite perhaps.

As Yi Chin leaves the graduation ceremony
she presents me with two plaques,
both hand-brushed with Mandarin Hanzi.

What do they mean?
She bows.
The small frame embodies 'truth' the large one 'love'.

They live on the mantle piece in our front room
and I know Diane doesn't mind. Yes, I know. - I still like this ending - the whole last three stanzas
Thanks again.
Cheers

David
Really appreciate you taking the time to review this poem once again.

Best

JJ
Long time a child and still a child

dedalus
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Re: Taiwanese Lessons (Revision 3)

Post by dedalus » Tue Jun 23, 2015 2:19 am

The original version strikes me as the best ... if you omit Stanza 2. This stanza adds nothing and introduces loopy language of sorts, at the least ambiguous language.

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Re: Taiwanese Lessons (Revision 3)

Post by JJWilliamson » Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:01 am

Thanks, Brendan

I appreciate you dropping in to share your thoughts. "Loopy" :) I had a friend at school with the nickname 'Loopy'. I suppose there is some ambiguity; I'll have a look at the original again. You're not alone in your opinion.

Best

JJ
dedalus wrote:The original version strikes me as the best ... if you omit Stanza 2. This stanza adds nothing and introduces loopy language of sorts, at the least ambiguous language.
Long time a child and still a child

ray miller
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Re: Taiwanese Lessons (Revision 3)

Post by ray miller » Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:31 am

She sweeps the ground,
listening for the sound of friendship.
I gently lift her chin. She doesn't object.
My smile embarrasses her culture
as her fathers reach for my eyes.

I think if you take out the 3rd line, this original stanza is better than what you have now. Well, even with the 3rd line, actually. The poem seems to have lost many of its teeth.
I'm out of faith and in my cups
I contemplate such bitter stuff.

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Re: Taiwanese Lessons (Revision 3)

Post by brianedwards » Tue Jun 23, 2015 12:18 pm

I didn't like the original, but it had an integrity that I think has been lost.

B.

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Re: Taiwanese Lessons (Revision 3)

Post by JJWilliamson » Tue Jun 23, 2015 8:41 pm

Thanks, ray

I've revised this poem once again, reverting to the original with a few words from the other revisions.
With or without teeth? With teeth I hope. :)

Best

JJ
ray miller wrote:She sweeps the ground,
listening for the sound of friendship.
I gently lift her chin. She doesn't object.
My smile embarrasses her culture
as her fathers reach for my eyes.

I think if you take out the 3rd line, this original stanza is better than what you have now. Well, even with the 3rd line, actually. The poem seems to have lost many of its teeth.
Long time a child and still a child

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Re: Taiwanese Lessons (Revision 3)

Post by JJWilliamson » Tue Jun 23, 2015 8:45 pm

Yes, some of the integrity IS lost in Revision 3, Brian. I hadn't really noticed but now that you mention it...
Further revision posted. I've borrowed a word or two from other revisions.

Best

JJ

brianedwards wrote:I didn't like the original, but it had an integrity that I think has been lost.

B.
Long time a child and still a child

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