[No Title Yet]

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Perry
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[No Title Yet]

Post by Perry » Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:35 am

One line shorter. I shortened "groin on groin and tongue to tongue":

This young man, so very handsome,
wants to make love to me — what does he see?
I am out of his league (I know that
and so should he). But here he is,
making all the moves to say he must
have me. I am lonely, I won’t say no;
but at forty-three I understand
that youth is water boiling in a pan.
And when we are locked together, friend,
groin on groin, who will I be loving?
You? (who are you?) or my own youth
coming to an end? Drop your pants, lover.
I’m not getting any younger.


Original:

This young man, so very handsome,
wants to make love to me — what does he see?
I am not in his league (I know that
and so should he). But here he is,
making all the moves to say he must
have me. I am lonely, I won’t say no;
but at forty-three I understand
that youth is water boiling in a pan.
And when we are locked in our embrace,
groin on groin and tongue to tongue, who
will I be loving? You (who are you?)
or my own youth coming to an end?
Drop your pants, lover — come quickly.
I’m not getting any younger.

-end-

Sometimes I think back to experiences I had when I was younger, and I write as if I were that younger age.

I have already named one poem "Youth". I need a clever title for this one.
Last edited by Perry on Mon Aug 05, 2019 6:07 pm, edited 8 times in total.
If I don't critique your poem, it is probably because I don't understand it.

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Re: [No Title Yet]

Post by Firebird » Fri Aug 02, 2019 1:40 pm

Hi Perry,

I’ve made some comments below. Hope they help.

Cheers,

Tristan
Perry wrote:
Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:35 am
This young man, so very handsome,
wants to make love to me — what does he see?
I am out of his league (I know that (‘I’m not in his league’?)
and so should he). But here he is,
making all the moves to say he must
have me. I am lonely, I won’t say no;
but at forty-three I understand
that youth is water boiling in a pan. (Good image)
And when we are locked together, friend, (I’m not sure you need ‘friend’)
groin on groin and tongue to tongue, who
will I be loving? You (who are you?)
or my own youth coming to an end?
Drop your pants, lover — come quickly.
I’m not getting any younger. (The end made me smile)

-end-

Sometimes think back to experiences I had when I was younger, and I write as if I were that younger age.

I have already named one poem "Youth". I need a clever title for this one.

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Re: [No Title Yet]

Post by Perry » Fri Aug 02, 2019 2:35 pm

Thank you, Tristan. I'll take that as a fairly positive review.

"I'm not in his league" is an American expression that means, "I'm not good-looking enough for that person". For example, a plain-looking man eyeing a beautiful woman at a party might say to his companion, "I'm not in her league, but I'm rich, so maybe she'll be interested." (That's probably how Trump got all his wives.)

I put in "friend" to set up a rhyme with "end" a few lines down. Without "friend" the line feels too short. I could substitute something like:

And when we are locked in our embrace,

As for the final two lines, I just slapped them on to finish the poem. I originally intended to make this poem a thesis analyzing sexual politics, but then decided I was over-writing it.

Thanks again!
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Re: [No Title Yet]

Post by Poet » Fri Aug 02, 2019 3:23 pm

Nice poem very sensual and really to the point, tell me are you gay? And if so, was this piece about a male encounter?

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Re: [No Title Yet]

Post by Perry » Fri Aug 02, 2019 3:41 pm

Thank you, Poet.

Yes, I'm gay, and this was about a male encounter. I suspect I'm the only gay person who is active on the forum now.
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Re: [No Title Yet]

Post by Poet » Fri Aug 02, 2019 3:53 pm

Perry wrote:
Fri Aug 02, 2019 3:41 pm
Thank you, Poet.

Yes, I'm gay, and this was about a male encounter. I suspect I'm the only gay person who is active on the forum now.
Oh so I was right, nice! I was just curious that's all.

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Re: [No Title Yet]

Post by Firebird » Fri Aug 02, 2019 5:25 pm

"I'm not in his league" is an American expression that means, "I'm not good-looking enough for that person". For example, a plain-looking man eyeing a beautiful woman at a party might say to his companion, "I'm not in her league, but I'm rich, so maybe she'll be interested."
Hi Perry,

Following ‘wants to make love to me - what does he see’ I thought what you say above was what you meant, but of course about a man, not a woman.

I’m assuming what you meant now is that your N believes he is either an older but much better looking man, or much more intelligent than the younger man, who sound in this context a bit of a bimbo. Is this correct? As by using ‘I’m out of his league’ this is how it sounds.

Cheers,

Tristan

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Re: [No Title Yet]

Post by Perry » Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:21 pm

Firebird wrote:
Fri Aug 02, 2019 5:25 pm
Following ‘wants to make love to me - what does he see’ I thought what you say above was what you meant, but of course about a man, not a woman.

I’m assuming what you meant now is that your N believes he is either an older but much better looking man, or much more intelligent than the younger man, who sound in this context a bit of a bimbo. Is this correct? As by using ‘I’m out of his league’ this is how it sounds.
I'm not quite sure what you're asking, but I'll try to clarify. It seems simple to me, but if you aren't accustomed to the expression, I guess it isn't.

I think the word "league" comes from sports. The expression "I'm not in his league" would mean, "I don't have his level of [excellence/skill/good looks]." In this poem, you know that I mean "good looks" because the first line of the poem praises the young man's looks and sets the scene, which is sexual. When the narrator asks, "what does he see [in me]?", he is really asking, "why does this handsome man find me attractive given that he is so much better-looking than I am?" It has nothing to do with intelligence. The N isn't saying that the young man is a [male] bimbo; he is only saying that the young man is very handsome, so much so that he wonders why the young man is showing interest.

Of course, forty-three-year-old men can be very attractive, but the perfection of youth would be gone at that point. In the gay world, at least, there is a lot of competitiveness in the looks department. When I was young and looking to hook up, I always worried about whether I was attractive enough to appeal to the men who turned me on -- and I have to admit that the men who turned me on were better-looking than I was. (In my poem "In Gay Bar Hell", below, I was trying to articulate that.)

I suspect the heterosexual world is less competitive in the area of looks. Women don't just look for good looks, they look for men with a certain amount of sophistication, sensitivity, intelligence, awareness or wealth. Men being men, however, tend to go for good looks. I think that's why you'll see beautiful women on the arms of ordinary-looking men much more than you will see ordinary-looking women on the arms of handsome men.

I've probably said too much. The expression "not in his league" shouldn't be over-thought. It just means "too good-looking to be interested in me".

One final thought: The gay world is fundamentally different from the straight world in one respect: Men don't compare themselves to women, and women don't compare themselves to men. But in the gay world, where you have men cruising men, potential mates do compare themselves to each other. A gay man usually wants to connect with someone at least as good-looking as himself. This can lead to the phenomenon in which you have gay couples who look very much alike.

In the straight world, you have apples and oranges pairing up. In the gay world you have apples and apples pairing up. An apple doesn't compare himself to an orange, but an apple does compare himself to other apples.

Is any of this making sense?
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Re: [No Title Yet]

Post by Firebird » Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:00 pm

Hi Perry,

Yes, it all makes sense and it’s interesting too to hear what you perceive as the differences between the homosexual and heterosexual worlds.

All I was saying is that ‘I am out of his league’ doesn’t mean the same as ‘I’m not in his league’. ‘I am out of his league’ sound like your N may be in a better league (for looks) than him, or there’s at least some ambiguity whether it’s a better or worse league. Whereas ‘I’m not in his league’ sound like your N is in a worse league (for looks) than him. I think it’s something to do with the prepositions ‘in’ and ‘out’ that have this effect.

In the poem you are using ‘I am out of his league’ and I think this is wrong and you should be saying ‘I’m not in his league’ or ‘He’s out of my league’.

Hope this makes things clearer.

Cheers,

Tristan

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Re: [No Title Yet]

Post by Perry » Sat Aug 03, 2019 12:11 am

Firebird wrote:
Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:00 pm
All I was saying is that ‘I am out of his league’ doesn’t mean the same as ‘I’m not in his league’. ‘I am out of his league’ sound like your N may be in a better league (for looks) than him, or there’s at least some ambiguity whether it’s a better or worse league. Whereas ‘I’m not in his league’ sound like your N is in a worse league (for looks) than him. I think it’s something to do with the prepositions ‘in’ and ‘out’ that have this effect.

In the poem you are using ‘I am out of his league’ and I think this is wrong and you should be saying ‘I’m not in his league’ or ‘He’s out of my league’.
I'm awfully sorry. I didn't even catch what you were saying. I think I may have read your last comment too quickly.
In the original draft, it said, "He is out of my league." As I was working on the poem, I suddenly realized that it should be the other way around -- more like, "I'm not in his league". But I already had my syntax set, so I made it, "I am out of his league" -- but that is wrong, isn't it?

So, let me see:

I am not in his league = I am not as attractive as he is
He is out of my league = I am more attractive than he is
I am out of his league = not sure what this means

In actual practice, I haven't used the expression in years, so that's why I'm confused (I think).

Thank you for pointing that out to me. If you hadn't, the wrong version of that expression would have stayed in the poem forever, and my biographers and adoring fans would have been puzzling about it for centuries!
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Re: [No Title Yet]

Post by JJWilliamson » Sat Aug 03, 2019 8:53 am

"Leagues" could be an interesting title, Perry.

An engaging piece that examines the very real dilemma that touches us all at some time in our life. Why does one person fancy another? If I knew the answer to that question I'd be a millionaire. When my wife started to show an interest in me I nearly fell off my chair with excitement. No kidding! Been married for 35 years and I still see the beauty.

Overall, I found the poem to be very engaging from a human pov. My brother is gay and is still with the same partner after 25 years. His partner is like one of my brothers and they are both surprisingly honest about their previous encounters. That helped me to understand your poem, from a gay perspective.
Perry wrote:
Fri Aug 02, 2019 11:35 am
This young man, so very handsome,
wants to make love to me — what does he see? ...The eternal question. So much doubt.
I am not in his league (I know that
and so should he). But here he is,
making all the moves to say he must
have me. I am lonely, I won’t say no; ...I like this line for its loneliness. The honesty is striking.
but at forty-three I understand
that youth is water boiling in a pan.
And when we are locked in our embrace,
groin on groin and tongue to tongue, who ...I wonder if this is a bit too graphic, not because of my sensitivities but because it moves away from the thoughtful to the graphic. It also lessens the impact of your close, where the switch suddenly ups the ante. Just a thought and others are free to disagree with me.
will I be loving? You (who are you?)
or my own youth coming to an end?
Drop your pants, lover — come quickly.
I’m not getting any younger. ...Ha! I know that feeling.

-end-

A different poem and one that grabs the attention.

Best

JJ

Sometimes I think back to experiences I had when I was younger, and I write as if I were that younger age.

I have already named one poem "Youth". I need a clever title for this one.
Long time a child and still a child

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Re: [No Title Yet]

Post by Perry » Sat Aug 03, 2019 1:27 pm

JJ, your one negative comment about the poem was spot-on. "Groin on groin and tongue to tongue" was originally just "tongue to tongue". I filled it out because the loose meter I was using demanded that one line be extended, so that's what I came up with. But if I am a good poet (and I may never know), I should not be satisfied with even one poor line in a poem, so I'll work to fix that.

Thank you!

Oh, I want to acknowledge that at least in one poem I haven't written about death. But I did write about youth, the other subject I'm obsessed with. I'm aware that in some respects I'm a broken record.

Oh, I have one more thing to say about your brother. I think it's great that you accept him like that, and accept his lover also. The reason that gays have gained in social acceptance in recent years is that more of them (us) stopped hiding what we are, and people started to discover that they know and like gay people. My closest friend in Rhode Island is 91 years old and was in a long-term relationship with her female lover for 36 years.

Oh, and I'm happy for your long marriage also. My longest relationship was about 2 years, which may explain something about me.

Oh #4, "Leagues" is a great title.
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Re: [No Title Yet] (shorter version for JJ)

Post by Perry » Sun Aug 04, 2019 1:36 pm

I'm knocking this to the top so JJ will see the shorter version in the first post.
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Re: [No Title Yet]

Post by twoleftfeet » Mon Aug 05, 2019 5:48 pm

Perry wrote:
Sat Aug 03, 2019 12:11 am

In the original draft, it said, "He is out of my league." As I was working on the poem, I suddenly realized that it should be the other way around -- more like, "I'm not in his league". But I already had my syntax set, so I made it, "I am out of his league" -- but that is wrong, isn't it?

So, let me see:

I am not in his league = I am not as attractive as he is
He is out of my league = I am more attractive than he is
I am out of his league = not sure what this means

In actual practice, I haven't used the expression in years, so that's why I'm confused (I think).

Thank you for pointing that out to me. If you hadn't, the wrong version of that expression would have stayed in the poem forever, and my biographers and adoring fans would have been puzzling about it for centuries!
Hi,Perry
That's interesting.

I'm confident that in the UK at least,

I am not in his league = I am not as attractive as he is (not in = below)
He is out of my league = He is more attractive than me (out of = above/beyond)
I am out of his league = I am more attractive than him (would be said in a jokey or narcissistic/boastful way)

Apart from that Perry,I like it and wouldn't change anything except for starting

Drop your pants, lover.
I’m not getting any younger.


On a new line

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

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Re: [No Title Yet] (shorter version for JJ)

Post by JJWilliamson » Mon Aug 05, 2019 5:55 pm

Hi, Perry

The shorter line fosters progression, I think. I understood the action and moved effortlessly to the fine close.

Best

JJ
Long time a child and still a child

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Re: [No Title Yet] (shorter version for JJ)

Post by Perry » Mon Aug 05, 2019 6:06 pm

Thank you, Geoff and JJ. I appreciate your feedback.
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