View Full Version : A Voyage Of Darkness And Shadow.

03-05-2016, 02:19 AM
Please delete.

03-05-2016, 06:08 AM
I won't dial 911 for you; it's the poem I'm concerned for (poor lacklustre, under developed, malnourished thing) , but fear the emergency services would be too late to help ;).

This poem could be a lot darker, and less trite cliche to do the title justice.

Thanks for sharing this.

03-05-2016, 07:09 PM
Adam, welcome to AW and to the poetry forum.

You do not need to place trigger warnings on your work. If you look around the board, you'll see that many of us write on themes of loss, depression, death, etc., and although I suppose it is possible that one morning we will all decide to chuck this mortal coil and commit mass suicide, it has not happened yet, and I remain optimistic that it won't.

Indeed, you don't need an introduction at all. While sometimes (very rarely) there is some additional context that might add to the reader's appreciation or understanding, it's generally best to let the poem speak for itself.

Nor, by the way, do you need a copyright symbol. Your work is copyrighted as soon as you create it. (I'm a lawyer, for what it is worth, so I do know what I'm talking about here.) I'm afraid that the sole effect of adding the symbol on a forum like this one (where many of us share our work sans copyright symbol) is to give the impression that you consider your work to be on an exalted plane that makes it especially ripe for stealing, and therefore in need of belt-and-suspender protection. I am sure you did not mean to convey such an impression, but that is the sense it gives.

Nor need you tell us your brain is always going. I assure you that most writers' brains are not stagnant pools, but are, like yours, continually flowing in thoughts. The difficulty in writing is rarely about coming up with ideas --it's about straining out the worthy nuggets and painstakingly polishing them. All the time, I find myself scribbling ideas and lines for poems on the margins of work documents and cocktail napkins when I'm supposed to be doing something else. (And later go through and toss most of them as dribble.) But I think it's safe to assume we all do that. Again, I am certain you did not mean to imply that the rest of us are thick-headedly slogging through mental muck, but you should be aware that when you tell us how busy your brain is, it rather implies that you think this is something that sets you apart from the common herd.

In short, the trouble with an introduction such as yours is that it gives the unfortunate impression that you consider yourself and your work to be of unusual brilliance -- which in turn sets up readers to approach with an "oh, really?" Best not to do that -- but if you do, your work had better come up to that extraordinarily high mark, or you are sorely tempting readers to expound on why it falls short (when we might otherwise have remained silent or gone very gently, as we generally do with new poets).

Finally, I am sure you did not mean to offend, but understand that you will not endear yourself with your fellow poets by airily referring to poetry as "ramblings," and noting that you spin off your poems while at work. Those of us who take poetry seriously do not simply scribble out poems or blurt emotions onto a page, and we do not ramble. I generally slave more over a line of poetry than I do over a page of prose, and I think it's safe to say most who care about poetry do the same. And to be honest, it is rather annoying to those of us who care deeply about our craft to have someone imply that poems are something one spurts out while on a conference call in between drafting text messages.

Unfortunately, your poem shows that you pretty much did just spit it out between text messages. In the fourth stanza, for example, you have an obvious grammatical error that can have no artistic purpose: "There is no explosions" That alone shows that you did not put much in the way of thought or craft into your work.

You will find, if you look around at other work posted here, that this is not one of those forums where we pooh-pooh rhyme, meter, and formal structure. Many of our poets, including Kie Borsden (who commented above), enjoy working with formal structure. But working within a formal rhyme/meter scheme is not enough to make your poem sing. I could write all of my posts in rhyme without much effort -- it comes quite easily to me. But that would not make my posts poems. (It might make them doggerel, which I occasionally indulge in, but I tend to confine it to the humor forum.)

First, if you set out to use regular meter, you must rigorously stick to it. You haven't. Your meter is all over the map.

Second, and more importantly, a poem needs to do more than simply lay out cliches in a rhyming pattern. It must do more than simply tell the reader "here's what I'm feeling." It goes beyond the old "show, don't tell" maxim -- a good poem should make the reader feel the poet's emotion and see what the poet sees, via vivid imagery, strong metaphor and other nifty tools from the poet's kit. I must agree with Kie that your poem has not done this.

A niggle -- you don't need an initial cap on every line.

FYI -- If you wish to simply post your work and not receive any commentary, the place for it is Chapbook (see the top of the page). If you are seeking specific line-by-line commentary in order to improve your poem, the place for it is Poetry Critique. Both of those forums are password-protected, by the way, so you are not giving up your first publication rights by posting there (http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?256708-quot-Can-I-still-sell-my-poem-if-I-post-it-in-the-Critique-forum-quot).

This main page, as you may have gathered, is the wild west of the poetry forum. People may comment or not comment on poems posted here. You may get line-by-line critiques, you might get "I like this" or "thanks for sharing," and you might get nothing -- many simply read what is posted here and do not comment. And you might get responses like this. FYI, this section is not password protected, so if you are anxious to preserve first publication rights, this is not the best place to put your work.


If you are interested in a line-by-line crit, I will provide one.

03-05-2016, 07:40 PM
Introduction to the poet's toolkit(interesting links inside too)
Some thoughts on line caps (http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?232285-Line-Capitalisation-%96-the-final-solution)